Guto Inocente is a natural heavyweight but moves like a middleweight, even a welterweight, if you consider the similarities between his spinning kick attacks and those of former welterweight contender Raymond Daniels.
Seeing a man of Inocente's size pull off some of the kick trickery he does is very impressive. His speed, balance and fluidity are all excellent. In his debut at GLORY 27 CHICAGO he managed to knock Demoreo Dennis out with a spinning heel kick but here in Los Angeles he was facing a much more seasoned opponent in the shape of Brian Douwes.
Douwes came in on just over a week's notice due to Chi Lewis-Parry breaking his left hand and being forced to pull out. He did not have a full camp behind him but is always in training due to how regularly he competes, so he was able to step up and take the slot. However, his gas tank obviously was not at full competition level and that became obvious after the first round.
The gameplan from Douwes side was to walk Inocente down, deny him space and work with traditional high/low Dutch kickboxing combinations. But from the second round onwards he was forced to be conservative with his energy and that let Inocente have all the space he wanted. A kicking clinic followed, with Inocente launching and landing some rare techniques, including an Andy Hug-style spin kick to the thigh.
Douwes never relented in his forward pressure though, which meant he would frequently end up tieing up with Inocente. More than once he fell forward as he initiated the clinch, making him look like he was attempting a double-leg takedown. One such instance prompted Inocente to sprawl his bodyweight on top of him, the correct response to such an attack in wrestling, drawing a laugh from the crowd.
The fight itself was no laughing matter though, as despite his fading gas tank Douwes remained a hard-hitter who Inocente could not afford to take lightly. The impact of Inocente's kicks was also massive, the sound of their impact reverberating around the Citizen Bank Arena.
By the final round the fight was obviously in the bag for Inocente and only a knockout from Douwes could win the fight for him. But the Dutchman's explosive capability wasn't there and it never materialized. Inocente took the unanimous decision win to go 2-0 in GLORY and continue towards his stated aim of challenging heavyweight champion Rico Verhoeven.