Boxers looking for fights

Fighters looking for fights?

EFP releases website designed to assist fighters, coaches and managers to find fights. The site www.explosivefights.com has a simple concept. With fighters constantly looking for fights this website can serve as a go to spot to easily “bid” for a fight. After a very easy sign up a fighter can login and bid. After the bid is submitted a member of the promotion will contact them and continue the process as is typically done. “It’s an easy to use tool for fighters, coaches and managers to reach promotions and get fights booked quickly and efficiently,” said  EFP Spokesperson Alicea McMichael. “This will provide another resource to help fill fight cards and improve both the fighter and customer experience at boxing Events.”

The website has the ability to feature Pro Boxing, Amateur Boxing and Kickboxing Events.

 

 

Calvin Kattar Expects To Have ‘Fans On Their Feet’ at UFC 220

It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that featherweight Calvin Kattar’s UFC debut was something of a blur.

Taking a fight at UFC 214 last July against Andre Fili on two weeks’ notice, Kattar barely had time to enjoy the experience, but is nonetheless happy he was able to come out with a unanimous decision win.

“I wish we would have a little bit more time with it, but when they call, you answer,” Kattar told MMAWeekly.com. “We had two weeks, so we made the best of it. I was happy to go out there under those circumstances get the W. I was happy with that performance.”

Though Kattar was able to just get in the lone bout against Fili in 2017, he feels like it was a positive year overall for his growth as a fighter.

“In between the fights it really is the work on yourself, as opposed to the conditioning and getting ready for the fights, so I’ve experienced a lot of growth in my game in the last year,” said Kattar. “Even though I only competed once, I learned a lot during that time period.”

Now that he’s in the UFC and has had the time to prepare a full training camp for his second bout with the promotion, Kattar couldn’t be happier.

Calvin Kattar UFC 214 Fight Highlights“The last fight happened on two weeks’ notice, so it was kind of like a flash in the pan, and as soon as I got the opportunity it was gone,” Kattar said. “This one I’ve had some chance to soak it in and think how crazy of an opportunity it was in July.

“I’m playing with house money now. I’m in the UFC. I’m fighting in my backyard. Now I’ve just got to go out and perform.”

Kattar (17-2) will return to the Octagon to take on Shane Burgos (10-0) in a preliminary 145-pound bout at UFC 220 on Saturday in Boston.

“There are no easy fights in the UFC, and Shane is a tough kid, but I see some areas I can capitalize on,” said Kattar. “I see some opportunities for me to come away with a W in this fight. He’s a stand-up guy, I’m stand-up guy, so I’m sure our fight will have the fans on their feet.”

TRENDING > Cub Swanson Enters Free Agency

With his first proper year in the UFC ahead of him, Kattar is looking forward to enjoying each opportunity as it comes his way and continue his work to better himself in 2018.

“I think I’ll take each fight as it comes,” Kattar said. “Each day I’m just focusing on that training session ahead of me. Every day focus on the work. The fights will come, and then they do, our goal is just to get our hand raised, and then worry about the next one after.”

Source: MMA Weekly

UFC 220 main-event breakdown: Can Stipe Miocic upset Francis Ngannou to set title record?

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MMAjunkie Radio co-host and MMAjunkie contributor Dan Tom provides an in-depth breakdown of all of UFC 220’s main-card bouts. Today, we look at the main event.

UFC 220 takes place Saturday at TD Garden in Boston. The main card, which includes two title fights, airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

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Stipe Miocic (17-2 MMA, 11-2 UFC)

Staple info:

  • Height: 6’4″ Age: 35 Weight: 246 lbs. Reach: 80″
  • Last fight: Knockout win over Junior dos Santos (May 13, 2017)
  • Camp: Strong Style Fight Team (Cleavland, OH)
  • Stance/striking style: Orthodox/kickboxing
  • Risk management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+ UFC Heavyweight champion
+ Golden Gloves winner
+ NCAA Div. 1 wrestler
+ Regional MMA title
+ 14 KO victories
+ 9 first-round finishes
+ KO power
+ Aggressive pace and pressure
+ Excellent footwork
+ Good sense inside the pocket
^ Pulls and returns well
+ Dangerous right hand
^ Counters well off of inside parry
+ Solid takedown transitions
^ Favors head-outside singles
+ Good positional rides
^ Active ground striker

