MMA Rundown - March 15th-17th: Shooto Brasil tops busy weekend
There’s a whole lot going on, and a ton of fun to look forward to.
With Bellator returning next week, and the UFC working an early Saturday schedule this weekend, you’ll have plenty to watch before and after that event ends. And believe me, there’s a lot to check out.
Shooto Brazil 90 features a fun main event, with Daniel Lacerda (7-0) and Edilceu Alves (9-2) fighting for the vacant flyweight title. The battle of the Adrianos is slotted for the co-main, with former UFC fighter Adriano Martins (28-10) taking on Adriano Rodrigues (11-3).
This event will not be available on Fight Pass, and it starts at 6:00pm EST on Friday night.
Shamrock 316 returns to St Louis, as the midwest’s most consistent talent factory puts on another set of fun prospect matches. Bellator and Shamrock vet Jordan Dowdy (6-4) is scheduled to face tough regional vet Ben Brewer (11-6) at welterweight.
Isaac Purnell may be only 1-0 as a pro, but has a handful of finishes as an amateur and hopes to remain undefeated in both categories as he deals with submission hunter Cort Wahle (4-3).
Shamrock FC 316 will be streaming live exclusively on FloCombat.com, starting at 7:30pm EST.
Titan FC brings back more South Florida action, with a flyweight title fight in which Juan Puerta (16-6) defends the title against Gustavo Balart (8-1). This is a rematch of a previous bout in which Puerta won with a sensational flying knee. It was a rough loss for the Cuban National team rep, but the Greco-Roman standout bounced back with two straight wins including a brutal TKO win in his last outing. He ended that one by dropping Wascar Cruz in less than 30 seconds with the mother of all left hands.
Former UFC fighter Mike Graves (7-1) will be competing for the interim welterweight title against Certified Finisher Jared Gooden (13-2) in what should be a guaranteed banger.
UFC fighter and BJJ ace Gilbert Burns will be in a grappling bout against former UFC fighter Gleison Tibau, and Celine Anderson (1-1) welcomes French boxing amateur champ Lucie Bertaud (1-1).
Finally, Mohammed Usman (yes, brother of UFC champ Kamaru) looks to improve to 4-1 when he steps in against Frank Tate (6-6).
Titan FC 53: Puerta vs Balart 2 starts at 8:00pm EST, streaming live exclusively on UFC Fight Pass.
EFC Worldwide returns to Pretoria, South Africa with a lightweight title fight headlining the event, as Martin Van Staden (19-10) looks to bounce back from his recent loss to Dave Mazany as he takes on England’s Joe Cummins (5-1) in a battle of hard hitters.
Heavyweight gold is also on the line as Jared Vanderaa (8-3) tries to fend off Ricky Mesholas (7-7). Vanderaa is fresh off a win against a newly-revitalized former UFC talent Ruan Potts, and has some submission wins in his pocket. Mesholas’ record hasn’t been stellar, but he’s coming off two straight wins and punches like a truck.
EFC mainstay Alain Ilunga (11-5) is a punisher, and he hopes to put on a show against Lukasz Swirdowicz (4-4).
EFC Worldwide 77 should make a great breakfast accompaniment for any fight fan, starting at 10:30am EST on Saturday morning. This event will be streaming live on DAZN.
ACA makes its way back to St Petersburg, Russia, and has a wealth of international talent. Salman Zhamaldaev (16-1) challenges for the featherweight title against Marat Balaev (10-1). Rustam Kerimov (12-0) will also be fighting against Rakhman Dudaev (22-4) for the bantamweight title.
But it’s the rest of the card that has some more interesting names. M-1 and ONE Championship vet Alexey Butorin (13-3) meets Spain’s Jose Daniel Toledo Canellas (7-6,) and Rob Emerson (20-13) meets hard-nosed vet Mikhail Malyutin (36-15).
Iranian wresting star Amir Aliakbari (9-1) clashes with fellow heavyweight Shelton Graves (9-3), while Muslim Magomedov (4-0) welcomes Chris Camozzi (24-13) to Russia. Lightweight vet Luis Palomino (26-15) tries to snap a two-fight losing skid against Apti Bimarzaev (13-3), and Argentina’s Nicolas Varela (10-2) will try to make an impression against Kurban Gadzhiev (14-3).
ACA 93 starts Saturday at noon EST for those of us stateside.
Pancrase 303 has a title fight at the top with bantamweight champion Rafael Silva (29-6) defending his belt against dangerous prospect Kenta Takizawa (9-4). Flyweights also get a workout in this one as DEEP and Pancrase vet Taiki Akiba (9-7) faces Ryuichi Miki (19-11, 4 draws).
Two more flyweight bouts are the card as Yusuke Ogikubo (10-8) tangles with Tatsuyuki Nakamura (12-13, 3), and Shohei Masumizu (9-3) locks horns with PXC vet and former Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series contestant Riley Dutro (13-4).
Finally, Russia’s Vladimir Leontyev (2-1) will have a tough uphill battle against Michinori Tanaka (12-3).
Pancrase 303 is for the night owls, starting at 3:00am EST from Saturday night into Sunday morning. This one’s also streaming live on UFC Fight Pass.