April 6 the Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to Fuel TV when it touches down live in Stockholm, Sweden. As explored in Part I of MMA Gospel’s UFC on Fuel TV 9 pre-fight breakdown, the first half of the main card kicks off with Akira Corassani (10-3) taking on Robbie Peralta (16-3), “The Scarecrow” Pablo Garza (12-3) battling “Ceara” Diego Brandao (16-8) in a featherweight showcase, and “The Hulk” Mike Easton (13-2) taking on fellow striker “One Punch” Brad Pickett (22-7). In this latter half of the main card breakdown, a quick look begins with the heavyweight battle between “Meathead” Matt Mitrione (5-2) and Philip DeFries (9-2). The co-main event sees “The Real Deal” Ross Pearson (14-6) welcoming Strikeforce transplant Ryan Couture (6-1). Two new faces grace the light heavyweight division in the main event as Ilir Latifi (9-2) steps in on less than a week’s notice for his injured teammate, perennial contender “The Mauler” Alexander Gustafsson (15-1), to meet “The Dreamcatcher” Gegard Mousasi (33-3-2). Both men grace the eight-sided cage for the first time and with each getting top-billing for their debut, a win at this stage can open many doors for them at 205 pounds.
The UFC returns after a wildly successful sojourn to Montreal at UFC 158 to offer its fifth free card of 2013, UFC on Fuel TV 9 from Stockholm, Sweden. Headlining the event is newcomer “The Sledgehammer” Ilir Latifi (7-2) as he debuts beside Dream and Strikeforce standout “The Dreamcatcher” Gegard Mousasi (33-3-2). “The Real Deal” Ross Pearson (14-6) looks to continue his recent success following TUF: The Smashes at the expense of second-generation prodigy Ryan Couture (6-1). “Meathead” Matt Mitrione (5-2) will struggle to find his winning way again as he meets Philip De Fries (9-2) in a bout that will likely leave one of the two jobless. The lower half of the main card also shows promise with “The Hulk” Mike Easton (13-2) looking to right the ship after a disappointing decision loss at the expense of “One Punch” Brad Pickett (22-7) in the anchor slot. Deadly finisher “Ceara” Diego Brandao (16-8) will meet “The Scarecrow” Pablo Garza (12-3) in the second match of the evening, and kicking things off is a pairing of featherweights looking to come out from under the radar, Akira Corassani (10-3) and “Problems” Robbie Peralta (16-3). Here in Part I of the UFC on Fuel TV 9 pre-fight breakdown, MMA Gospel examines the first three of the night’s match-ups.
—MAIN CARD (on Showtime)—
Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey: Rousey via Submission (Armbar), Round 1, 4:27
Josh Thomson vs. KJ Noons: Thomson via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Paul Daley vs. Kazuo Misaki: Misaki via Split Decision (30-27, 29-28, 28-29), Round 3, 5:00
Scott Smith vs. Lumumba Sayers: Smith via Submission (Guillotine Choke), Round 1, 1:34
Ronaldo Souza vs. Brisol Marunde: Souza via Submission (Arm-Triangle Choke), Round 3, 2:43
Lorenz Larkin vs. Nick Rossborough: Larkin via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Lavar Johnson vs. Shawn Jordan: Jordan via Submission (Keylock), Round 2, 3:08
Ryan Couture vs. Maka Watson: Couture via Majority Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-28), Round 3, 5:00
Jason High vs. Todd Moore: High via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
Brian Melancon vs. Felipe Portela: Melancon via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
The nineteenth installment of the Strikeforce Challengers series is set to take place Friday night at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada as another crop of aspiring young fighters seek to break into the Zuffa family. Headlining the card is “The Monsoon” Lorenz Larkin (10-0) who puts his undefeated record on the line against late replacement “Leather Face” Nick Rossborough (20-14). The co-main event for the card finds second generation superstar Ryan Couture (2-1) looking to rebound from his first loss against a tough submission guru, Maka Watson (5-1). Challengers Series stand-out “Big” Lavar Johnson (13-4) returns after a less than successful debut on the Strikeforce main card and attempts to return to form against Shawn Jordan (10-3). One-time UFC veteran Jason High (12-3) will continue his second chance at Zuffa favor in the evening’s second bout against Texas native “Maniac” Todd Moore (13-4) and the night will open with a match-up between toughened ground-and-pounder Brian Melancon (5-2) and undefeated Brazilian “Balboa” Felipe Portela (7-0). The film and file on the fighters is practically non-existent and the combatants themselves are starving for the bright lights of Zuffa stardom, which is always a good mix for the fans of MMA.