Francis Ngannou (11-1 MMA, 6-0 UFC)

Staple info:

  • Height: 6’4″ Age: 31 Weight: 262 lbs. Reach: 83″
  • Last fight: Knockout win over Alistair Overeem (Dec. 2, 2017)
  • Camp: UFC Performance Institute (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Stance/striking style: Orthodox/kickboxing
  • Risk management: Fair

Supplemental info:
+ Regional MMA accolades
+ 6 KO victories
+ 4 submission wins
+ 7 first-round finishes
+ KO power
+ Athletic and agile
^ Maintains composure and endurance
+ Solid feints and footwork
^ Manages distance well
+ Accurate left hand
^ Jabs, crosses, shovel/check-hooks
+ Hard knees inside the clinch
+ Improved takedown defense
^ Strong hips and fundamentals
+ Good getup ability
^ Cage and underhook awareness
+ 100 percent finishing rate

Summary:

The main event in Boston features a must-see battle for the heavyweight championship when Stipe Miocic looks to defend his belt against Francis Ngannou.

With the heavyweight division being volatile by nature, the organization has yet to see a champion successfully defend his title more than twice. Miocic will be the next man who is up to bat in that regard, but breaking this record won’t be easy given who is in the champion’s way.

An amalgamation of muscles and skill, Ngannou has forcefully injected new life into a weight class that needs it. Now, after going from homeless immigrant to top prospect in under five-years time, Ngannou will attempt to capstone his incredible journey with a championship belt.

As many now know, Ngannou came from Cameroon with basically nothing and was only introduced to MMA shortly after he arrived in Paris in 2013.

So, with that in mind, it is Ngannou’s fight IQ and rate of technical progressions, not his physique, that impresses me most.

Whether he is throwing straight shots or variating his patent up-jabs and shovel-hooks, Ngannou seems to prefer conducting traffic from his left hand. Even on the occasion of fighting from a southpaw stance, Ngannou displays comfort and competency in throwing his left cross both coming forward and off of the counter.

Utilizing feints and pivoting well within close quarters, the 31-year-old keeps a good sense of space, managing distance well when he chooses to.

However, as impressive as Ngannou’s movement is, he is not beyond being hit while coming forward, which makes the striking dynamic of this matchup a compelling one.

Enter the champion.

A Golden Gloves boxing winner before he even began his MMA career, we have seen Miocic continue to make improvements to his striking. Although his athletic ability and background in wrestling add an undeniable dimension to his game, it is the work that Miocic does in small spaces that is so impressive.

Akin to a heavyweight version of Frankie Edgar, Miocic will steadily work behind a series of jabs and feints, stepping slightly off angle in search of his counter or follow-up shots.

Moving just as well laterally as he does in and out, Miocic shows a good sense of things inside the pocket, almost preternaturally pulling and returning his punches.

Whether he is using his patent inside-parries or slick step-offs to the side, it is his battering ram of a right-hand that Ngannou will be attempting to avoid. That said, Miocic will need to remain on his best behavior as well, especially considering that his style also allows for oncoming traffic.

Assuming that neither man ices the other in the opening stanzas, then I suspect that the outcome of this fight could hinge within the wrestling and clinch exchanges.

Given the dynamic of this matchup, Miocic will be the man with more of a motive to take this fight to the floor.

Despite somewhat reluctantly leaning on his wrestling abilities in recent years, I have to imagine those skills are still intact for the champion. Whether he is entering off of a double-leg shot or chaining off to a snatch-single, Miocic has shown a good takedown game when he calls upon it.

Nevertheless, grounding Ngannou appears to be a task that has become increasingly difficult. Accustomed to his opposition trying to take him down for some time now, Ngannou has already spent the early portions of his career having to defend takedowns from a fence or barrier.

