Category Archives: mixed martial arts

RUMFORD’S HANSEN GETS LONG-AWAITED SHOT AT MMA GOLD

 

Matt Andrikut v Mike Hansen square off in MMA action from NEF 25.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Rumford, Maine (August 3, 2017) – New Mike Hansen’s dreams of becoming a mixed martial arts (MMA) champion were admittedly premature. Then they were derailed for nearly a decade by a combination of injuries, service to his country and fatherhood.

 

The teenage ambition that made Hansen believe he could conquer the world, or at least his little corner of it, never went away, though.

 

Twenty-nine months after resurrecting his career with New England Fights, Rumford’s Hansen (5-5) finally gets that coveted title shot. He will battle hometown favorite C.J. Ewer (2-0) at “NEF 30: Rumble in Bangor” this Saturday, August 5 at Cross Insurance Center for the organization’s vacant middleweight title. The card starts at 7 p.m.

Hansen, who turned 32 on July 21, says the opportunity fulfills an early goal while living and fighting in Massachusetts back in 2005.

 

“I was 19 years old and thought I had a great head on my shoulders, so I called out the (World Fighting League) champion at the time, who was John “Doomsday” Howard,” Hansen said. “I said that I wanted that belt and that I was coming after him. Knowing what I know now, he probably would have whipped the (crap) out of me.”

 

Howard went on to compete at the highest level with Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC) and is now a veteran of 37 journeys into the cage. Hansen’s career path had many more stops, starts and detours.

 

He started with six amateur wins out of the gate and won his initial professional foray with ease. The title fight will take place on the eve of the 12th anniversary of that pro debut.

 

“Being 19 years old, I was kind of cocky. I remember telling my dad nobody could compete with my wrestling,” Hansen said. “Back then, MMA hadn’t really evolved. The wrestler had the advantage over the jiu-jitsu guy. You could just hold a guy down and snuggle and hug and sweat out a win.”

 

After his first knockout loss, Hansen promised his father he would quit the sport. But he had already caught the fever, and his confidence was sky high.

 

Hansen was training for a bout at Laconia, New Hampshire’s bike week when he suffered a broken ankle two weeks before the weigh-in. He recovered and was in training for another fight when he was stabbed and beaten with a baseball bat in what could have been a fatal case of mistaken identity.

 

He remarkably walked out of the hospital a day later and soon embarked on a more structured path as a combat engineer in the United States Army. While enlisted, Hansen suffered a serious shoulder injury. Even after retirement, a return to the MMA cage seemed unlikely.

 

Then came a fateful call from an old friend and neighbor, NEF co-owner and matchmaker Matt Peterson, and the rest is history. Hansen has carved out a reputation as one who will take on any opponent in any weight class at any time, and perhaps there is no greater example than the Ewer matchup.

 

“The belts are vacant at 170, 185 and 205 (pounds). I can make weight for all those if I have enough time,” Hansen said. “I guess Peterson thought it made sense to kill two birds with one stone and put me in with Ewer at 185. Six weeks ago is when they called me, and at first they asked me about 170. I really liked the fight, but the weight didn’t make sense. I was sitting on the couch at 248.”

 

Hansen has spent most of his time in the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions.  He was glaringly outweighed in his last bout, a February loss to Ras Hylton.

 

Only once previously has he downsized to the middleweight threshold, a February 2016 loss to Zach Elkins. In the case of Ewer, who has done most of his work at 170, meeting in the middle might play to Hansen’s advantage.

 

“We’re two different styles of fighters. He’s coming up in weight and I’m coming down,” Hansen said. “He’s never been in the cage against anybody with my kind of power. When I’m hitting somebody at 200 pounds, I’m hitting them with the force of somebody who’s 245. My opponents have told me they’ve never been hit harder by a guy my size. I feel like it’s my fight to lose, as long as I don’t make any mistakes and go in there with the stamina I need to have.”

 

Hansen is confident against Ewer, who had a 5-2 amateur record with notable wins over Ricky Dexter and Crowsneck Boutin before turning pro. He knows better, however, than to underestimate any fighter out of the Young’s MMA stable.

 

“I feel like I’m the more talented fighter and that I have more tools in my tool box. But I know Young’s MMA is a great camp and that he trains with a lot of great guys,” Hansen said. “Chris (Young) finds a way to set you up to fight the fight you need to win. Look at the Pat Kelly fight (against Rafael Velado). They prepared to turn that into a kickboxing fight, and then he went out and did just that.”

 

Hansen has seen his name rise into the New England top-five conversation. Most of the fighters ahead of him have experience with larger promotions.

 

He said a win over Ewer could inspire him to travel and continuing to pursue the dream. That’s consistent with the personality he has shown through this second act of his career.

 

“I’ve been fighting the top-level guys in NEF for about the past two-and-a-half years,” Hansen said, “I always told Peterson to set me up with a guy who’s in the top 10 or just above me. I wanted to work my way up.”