Caros Fodor vs. James Terry: Fodor via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Ryan Couture vs. Matt Ricehouse: Ricehouse via Unanimous Decision (2-28, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Lorenz Larkin vs. Gian Villante: Larkin via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Jason High vs. Quinn Mulhern: High via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
Julia Budd vs. Germaine de Randamie: Budd via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Derek Brunson vs. Jeremy Hamilton: Brunson via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
Eduardo Pamplona vs. Jerron Peoples: Pamplona via TKO (Strikes), Round 1, 2:40
Trevor Smith vs. Keith Berry: Smith via Technical Submission, Round 2, 3:02
This Friday night marks the return of Strikeforce’s flagship farm organization, Strikeforce Challengers, as the red hot Caros Fodor (6-1) continues his blitz for a promotion to the Strikeforce main card against Cung Le (7-1) disciple James Terry (9-2). Also slated for action is Ryan Couture (2-0) as he faces Matt Ricehouse (4-0) in an attempt to lay further ground word to build a legacy for himself separate from that of his famed father “The Natural” Randy Couture (19-11). Lorenz Larkin (9-0) will seek to continue his undefeated attack on the heavyweight division as he takes on the Bellmore Kickboxing Academy KO machine Gian Villante (7-2) and kicking off the main card will be “The Jewel” Julia Budd (2-1) and “Iron Lady” Germaine De Randamie (2-1) as the ladies take the cage in an attempt to make waves in the burgeoning Strikeforce Women’s Welterweight division as the first two women to ever fight under a Zuffa banner.
Lyle Beerbohm vs. Ryan Healy: Healy via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Carlo Prater vs. Bryan Travers: Prater via Submission (Anaconda Choke), Round 1, 0:38
Ryan Couture vs. Lee Higgins: Couture via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 3, 4:41
Erik Apple vs. Ryan Larson: Larson via Submission (Triangle Choke), Round 2, 3:14
David Douglas vs. Nick Gonzalez: Douglas via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 1, 1:05
Aaron Franco vs. Ousmane Thomas Diagne: Diagne via TKO (Strikes), Round 1, 4:22
Drew Pendleton vs. Dennis Dombrow: Pendleton via Submission (Guillotine Choke), Round 2, 2:38
Brazilian Chute Boxe practitioners “Cyborg” Evangelista Santos (17-14) and “Cyborg” Cristiane Santos (10-1) could be considered the first couple of MMA. Team Black House fighters “Lil’ Nog” Antonio Rogerio Nogueria (18-4) and “Minotauro” Antonio Rodrigo Nogueria (32-6-1) can be deemed the siblings of submission, and Dan Miller (13-4) and “The Mongoose” Jim Miller (19-2) could be considered the true blue-collar brothers of battle. Now, in the latest edition of families who are making their legacy known in combat, “The Natural” Randy Couture’s (19-10) son, “Natural Light” Ryan Couture (1-0 Professional, 4-0-1 Amateur), is getting set to blaze his path in MMA history. Although Randy made his career known by using his Greco-Roman wrestling to bend his opponents to his will, his son’s legacy in the amateur level is being paved with the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu that has ended each of his five wins via submission. With professional level fighters and trainers alongside him at Xtreme Couture, Ryan might just have the right tools at his disposal to take the lightweight bracket by storm. After a successful first round submission victory in his professional debut last summer, Couture is returning February 18 under the Strikeforce banner hoping to keep the winning streak alive.
Strikeforce lights up Austin, Texas this Friday, February 18 at the Cedar Park Center with it’s ShoMMA: Challengers 14 fight card. Featured in the main event, undefeated slick submission artist “Fancy Pance” Lyle Beerbohm (15-0) steps in against the well rounded veteran that is “Bam Bam” Patrick Healy (20-15) with both martial artists looking to take a step closer to being a lightweight title contender. The co-main event for the evening features the highly regarded “Natural Light” Ryan Couture (1-0) attempting to live up to his father’s name – UFC Hall of Famer and multiple-time champion “The Natural” Randy Couture (19-10) – by taking on Lee Higgins (2-0) a practically unknown fighter who has an outstanding ground game and hails out of Houston, Texas. The main card also showcases three other bouts with the likes of Brazilian-born and current Bryan, Texas resident Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt and Judo brown belt Carlo Prater (24-8-1) versus NCAA wrestler Bryan Travers (12-2), Vale Tudo fighter “Bad Apple” Erik Apple (10-2) taking on Houston native and BJJ brown belt Ryan Larson (5-2), and Cesar Gracie Academy kickboxer David Douglas (5-2) vs. Austin’s all around fighter “The Ghost” Nick Gonzalez (16-9). All in all, Challengers 14 offers a solid night of outstanding prospects looking to make waves in the lower ranks of the Strikeforce promotion.