If you’re synced up to our calendar, you probably noticed that this weekend has a LOT of MMA to consume, but with so much to choose from you might be wondering where to start. Well, thankfully we have Mr. Bitter the @MMAWizzard here to give us all some insight on some fighters to watch.
Tachi PF 31, Thursday. (California)
-FW, Tyler Diamond (7-0): Tyler is a solid wrestler, very strong, able to slam his opponents to the mat easily. On top, he has very good ground and pound and solid top control. On the feet, he has speed and power, but everything he does is to set up the takedown. For a better description of Diamond, I wrote about him as one of my prospects of the week HERE. He fights Nathan Stolen (6-0) who I can’t find much on, but is undefeated as well.
-HW, Chris Lewis (1-0): Only 1-0 as a pro he had a successful amateur career going 6-0. Lewis has a background in high school wrestling. His wrestling background shows in his fights he is able to explode forward with the double leg or just using his strength and throwing his opponents to the mat also his counter wrestling is very good. On top, he will stay there he is very heavy, very powerful with his ground and pound and has also shown a chain of submission grabbing the neck or the arm for a kimura/key lock. He is still a green fighter but he is on the right path to be a relevant fighter. He fights Van Palacio (4-1) who is a very slow and sloppy fighter. Lewis shouldn’t have a problem.
Fight Nights Global 65, Friday. (Kazakhstan)
-WW, Georgiy Kichigin (14-5): I’m not too confident on his striking, but his wrestling is very good, and his grappling is perfect. He has great hips, can attack off his back all day. He usually doesn’t stay on his back too long, and if so he is very dangerous. On top, he knows how to pass guard easy and transition into mount, where he does strike, but is mainly setting up submissions. He fights Gadzhimurad Khiramagomedov (5-1) who seems to be a pretty good prospect as well. He has solid position grappling and has decent striking, but I think if the fight hits the mat, and I’m sure it will, Georgiy should be the favorite.
-BW, Ruslan Serikpulov (11-1): He has good kickboxing, very hard kicks and throws from different angles but is mainly a grappler. He has good wrestling his entrances to his takedowns are perfect but its the work he does on top that is really well done. He is a good position grappler and can attack any limb for submissions. He fights Akhmend Musakaev (4-0) who has no footage but is undefeated all 4 finishes by TKO.
-Fly, Shajidul Haque (9-2): A very under-rated Flyweight prospect that is just as good as many in the UFC today. His only 2 losses are against two other solid fighters; Paul Marin and Rany Saadeh. Haque is very solid all around and can take the fight anywhere. His movement though is phenomenal, he moves side to side, throwing feints, kind of reminiscent of TJ Dillashaw. He has striking, kickboxing with power in his hands and of course a lot of speed. Overall a very good fighter. He fights Tagir Ulanbekov (5-0) who is alright but in my opinion, I think Haque puts on a clinic here.
M-1 Challenge 77, Friday. (Russia)
-MW, Artem Frolov (8-0): Frolov is at best when utilizing his wrestling. He is a very strong and powerful fighter. Once he gets his hands together he can elevate you and put you on your ass, and hasn’t had a problem getting guys at all in his career. On top, he is excellent, very good control and a big submission threat. He has had 2 guillotines, an armbar, and a triangle proving his skill. He doesn’t spend much time on the feet, though sometimes I wish he would; he has power and has hurt many of his opponents with his hands. He fights Talekh Nadzhafadz (4-1) and I would be surprised if Frolov lost this fight.
Bellator 179, Friday. (UK)
-FW, Diego Barbosa (3-0): A very quick and explosive fighter with legit finishing ability. On the outside, he is dynamic and he has good kickboxing, lunges forward with big strikes. He has finishes with a headkick, flying knee, and a huge overhand right showing how diverse he really is. Diego also shows glimpses of good takedown ability, getting trip takedowns and slinging his opponents to the mat, and has shows a bit of a submission game. Overall I see no weakness in this guy. He fights Salih Kulucan (4-5) who is low leverl. Barbosa should smoke this guy.
-MW, Mike Shipman (9-1): After losing his first pro fight he has gone on to win the following 9, finishing all 9, 7 of them in the 1st round. He is a threat everywhere. He has very good wrestling, perfect timing along with the strength he possesses. Getting body locks and slamming his opponent to the mat. On top, he has very heavy control, and has a knack for snagging the neck winning 4 of his submissions by choke. On the feet, Shipman has big power in his hands enough to end the fight in one punch or sit his opponent on his ass. Overall a very good fighter. He fights Marcin Prosto (4-3) who is no good. Shipman is just better everywhere.
