Main Card (6pm MT on ESPN+)
Rafael dos Anjos vs Kevin Lee
Antonio Carlos Junior vs Ian Heinisch
Megan Anderson vs Felicia Spencer
Vincent Luque vs Derrick Krantz
Charles Oliveira vs Nik Lentz
Davi Ramos vs Austin Hubbard
Undercard (3pm MT on ESPN+)
Aspen Ladd vs Sijara Eubanks
Desmond Green vs Charles Jourdain
Michael Trizano vs Grant Dawson
Danny Roberts vs Michel Pereira
Zak Cummings vs Trevin Giles
Patrick Cummins vs Ed Herman
Julio Arce vs Julian Erosa
When: Sat, May 18th
Where: Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, New York
Main Event – Rafael dos Anjos vs. Kevin Lee:
A pair of former lightweights will meet at welterweight in our main event of the evening.
Rafael dos Anjos (28-11 MMA), a former champion in the lightweight division, made the jump up to 170lbs in 2017. Since then, dos Anjos is 3-2 and most recently lost to current welterweight king, Kamaru Usman last November.
Kevin Lee (17-4 MMA) was recently on the cusp of contention in the lightweight division before a loss to Al Iaquinta set him back. Lee always had a hard time making the 155-pound limit and the loss prompted him to jump up and test the waters in a new division.
At its core, the name of the game in this one is American Wrestling vs Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Lee will be looking to impose his heavy top game and it’s likely that dos Anjos will find himself on his back at some point. Dos Anjos has shown some holes in his takedown defense throughout his career and has been taken down an astounding 19 times in his last two bouts alone. It’ll also be interesting to see if having a presumably easier weight cut will make a difference for Lee cardio-wise. “The Motown Phenom” has gone five-rounds but has noticeably slowed in those longer fights while at lightweight.
On the feet, dos Anjos likely has an edge being a more complete Muay Thai practitioner, but you can’t count out the heavy hands of Lee who throws everything with ill-intent.
Potential Fight of the Night – Antonio Carlos Junior vs Ian Heinisch:
Antonio Carlos Junior (10-2 MMA) is on a five-fight win streak and poised to jump into the top of the division. That’s easier said than done because Ian Heinisch (12-1 MMA) isn’t the type of guy to put anyone over. Carlos Junior is a Jiu-Jitsu world champion and it shows on the mat. Heinisch is no slouch on the ground himself and has absolutely vicious ground and pound from the top. Both guys are aggressive on the feet and this one will likely start out fast-paced. I’m not sure how long it’ll last, but until it ends, it should be a banger.
Upset to Watch for – Felicia Spencer to beat Megan Anderson:
Former Invicta FC featherweight champions will collide this Saturday. Felicia Spencer (6-0 MMA) will be taking on Megan Anderson (9-3 MMA) in the barren women’s featherweight division. Spencer — a black belt in tae kwon do and jiujitsu — will have to work past the massive reach advantage and not get tagged up by the Australian kickboxer while going for the clinch ASAP. On the outside, Spencer will get chewed up. But should she get her clutches on Anderson, there’s a solid chance she can exploit the Aussie’s abysmal takedown defense and ground game. The fight should be all Spencer on the ground… if she can get it there.
Lock of the Night – Vincent Luque to beat Derrick Krantz:
Vincent Luque (15-6-1 MMA) was originally scheduled to face Neil Magny this weekend but a USADA violation forced Magny out of the event. Derrick Krantz (24-10 MMA) was chosen to step up on less than a week’s notice to take on the surging Luque who is 8-1 in his last 9 bouts. Krantz is on a four-fight win streak of his own, but he’s taking on a talent that many feel could be a legit top tenner. I think Krantz will be a fun addition to the promotion, but I don’t like his chances against “The Silent Assassin” with so little time to prepare.
— Media_Giant! (@Wrestle_notes66) December 10, 2017
Fighters to watch for – Trevin Giles (11-0 MMA):
Giles fought twice in the UFC back in 2017 and finished both opponents by TKO. In fact, he’s finished all but one of his opponents as a professional.
A hot prospect, he then took a year off to work on his career as a police officer. With his probationary period complete, the 26-year-old will be looking to prove he’s still someone to watch when he takes on the gritty Zak Cummings (22-6 MMA) this weekend.
Michel Pereira (22-9 MMA):
“Demolidor” can best be described as an absolute madman in the cage. From flying knees to bouncing off the fence and throwing strikes Anthony Pettis-style, to moonsaults (yes, moonsaults), there’s absolutely no telling what Pereira will throw when locked in the Octagon. After clips from his last fight went viral, UFC snatched him up with a quickness. He’ll have a tough fight in UFC veteran Daniel Roberts (16-4 MMA), but win or lose, Pereira wackiness shouldn’t be missed.