Ricardo Ramos needs an opponent for UFC Minneapolis after Sergio Pettis pulled out, so we came up with five prospects who could replace Pettis.
UFC Minneapolis a bantamweight bout was scheduled for the card as Sergio Pettis was set to take on Brazilian Ricardo Ramos in Minneapolis, Minnesota. According to MMA Junkie’s Nolan King, Pettis was removed from the card due to an undisclosed reason. The show must go on and with the event about two weeks away the UFC may find a replacement. MMA Brasil’s Matheus Costa and I decided on five prospects we’d like to see step in and fight Ricardo Ramos.
Shawn Bitter’s Picks
Raufeon Stots (12-1)
Raufeon Stots is a former NCAA Division II national champion in wrestling at the University of Nebraska-Kearney. The only loss on his MMA record came to current UFC fighter Merab Dvalishvili. Since that defeat, Stots got back on board with three wins and is one of the best bantamweight prospects today. Stots is a fantastic wrestler and his stand-up has come along nicely. He’s currently with LFA, which is the number one “feeder league” for the UFC in North America. Stots should have been in the UFC on multiple occasions and a bout with Ricardo Ramos makes all kinds of sense.
Alexander Keshtov (9-0)
Keshtov is an undefeated fighter out of the amazing camp K-Dojo Warrior Tribe, training with some UFC fighters and other top prospects. Keshtov is an excellent prospect as he is super diverse, throwing many different attacks both with his punches and kicks and he puts them all together perfectly. Keshtov is a former Ring of Combat champion and the current CFFC champ. He was contacted by the UFC to step in on short notice against Tim Elliott in Canada in last year but visa issues held that back. If that situation is settled now, look for him to get another call. Keshtov vs. Ramos would be a great stylistic matchup that has fight of the night written all over it.
Tony Gravely (18-5)
Before transitioning over to MMA, Gravely was a standout wrestler in high school who was All-State four times, an All-American three times, and a two-time state and regional champion. He also became a two-time conference champ at Appalachian State University. Gravely has five losses but they are to top Bellator contenders Ricky Bandejas and Patrick Mix, prospect Pat Sabatini, as well as UFC fighters Manny Bermudez and Merab Dvalishvili. Now, Gravely is on a six-fight win streak winning multiple titles including the KOTC and CES bantamweight championships.
Matheus Costa’s Picks
Charles Henrique (10-1)
“Blackout” just made his international debut at ACA 94. The 31-year-old fighter is not a finisher, but he’s a very well-rounded fighter and could take the bout to where he wants to fight. With a 10-1 record, Charles is currently riding a six-fight win streak and just put the first L on Kasum Kasumov’s record in his most recent bout.
Herbeth Sousa (13-1)
Another interesting name is Herbeth Sousa, the 25-year-old fighter from Constrictor Team recently signed with Future FC to face former Jungle Fight champion Maike Linhares. However, with a 13-1 record, “Indio” might be one of the best names out on the market to step in. The jiu-jitsu specialist is looking for a big platform to show that he can hang with a lot of great fighters, just like Ricardo Ramos. Why not the biggest of them all?