 

From his days as a high school state wrestling champion at Mountain Valley High School, Hansen flaunted a distaste for winning that served him well.

 

In those days, he wore a T-shirt that read, ‘Nobody remembers second place,’ with four gold medals beneath it. Hansen’s attitude remains, but the mainstay of Berserker’s MMA out of the Greater Rumford Community Center noted that it is never only about himself.

 

“I want to win the title for all the people who have supported me and trained with me in Rumford. I also want it for my gym. We’ve done this three times in the amateurs and now we’re going to do it with a pro,” he said. “(GRCC is) just a little on-profit that helps people pursue their dreams. I’d love to hang that belt on the wall. It shows people in the community what we’re capable of here, and hopefully it gets them interested and grows the gym. That’s my goal.”

 

Tickets for “NEF 30: Rumble in Bangor” are available at CrossInsuranceCenter.com.  For more information on the fight card and event updates, please visit NewEnglandFights.com.

 

About New England Fights

New England Fights (“NEF”) is a fight events promotions company. NEF’s mission is to create the highest quality events for Maine’s fighters and fans alike. NEF’s executive team has extensive experience in combat sports management, events production, media relations, marketing, legal and advertising.

 

LFA RETURNS TO COLORADO WITH  MIDDLEWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT:

 
LFA 22 – HEINISCH vs. PEREZ

MAIN EVENT:
UNDEFEATED SUPER PROSPECT
IAN “THE HURRICANE” HEINISCH
vs.
UNDEFEATED SUPER PROSPECT
MARKUS “MALUKO” PEREZ
MIDDLEWEIGHT WORLD TITLE
CO MAIN EVENT:
GILBERT SMITH
vs.
ANDREW KAPEL
GILBERT SMITH’S FINAL FIGHT
WOMEN’S FEATURE BO

UT:
MAYCEE BARBER
vs.
MALLORY MARTIN
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 8th LIVE on AXS TV
1STBANK Center in BROOMFIELD, COLORADO
Tickets are on sale NOW through AltitudeTickets.com
HOUSTON, Texas – Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) CEO Ed Soares announced today that the promotion will crown a new middleweight champion in September when the promotion returns to Colorado.

The main event of LFA 22 will feature the top two middleweight prospects in the sport. Colorado’s own Ian “The Hurricane” Heinisch will face Brazilian dynamo and fellow undefeated prospect Markus “Maluko” Perez for the vacant LFA middleweight title. LFA 22 – Heinisch vs. Perez takes place Friday, September 8th at the 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, Colorado. The entire main card will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
“LFA will crown a new middleweight champion at LFA 22 in Colorado,” stated Soares. “Ian Heinisch and Markus Perez are the top two middleweight prospects in the sport. On September 8th, only one will walk away with their perfect record intact with the LFA middleweight title wrapped around their waist.”
Tickets for LFA 22 – Heinisch vs. Perez are available for purchase NOW at AltitudeTickets.com. You can also support your favorite fighter by purchasing your tickets at CombatTickets.com.
Heinisch (8-0) received plenty of fanfare when he signed with the LFA earlier this year. This was due to the fact that Heinisch is widely regarded as one of the top middleweight prospects in the world. The two-time Colorado state wrestling champion from Ponderosa High School lived up to media and fans’ lofty expectations, and then some, when he made his highly-anticipated LFA debut in the main event of LFA 10. Heinisch quickly dispatched the well-versed Brazilian powerhouse Lucas Rota in less than a round with a rare Ude-Garami (Keylock) from Kesa-Gatame (Scarf Hold). This positioned him at the front of the line for a title shot. The 29-year-old will now get the opportunity to fight for the vacant LFA middleweight title in front of his home crowd at LFA 22.
Perez (8-0) is perhaps the only middleweight prospect in the world that can match the intrigue surrounding Heinisch. This is due in large part to the fact that Perez has been just as dominant in his native Brazil as Heinisch has been stateside. The man known as “Maluko” will be making his highly-anticipated international MMA debut on the heels of back-to-back wins over UFC veterans Ildemar Alcântara and Paulo Thiago. Those wins saw Perez’s stock as a top prospect skyrocket as Alcântara and Thiago have a combined 20 fights in the UFC between the two of them. The 27-year-old is now eager to showcase his talents outside of Brazil for the first time. He will get that opportunity on September 8th when he fights for the vacant LFA middleweight title.
The co-main event of LFA 22 will feature the farewell fight of one of Colorado’s most beloved and accomplished fighters when Gilbert Smith gets his hands wrapped and throws down one last time in front of his adoring home crowd. The proud Coloradan has enjoyed an MMA career that has seen him reach the highest levels of the sport.
The U.S. Army veteran and Colorado Springs resident competed on two seasons of the UFC’s hit reality television series The Ultimate Fighter. Along with being a memorable cast member on TUF 17 and TUF 25, Smith competed for the UFC and Bellator, as well as both RFA and Legacy FC before the two promotions merged to form LFA at the beginning of the year. During his time with RFA, Smith won the welterweight world title.
The man standing across the Octagon from Smith at LFA 22 will be Andrew Kapel (11-6). Kapel is a longtime friend and teammate of  Benjamin Smith, who is the man that Gilbert Smith took the RFA title from two summers ago in the main event of RFA 26. Kapel, like Benjamin Smith, is a student of Greg Nelson at The Academy in Minneapolis, Minnesota and will look to exact a bit of revenge in the same building where Gilbert Smith submitted Benjamin Smith. The budding grudge match in Gilbert’s farewell fight has one more layer. Kapel submitted Smith’s teammate Adam Stroup last month in less than a round.
In the always exciting women’s strawweight division, Maycee Barber (1-0) will return to the LFA Octagon against RFA vet and fellow top prospect Mallory Martin (1-1) at LFA 22. Barber burst on to the MMA scene in June with a dominant professional MMA debut at LFA 14. Barber submitted undefeated prospect Itzel Esquivel via armbar in the first round of a bout that took place in her opponent’s hometown. Now Barber will return to the LFA Octagon in her home state. She will face a fellow Coloradan prospect in Martin who is no stranger to the 1STBANK Center in Broomfield. It was in this same venue where Martin submitted the Gilbert Smith trained Melissa Parker via Rear Naked Choke at RFA 34. Now the table is set for a showdown between the top two strawweights in “The Centennial State” as the 19-year-old Barber faces the 23-year-old Martin on the main card of LFA 22.
Currently Announced Main Card (Televised on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT):
Main Event | Middleweight Title Bout (185 lb)
– Ian Heinisch (8-0) vs. Markus Perez (8-0)
Co-Main Event | Welterweight Bout (170 lb)
– Gilbert Smith (12-6) vs. Andrew Kapel (11-6)
Women’s Strawweight Bout (115 lb)
– Maycee Barber (1-0) vs. Mallory Martin (1-1)
In September 2016, RFA and Legacy FC officials announced that they would be merging to form the premier developmental organization in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) starting in January 2017. RFA and Legacy FC have launched the careers of over 100 athletes that have reached the pinnacle of MMA by competing in the UFC.
LFA 22 will serve as the third LFA event to take place in the state of Colorado. RFA visited “The Centennial State” eight times before the merger. Further information about LFA 22 will be announced soon. The entire main card of LFA 22 will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
Please visit LFAfighting.com for bout updates and information. LFA is on Facebook at Legacy Fighting Alliance. LFA is also on Instagram at @LFAfighting and Twitter at @LFAfighting.

