Undefeated light heavyweight Alex Polizzi gets the biggest test of his career against Jamal Pogues at LFA 82.
When former Dana White’s Contender Series alumni Julius Anglickas left the Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) to join the Bellator roster, he vacated the organization’s light heavyweight title. The promotion will finally crown a new champion on Friday night at the Mystic Lake Casino in Prior Lake, Minnesota when Jamal Pogues battles Alex Polizzi for the coveted strap in the evening’s main event.
Pogues enters the cage as the more recognizable name of the two after having a successful stint on the 2019 season of Dana White’s Contender Series. The Cobra Kai team member picked up a decision win over Marcos Brigagao on the show. Despite the victory, UFC President Dana White told him that he would like to see him polish up his skills on the regional scene before being promoted to the world’s premier MMA organization. Polizzi, on the other hand, is excited about being the lesser-known combatant.
“I try not to think about the opponent’s history,” Polizzi told Cageside Press ahead of the fight. “If they are big and bad. I am just trying to focus on the fight ahead of me and make sure I am not getting too much into my own head. This is a great fight and another chance for me to show my skills in the ring… It is really nice to have people cheering on you [like Pogues] and to know your name and say, ‘I’m going to cheer for this guy.’ But it is something else to be the opponent, to be the guy that shouldn’t have won, to be the guy everyone wants to cheer against. I’m actually kinda excited about that.”
Polizzi should not be looked past. He is a former Wisconsin state champion wrestler and former Division I NCAA wrestling wrestler at Northwestern — who qualified for the National tournament three times. Since transitioning to MMA, “Eazy” has amassed a perfect 5-0 record without a single fight reaching the judge’s scorecard. In his last appearance, he made quick work of UFC veteran Daniel Jolly with a first-round TKO. Regardless of the success, the Chosen Few Gym representative won’t spend any time relishing it.
“It’s nice for the day,” Polizzi said. “It’s a nice indicator of how far I have come as a fighter. However at the end of the day if you are worried about being undefeated and keeping my perfect record it leads to nervousness. It is no good. I like to think about every fight as starting fresh. Coming 0-0 at him with nothing to lose.”
Despite top UFC talents like Henry Cejudo, Kamaru Usman, Dominick Reyes and many others having a history with the LFA (some fought for the promotion when it was still called Legacy Fighting Championship), and the promotion virtually acting as a feeder system for the UFC, Polizzi won’t even take a minute to think about anything after his battle with Pogues.
While the Wisconsin native won’t look past Pogues he did give his official prediction when they meet.
“It’s going to be a stoppage if history told us anything,” Polizzi said. “Putting it on the judges just ain’t my thing. They can decide the rest of the fights. I am going to try to make the fight stop. I am going to drag him into the deep water, I’m going to wear on him. I’m going to put him down on the ground and beat on him. The ref will probably pull me off of him, let’s say round three.