Spreading out his 6-foot-4 frame into a wide-reaching base, the contender from Cameroon keeps calm and collected, all while utilizing defensive fundamentals in a step-by-step fashion. Ngannou also shows a surprising amount of muscular endurance in these positions despite his build, quietly maintaining crucial underhooks with no signs of giving, nor grief.

When put on his back, Ngannou displays a solid awareness of grips, using wrist-controls and collar ties to fuel his submission attempts or getup transitions.

Even in his first and lone defeat (roughly four months after being introduced to MMA), Ngannou was already showing a subtle understanding of the intricacies regarding groundwork, cleverly defending from armbars and other precarious positions. Since then, the 31-year-old has only improved, as I have to imagine this last year spent training stateside has helped his already astounding trends.

The oddsmakers and public have both seemingly backed the challenger since the line opened, listing Ngannou -190 and Miocic +160 as of this writing.

Though making a champion of Miocic’s caliber an underdog can feel disrespectful on paper, I can see why both public and professional opinions are swaying toward Ngannou. He is a captivating talent who seems to shatter his potential ceiling each time out, and his speed and power edge feel extra palpable given where Miocic likes to make his hay.

Still, the reminder of Miocic’s wrestling base will be the looming question that many will be waiting to see if Ngannou can answer.

Optimistically, I’d like to think that Miocic can and will dust off his takedown chops after utilizing the first couple of minutes to set things up. The problem, however, is will Miocic be able to keep Ngannou down?

Miocic has never been known as a controlling positional specialist on the mats, as he is more of an opportunistic ground-and-pounder who floats and rides in a conservative but intelligent fashion. And considering that the champion has yet to demonstrate the submission skills to threaten escape routes or set traps in transit, then Ngannous’ getup game of underhooks and athleticism will likely have a lot of play.

For that reason, I believe that establishing half-guard will make the difference between winning and losing for Miocic.

Not only is half-guard a notorious offensive position for wrestlers in MMA (ala Randy Couture), but it is also one the best places to be if you are trying to stop a scramble/slow the fight. Against palpable striking threats like Mark Hunt and the late Shane del Rosario, we would see Miocic go to his half-guard game repeatedly.

Securing a far-side underhook with immediacy, Miocic was able to halt his opponent’s momentum and underhook attempts. From there, Miocic was free to punish his opposition with short elbows that allowed him to do damage without creating big enough spaces for scrambles and escapes to ensue. That said, I am not sure things will progress that far.

Pressure is what makes Miocic’s game work, but it is also what exposes him to harsh weather. Furthermore, Miocic’s common culprit standing has traditionally been left-handed strikes – a specialty of Ngannou. Should the champion fail to punctuate exchanges or ground the challenger in the first, then I ultimately see Ngannou scoring the knockout come the second.

Official pick: Ngannou inside the distance


For more on UFC 220, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Paige VanZant to have surgery on broken arm suffered at UFC Fight Night 124

Paige VanZant is headed for surgery.

VanZant (7-4 MMA, 4-3 UFC) suffered a unanimous-decision loss to Jessica-Rose Clark (9-5 MMA, 2-0 UFC) in Sunday’s UFC Fight Night 124 co-headliner, which took place at Scottrade Center in St. Louis. In the process, “12 Gauge” also broke her right arm when a spinning backfist connected with Clark’s head.

VanZant told her corner after the second round of the flyweight bout that she broke it in the first. After the bout, she confirmed the self-diagnosis with a hospital photo and an x-ray on Twitter.

On Tuesday, VanZant visited a doctor and shared video to comment about it.

Paige VanZant says she broke her arm on this spinning backfist at UFC Fight Night 124.

“Looks like I’m going to need surgery. So I go in on Monday,” VanZant said. “Wish me luck. Send some prayers up. And now I’m going to go sympathy shot.”

“Thank you, guys, for all your support,” she continued. “I love all my fans out there. I’ll be back strong than ever, this time with a bionic arm.”

VanZant’s bout with Clark was her first at 125 pounds. She’s now lost two in a row and three of her past four after being on a four-fight winning streak.