SECOND EVENT IN MONSTER ENERGY BELLATOR MMA FIGHT SERIES SET FOR BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY’S NASCAR RACE WEEKEND SATURDAY, AUGUST 19

 

Also, Appearances by Former Bellator Champ and Monster Energy Athlete Phil Davis and MMA Legend Dan Henderson

LOS ANGELES – Following the successful debut of the Monster Energy Bellator MMA Fight Series at the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race in May, the series returns for its second event on Saturday, August 19 next to Bristol Motor Speedway, located at the Earhart Campground, in Bristol, Tenn.

Prior to the start of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, the Monster Energy Bellator MMA Fight Series will feature exciting MMA action throughout Saturday afternoon from 4–5:30 p.m. ETAdmission to the event is free to fans.

Additionally, fans will have the opportunity to meet former Bellator light heavyweight champion and Monster Energy athlete Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis, as well as former PRIDE and STRIKEFORCE titleholder Dan “Hendo” Henderson, at the Monster Energy display in the Fan Zone on Friday, August 18 from 3-4 p.m. ET.

“Bellator’s partnership with Monster Energy has opened the door for many new and exciting opportunities,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “The Monster Energy Bellator MMA Fight Series allows us to share our brand of entertainment with an entirely different fan base. Following the success and feedback of the first event in May, we are thrilled to work together with Hans Molenkamp, Aaron Quesada and the entire Monster Energy team again to bring Bellator MMA action to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in Bristol.”

Through Bellator MMA, alongside longstanding partner Monster Energy, mixed martial arts will be included as a pre-race activation exclusively for fans in attendance. The lineup on Saturday will consist of four MMA bouts featuring some of the best regional up-and-coming talent, with the main event prospects in consideration to be signed to a multi-fight Bellator MMA contract.

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race takes place Saturday, August 19 at 7:30 p.m. ET.. Tickets to the race are available at NASCAR.com/tickets, BristolMotorSpeedway.com/tickets or by calling Bristol Motor Speedway at 1-866-415-4158.

Situated beside Bristol Motor Speedway, Earhart Campground has become a full-service facility offering spectacular camping opportunities, daily parking and tailgating sites, retail vending, corporate marketing and sponsor-hosted hospitality sites. Race fans looking to make camping reservations can visit EarhartCampground.com for more information.

