Kamaru Usman entered “The Ultimate Fighter 28 Finale” main event on Friday in Las Vegas with one goal in mind: to secure a title shot at the Ultimate Fighting Championship welterweight title. Now that the dust has settled, he appears to have done so. The Hard Knocks 365 product put himself in excellent position with a one-sided decision win over former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos.
Usman immediately looked to take the center of the Octagon and began applying pressure on his opponent, walking dos Anjos to the fence for an early takedown. It became a running theme of their fight. “The Nigerian Nightmare” handled his business across five rounds, as he succeeded at stifling dos Anjos at nearly every turn on his way to a blowout on the scorecards. UFC President Dana White indicated that the performance may have put Usman next in line for a crack at the welterweight belt currently in Tyron Woodley’s possession.
When it comes to Aubin-Mercier, he has a preferential style matchup. Yes, Gilbert Burns is an outstanding and legitimately world-class jiu-jitsu player. However, Aubin-Mercier’s losses have come when he’s not able to buy takedowns. He couldn’t take down Carlos Diego Ferreira, and as we found out, Alexander Hernandez isn’t exactly an easy out. However, even with Burns’ continued training under Henri Hooft at Hard Knocks 365, Aubin-Mercier has vastly improved his striking, possesses superior conditioning and should be able to buy takedowns when necessary. This is absolutely his sort of fight to grind out.
As for Katona, “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 27 winner doesn’t really have any particular individual skills that stand out above his contemporaries. However, he is dropping down to his more natural weight class at 135 pounds, and opponent Matthew Lopez, while he may be the more dynamic party, has an awful lot of trouble keeping up with opponents and routinely gasses out halfway through 15-minute affairs. I think Katona will work a conservative game. He’s going to pump his jab, land low kicks and be the superior scrambler to Lopez. It’s not going to be a dominant win by any stretch, but Katona should be able to use his fundamentals in every round to not just best Lopez but also tire him out and take a more resounding control over the bout as the fight rolls on to earn himself a tidy decision. That’s three competitive favorites sorted for +355, which is fine money if you ask me.
Charles Medical Group Teams Up with Local MMA Fighters to Deliver Toys, Smiles and HOPE to Children with Disabilitieshardknocks365 December 05 2018 (0) Comment
Boca Raton, FL, December 04, 2018 –(PR.com)– Local professional fighters have just announced an upcoming event taking place at Broward Children’s Center on Tuesday December 4, 2018 to present gifts and toys to children who live with medical disabilities. In an act of kindness and love, UFC fighter Chas Skelly, along with Charles Medical Group, is rounding up his friends from Hard Knocks 365 to let the kids of Broward Children’s Center know that they are not forgotten. It is the goal of the fighters to bring hope and encouragement to a group of brave children who fight the hardest every day to thrive in spite of the many physical challenges they face.
“The older I get, the more I realize how important it is to give back. I know how hard it must be for these kids during the holiday season and we as a team just want to brighten this Christmas for them by ensuring they all wake up with gifts. The kids at Broward Children’s Center are the real champions. I want them to know that we are in their corner. We have their back,” says Skelly.
“When we sit and talk about ways to give back, we always circle back to Broward Children’s Center as we have worked with them in the past and fully support what they do. This year we decided on a toy drive,” says Alexia Donovan of Charles Medical Group. “Chas and I have been friends for a long time and, being the fantastic person he is, he reached out to see how he and the guys can help brighten the holidays for these much deserving children.”
Those interested in helping can drop off new, unwrapped toys to Charles Medical group at 200 Glades Road, Suite 2, Boca Raton, FL 33432 or Hard Knocks 365 at 5300 Powerline Rd, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309 by December 4th at noon.
Usman will meet Rafael dos Anjos in “The Ultimate Fighter 28 Finale” on Nov. 30 at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. A decisive victory over dos Anjos would move the Hard Knocks 365 standout one step closer to the title shot he covets. As Usman approaches his critical showdown with dos Anjos, here are five things you might not know about the 31-year-old welterweight contender:
1. He comes from Nigeria.
Usman was born on May 11, 1987 in Benin City, the capital of Edo State in southern Nigeria. When he was 5, Usman and his family emigrated to America in search of a better life. Despite leaving at such a tender age, “The Nigerian Nightmare” still identifies as Nigerian. Being draped in a Nigerian flag has become a staple of the brash combatant’s walkouts. Usman’s successes in the cage have seen him gain a strong following back in his homeland, where the nascent sport is just starting to take off.
2. He was a talented wrestler.
Prior to becoming a professional MMA fighter, Usman was a wrestler. He initially excelled in the sport while at school. During his tenure at Bowie High School in Arlington, Texas, Usman compiled a 53-3 wrestling record. After graduating, Usman went to the University of Nebraska at Kearney. There, he continued wrestling competitively. His college accolades include earning NCAA Division II All-America honors in each of the three years he was at the school. He was also the 2010 NCAA Division II national champion and a member of the University World Team that same year. During his days on the wrestling mat, Usman went by the moniker “Marty.”
