10 fights you don’t want to miss on Season 6 of Contender Series
Season 6 of Dana White’s Contender Series is officially underway. With 10 weeks of the best regional prospects in the world highlighted, fight fans will get introduced to many new names and faces. With so many fights already scheduled, we decided to put together a list of the best scraps currently booked for this season.
Read about the 10 fights you don’t want to miss on DWCS, Season 6…
Ozzy Diaz vs. Joseph Pyfer
Fans are in for a treat in Episode 1 as the current LFA middleweight champion Ozzy Diaz (7-1) takes on DWCS returner Joseph Pyfer (8-2). Diaz has been on a mission while fighting on the regional scene since 2019. Prior to defeating the tough veteran Bruno Assis for the vacant LFA title this year, Diaz went 2-0 in Bellator and made his LFA debut. At 31, the time is now to get into the UFC… But he has a very well-rounded competitor in front of him.
Not new to the bright lights, Pyfer makes his long awaited return to the UFC Apex. Since losing to Dustin Stoltzfus on DWCS in 2020 and getting injured, Pyfer successfully recovered his shoulder and made his CFFC debut taking out the undefeated Austin Trotman. He now looks forward to his second chance at a contract, hopefully joining the rest of the Renzo Gracie Philly boys in the UFC.
This should be a banger! Don’t you dare miss it.
Anton Turkalj vs. Acácio dos Santos
Anton Turkalj (7-0) finally gets his shot at a UFC contract after his matchup fell through last season. “The Pleasure Man” sat on the sidelines since, and will make his first walk into a cage since April 2021. After taking on UFC Hall-of-Famer Alexander Gustafsson in a grappling match, Anton went on a finishing streak, beating his next three opponents. This put him on The Scrap’s radar, landing him on the inaugural Top of the Class list. With a 100% finish rate, his flashy style, and unique persona; UFC has a future light heavyweight star on their hands.
But he has a tough test ahead of him when he takes on Acácio dos Santos (14-4) in the first week of Season 5. Dos Santos gets his first opportunity on DWCS after a decision win against Marcos Brigagão. Fighting under the SFT banner since 2019, the 30-year old looks to get on a win streak when he takes on Turkalj in the co-main event.
Billy Goff vs. Shimon Smotritsky
In Episode 2, fans will get introduced to New England’s Billy Goff (7-2). He recently captured the CES welterweight and middleweight titles, only after winning the Cage Titans welterweight title. The Connecticut native won three titles in his last three fights, and that was only after making his Bellator debut in 2020 defeating the highly touted Robson Gracie Jr…
But in his way of a UFC contract is the 21-year-old DWCS returner, Shimon Smotritsky (8-1). After losing last season to Mike Malott, Smotritsky went back to the regional scene and dominated a veteran in William Macário. He returns in week two, in hopes of getting back on a win streak and finally getting that contract. But he’ll have to showcase that he’s addressed the holes in his ground game if he wants to get past an insanely durable Goff.
Francis Marshall vs. Connor Matthews
Also fighting on week 2 is another New England prospect. The undefeated Connor Matthews (5-0) gets his highly anticipated DWCS debut against New Jersey’s Francis Marshall (5-0). They both have perfect resumes, but as we know… Someone’s 0 has got to go.
With 4 of his 5 fights ending in a finish, Marshall is no joke and will be Matthew’s toughest opponent to date. With a knack for submission finishes, it’ll be interesting to see how his ground game matches up to the Joe Lauzon prospect. Matthews has a 100% finish rate and also loves strangling his opponents, so this should be a good one…
It’s going to be a chess match you don’t want to miss.
Zachary Borrego vs. Bo Nickal
We have one of those main events that make you scratch your head a little bit during in week three. But if you know your wrestling prospects, Bo Nickal (1-0) is one of the best to recently transition to mixed martial arts. Though he is only 1-0 professionally, he will get his shot at a UFC contract against a tough Zachary Borrego (3-0), who has much more experience.