Updated Monster Energy Bellator MMA Fight Series at Bristol Motor Speedway Fight Card:

Welterweight Main Event: Ben Sergent (7-0, Nashville, Tenn.) vs. Brandon Bell (7-6, Johnson City, Tenn.)

Lightweight Bout: Nick Gehrts (7-2, Knoxville, Tenn.) vs. Ken Beverly (5-2, Hazard, Ky.)

Lightweight Bout: Damir Ferhatbegovic (3-1, Knoxville, Tenn.) vs. Jonathan Pearce (4-3, Johnson City, Tenn.)

Featherweight Amateur Bout: Ahva Mayi (4-1, Nashville, Tenn.) vs. Preston Schick (6-0, Johnson City, Tenn.)

Please visit Bellator.com for details.

*Event schedule subject to change.

****

LFA HEADS TO MISSOURI WITH A  LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT WAR

LFA 21 – NOBLITT vs. BRANJÃO

 MAIN EVENT:
UNDEFEATED LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT PROSPECT
KYLE NOBLITT
vs.
UNDEFEATED LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT PROSPECT
ANTÔNIO PAULO BRANJÃO
LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT WAR
PLUS:
TOP WOMEN’S PROSPECT
KATY “RED DRAGON” COLLINS
and
LIGHTWEIGHT SHOWDOWN
T.J. BROWN vs. TREY OGDEN
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 1st LIVE on AXS TV
BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER in BRANSON, MISSOURI
Tickets are on sale NOW through CombatTickets.com
HOUSTON, Texas – Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) CEO Ed Soares announced today that the promotion will feature the sport’s top two light-heavyweight prospects when the LFA makes its first visit to Missouri on the first day of September.

The main event of LFA 21 will feature a light-heavyweight war between undefeated American prospect Kyle Noblitt and undefeated Brazilian prospect Antônio Paulo “Montanha” Branjão. LFA 21 – Noblitt vs. Branjão takes place Friday, September 1st at the Branson Convention Center in Branson, Missouri. The entire main card will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
“I am excited to bring the LFA to Missouri in September,” stated Soares. “RFA hosted four shows all over Missouri and it has proven to be one of the most talent-rich states in the country. We look forward to building on that success at LFA 21 on September 1st. Kyle Noblitt is the top light-heavyweight prospect in Missouri and he will face one of the top light-heavyweight prospects in Brazil, when he faces Antônio Paulo Branjão in the main event of LFA 21.”
Tickets for LFA 21 – Noblitt vs. Branjão are available for purchase NOW at Combattickets.com
Noblitt (8-0) is widely considered one of the top prospects in the United States at both heavyweight and light-heavyweight. After making his pro MMA debut in 2015, Noblitt unleashed a path of destruction in both weight classes much to the delight of fans in his home state and MMA pundits alike. The Missouri mauler has finished seven of the eight men he has faced, six inside of round one, and two in the same night. Noblitt was sitting cageside when the RFA visited his hometown in December and now the 27-year-old is set to headline LFA 21 in front of his home crowd as he looks to solidify his claim as the top light-heavyweight prospect in the world.
Branjão (4-0) is ready to make his highly-anticipated international MMA debut after making a name for himself in his home country of Brazil.  After dispatching his first three opponents via KO or TKO in less than a round, the man known as “Montanha” moved up to heavyweight to participate on the third season of the UFC’s hit reality television show The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil (TUF: Brazil 3). Branjão reached the quarter-finals on the show before returning to 205-pounds where he continued his winning ways against Stefano Alves. The 29-year-old now looks for his fifth stoppage win in his fifth fight when he travels to the United States to headline LFA 21.
The co-main event of LFA 21 will feature the LFA debut of the 2016 RFA Fans’ Choice Awards “Prospect of the Year” winner Katy Collins (7-2). “Red Dragon” made a spectacular RFA debut this past December at RFA 46, which was the final RFA event before RFA and Legacy FC merged to form LFA. Collins is currently ranked in the Top 5 of the AXS TV Fights Women’s Pound-For-Pound Rankings and looks to build on the momentum of a dominant win she earned last month at Bellator 181. She will make her LFA debut in her hometown of Branson, Missouri inside the same venue where she won her RFA debut eight months ago.
In the lightweight division, “Downtown” T.J. Brown (9-4) will make his LFA debut after competing three times inside the RFA Octagon. The Arkansas native is a fan favorite regardless of which state he fights in due to his wildly entertaining, all-action, style of fighting. Brown will need that experience when when he faces Trey Ogden (8-1) in the featured lightweight bout at LFA 21. The Bellator vet Ogden is a surefire prospect that trains alongside UFC stars and RFA greats James Krause and Tim Elliott in Kansas City, Missouri.
Currently Announced Main Card (Televised on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT):
Main Event | Light-Heavyweight Bout (205 lb)
– Kyle Noblitt (8-0) vs. Antônio Paulo Branjão (4-0)
Co-Main Event | Women’s Flyweight Bout (125 lb)
– Katy Collins (7-2) vs. TBD
Lightweight Bout (155 lb)
– T.J. Brown (9-4) vs. Trey Ogden (8-1)
In September 2016, RFA and Legacy FC officials announced that they would be merging to form the premier developmental organization in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) starting in January 2017. RFA and Legacy FC have launched the careers of over 100 athletes that have reached the pinnacle of MMA by competing in the UFC.
LFA 21 will be the first LFA event to take place in the state of Missouri. RFA visited the “Show Me State” four times before the merger. Further information about LFA 21 will be announced soon. The entire main card of LFA 21 will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET /6 p.m. PT.
Please visit LFAfighting.com for bout updates and information. LFA is on Facebook at Legacy Fighting Alliance. LFA is also on Instagram at @LFAfighting and Twitter at @LFAfighting.

