Your complete guide to Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series Season 3
DWTNCS is set to start back up for season 3 starting June 18th through August 20th on ESPN+.
The show is a great pipeline for talented fighters to earn a contract. Often times, fighters that appear on DWTNCS are ones that UFC has been scouting for a while or other UFC fighters are pushing for. The show is mostly consistent with the philosophy of finish and you are in. Put on a show in this fight, get a big finish, and you get a UFC contract.
Viewers watched season 2 hand out a crazy number of contracts. Most of the fights ended with finishes and sometimes fighters ended up without contracts even with a finish. With five fights on a card typically, there were multiple weeks where four contracts were handed out. There have been a large number of high-profile names to come from DWTNCS, and more talent is never a bad thing.
Season 3 has a similar format with each card featuring 5 fights. So far, the first two weeks have been announced with the cards being listed as follows.
June 18th 2019, Week 1
Punahele Soriano vs Jamie Pickett (Middleweight)
Brok Weaver vs Leon Shahbazyan (Welterweight)
Hannah Goldy vs Kali Robbins (Strawweight)
Bill Algeo vs Brendan Loughnan (Featherweight)
Alton Meeks vs Yorgan De Castro (Heavyweight)
June 25th 2019, Week 2
Miguel Baeza vs Ramiz Bahimaj (Welterweight)
Alton Cunningham vs Tony Johnson (Light Heavyweight)
Zach Zane vs Justin Gonzales (Featherweight)
Michael Lombardo vs Kyle Daukaus (Middleweight)
Richie Santiago vs Miles Johns (Bantamweight)
Fighters to Watch:
There are some names that have some hype behind them already. Many to keep an eye on in these first two cards including Punahele Soriano, a young undefeated finisher, he fits the mold as a, “win and he’s in (the UFC)” candidate.
Leon Shahbazyan is on the heels of his brother Edmen Shahbazyan, who was also awarded a contract on DWTNCS last season. Leon loves to go for the neck with 6 submission wins, all coming from some choke variation.
Brendan Loughnan is 16-3 at 29 years old, his time is now or never for the UFC. While 16-3 is an impressive record, all 3 losses have come by way of decision, and 2 of them were split decisions. This tells a story of a guy who is hard to put away, and is 5’10” as a featherweight.
Alton Cunningham has beaten up everyone, and badly, everyone but one person. Last season Cunningham lost to Bevon Lewis, who nearly beat Uriah Hall in an impressive decision, but got caught and finished in a fight he was dominating. UFC must want Cunningham if they are bringing him back for another go.
Zach Zane has an underwhelming record of 12-7 as a professional, but is on an impressive 8-fight win streak with one finish after the next that has gotten him some attention. He’s a tall fighter for featherweight a 5’10” and has that Hawaiian toughness.
Justin Gonzales is an undefeated Colorado native, also undefeated as an amateur. Gonzales finished every amateur he faced, but has struggled as a professional to finish fights. A finish here would be big for Gonzales to convince the UFC he is exciting and worth a contract.
William Knight is a very confident, not to be confused with cocky, fighter in the light heavyweight division. Knight is set to be on DWTNCS later on in the season. Knight is a New England native that knocks everyone out, unless he decides to submit you instead. Fighters, beware of William Knight.
Jay Perrin is a fighter from my neck of the woods in the Northeast. Perrin is supposed to fight in August vs Dwight Joseph. Perrin is on a 5-fight streak piling wins together in finishes and decisions, showing he can get the win in different fashions.
Mallory Martin is a young budding star. She only has 2 defeats on her professional record, and one of those came in a decision loss to Maycee Barber, another young budding star. She has finished her last 3 fights, and loves to ground and pound her opponent. Micole DiSegni is set to be Marin’s opponent, who will likely be making one more push for the UFC at the age of 31. DiSegni has won fights in all fashions, and has quick first-round finishes, showing she can bring more excitement to the UFC strawweight division.
Fabio Cherant is an undefeated fighter from the New England area, and when he fights, protect your neck. Cherant has won all of his professional fights by way a choke (2 guillotine, 2 rear naked choke) and has done it quickly. Cherant’s longest fight has only lasted to about the mid-way point of the second round.
Jordan Williams won his fight in season 2 of DWTNCS, but the results were overturned after a failed drug test. He will be looking to make the most of his second chance at the UFC after his most recent win in the Bellator cage. The talent is there, now he is trying to prove the he learned.
Make sure to follow The Scrap News (@thescrapnews) on Twitter.
Connor “Rags” Rogowsky is a co-owner of The Scrap and its current President. Rogowsky played football and track collegiately, and holds a Masters of Science in Psychology from Southern New Hampshire University. Make sure to follow Rags on Twitter (@rogowskyc).