You know there are going to be fights this coming weekend, you just don’t know who is competing or where. Find out more on this week’s prospect report.
FNG 90, Friday. (Russia)
Middleweight, Vladimir Mineev (11-1)
Before transferring over to MMA, Mineev was an accomplished kickboxer holding titles as an amateur and a pro as he has a pro record of 23-2. Mineev has some glaring holes in his game like his cardio wears as the fight goes, his takedown defense could be better, and he lacks head movement. With that said, the Russian has a dynamic offensive striking attack with excellent output with his hands and kicks. He’s a solid fighter but he has to tighten up some things to fight at a higher level. He fights Magomed Ismailov (13-3)
Middleweight, Magomed Ismailov (13-3)
With a background in combat sambo, Ismailov is a powerhouse athlete this is very fun to watch. He does have power on his feet but Ismailov has every desire to get his fights to the mat. When you tune in to watch Ismailov you would think your watching a professional wrestling match as the way Ismailov picks guys up and drive them to the mat is just awesome. He’s insanely strong he can elevate his opponents at any time and put them down. He has a few submissions but has better ground and pound. He fights Vladimir Mineev (11-1).
Flyweight, Mariya Agapova (6-0)
Agapova is a nice prospect training out of Akhmat Fight Club. She’s still very young at only 20 and has a lot of upside going forward. On the feet she throws at range well and as she could improve her footwork she does have sharp hands as shown at times. She thrives on the mat more as her ground and pound is her best weapon and can threaten with submissions everywhere. Agapova has also shown solid grappling and overall is someone worth watching out for. She fights Julia Borisova (5-4) who is on a two-fight win streak but Agapova should win.
Featherweight, Mukhamed Eminov (11-0)
Eminov hasn’t fought good competition thus far in his eleven career fights as his opponents have a combined record of 11-6. With that said, Eminov has competed the way he should’ve if he is someone to watch for as he has all wins finished in the first round. The Russian hasn’t displayed much on the feet but he does have a solid ground game. Eminov is a very technical grappler who transitions through guard beautifully and passing positions in whole. He also brings a very intelligent submission base with all but one of his wins coming by submission. He fights Vladimir Egoyan (18-6) who is coming off two wins but this should be a win for Eminov.
LFA 52, Friday. (Texas)
Bantamweight, Ray Rodriguez (13-4)
He is good everywhere, on the feet he is explosive he throws head kicks a lot and has had a few flying knee knockouts but his striking is crisp. Rodriguez throws combinations but it’s on the mat is where he is more skilled. “The Judge” is a highly skilled BJJ guy who has six submission wins. He moves well and is very good at taking the back and a solid good transition grappler. He fights Chris Gutierrez (11-2-1) who is decent but this fight will show how good Ray is.
Middleweight, Punahele Soriano (4-0)
Still young in his MMA career as the Hawaiian native is 4-0 as a pro and an amateur at 2-0 but he has been running through guys. Soriano has a background in wrestling and has shown that in his MMA career thus far. He has heavy hands but has wasted no time getting his fights to the mat and pounding away with very sound ground and pound beating all his opponents in round one. He fights Jhonoven Pati (4-1) who looks to be a dangerous fighter but footage lacks.
Final Fight Championship 32, Friday. (Las Vagas)
Heavyweight, Shelton Graves (8-3)
Graves may not be the most intriguing fighter to watch but he has boosted some solid wins in his career including winning the Ring of Combat title. Graves is a grinder who will put his opponents against the fence and work takedowns. As he doesn’t have much offensive output he has superior cardio. He fights Tony Johnson (11-4-1) who is the favorite in this fight.
Welterweight, Austin Vanderford (5-0)
Vanderford is coming off a big win this past Summer on the Contender Series in a comeback of the year performance. In the end, he didn’t get the title but he showed he is someone to watch for. Vanderford is a really strong wrestler as he was an amateur wrestling champion. He has excellent chain wrestling and once on top he is very dominant. He doesn’t have much on the feet but he is growing and he does hold power in his hands. He fights Edmilson Freitas (7-2) who is a good test for Vanderford.
Italian Fighting Championship 5, Saturday. (Italy)
Bantamweight, Francesco Nuzzi (5-1)
At a very young age of 22, Nuzzi is one of the brightest prospects out of Italy. From a technical standpoint, his stance kind of resembles Stephen Thompson’s, keeping his opponent guessing what his next moves will be and counter-striking with precision. Unlike “Wonderboy”, though, he’s not afraid to move forward, looking for an opening to put somebody to sleep. “The Berserker” is constantly improving on his wrestling while on the ground he’s getting close to be a polished product (at ease either defending himself on his back or finishing fights by ground and pound or submission). He fights Giorgio Belsanti (7-8-1) who is coming off a loss but is more experienced so this is a good test for Nuzzi.
Cage Warriors 98, Saturday. (UK)
Welterweight, Ross Houston (7-0)
Houston is an excellent up and comer out of Scotland who is currently undefeated as a pro and as an amateur he was undefeated at 3-0. Houston is primarily a wrestler who does an excellent job at closing the distance to get his hands around his opponent and pull them to the mat. Houston can wrestle and grapple all fight as his cardio is very good. On the feet, he doesn’t spend too much time there but he does hit hard and he has good technique but his head movement does need to improve. He fights Stefano Paterno (12-2-1).
PFL #10, Saturday. (Washington)
Middleweight, Abusupiyan Magomedov (21-3)
At only 27 years old he has a lot of experience at 23 fights fighting some good competition as well. Magomedov has lost to three solid fighters but he does have a win over current UFC fighter Jessin Ayari. Magomedov is a fantastic prospect that many people probably don’t know much about. He has everything you look for in a fighter moving up in the ranks, he has that tall build fighting long using his jab and kicks perfectly at a distance. Magomedov is a combination striker always going to the body mixing that in with combinations. Impressive footwork exploding forward covering a lot of distance but getting back out when needed. For a plus the TDD is awesome and he has a sick guillotine he has hit many times. He fights former UFC fighter Gasan Umalatov (18-6-1) who Abus should easily beat.
Welterweight, Ray Cooper (15-5)
“Bradda Boy” is one hell of an explosive fighter with bombs in both hands. All he does is move forward and throw hooks with both hands and when you describe a knockout artist he fits the bill perfectly cause he can end the fight at any time with just one punch. He’s only getting better and is only 25. He fights Jake Sheilds (33-10-1) who he already beat but is still a tough test.
Middleweight, Shamil Gamzatov (13-0)
Gamzatov is a very well rounded MMA prospect he throws a lot of feints to set up big shots or even shoot in for a takedown when he can slam with ease being so strong. On the feet is where he does his most damage. He throws with power in everything he throws at you but is also precise with his punched and kicks. Gamzatov is very good at picking apart one space of the opponent. Gamzatov needs to tighten up his takedown defense and tuck his chin a bit better though. He fights former UFC fighter John Howard (26-14) who is coming off a loss.