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 124, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Watch Stipe Miocic Take Out Junior Dos Santos (UFC 220 Free Fight)

(Courtesy of UFC)

Stipe Miocic tied the UFC heavyweight record for title defenses when he defeated Junior Dos Santos at UFC 211 in May of 2017. He looks to stand alone in heavyweight history when he faces off against Francis Ngannou at UFC 220 on Saturday, January 20, live on Pay-Per-View.

TRENDING > Dana White: Conor McGregor May Not Return Until September, Hints at Title Being Stripped

Tune in Saturday, Jan. 20, for UFC 220: Miocic vs. Ngannou full results and live fight stats, with the first bout slated for 6:30 p.m. ET / 3:30 p.m. PT on MMAWeekly.com. 

The card is headlined with the heaviest fights possible, as UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic puts his belt on the line opposite fast-rising knockout artist Francis Ngannou. 

If Micoc wins the bout, he would set a UFC record for most heavyweight title defenses at three, which goes to show how explosive the power is in the division. Hardly anyone could be a better example of that explosiveness than Ngannou, who left jaws hanging open when he landed the knockout of the year on Alistair Overeem late last year. It was the victory that placed him in front of Miocic at UFC 220.

There’s no drop-off in the UFC 220 co-main event, as light heavyweight titleholder Daniel Cormier attempts to defend his championship from another fast-rising talent in Volkan Oezdemir.

Source: MMA Weekly

UFC Fight Night 124 reactions: Winning and losing fighters on social media

Since the early days when the sport was anything but a mainstream endeavor, the MMA industry has thrived and survived through various websites, forums and, perhaps most importantly, social-media platforms.

Fighters interact with fans, each other and many more through the likes of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, which helps outsiders get a deeper look into the minds of the athletes.

Following Sunday’s UFC Fight Night 124 event in St. Louis, several of the winning and losing fighters, along with their coaches, training partners or family members, took to social media to react to the event or share a message with supporters.

Check out some of those reactions.

* * * *

The defeated

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The victorious

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For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 124, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

Source: MMA Junkie

USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA rankings, Jan. 15: Where does Darren Elkins sit after another comeback finish?

Darren Elkins is making a habit out of getting beat up, then coming back to win in dramatic fashion.

Elkins (24-5 MMA, 14-5 UFC) on Sunday had a rough first round against Michael Johnson (17-13 MMA, 9-9 UFC) in what was Johnson’s debut at featherweight. But in the second, Elkins got the fight to the canvas, then took Johnson’s back and forced him to tap with a rear-naked choke.

The victory gave Elkins six straight wins in the featherweight division that is ruled by champ Max Holloway. Elkins said after the fight he knows he can’t have a title shot next – but he’d sure like to have the kind of fight that would get him one with one more win.

Elkins made a little climb in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA featherweight rankings. Who else joined the ranks, or took a tumble? Check out all the new rankings after the UFC’s first event of 2018, the start of a busy stretch for the big promotions over the next few months.

Source: MMA Junkie

Ovince Saint Preux: Ilir Latifi injured, UFC on FOX 27 co-headliner scrapped

There goes another UFC co-main event.

Ovince Saint Preux, who was set to fight Ilir Latifi in next week’s UFC on FOX 27 co-headliner, tweeted tonight that the bout is off because of an injury to Latifi.

Via Twitter:

UFC on FOX 27 takes place Jan. 27 at Spectrum Center in Charlotte. The main card will air on FOX after prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

Saint Preux (22-10 MMA, 10-5 UFC) vs. Latifi (13-5 MMA, 6-3 UFC) already is the second co-main event of the year to fall, with Vitor Belfort-Uriah Hall being scrapped this past Sunday at UFC Fight Night 124 when Hall failed to step on the scale.

The news is unfortunate for both Saint Preux and Latifi. They called each other out late last year after wins and finally got their wish to fight each other in November. Saint Preux’s originally requested the bout for UFC 219 to close out 2017, but that never came to be.

It’s clear Saint Preux is hopeful to remain on the card against a replacement opponent, though it’s unknown what the UFC’s plans are.