FNU Combat Sports Show: Mayweather vs. McGregor, UFC 214 Preview

This week’s show features lots of Mayweather vs. McGregor discussion and a look back at the last two weeks in combat sports. We preview this weekend’s fights as well. Tune in to find out what Rich’s new favorite Conor McGregor insult is…and why it applies to Dana White as well. Psychic Tom gives his valuable insight and Tony the Tornado breaks down all the boxing angles in this episode.

SPIKE PRESENTS AN ENCORE PRESENTATION OF BELLATOR’S BIGGEST EVENT EVER – BELLATOR NYC: SONNEN VS SILVA

Special Broadcast on Friday, July 28 from 9-11:30pm ET/PT

 

 

LOS ANGELES – From a wild and rare double-knockdown featuring an MMA icon, to a back-and-forth battle for the lightweight title fight, to an even more shocking upset of an MMA prodigy – Bellator NYC: Sonnen vs. Silva was certainly entertaining, exciting and often unpredictable.

 

For those who missed the Pay-Per-View telecast on June 24, Spike will present a special encore presentation of this memorable event onFriday, July 28 from 9-11:30 p.m. ET/PT.

 

Emanating from Madison Square Garden in in the heart of New York, Bellator’s biggest fight card featured a double main event between fierce rivals Chael Sonnen and Wanderlei Silva, while Matt Mitrione stood toe-to-toe with the iconic Fedor Emelianenko in a heavyweight showdown for the ages. In addition, two explosive title fights took place, as Douglas Lima looked to defend his welterweight crown against Lorenz Larkin and lightweight champ Michael Chandler took on the undefeated Brent Primus. Rounding out the action, Aaron Pico made his long-awaited MMA debut against Zach Freeman in a lightweight bout and Brazilian jiu-jitsu aceNeiman Gracie put his skills on display against New York’s Dave Marfone.

LFA RETURNS TO MINNESOTA IN AUGUST

LFA 20 – CURRY vs. BARNES

MAIN EVENT:
 
CHAD “BLITZ” CURRY
vs. 
NICK “THE PHOENIX” BARNES
 
WELTERWEIGHT SHOWDOWN
 
 
CO-MAIN EVENT:
 
BOBBY “THE WOLFMAN” MOFFETT
vs.
“NASTY” NATE JENNERMAN
 
FEATHERWEIGHT WAR
 
 
PLUS:
 
