Prospects the UFC Should Sign by the End of 2020

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jasmine jasudavicius
Jasmine Jasudavicius, BTC 8 Credit: Mike McClory/Cageside Press

Dusty Andrews

Middleweight, Vladimir Mineev (14-1-1): A 30-year-old patient Russian showman w/ a respectable Kickboxing background. He puts meaning behind all of his strikes which is led by his stiff jab, underrated leg kicks, and stabbing front kick to the body. He has shown competent grappling defense and survivability, especially vs a strong wrestling focus from Ismailov. Mineev looks good in five-round fights by not dumping too much energy into his actions yet still throws heavy shots that can end it early. He would compete well with the current undercard of the UFC’s MW division today.

Bantamweight, Rustam Kerimov (14-0): This is a no brainer, at 28 years old the 5’5″ Dagestani has already proven his value with wins over a list of strong challengers in the fan spoiling promotion of ACA: Ragimov, Mizugaki, Borisov, Maciel and the strongest win being Dudaev. A Sambo fighter with impressive takedown ability, he likes to get to the top position to finish the fight with ground & pound. Kerimov is very explosive and tends to favor using his lead leg for various kick techniques. With the UFC’s BW division now fully in its greatest era, it would be smart to get Kerimov on board to truly sweeten the pot.

Welterweight, Matt Dixon (9-0): I believe this will be a name at the top one day. Undefeated in Amateur & Pro the Oklahoma native who at 24 years old currently
fights for LFA and has a recent win over Bellator vet Justin Patterson. Matt has a boxing, wrestling, and a karate background to go with excellent athleticism, charisma, and looks.
Good speed, reflexes, and power for his weight class. Once Dixon enters the big stage and establishes comfort & confidence it shouldn’t be long before he’s hyped up. He just may need to move to a bigger camp to sharpen the tools and cardio higher.

Flyweight-Strawweight, Jasmine Jasudavicius (4-0): A late start in MMA, at 31 Jasmine is already an aggressive killer with nasty intentions. Her elbow & knee techniques are delivered with venom. Training at Para Bellum MMA in Canada with recent UFC signing Anthony Romero and others as well as visiting camps to work with top-notch female fighters has likely played a role in her already fast development. Jasudavicius has talked about making the move to 115lbs which would provide her with more options to develop on the big stage. Knowing she can compete at 125lbs where more names and bodies are needed will be a nice backup plan though.

Bantamweight, Melissa Croden (2-0): This is the prospect I feel the most confident in. Like Jasmine, she is a late start to the pro ranks at 28 and from Canada but is an absolute destroyer. Excellent power in her strikes Croden likes to incorporate the front kick with accurate punching combos, is heavy on her kickboxing and muay thai techniques. She has shown to be capable in defending on the ground and has good strength for a striker. Croden has also spent time in bigger camps like Jackson Wink to help out and spar with the top flight females. The 135 lbs division NEEDS fighters and like Bea Malecki, signing apparent skills without a resume may be needed.

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