The resurgent Saint Preux is on a three-fight streak that includes two straight fight-night bonuses. Most recently, he won with a head-kick KO of Corey Anderson at UFC 217 in November. Prior to that, he had back-to-back Von Flue choke finishes of Marcos Rogerio de Lima and Yushin Okami.

Latifi was looking to win his second straight after getting back on track in September with a unanimous-decision win over Tyson Pedro at UFC 215.

The UFC on FOX 27 lineup now includes:

MAIN CARD, FOX, 8 P.M. ET

  • Ronaldo Souza vs. Derek Brunson
  • Ovince Saint Preux vs. TBA
  • Dennis Bermudez vs. Andre Fili
  • Gregor Gillespie vs. Jordan Rinaldi

PRELIMINARY CARD, FS1, 5 p.m. ET

  • Bobby Green vs. Erik Koch
  • Mirsad Bektic vs. Godofredo Pepey
  • Mara Romero Borella vs. Katlyn Chookagian
  • Juliana Lima vs. Randa Markos
  • Vinc Pichel vs. Joaquim Silva

PRELIMINARY CARD, UFC Fight Pass, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Justine Kish vs. Ji Yeon Kim
  • Niko Price vs. George Sullivan
  • Frank Camacho vs. Drew Dober

For more on UFC on FOX 27, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Source: MMA Junkie

Felice Herrig happy to be 'graced with' opponent she asked for, reportedly Karolina Kowalkiewicz

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ST. LOUIS – Felice Herrig asked and, finally, it looks like she shall receive.

After her latest win, a split decision over Cortney Casey at UFC 218, Herrig expanded her winning streak to four in the UFC. This was months after the strawweight veteran delivered an emotional post-fight speech, in which she opened up about what she perceived as difficulties getting opportunities with the promotion.

Speaking to MMAjunkie Radio shortly after the Casey fight, Herrig said she didn’t see significant improvement in that department. But she did say that, given her momentum, there was no reason why she shouldn’t get matched up with top-10 competition next.

It appears she got it.

While she wouldn’t reveal who her next opponent is, Herrig said she’s already signed a bout agreement and should be in camp soon.

“This is actually the opponent I asked for,” Herrig told MMAjunkie backstage at Scottrade Centre in St. Louis, where she attended UFC Fight Night 124. “I’m not saying I asked for it publicly. But I asked (UFC matchmaker) Mick Maynard for the fight, and he graced me with it.”

According to a report by MMANytt, which MMAWeekly later confirmed, that opponent is former title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz. The reports say the 115-pound bout is expected for UFC 223 on April 7. Although not announced by the promotion, the event is rumored to take place at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

If that turns out to be the case, Herrig did kind of ask for it publicly. During that same interview with MMAJunkie Radio, the strawweight said she believes the ex-title-challenger, who sits five spots above her in the official UFC rankings, could be both an exciting fight and a “good gauge” for her.

At 33, Herrig (13-6 MMA, 5-1 UFC) has found quite the groove in the octagon, having recovered from a loss to Paige VanZant with wins over Kailin Curran, Alexa Grasso, Justine Kish, and Casey.

Kowalkiewicz (11-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC), in turn, has recently recovered from a two-fight losing skid (which included a title effort) with a unanimous-decision win over Jodie Esquibel.

While we’ve yet to receive official word on Herrig’s opponent, fact is that it’s someone she requested. And that, in itself, seems like a good start to a year that could be big for Herrig.

“18 is my lucky number, so it would be really bad if 2018 wasn’t good for me,” Herrig said.

That, of course, rides on being able to keep her momentum going. And, while  there are always adjustments to be made, the strawweight believes the key to making sure that happens lies in sticking to the system that’s been paying dividends.

“I don’t really have a plan. I just hope to keep doing everything the way I’ve been doing it,” Herrig said. “As every fight, obviously I plan on winning. But I think, too, I’m trying not to put as much pressure on myself.