Women’s MMA Pioneer
KELLY “BLOOD RED” KOBOLD
vs.
Knockout Artist
CHRISTINE “KNUCKLES” STANLEY
FRIDAY, AUGUST 25th LIVE on AXS TV
LIVE at the MYSTIC SHOWROOM in PRIOR LAKE, MINNESOTA
Tickets are on sale NOW through MysticLake.com
HOUSTON, Texas – Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) CEO Ed Soares announced today that the LFA will make its third trip to Minnesota at the end of August with a welterweight headliner and the return of two revered Minnesotans.
The main event of LFA 20 will feature a welterweight war between rising star Chad “Blitz” Curry and former RFA title challenger Nick “The Phoenix” Barnes. LFA 20 – Curry vs. Barnes takes place Friday, August 25th at the Mystic Lake Showroom in Prior Lake, Minnesota. The entire main card will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
“I’m happy to bring the LFA back to Minnesota for a third time this year”, stated Soares. “We have a great history of bringing exciting fights to the area, and this card will continue that tradition.  Both Curry and Barnes have shown to be aggressive, physical fighters, and I really want to see how this match up plays out. Mystic Lake has been a great partner and we look forward to bringing LFA 20 to the Mystic Lake Showroom on August 25th.”
Tickets for LFA 20 – Curry vs. Barnes are available for purchase NOW at MysticLake.com.
Curry (9-1) has transformed himself from one of Minnesota’s most popular fighters to one of the sport’s most exciting and promising prospects. The man aptly known as “Blitz” has decimated his last two opponents since moving up to welterweight. In fact, all nine men that he has defeated, never saw the final round. Curry is able to do this by utilizing a unique blend of technical grappling and stout ground-and-pound. The 27-year-old Minnesotan now faces a huge test as he gets set to headline his first televised event at LFA 20.
Barnes (11-2) makes his LFA debut roughly twelve months after competing for the RFA welterweight world title. The Wyoming native, who now calls San Diego, California home, has taken the time since that fight to strengthen his already formidable skill set. After coming up short in that title fight to a man who was then immediately signed to the UFC, the 26-year-old known as “The Phoenix” will look to live by the famous words of S.A. Sachs: “Hope rises like a Phoenix from the ashes of shattered dreams.” The Phoenix will look to rise again at LFA 20.
The co-main event of LFA 20 will feature a highly-anticipated match-up between two of the promotion’s top featherweightcontenders. Bobby “The Wolfman” Moffett (9-2) and “Nasty” Nate Jennerman (9-2) will face off in a high-stakes affair as the two contenders jockey for position at the top of the division. The pair of featherweight standouts share more than just identical records. They both have roots in the famed RFA promotion. Moffett who trains at The MMA LAB in Glendale, Arizona competed three times for the RFA. Meanwhile, Jennerman who trains at Roufusport in Milwaukee, Wisconsin finished his amateur career for the promotion.
The main card of LFA 20 will also feature the return of women’s MMA pioneer Kelly “Blood Red” Kobold. After a six and a half year hiatus from the sport, she will take on knockout artist Christine “Knuckles” Stanley.
Kobold (18-3-1) is one of the most respected women in the sport. She has enjoyed an illustrious professional MMA career that dates back fifteen years. A true pioneer in women’s MMA, the warrior known as “Blood Red” has been there moving behind the scenes, cutting a bloody path through the ages until suddenly, just like that, she up and disappeared in 2011. Now she is back at 125-pounds, ready to stake a claim at the top of the division.
Stanley (5-3) will be the woman waiting to welcome Kobold back to the sport she helped pioneer. The San Diego native has built a career around an explosive striking base that has earned her a reputation as one of the most feared knockout artists in the division. The RFA vet holds one of the fastest knockouts in combat sports. That knockout came in 5-seconds with a highlight reel Flying Spinning Hook Kick back in 2014. “Knuckles” has earned four of her five wins by way of KO or TKO and now looks to pick up the biggest win of her career at LFA 20.
Main Card (Televised on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT):
Main Event | Welterweight Bout (170 lb)
– Chad Curry (9-1) vs. Nick Barnes (11-2)
Co-Main Event | Featherweight Bout (145 lb)
– Bobby Moffett (9-2) vs. Nate Jennerman (9-2)
Lightweight Bout (155 lb)
– Travis Perzynski (21-9) vs. Carl Wittstock (9-1)
Women’s Flyweight Bout (125 lb)
– Kelly Kobold (18-3-1) vs. Christine Stanley (5-3)
Lightweight Bout (155 lb)
– Bobby Lee (6-1) vs. Ashkan Morvari (13-6)
Lightweight Bout (155 lb)
– Jeff Peterson (7-4) vs. Brandon Jenkins (10-4)
Bantamweight Bout (135 lb)
Mitch White (3-1) vs. Jesse Wannemacher (3-1)
In September 2016, RFA and Legacy FC officials announced that they would be merging to form the premier developmental organization in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) starting in January 2017. RFA and Legacy FC have launched the careers of over 100 athletes that have reached the pinnacle of MMA by competing in the UFC.
LFA 20 will be the third LFA event to take place in the state of Minnesota. RFA and Legacy FC hosted a combined nine events in the “Land of 10,000 Lakes” before the merger. Six of those events took place under the RFA banner inside the Mystic Lake Showroom. The entire main card of LFA 20 will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
Please visit LFAfighting.com for bout updates and information. LFA is on Facebook at Legacy Fighting Alliance. LFA is also on Instagram at @LFAfighting and Twitter at @LFAfighting.

EXPLOSIVE WELTERWEIGHT BOUT PITTING PAUL DALEY AGAINST LORENZ LARKIN ADDED TO BELLATOR 183 ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 23 IN SAN JOSE

 

LIGHTWEIGHT MATCHUP PITTING UNDEFEATED ADAM PICCOLOTTI AGAINST GOITI YAMAUCHI ALSO ADDED TO MAIN CARD

LOS ANGELES – An exciting welterweight contest between British slugger Paul Daley (39-15-2) and California’s Lorenz Larkin (18-6, 1 NC), as well as a compelling lightweight bout pitting Adam Piccolotti (9-0) against Goiti Yamauchi (21-3) have been added to Bellator 183: Henderson vs. Pitbull on Saturday, September 23 at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif.

That evening, SAP Center in San Jose will also play host to Bellator Kickboxing 7, which features a welterweight world title main event with current champ Karim Ghajji (97-13-1) set to defend his title against Raymond Daniels (11-3).

Bellator 183: Henderson vs. Pitbull will be broadcast live and free on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App. Bellator Kickboxing 7: Ghajji vs. Daniels will air on SPIKE immediately following Bellator 184: Dantas vs. Caldwell on October 6. Tickets for the event are on sale now at Ticketmaster.com.

