Today’s fight round-up begins with the UFC’s first trip to Ohio since ‘Rampage’ Jackson and Keith Jardine were headlining UFC 96.
UFC Fight Night 40
For the first time in nearly five years the UFC is heading back to the Buckeye State, and they’ve already pinned four fights for the May 10 show. The main event hasn’t been announced but a featherweight match between Nik Lentz and Manny Gamburyan will be high on the card.
Lentz (24-6-2) split his last six fights and looks to recover from a unanimous decision loss to Chad Mendes at UFC on Fox 9. The Minnesota native needs a spark after failing to upset the UFC’s No.1 contender in the featherweight division.
Meanwhile, Gamburyan (13-8) is looking for anything to keep his MMA career going. Ronda Rousey’s assistant coach on The Ultimate Fighter 18 debuted in 1999 and joined the UFC in 2007, losing to Nate Diaz on The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale. More recently, Gamburyan lost via unanimous decision to Dennis Siver at UFC 168.
The Ultimate Fighter 3 cast member Ed Herman faces Rafael Natal in a middleweight matchup. The two were supposed to meet at UFC 167 but injuries hampering other events forced Natal to take Lyoto Machida’s spot at Fight Night 31.
Natal (17-5-1) lost the replacement fight against Tim Kennedy and snapped a three-match winning streak after getting knocked out near the end of the first round. Herman (21-10) has found success once in his last four fight, a split decision win over Trevor Smith at UFC on FOX 8. Otherwise, Herman has lost disappointing to decisions to Thales Leites and Jacare Souza, and he would have another were it not for Jake Shields’ failed post-UFC 150 drug test.
Ben Wall takes on Justin Salas in a lightweight matchup. Salas (11-5) has lost two of his last three fight, including a Fight Night 32 match with Thiago Tavares. Salas succumbed to a rear-naked choke halfway through the first round. Wall (7-1) made his UFC debut at Fight Night 33, losing to Alex Garcia by knockout.
Soa Palelei and Ruan Potts round out the announced Fight Night 40 matches. Palelei (20-3) carries a 10-fight winning streak that dates back to his days with Australian Fighting Championship and victories over Pat Barry and Nikita Krylov are his first under the UFC banner. The relatively unknown Potts (8-1) makes his UFC debut after spending his fight career in South Africa.
All were confirmed by UFC affiliated Twitter Accounts.
UFC Fight Night 39
Just prior to the Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira/Roy Nelson main event, former Strikeforce lightweight champion Clay Guida takes on UFC newcomer Tatsuya Kawajiri. It will be the UFC’s first trip to Abu Dhabi since April 2010.
Guida’s (30-14) storied UFC run may be near its end. The No. 9 ranked featherweight has lost three of four fights, most recently losing to Mendes at UFC 164. To his credit, Guida is one of two men to have beaten UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis.
Kawajiri (33-7-2) spent over 12 years with Japanese MMA before debuting with the UFC earlier this year. He choked out Sean Soriano at UFC Fight Night 34 and currently holds the last spot in the promotion’s featherweight rankings.
Sources confirmed the news of the verbal agreement to FOX Sports
UFC Fight Night 38
Michel Prazeres is replacing Gleison Tibau on the UFC Fight Night 38 fight card after the Brazilian suffered an undisclosed injury.
Prazeres (17-1) will battle Mairbak Taisumov in the March 23 event after suffering his first career loss to Paulo Thiago at UFC on FX 8. He bounced back four months later with a split decision win over Jesse Ronson.
The 25-year-old Taisumov (21-4) won his UFC debut last month, edging Tae Hyun Bang and extending his winning streak to four in a row. In 25 professional bouts, it was his first decided by the judges’ scorecards.
UFC officials announced this bout.
The Ultimate Fighter Nations Finale
Two fights have been announced leading up to the UFC’s first event in Quebec City.
Dustin Kimura and George Roop will meet in a bantamweight bout. Kimura (11-1) has been near unbeatable in his four-year MMA career. After losing his first professional fight to Mitch Gagnon at UFC 165, Kimura rebounded with an armbar victory over Jon Delos Reyes this past month.
Roop (14-10-1) has lost four of his last seven fights and will try to shake off a TKO loss to Francisco Rivera at UFC Fight Night 31. The loss snapped his two-fight winning streak.
Semi-professional hockey player Steve Bosse signed with the UFC and will fight Ryan Jimmo at the finale. Bosse (10-1) has ventured through multiple Canadian promotions, most notably defeating Houston Alexander in 2011. Jimmo (18-3) has split his four fights in the UFC and got knocked out by Jimi Manuwa last October after suffering a leg injury.
@UFCNews confirmed both of these bouts.
Isaac Vallie-Flagg and Danny Castillo have verbally agreed to meet at UFC 172, a show headlined by the Jon Jones-Glover Teixeira championship bout.
Vallie-Flagg (14-4-1) had a 12-fight unbeaten streak snapped by Elias Silverio last month. The former Strikeforce and King of the Cage member only fought once in 2013 as a result of a back injury. Castillo (16-6) is also coming off a loss, his at the hands of Edson Barboza last December. Prior to that, he had won five of six fights.
Cage Warriors 66
Cage Warriors’ welterweight champion Cathal Pendred has left the promotion and the title’s new owner will either be Nicolas Dalby or Sergei Churilov.
Dalby (11-0) will make his Cage Warriors debut after spending most of his professional career with Denmark-based Fighter Gala. His last fight ended with a knockout of Morten Djursaa last September. Churilov (15-1) has won five straight after suffering his first career loss in Oct. 2012. It will be Churilov’s second stint with Cage Warriors after defeating Anatoly Starodubtsev at Cage Warriors 46.
Nicolas Dalby Confirmed the news via his official Twitter.
For the latest fight announcements visit SciFighting.com