“Because every fight, I felt like I had to top myself. So, ‘OK, now I have to be in camp longer,’ even though it would maybe burn me out. ‘Last time, I did 10 weeks, but this time I’ve got to do 12.’ I’m just trying to keep everything the same. The system has been working, and I’m trying not to mess with that.”

To hear from Herrig, check out the video above.

And for more on UFC 223, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Georgi Karakhanyan Predicts ‘Fireworks’ Against Henry Corrales at Bellator 192

Coming off a majority decision loss to Emmanuel Sanchez at Bellator 170 to start off his 2017, featherweight veteran Georgi Karakhanyan was looking to rebound in his next bout this past August against Daniel Pineda at Bellator 182.

For his part, Karakhanyan was able to do just that, picking up a second round TKO of Pineda, and in the process earning a victory in what some saw as a must-win fight.

“I feel like my wrestling wasn’t the best, but overall I got the finish and got the win, and that’s all that matters to me,” Karakhanyan told MMAWeekly.com. “A lot of people look at it different ways. But to me, the loss to Sanchez wasn’t too big to me. Yeah he did win on paper, but he wasn’t convincingly the winner.

“I didn’t feel like I lost – I feel like I just didn’t perform – and that’s where the difference is. To me losing is being knocked out or submitted. You’ve got to beat me up all three rounds to where I’m bloodied up. It was a loss, but it was good to come out with a victory in the Pineda fight.”

The win over Pineda was not only Karakhanyan’s third in his last four fights, but also his third finish in those wins, which is exactly what he needs to stay competitive in the featherweight division.

“I have to put on such a good performance that whoever is fighting after me has to go out there and try to out-perform me,” said Karakhanyan. “It’s about performance, performance, performance; I’ve got to have the performance to beat.”

Karakhanyan (27-7-1) will look to kick off his year on a positive note when he takes on Henry Corrales (14-3) in a main card 145-pound bout at Bellator 192 on Saturday in Los Angeles.

“I kind of knew we were going to cross paths,” Karakhanyan said. “I feel like (Corrales is) a guy who comes forward. I come forward. It’s going to be fireworks, and may the best man win. I’m going to go hard. I know he’s going to go hard. The main thing for me is that I leave everything in there.”

TRENDING > Will Georges St-Pierre Ever Make Another UFC Return? Should He?

For Karakhanyan moving forward, he just wants to enjoy each moment that comes and not worry too much about the far ahead future.

“I take it fight by fight, day by day,” said Karakhanyan. “I’ll think about the fight maybe hours before the fight, but as of right now I just enjoy everything. Before I was thinking about the fight one or two months before and I couldn’t sleep, but now I just go day by day.

“You learn how to deal with the losses, learn how to deal with failures, learn how to deal with injuries. That’s what makes a good fighter. A lot of fighters lose or get injured and just shut down, but for me the way I look at anything is it’s just part of my career.”

Source: MMA Weekly

Oviince Saint-Preux Reveals Ilir Latifi is Injured, Awaiting New Opponent for UFC on FOX 27

Ovince Saint-Preux needs a new opponent.

The former UFC title contender revealed on Tuesday that his opponent Ilir Latifi has been forced out of their fight next weekend at UFC on FOX 27 in Charlotte, N.C. due to injury.

Saint-Preux vs. Latifi was scheduled as the co-main event for the card in North Carolina and now the search is one to find the former University of Tennessee football standout a new opponent.

“Ilir Latifi is hurt and out of our scrap next Saturday in Charlotte, NC, UFC on FOX 27, who wants to step up and scrap?” Saint-Preux wrote. “I’m even open to going up in weight if no guys in my division will step up? Looking for someone to do what I do: step up and fight.”

It’s unfortunate timing with the event just over a week away as Saint-Preux awaits word from the UFC on potentially finding him a new opponent.

Obviously, Saint-Preux even sounds interested in testing the waters at heavyweight if that will keep him on the card but as of now UFC officials have made no announcement regarding the bout.

Saint-Preux is currently riding a three fight win streak including a head kick knockout against former “Ultimate Fighter” winner Corey Anderson in his last bout in Nov. 2017.

Source: MMA Weekly