A veteran of 56 professional fights, Paul “Semtex” Daley will look to once again showcase his explosive and dangerous power against Lorenz Larkin. With nine of his last 10 wins coming by way of knockout, including an emphatic flying knee KO against Brennan Ward at Bellator 170 in January, Daley will look to re-establish himself as a top contender in Bellator’s stacked welterweight division with a win on September 23.

 

Larkin enters the bout against Daley with an equally impressive arsenal of strikes and power. With 11 of 18 wins coming by way of knockout, the Riverside, Calif. native comes into the event following a must-see title bout against Douglas Lima at Bellator NYC in June, a fight that marked “The Monsoon’s” promotional debut. With marquee wins over Robbie Lawler, Santiago Ponzinibbio, Jorge Masvidal and Neil Magny to his name, Larkin will look to add Paul Daley to his long list of defeats on his way to reaffirming his status as the division’s top contender.

 

Fighting out of Half Moon Bay, Calif., Piccolotti will enter the cage for the first time in 2017 following his unanimous decision victory over Brandon Girtz last November at Bellator 165. The 28-year-old lightweight began his professional career on the regional MMA scene where he collected four consecutive victories, including a trio of finishes before joining forces with the Viacom-owned promotion. “AP” has continued his success with Bellator MMA, earning five straight wins over competitors in the stacked lightweight division, including three submission finishes.

 

Coming off a win against Valeriu Mircea at Bellator 168, the 24-year-old Yamauchi, who trains out of Anjo, Japan, will continue his run in the lightweight division after making the jump to 155-pounds in 2016. In his career, the Yamauchi has an incredible 17 submission victories among his 21 career victories and holds wins against Ryan Couture, Isao Kobayashi and Mike Richman.

Updated Bellator 183: Henderson vs. Pitbull Fight Card

Lightweight Main Event: Benson Henderson (24-7) vs. Patricky “Pitbull” Freire (17-8)

Heavyweight Co-Main Event: Roy Nelson (23-14) vs. Javy Ayala (10-5)

Welterweight Main Card Bout: Paul Daley (39-15-2) vs. Lorenz Larkin (18-6, 1 NC)

Lightweight Main Card Bout: Adam Piccolotti (9-0) vs. Goiti Yamauchi (21-3)

Lightweight Main Card Bout: Aaron Pico (0-1) vs. TBA

Updated Bellator Kickboxing 7: Ghajji vs. Daniels Fight Card

Welterweight Kickboxing World Title Main Event: Karim Ghajji (97-13-1) vs. Raymond Daniels (11-3)

 

****

Alexander Volkov: Mikhail Zayats is now hungry for battles, I’m looking forward to his triumphant victory.

M-1 Challenge 82, Aug. 5, in Helsinki, Finland
(MMA heavyweight star Alexander Volkov recently spoke about the preparation of his teammate, Mikhail Zayats (22-8-0, M-1: 12-5-0), for his M-1 Challenge 82 main event fight vs. Marcus “Caveman” Vanttinen (24-6-0, M-1: 2-2-0), August 5,  in Helsinki, Finland.  This Q & A story appeared online at mixfight.ru.)

 (L-R) — World-class Russian MMA fighters Sergei Kharitonov, Mikhail Zayats and Alexander Volkov from a recent training session

You have been training on the same team for so many years. How would you describe Mikhail as an athlete?

Volkov: “He works very hard as a fighter, completes all workouts to the end, and is among the last to leave the gym.”
 
What did you learn from him during sparring and training sessions?
Volkov: “How to work to the utmost extent, both in training and in combat. When I watch Mikhail train, he inspires me to work harder and not to be lazy.. We always have small competitions while training and we push each other to work even harder.”
 
Which of you is more helpful to preparing for battle?
Volkov: “When Michael had no fights, he helped me a lot, of course. In my training camp, he was like a wrestling coach, helping me work on physical exercises as well. I would say that during these last few years, he was more involved in my training than I was in his. But, now he has an upcoming fight and I’m fully involved in his preparations. Moreover, his future opponent is 6 ft. 4 inches tall. So, I imitate his opponent’s style to help Misha prepare for the fight.”
 