To cap off this season of The Ultimate Fighter, welterweight contenders, Rafael dos Anjos and Kamaru Usman will square off in a main event bout with title implications. Dos Anjos, who adjusted beautifully to his transition to welterweight, is coming off a loss to Colby Covington for the interim title. He needs a win in this one to keep his name in the title picture. Usman has been lobbying for a title shot for quite some time now and if he beats dos Anjos, it will be impossible to say he does not deserve it. He is 8-0 in the UFC with a 12 fight winning streak as a professional.
A similar task in front of dos Anjos
Since making the transition from lightweight to welterweight, Rafael dos Anjos (28-10) has looked rejuvenated. He started his welterweight career with three straight wins over Tarec Saffiedine, Neil Magny, and Robbie Lawler before dropping the interim title fight to Colby Covington. At welterweight, we have seen crisp and accurate striking from dos Anjos despite a lack of knockout power. The huge punches have not come against the larger competition but his consistency is there. Dos Anjos has also never looked better on the ground. The black belt blew through Neil Magny to get a submission and is capable of doing so to many more.
Bobby Moffett was victorious in his Ultimate Fighting Championship debut but not in the manner in which he envisioned.
The MMA Lab standout submitted Chas Skelly with a brabo choke in the second round of their featherweight prelim at UFC Fight Night 139 on Saturday at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Moffett (14-3, 1-0 UFC) brought it to a close 2:43 into Round 2, through the result was not without controversy. Thinking Skelly was unconscious, referee Tim Mills had moved in to release the choke and call for the stoppage. The Hard Knocks 365 representative immediately rose to his feet in protest, to no avail. After several tense moments and multiple looks at replays, Mills’ decision stood.
Skelly (17-4, 6-4 UFC) transitioned from a takedown to a standing back take in the first round, attached himself to his opponent’s back and hunted for the rear-naked choke. Moffett fought through the adversity and pushed the fight deeper. He landed a takedown roughly 90 seconds into the second round, only to be reversed by the cagy Skelly. However, Moffett cinched a brabo choke from the bottom and squeezed until Mills intervened.
Moffett has won four fights in a row.
Andre Soukhamthath has already been involved in four-straight bangers in the UFC. His most recent bout against Sean O’Malley earning him Fight of the Night honors. Heading into the fifth bout of his UFC contract, Soukhamthath has been tasked with welcoming promotional newcomer Jonathan Martinez to the Octagon at UFC Moncton this Saturday night, after original opponent Gavin Tucker was forced off of the card due to health issues.
Before stepping into the cage on Saturday, Soukhamthath caught up with Bloody Elbow to discuss his exciting FOTN outing, as well as his thoughts on O’Malley’s failed drug test. Soukhamthath also detailed the various ways in which the Laotian-American was able to earn thousands of dollars to help aid the flood victims of Laos. The interview wraps up with the “Asian Sensation” giving his prediction for his UFC Moncton main card matchup.
Andre Soukhamthath hit a setback last time out, but at UFC Moncton, he’s ready to show that he’s still going to be a big problem at 135lbs in the UFC.
Moncton, NB — Andre Soukhamthath heard the critics. Heard plenty from them after his loss to Sean O’Malley at UFC 222. It’s a fight in which ‘The Asian Sensation’ was rocked early, only for O’Malley to later injure his leg. Yet Soukhamthath was unable to turn off ‘The Sugar Show,’ and got an earful for repeatedly taking O’Malley down rather than trying to knock him out. Armchair critics, for the most part. Yet Soukhamthath, who later left Twitter with a pointed message to the media saying “it takes two people to put on FOTN,” (the bout won Fight of the Night honors), is ready to put all that behind him at UFC Moncton this weekend.
“If I can take anything from that experience, it’s growth,” he said at Thursday’s media day, ahead of a fight with short-notice replacement Jonathan Martinez. “I should have did something, I didn’t do it, I got a lot of backlash for it, whatever. Growth man.” Besides not performing the way he wanted in the fight, Soukhamthath also felt he was too distracted by outside influences.
A look back through Aung La N Sang’s body of work in ONE Championship will take the viewer on a thrill ride through some of the most memorable bouts in the organization’s history.
The two-division ONE World Champion has featured in some of the most thrilling encounters ever seen under the bright lights of ONE’s big arena events, and “The Burmese Python” is rightly proud of his career to date.
Aung La N Sang will look to make the latest defence of his ONE Middleweight World Title in Yangon, Myanmar on 26 October when he faces Mohammad Karaki in the main event of ONE: PURSUIT OF GREATNESS.
Ahead of the contest “The Burmese Python” took time out of his busy schedule to chat about his career to date and some of the bouts that have defined his remarkable career.
Aung La N Sang captured the ONE Middleweight Title in a rematch against then-champion Vitaly Bigdash, and most recently defended the title in a thriller against Japan’s Ken Hasegawa.