Weekly MMA Prospect Report: Asia, Europe in the Spotlight

ONE Championship: Reign of Valor
Credit: ONE Championship

Asia sees DEEP 88 Impact and ONE Championship: Reign of Valor go down this weekend, while Europe also sees plenty of MMA action.

While the UFC brings heavyweight action to Wichita, Kansas, ONE Championship and Deep lead the charge for the prospect watch this week. So with no further adieu, here’s this week’s MMA Prospect Report!

DEEP 88 Impact | Saturday | Japan

Bantamweight, Victor Henry (16-4)

Victor Henry has shown he’s well-rounded to go along with his successful background in catch wrestling. He thrives in scrambles and hunts for submissions actively, being well-versed on the mat. His striking is getting better with a solid base of kickboxing. Henry has never looked better and has key wins over current UFC fighter Anderson Dos Santos, and good prospects in Kyler Phillips, Denis Lavrentyev, and many more. He fights Yuki Motoyo (23-5).

ONE Championship | Saturday | Myanmar

Welterweight, Georgiy Kichigin (20-5)

Prospect might be a bit of a stretch, but Georgiy Kichigin is making his ONE debut even if it is a title fight. His wrestling is very good and his grappling is perfect. Kichigin has great hips as he can attack off his back all day. He usually doesn’t stay on his back too long and if so he is very dangerous. On top, he is perfect; he knows how to pass guard easily and transition into mount where he’s mainly setting up submissions. He fights Zebaztian Kadestam (11-4) who is the ONE title holder, but there’s a good chance Kichigin wins.

Bantamweight, Gary Mangat (13-2)

A very solid all-around fighter, on the feet, Mangat is mainly a kickboxer. He chops at the legs, goes to the body, and connects to the head and at times it’s all set up at the end of combinations. Mangat is an excellent wrestler with nice timing on his level changes and on his double leg takedowns. The way Mangat is able to catch his opponent’s kick and take the fight down shows great awareness with wrestling ability. In top position, Mangat has very sound ground and pound, he is always landing no matter what position he is in. Mangat has shown he is a threat to taking the back but his ground and pound may be his best weapon. He fights Toni Tauru (11-6-1) who is on a 2-fight skid.

Venator FC 5 | Saturday | Italy

Lightweight, Danilo Belluardo (11-3)

After a two-fight skid a few years ago, Belluardo would boost up a 5-fight win streak. On the feet, he does have good output mixing in kicks and punches. He also has some good power but is much more comfortable on the mat. Belluardo is very skilled on top with legit ground and pound landing big elbows and staying active. He fights Denilson Neves (15-7) who is coming off a loss.

RCC Intro 3 | Saturday | Russia

Lightweight, Pavel Gordeev (13-1)

Gordeev has shown he is a good prospect, beating four undefeated fighters, former UFC fighter Mickael Lebout, and other solid competition. Gordeev is mainly a striker who loves to use the jab often. The Russian has good long straight punches and his speed can be a real factor. His wrestling is decent enough to be effective with good scrambles and an active ground game. He fights former UFC fighter Godofredo Pepey (14-6) who is coming off a win since his release.

Middleweight, Sergei Martynov (11-2)

Martynov is a fun fighter with nine finishes all by KO/TKO. He’s got good takedown defense and is skilled on top. He has superb control and solid ground and pound. Martynov though is much more dangerous on the feet. He’s a power puncher and is very good with his counter strikes as he is always the aggressor as well. Martynov does tend to tire quick, but does go hard right as the bell rings. He fights former UFC fighter Viscardi Andrade (19-7) who is coming off a loss since his release. This is a big test for Martynov.

Cage Warriors 103 | Saturday | Denmark

Welterweight, Mark Madsen (6-0)

Mark Madsen is a little too old for a prospect at 34 but still is young in his MMA career. Madsen is a very accomplished Greco-Roman wrestler who is an Olympic silver medalist. He is also a five-time Greco-Roman wrestling champion and won a bronze medal in the 2014 Greco European Championships. Madsen has run through all his opponents with four finishes as he has both finished it on the mat and on the feet. On the feet, big power in his right hand. He is a very strong wrestler being able to rag doll his opponent. Madsen is aggressive and for his pace, he has solid cardio. He fights Thibaud Larchet (12-4-1) who is coming off a loss.

Lightweight, Soren Bak (11-1)

With one blemish on his record, Soren Bak has been an absolute force dominating in all of his wins. He doesn’t have much in the stand-up department, but he’s been improving and has shown glimpses of power in his hands. The wrestling and the grappling though is outstanding with an incredible top game, with vicious ground and pound and natural skills to pass guard. Bak has six submissions and has shown a diverse attack once he gets the fight to the mat. “The True Viking” is also a very smart but aggressive fighter who could have a bright future. He fights Morgan Charriere (13-6-1) who Bak should easily beat.

Celtic Gladiator Academy | Saturday | UK

Bantamweight, Javid Basharat (6-0)

Javid is an excellent prospect to keep an eye on but the competition he has beat has been lackluster. Javid is well-rounded as he has finished from both on the feet and off the mat. His footwork is quite advanced; the way he cuts angles and moves side to side is perfectly done and if I’m not mistaken he has a background in taekwondo. Javid isn’t just a flashy striker he is also an excellent wrestler that has a strong submission game and does a great job at creating space and landing big ground and pound. He fights Hicham Rachid (4-6) who is coming off a loss.

Chosen Few FC 16 | Saturday | Wisconsin

Light-heavyweight, Alex Polizzi (2-0)

Undefeated as a pro and as an amateur going 6-0, Polizzi has the recipe to be a big prospect in the 205 weight class. Polizzi is a D1 wrestler at Northwestern University from 2010-2015 and was a state champion. He needs work on his feet but his wrestling and athleticism will take him far. He fights Cedric Savage (2-0).

Light-heavyweight, Cedric Savage (2-0)

Although Savage is only 2-0 he was 6-0 as an amateur as well. Cedric Savage also fought for Glory Kickboxing and was 2-0 as an amateur. And was 4-0 as in amateur in muay thai. In other words, he’s been around. Despite his accomplishments on the feet, Savage has three wins in his career by submission. He’s explosive, athletic, and dangerous in all areas. He fights Alex Polizzi (2-0).

Middleweight, Dante Schiro (3-0)

After a 6-1 amateur career, Schiro has grown into a very improved fighter. His stand-up still needs some work but he at least has heavy leg kicks. He also strikes well to close the distance in order to work his takedowns. Schiro has solid wrestling, but his jiu-jitsu is his strong suit. He is very slick with his transitions and while his ground and pound is good, he is excellent at hunting for submissions and closing the fight. He fights Robert Turnquest (10-5) who is coming off a win and is the biggest test for Schiro in his career thus far.