What prediction do you have Mikhail Zayats’ upcoming fight?
Volkov: “I personally hope for the best. I expect him to end his fight with a bright victory, by knockout or submission. Although this won’t be an easy fight for him because his last fight was a while ago (Feb. 28, 2014,). I know from my own experience that even a one-year gap between two fights can make it very hard to show your best fighting qualities. Mikhail has a huge motivation now. He is very hungry for battles and victories too. So, I’m waiting for the triumphant victory of Mikhail Zaytz.”
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M-1 Challenge 82: August 5, 2017 in Helsinki, Finland

LFA RETURNS TO MMA HOTBED IN SOUTH DAKOTA WITH LFA 19: MICHAUD vs.RODRIGUES

 MAIN EVENT:
“BULLDAWG”
DAVID MICHAUD
vs.
“BAD BOY”
CIRO RODRIGUES
 
WELTERWEIGHT WAR
FRIDAY, AUGUST 18th LIVE on AXS TV
SANFORD PENTAGON in SIOUX FALLS, SD
 
Tickets are on sale NOW through Ticketmaster.com
HOUSTON, Texas – Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) CEO Ed Soares announced today that the promotion will continue its tradition of MMA excellence in South Dakota at LFA 19. This is a rich and exciting history that began three years ago at RFA 17, which served as the state’s first sanctioned MMA event.
The main event of LFA 19 will feature a welterweight war between three-time UFC vet David “Bulldawg” Michaud and Brazilian powerhouse Ciro “Bad Boy” Rodrigues. LFA 19 – Michaud vs. Rodrigues takes place Friday, August 18th at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The entire main card will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
“LFA 19 will add to an exciting MMA history in South Dakota that began three summers ago with the RFA,” stated Soares. “We brought the first sanctioned MMA event to the state at RFA 17, we hosted the first MMA world title fight in the state, and ten of the fighters that competed for us in South Dakota have gone on to fight in the UFC.”
Tickets for LFA 19 – Michaud vs. Rodrigues are available for purchase NOW at Ticketmaster.com. You can also support your favorite fighter by purchasing your tickets at CombatTickets.com.
Michaud (11-3) is one of the most beloved and successful fighters to hail from the state of South Dakota. Born and raised in Pine Ridge, South Dakota on the western side of the state, Michaud won a state title in wrestling for Pine Ridge High School during his senior season. He went on to wrestle at the NCAA Division I level for South Dakota State University (SDSU) before crossing over into MMA. The man known as “Bulldawg” has competed at the highest level of MMA as well. Michaud was a contestant on the sixteenth season of the UFC’s hit reality show The Ultimate Fighter (TUF 16) and fought three times for the UFC. Since leaving the UFC, Michaud has earned dominant wins for the RFA and LFA. The MMA LAB product now returns to his home state in the main event of LFA 19.
Rodrigues (20-7) has run roughshod over the MMA scene in Brazil for the past 11 years. The Brazilian known as “Bad Boy” made his professional MMA debut when he was only 17-years-old. He has since made an indelible mark on the fight scene in his home country. The Nova União trained fighter won one of Brazil’s most prestigious titles, when he captured the Jungle Fight world title in 2015. That win came during an impressive streak, which has seen Rodrigues win seven of his last eight fights over the past four years. Rodrigues is now looking to make his name known on a global scale when makes his highly-anticipated international debut on August 18th. That will happen when he faces his toughest and most accomplished opponent to date in the main event of LFA 19.
LFA 19 will continue a rich and fascinating history of MMA greatness in the state of South Dakota. This history began three summers ago at RFA 17. That event was the first sanctioned MMA event in the state’s history. RFA 17 hosted the first two world title fights in South Dakota history and also served as the first MMA event in the state that was televised worldwide. RFA 37 was the final RFA event in the state of South Dakota and it was featured on UFC President Dana White’s hit reality show Dana White: Lookin’ For A Fight. Five fighters from that event were signed to the UFC and another two signed with Bellator. That includes every fighter that won on the main card and another fighter that won on the undercard.
RFA visited South Dakota a total of four times and produced an incredible amount of talent at those four events. Ten fighters went on to compete for the UFC and five more would go on to fight for Bellator. Christos Giagos, Luke Sanders, Devin Clark, Geane Herrera, Khalil Rountree, Matthew Lopez, Terrion Ware, Jordan Johnson, Joe Gigliotti, and Brian Camozzi are the ten fighters that competed for the RFA in South Dakota before signing with the UFC. Justin Lawrence, Mark Dickman, Francisco France, Leandro Higo, and Logan Storley are the five fighters that competed for the RFA in South Dakota before signing with Bellator.
Currently Announced Main Card (Televised on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT):
Main Event | Welterweight Bout (170 lb)
– David Michaud (11-3) vs. Ciro Rodrigues (20-7)
Feature Bout | Welterweight Bout (170 lb)
– Clarence Jordan (9-3-1) vs Marcus Edwards (12-5)
In September 2016, RFA and Legacy FC officials announced that they would be merging to form the premier developmental organization in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) starting in January 2017. RFA and Legacy FC have launched the careers of over 100 athletes that have reached the pinnacle of MMA by competing in the UFC.
LFA 19 will serve as the second LFA event to take place in the state of South Dakota. RFA visited “The Mount Rushmore State” four times before the merger. That includes RFA 17, which was the first sanctioned MMA event to take place in the state of South Dakota. Further information about LFA 19 will be announced soon. The entire main card of LFA 19 will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.
Please visit LFAfighting.com for bout updates and information. LFA is on Facebook at Legacy Fighting Alliance. LFA is also on Instagram at @LFAfighting and Twitter at @LFAfighting.