-LW, Alfie Davis (7-1): He has a background in kickboxing at the age of 16 he became the British Kickboxing Champion and won the Silver medal in 2009 and 2010 in the European and world kickboxing championship. His mma career has been very impressive and despite his kickboxing background he holds 3 submission wins he has very good jiu-jitsu he attacks very well off his back and his ability to change positions and wind up on top is very well done. Obviously, he is good on the feet he holds two highlight reel knockouts a knee and a spectacular rare ax kick knockout. His reaction time is perfect knowing when his opponents are going come in, this guy is a real talent. He fights Jay Dods (6-0)…
-LW, Jay Dods (5-0): He has some good wrestling but in his stand-up that is where he is very dangerous. He throws a lot of heat in everything he throws, has knockouts by punch and headkick.
STFC 42, Friday. (Texas)
-FW, Gabriel Silva (6-0): The younger brother of UFC fighter Erick Silva. He really proved he is a top prospect when he beat fellow Polish prospect Kamil Lebowski. Gabriel is improving each fight, quickly getting better. On the feet, he is a very good striker, marching forward firing right hook after left hook, over and over again with a lot power and excellent precision. He is always moving forward when striking, but he can also shoot in and get the takedown very well. On top, he knows how to pass guard and transition to better positions but can unload ground and pound also. Overall a solid all around fighter with an extensive toolset. He fights Jeff Campbell (0-1) I’m about 100% sure Silva wins this.
Titan FC 44, Friday. (US Southeast)
-Fly, Jose Torres (4-0): Torres might only be 4-0 as a pro but he has a 17-0 amateur record, he has tons of experience. In his stand up his hand speed is crazy good, but it’s his accuracy that can really put a hurting on his opponent with huge power. His ability to slam you down to the mat and have control is very good, getting into mount easily and looking for the submission. Torres also has the cardio to go the distance. In a young fighter is very promising. He fights Farkhad Sharipov (17-7) who is good but Torres is just another level.
-WW, William Starks (1-0): Only 1-0 as a pro but like Torres he had many amateur fights going 15-1. Starks was very successful in his amateur career being the IMMAF 2015 and 2016 world champion. He is a very strong, athletic fighter, his wrestling showing nice timing and athleticism. On top he is solid, he has won by tko and submission, but really is more of a grinder. On the feet, its still a work in progress. Explosive, pretty great kicks, and in the clinch he has a lot of power in his elbows. He fights Michael Cora (3-0) who has a lot of power but is very sloppy and not too technical at all.
LFA 12, Friday. (Minnesota)
-LW, Bobby Lee (6-0): He started off his career being mainly a wrestler, but he has improved leaps and bounds. His striking growing to where you would never believe he started off as a wrestler. In his striking he has shown some great accuracy with his right hand, and behind that a lot of power as well. He throws combinations with his strikes very well and mixes all that in with his wrestling bread and butter. On top, he does everything you would expect he moves well, he gets dominate position, he uses a lot of ground and pound. and has submission skills. He fights Jeff Peterson who isn’t all too good. I believe Lee has another impressive showing.
ACB 61, Saturday. (Russia)
-LW, Abdul-Aziz Abdulvakhabov (14-1): He is the current ACB 155 champion. The only loss of his career was his first pro fight, currently on a 14 fight win streak. He’s a very versatile fighter all around. He has the stopping power in both his kicks and hands which he uses to pick his opponents apart. He has good wrestling with even better counter wrestling. Top that off with a good ground game, skillful submissions, and his ground and pounds. It’s hard to find a weakness in this guy. He fights Andrey Koshkin (16-5) who is dangerous on the feet so I’m thinking Abdul needs to take this fight down.
Invicta FC 23, Saturday.(Kansas)
-WFly, Agnieszka Niedzwiedz (8-0): She is very tough, she can take hits, and is always going forward throwing punches in bunches. She throws a lot of volume and moves in and out very well and she is also a good wrestler. She has good timing on her takedowns and is solid on the mat with very good slick jiu-jitsu. She fights Vanessa Porto (18-7) who is a solid vet so this will be a big test for Agnieszka.
WFCA, Saturday. (Russia)
M-1 Challenge 78, Sunday. (Russia)
-LW, Damir Ismagulov (10-2): A very excellent striker and kickboxer, completely at home fighting on the feet. He is very diverse in his attacks. Flying knees and spinning kicks which are un-telegraphed and very quick. He stays on the outside mostly and fires his kicks and long range strikes with a lot of power in his hands, getting many knockdowns in his career. He also has a ground game, decent wrestling and good at taking the back but is at home on the feet. He fights Maxim Divnich (13-2) who is the toughest test in the career of Damir.