After four straight finishes on the main card at Friday night’s Legacy Fighting Alliance 23 in Bossier City, Louisiana, Andrea Lee had something to live up to. Facing the mostly unknown Jamie Thorton, KGB Lee (the nickname “KGB” comes from her supposedly Russian looks, despite Lee originally hailing from Texas and residing in Louisiana), needed a statement win on a night full of them. Not surprisingly, she did not disappoint.
Lee, defending her LFA women’s flyweight championship for the first time, ate a couple of hard leg kicks early in the opening frame, a statement from Thorton that she would not go quietly into the night. KGB Lee, however, soon began getting the better of the exchanges, utilizing her arsenal of kicks, Thai clinches, and superior striking ability. Towards the end of the first round, a crisp left hook connected with Thorton, knocking her senseless. Somehow she survived, only to eat a high side kick to the throat which knocked her on her back. Again finding the will to carry on, she would survive the first round despite eating numerous knees from the clinch, not to mention some nasty elbows.
It wasn’t long into the second round, however, before Lee found her finish. After some early success from KGB, Thorton managed to wrap her arm around Lee’s neck, looking for a guillotine choke. As the fighters fell to the canvas, however, Lee was able to land on top, secure side control, and after breaking free of Thorton, latch on to her arm and get her leg in position for a kimura. It was mere moments before the challenger was forced to tap, and with that, KGB Lee had her first successful title defense.
The win will likely bring about continued talk of Lee moving to the UFC, which is currently in the process of launching a women’s flyweight division. The LFA and Invicta FC star told us earlier this year that she’d rather sign direct to the promotion rather than go through The Ultimate Fighter 26, tryouts for which came just days after her last Invicta fight.
Also on the LFA 23 card, welterweight champ Derrick Krantz made his first title defense, against James Nakashima. A pair of low blows and an eye poke from Nakashima halted the action, and seemed to prevent Krantz from finding his rhythm. Ultimately, the fight would go the distance, with Krantz winding up on the wrong side of a split decision.
James Nakashima, now LFA’s new welterweight champ, moved to a perfect 8-0 with the victory. Krantz’s corner was livid after the result, pointing to the fouls from Nakashima as a major factor in the bout.
Elsewhere on the card, Sabina Mazo continued her march towards becoming the next women’s flyweight star, improving to a perfect 4-0. The Colombian Queen finished off opponent Linsey Williams via head kick late in the first round of their flyweight battle. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Mazo and Lee cross paths some day, though it may come on a bigger stage if both jump to the UFC at some point.
Legacy Fighting Alliance 23 Main Card Results:
James Nakashima def. Derrick Krantz (c) by split decision
Andrea Lee (c) def. Jamie Thorton by submission (kimura), Round 2, 2:54
Ryan Spann def. LeMarcus Tucker by submission (rear-naked choke), Round 2, 2:55
Bryan Billiot def. Brandon Shavers by submission (heel hook), Round 2, 3:07
Sabina Mazo def. Linsey Williams by KO (head kick), Round 1, 4:26
Peter Stanonik def. Kendrik Williams by KO (punch), Round 2, 4:18
Zach Albritton def. Berto Grimaldo by KO (punch), Round 2
Spencer Flores def. Ariel Jaurez by submission (armbar), Round 1