With everything starting to open up around the world, MMA has been able to thrive once again. Especially regional MMA. Nowadays, there are so many options for fight fans to watch around the world thanks to UFC Fight Pass and various other streaming platforms.
This week alone, people can tune into UWC 28, ONE Championship: Battleground 2, Combate Global, EFC 88, Flex Fights: Battle Garden Vol. 3, the beginning of the playoffs at PFL 7, Bellator 264, CFFC 99, Full Contact Promotions, CFC 4, Northstar Combat 16, Unified MMA 40, Gulf Coast MMA 11, B2 Fighting Series 131, BTC 11, EFC 15, and more. With options, comes questions; so The Scrap decided to put together a new column — a one stop shop titled ‘3, 2, 1.’
Most weeks we will feature three fights to watch, two fighters to keep an eye on, and one regional card you can’t miss.
3 FIGHTS TO WATCH
It’s officially PFL playoff season and the first card’s headliner is a banger! For the first card of the playoffs, Ray Cooper III who won it all in ’19, will take on the legend, Rory MacDonald. As for MacDonald, he will look to bounce back after his controversial split decision loss last time out.
But let it be known, he has a tough test ahead of him. Cooper III is as aggressive as they come, and he comes with one-punch KO power that MacDonald will have to respect.
What. A. Fight. This matchup is truly main event worthy. Magomed Magomedov vs. Raufeon Stots will fight after their first matchup at Bellator 263 was rescheduled. There is a lot on the line, as two of Bellator’s top bantamweights battle it out. Neither fighter is used to losing and winning is a tradition as both men have only one loss on their record.
Magomedov is #3 in Bellator’s bantamweight division, and has won 6 fights in a row. Stots ranks at #4, and is on an 8-fight win streak to his own credit. The winner here is probably one fight away from a championship opportunity.
When you get two home gown CFFC talent squaring off, you know it’s going to be fireworks. Six cards later, the undefeated prospects square off against each other this time around… And as the saying goes, someone’s 0 has got to go.
After wins at CFFC 94, Timothy Cuamba will take on James Lyons in a potential FOTN contender. After the main event fell through, CFFC 99 quickly turned into a night that could highlight the next breakout star for the promotion. Looking to steal the show will without a doubt be these two. Do not miss this one.
2 FIGHTERS TO WATCH
Martinetti is a young, undefeated prospect (10-0) from Ecuador. He is 25 years old, and has been a pro since he was 18. He is a dangerous combination of young and experienced. Marinetti has a lengthy record for the regional scene, especially with an undefeated record.
As a young flyweight with a lot of finishes to his record, a major promotion should come knocking soon. Marinetti should be ready for the next level, and the only way to test that theory is to make that leap.
On Sunday night, BTC 11 goes down on PPV. Though Tapology doesn’t highlight the full card that is going down, BTC is known for putting on quality production while highlighting the best up and coming fighters in Canada. Though the card is full of fun scraps, no fight gets us more excited than Devon Lozej vs. Albaraa Atmeh, and we think the President Rob Veevers would agree…
The undefeated 4-0 amateur bantamweight will look for his first professional win when he faces a fellow Canadian standout. Lozej is something special though, the way he carries himself and the way he promotes his fights is refreshing to see so early on. Keep an eye on the Thunder Bay native as he is looking to remain active after Sunday night.
1 REGIONAL CARD TO WATCH
Combate returns this Friday night with a banger of a card. The organization plans to highlight their first-ever eight woman one-night strawweight tournament to determine the number one contender for the 115-pound strap.
The bracket features the promotion’s golden girl Yasmine Jauregui taking on DWCS alum Stephanie Frausto, Paulina Vargas vs. Claudia Diaz, and Karen Cedillo vs. Claire Lopez. But looking to play spoiler is Philadelphia’s Criszaida Adames who takes on Yajaira Cunningham in her first matchup.
Thinking ahead, the promotion set two “reserve” bouts on the undercard in the event one of the eight strawweights is unable to compete a second or third time. The sole male bout between Elias Garcia and Matias Vasquez Jimenez will also take place in between stages.
Paramount+ live coverage will begin with a Combate Global pre-show at 10:30 p.m. ET/9:30 p.m. CT, and will continue with the live fight action, beginning at 11:00 p.m. ET/10:00 p.m. CT.