Indian wrestler Ritu Phogat was already set to compete in the upcoming atomweight grand prix when she opted to take a fight at ONE: Dangal, which airs this week. She’s one of several MMA prospects in action over the next several days.
Titan FC 69 | Dominican Republic | Friday
Welterweight, Carlos Matos (8-0)
Matos is a big welterweight that is a promising 24-year-old out of the Dominican Republic. In 2019, Matos was a sambo Pan American Champion. His main trajectory is to get the fight to the mat. The wrestling isn’t as good as it should be as he uses his size to get the fights grounded. Of eight wins, he’s finished six of those by submission. From the moment it hits the mat Matos is attacking limbs working for submissions. He really dangerous in all areas grappling but taking the back and sinking in the RNC is where he excels. Matos fights Dilano Taylor (5-1).
Welterweight, Dilano Taylor (5-1)
Why is Taylor’s nickname The Postman? That’s because he delivers. A product out of Sanford MMA, Tayor is someone I have high praise for. With one sole loss as a pro, it was to Bellator’s Roman Faraldo so no shame in that. On the feet Taylor fights long very well and the striking he has is really crisp. He’s a big strong welterweight slinging and powering guys down to the mat. Taylor has some solid ground and pound and a good ground game all around. His only concern is his takedown defense and off his back but at 24 the sky is the limit. He fights Carlos Matos (8-0).
LFA 107 | US | Friday
Heavyweight, Alejandro Solorzano (9-2)
Solorzano does have an impressive record but so far he hasn’t blown me away so far. “Goliath” is a big man weighing in at the heavyweight limit at 265lbs and standing at 6’5″. Solorzano is purely a striker which is a reason he took a bare-knuckle boxing fight. He’s a technical boxer that keeps his hands high and picks his shots. He could be more active but is someone that counters well and puts it together nicely once he commits. Solorzano fights Vernon Lewis (8-4) which is a tough fight.
Bantamweight, Allan Begosso (5-0-1)
Born in Brazil, Begosso currently lives in the US in California and trains out of Team Alpha Male. Begosso isn’t active enough, only fighting once in the last three years. His level of competition hasn’t been great but has never fought anyone with a losing record. Due to the excitement level Begosso brings he’s a fun guy to watch for. He has a lot of power in his hands, is very explosive, and can finish the fight at any time. He fights Luciano Ramos (6-5).
ONE Championship | Singapore | Saturday
Strawweight, Ritu Phogat (4-0)
Phogat is still new to MMA, but is a former wrestler who won a gold medal in the 2016 Commonwealth Wrestling Championship. So far in her MMA career, Ritu hasn’t had a problem getting the fight down. Once on top, she has proven to have heavy top control and really active ground and pounds. She still has a lot to show but has looked dominant. She fights Bi Nguyen (5-6) in a previously taped bout, and will then compete in the atomweight grand prix later in the month.
Valor Fighting Challenge 82 | US | Saturday
Heavyweight, Tee Cummins (3-0)
Cummins is only 3-0. Although he isn’t experienced much in pro MMA, Cummins has also dabbled in some bare-knuckle boxing for BKFC going 2-0. In his most recent fight for LFA, he displayed technical ability, patience, and still earned a sick finish. That trifecta isn’t seen much at 205. A lot still needs to be seen from Cummins, but he’s looked really good recently. Watching his old fights he’s improved quickly. Moving up to heavyweight, he will fight Eric Olsen (1-3).
Gulf Coast MMA 10 | US | Saturday
Welterweight, Michael Lombardo (11-2)
Lombardo has been on the Contender Series twice and won his last time out. He was never awarded a UFC contract after that win because it was frankly a boring performance. That having been said, it was a very dominant performance from Lombardo. Wrestling comes first with the style of Lombardo. He does have really sound wrestling and has solid chain wrestling as well. Along with the wrestling, he has good grappling as well. Lombardo fights Omar Johnson (7-3).
Fury FC 46 | US | Sunday
Welterweight, Nikolay Veretennikov (8-3)
Veretennikov is from Kazakhstan and has good wins over tough regional guys like Austin Jones, Artenas Young, and Steve Jones. He also holds a win over current UFC fighter Charlie Ontiveros. I believe Veretennikov has competed in wrestling, boxing, and does have a background in Sambo. He stays pressure-heavy moving forward and cutting the cage in half. He has a slew of weapons including kicks, knees, hooks, and wrestling. When he puts it together he’s like a gnat on a summer day. He fights former UFC fighter, Anthony Ivy (8-4).
Featherweight, Cameron Graves (9-3)
Graves have been fighting on the regional scene in Texas for his entire career. Graves is the former Fury FC featherweight champion which is the premier promotion out of Texas. Graves has also fought twice for LFA. Momentum is everything and as Graves is on a two-fight win streak — but it was his last performance that stood out. It was a beautiful head kick knockout he scored to retain his Fury FC strap. Graves fights Fernando Padilla (13-4).