The MMAWizzard’s Prospect of the Week: Team Alpha Male’s Tyler Diamond

Sacramento’s Team Alpha Male is one of the strongest gyms for developing lighter-weight wrestling talent, and the squad’s latest featherweight prospect Tyler Diamond shows many of the traits that fans have come to expect from TAM representatives. Diamond’s intense takedown game sets up the North Dakota State University alum’s trademark ground-and-pound assault, which he’s used to score TKO finishes in five of his seven pro fights. Read on to get to know more about Tyler Diamond and watch footage from some of the 145 pounder’s early-career performances.

Tyler Diamond by the Numbers

5’7″, 145 pounds

Fighting out of Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, California

26 years old

Undefeated as a pro at 7-0, undefeated as an amateur at 7-0

5 KOs/TKOs

Fightmatrix #154 ranked featherweight

Twitter handle: @TylerD1amond

Tyler Diamond Tapology page

Tyler Diamond’s Career So Far

Pro debut: Chad McEwen, 0-6 (Gladiator Challenge, 3/2015). No video footage available, but this was a great way to debut as Diamond won the fight in just nine seconds and with only one punch.

2nd pro fight: Matt Goff, 2-14 (King of the Cage, 10/2015). No video footage for this one either, but again Tyler won by TKO in the 1st round.

3rd pro fight: Jimmy Jones, 4-5 (West Coast FC 16, 1/2016). This was Diamond’s first real test against a decent opponent with six more professional fights on his record. Not much happened in the first half of the round besides Diamond holding Jones against the cage for a long period of time before they were separated by the ref. After the break Diamond caught a kick from Jones and ended up getting on top and stayed on top for the rest of the round. He managed to work his way to side control and land some very good ground-and-pound. 2nd round, Diamond used his striking skills to get on the inside and spring a double leg on Jones that he finished by lifting and slamming him the mat. Once again Diamond stayed on top for the entire round and landed constant ground and pound including heavy punches, hammerfists, and elbows. At the end of the 2nd round Tyler briefly took the back and tried for the RNC but ran out of time. 3rd round, Jones was visibly gassed so Diamond quickly closed the distance and shot in for the double leg. Again he lifted Jones and slammed his to the mat, hurting Jones badly.  Diamond postured up and landed heavy ground and pound and the ref stepped in to give Tyler Diamond his third TKO win 30 seconds into round number three.

4th pro fight: Tyrone Henderson, 3-2 (King of the Cage, 3/2016). No video footage is available for this fight, but he won by TKO in the 3rd round.

5th pro fight: Edward Thommes, 4-2 (GKO 7, 8/2016). When this fight took place it was a matchup of undefeated 4-0 prospects. Diamond started off pumping his jab and using a lot of feints but surprisingly it was Thommes who shot for a takedown. Diamond sprawled and wound up on top briefly after tieing up the leg and head nicely. Diamond scored another brief takedown, getting the body lock and tearing Thommes down to the mat for just a second before he scrambled to his feet. Diamond closed the distance well and had Thommes against the cage where he landed heavy unanswered right hands to the side of the head. Then as the first round ended Thommes started finding his range, defending the takedown and getting the better of the exchanges. 2nd round, Diamond started off by landing heavy strikes and winging punches with both hands that really tested the chin on Thommes. Thommes eventually shot for a takedown but Diamond sprawled, got the body lock, and again got the takedown briefly. Once they were back to the feet Diamond was landing well but was more focused on finding the takedown, which he was able to get at the end of the round. 3rd round, Diamond shot in for a very nice and deep double leg but somehow Thommes was able to defend and separate. Both were visibly gassed but Diamond was landing the bigger strikes mainly with his right hand at this point. At the end of the round, Thommes got a takedown briefly and Diamond fished for a guillotine but it wasn’t a serious threat so late in the fight. In the end all three judges saw the bout for Tyler Diamond, who earned a unanimous decision in his first fight that went the distance.

6th pro fight: Cody Walker, 8-6 (GKO 8, 11/2016). Despite not having a great looking record Kings MMA’s Cody Walker is definitely Diamond’s toughest opponent to date, as he holds wins over capable regional fighters Scott Heckman, Kalvin Hackney, and Treston Thomison and his losses are to very good featherweights like AJ McKee, JC Cottrell, RIcardo Ramos, and Steve Garcia. These two closed the distance early and as Walker went to throw a knee Diamond hooked the leg and dumped him to the mat. On top, Diamond got mount for awhile and as Walked tried to roll out Diamond went for a nice armbar but Walker was able to squirm out and get back to the feet. Diamond again quickly got the body lock and scored the takedown where he stayed on top for the last 30 seconds. 2nd round, Diamond landed a big looping right hand before lunging forward for the double leg, scooping Walker up, and slamming him down into side control. Once on top, Diamond showed solid control and eventually locked up a deep arm triangle but he gave it up to pass into mount and lost the position. Once back on the feet both men were throwing with a lot of heat and connecting before Diamond closed distance and dumped Walker to the mat one more time at the bell. 3rd round, despite being on the wrong end of a big height difference Diamond was landing many right and left hooks on the chin of Walker before going back to Plan A and slamming Walker into side control. Diamond managed to keep the feet mostly on the ground the rest of the way and the fight ended with Diamond holding Walker against the cage and raining down punches at the bell. This was another dominant 15 minute performance from Tyler Diamond, and he earned another unanimous decision nod for his efforts.

7th pro fight: Ran Weathers, 18-26 (GKO 9, 3/2017). Ran Weathers used to be a decent regional journeyman, but since the start of 2014 he’s dropped 11 straight fights to pretty good regional fighters. As Ran quickly closed the distance Diamond got the takedown but Ran was able to quickly spring back to his feet. Diamond worked Ran against the fence and landed a nice series of elbows that up Weathers’ face. Once they separated Diamond scored another brief takedown, and as Ran was getting back to his feet Tyler nailed him with some punches and a very hard knee to the ribs. Diamond smelled blood and pressed Ran against the cage where he unleashed a flurry of punishment including uppercuts, knees, and a huge left hand that dropped Ran as the ref stepped in to award Diamond the TKO win at the 1:51 mark of round one.

Overall: Diamond is a wrestling-first fighter in the true Team Alpha Male mold. Most of his takedowns come from his talent for elevating his opponent and powerfully slamming them down to the mat. He has shown the ability to shoot in for double legs, timing his entrances very well, and he also likes to get his takedowns by dragging opponents down against the cage. Tyler’s best weapon is his ground and pound, as he is good at constantly throwing punches from short distance no matter what position he’s in on the mat. On the feet, he does get a bit wild at times but he has power and speed in his hands when he decides to use it. Everything he does on the feet is primarily a set up for getting inside where he shows off very solid clinch work including good punches and knees. Diamond is only getting better each fight and at this point, it wouldn’t hurt for him to stay with Global Knockouts as it’s a solid promotion with many promising starts. I wouldn’t complain if he was signed up by a big promotion now, but he’s only 26 with a few more areas to develop and by next year I think this guy will be even better prepared for fighting top shelf competition.

 

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