Borrego is no slouch; not only is he coming from Fury FC, he is currently 3-0 as a pro with six amateur fights under his belt. He’ll hope to put an end to the all the hype when he takes on Nickal. Whether you tune in to root for or against Nickal; it’ll be interesting to see what the UFC decides to do with a stud wrestling prospect on their hands who is very early on in his career.
Thomas Paull vs. Esteban Ribovics
England will be well represented when Thomas Paull (11-3) makes his highly anticipated DWCS debut during Episode 4. The “Juggernaut” will look to add on to his impressive 100% finish rate when he takes on the undefeated Esteban Ribovics (10-0) during week four.
As for representation, Argentina will be put on the MMA map once again when the 26-year old makes his walk to the cage. On paper, Robovics is a big threat to Paull with his killer ground game and similar knack for finishes. Things could definitely get interesting once the cage doors are locked… Both men have a 100% finish rate. Both men don’t like leaving it to the judges.
This has Fight of the Night written all over it.
Jack Cartwright vs. Jose Johnson
This one is an absolute banger! The undefeated Cage Warriors bantamweight champion, Jack Cartwright (10-0), finally gets his shot at a UFC contract. With a few title defenses under his belt and winning his last fight due to his opponent head-butting him, it was time for the 28-year-old to make that jump up in competition.
On the other side of the cage is DWCS returner, Jose Johnson (14-7). After losing to Ronnie Lawrence in 2020, Johnson continued to push himself by taking on tough challenges. He fought Mana Martinez, pulled off the upset against a rising prospect in Mo Miller, and recently defeated Goat Shed’s Dulani Perry in 12 seconds. He’s definitely earned his spot back, now let’s see if he can pull off another upset come Episode 4.
Josh Wang-Kim vs. Cameron Saaiman
It’s not very often where two VERY highly touted prospects battle it out for a UFC contract. But when it does, you have to highlight it… California’s Josh Wang-Kim (5-1) takes on South Africa’s Cameron Saaiman (5-0) during week five of Contender Series.
We’ve been following both men at The Scrap for quite some time, so you now this has the potential to be the Fight of the Night. Though relatively unknown to the casual fan, Saaiman is UFC middleweight Dricus Du Plessis’ protege. He recently captured the EFC bantamweight champion and will look to add on to his 10-fight win streak.
As for one half of the Wang-Kim twins, Josh recently got back in the win column after his LFA debut was stopped due to illegal elbows. He’s known for his well-rounded skillset and his fun/flashy style. He will undoubtedly be Saaiman’s toughest opponent yet, so this will be a fun scrap to watch.
Viktoriya Dudakova vs. Maria Silva
In Episode 6, fans will get to see Viktoriya Dudakova (5-0) and Maria Silva (8-0) throw down inside the octagon. Most of you may recognize Silva, who was on last season of DWCS. After a dominant win over TUF 30’s Kathryn Paprocki, she didn’t do enough to get the contract. But Silva went back to the regional scene and took on another undefeated prospect in Ewelina Woźniak at Ares FC 4. After securing a third-round Rear Naked Choke, the Brazilian returns to Las Vegas in her second attempt to earn a UFC contract.
But in front of her stands another undefeated prospect in Dudakova. After a successful amateur run under the IMMAF, Viktoriya went pro in 2020 and hasn’t looked back since. Currently 5-0 with a 100% finish rate, Dudakova will look to extend her win streak to 12 wins during week six.
This should be a good one!
Roybert Echeverria vs. Jafel Filho
In week 9, fans can look forward this awesome matchup at 135-pounds. One of Goat Shed’s most interesting prospects, Roybert Echeverria (7-0), will get make his highly anticipated DWCS debut against the tough Jafel Filho (13-2).
After fighting his entire pro career under the Titan FC banner, Echeverria finally makes the leap in competition to take on his toughest opponent to date. Racking up five first-round finishes accompanied by two decisions, it seems he’s now ready to test himself in the big leagues. But Filho is no joke, with over 15 pro fights under his belt. He has an insane amount of finishes, only going to decision once in his career.
Though we can’t predict how this one will go, it’s definitely one of the stand-out matchups this season that you shouldn’t miss.
Which fights and prospects are you excited to watch this season of DWCS? Let us know below!
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