Here are some of the better prospects in action this weekend. I'm not perfect, if I've missed a fight that you know of... or someone has pulled out of a fight let me know in the comments section.
Bitetti Combat - 31 Oct - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Luis Philipe "Monstro" (6-0) vs. Armando Sixel (7-2)
Monstro is a Nova Uniao fighter who went 4-0 in 2005-2006, and since has only had two fights. He was announced to fight on a Bellator Summer Series card in 2012, but it never happened. Luis's striking reminds me of Ryan Bader, except left-handed. He is looking to set up his big looping left hand that is the center point of his offense. It will be interesting to see if activity sharpens his tools, as it is hard to see someone being near their peak with such long layoffs as he has seen in his career.
King of the Cage - 31 October - Highland, CA
Cody East (7-1) vs. Wes Combs (20-6)
East is on a 4 fight winning streak, since he suffered his only loss against Tony Lopez in April 2012. Cody has good size, a solid wrestling base and while I'm unsure if he trains their full time, he has spent time at Greg Jackson's camp in the past working with Frank MIr, and Travis Browne. East is working to round out his game, and won a 4 round, low level boxing match earlier this year in Texas. My big concern with East is his gas tank, as that was a factor in the Lopez loss.
Henry Corrales (6-0) vs. Jerod Spoon (6-3-1)
Corrales has a wrestling and submission based game that he uses to impose his will on his opponents. Henry's first 4 fights ended by way of submission, and he has since added a UD over solid prospect Cooper Gibson, and another KO to his ledger.
Cage Fury Fighting Championships - 1 Nov - King of Prussia, PA
Bekzod Abdurakhmonz (3-0) vs. Christian Leonard (5-3)
Bekzod makes the quick turn after picking up a TKO on Oct 5th. I've written about Bekzod before because he is an extremely accomplished NCAA Division 1 wrestler, who did not waste any time transitioning to MMA straight from college. In addition to his pro wins, he reeled off 5 amateur wins since turning to MMA in July 2012.
Cage Fury FC - 2 Nov - King of Prussia, PA
Sterling was a Division 3 All-American wrestling for SUNY Cortland in upstate NY. He has also served as an assistant coach for the university, while training with Team Bombsquad. Sterling got into MMA when he crossed paths with Jon Jones, and was invited to come down to Team Bombsquad where Jones got his MMA start. There is a good chance Sterling would be in UFC right now, if a shoulder injury hadn't sidelined him since last August. The biggest question in this fight is going to be if Sterling is still suffering the effects of a long layoff due to injury.
Jungle Fights - 2 Nov - Sao Paulo, Brazil
Douglas da silva Andrade (20-1) vs. Fabiano Nogueira (6-2)
Andrade has won 19 in a row, but the competition has been realtivly non-discript and there isn't a ton of film that I found on him. After keeping a busy schedule from 2009-2012, Andrade has only fought once so far in 2013.
Review from last week:
Pacific X-Treme Combat - 25 Oct - Mangilao, Guam
Michinori Tanaka (9-0) broke Kyle Aguon's (6-4) four fight winning streak with a UD victory. Tanaka has a lighting quick single leg shot, and finishes it very well. Aguon pushed him in some scrambles, and every round was close, but I scored every round for Tanaka. Tanaka looked like the smaller fighter, and I suspect a drop to 125lbs would be in his future if UFC comes calling.
Will Chope (19-5) stopped Takumi Nakayama (18-14-6) in the 3rd round of an entertaining back and forth fight. Both men had their moments early in the fight, and Chope got roughed up and nearly stopped in the 2nd round, but recovered and put it on Nakayama in the 3rd. Chope now has 14 straight wins.
RFA - 25 Oct - Des Moines, Iowa
Mike Rhodes (6-1) picked up a 5 round UD over Alan Jouban (7-2). UFC has a ton of WW's on the roster, and I expect Rhodes to need another win or two before he gets the call.
Nitro MMA 10 - 26 Oct - Logan City, Australia
Steven Warby (6-1) dropped a UD to veteran Jim York (16-5)
Fight Nights - 26 Oct - Moscow, Russia
Ruslan Magomedov (11-1) picked up a UD over former UFC champ Tim Sylvia (31-10). Magomedov may be in Bellator purgatory right now, as he was reported to sign a deal with the organization early last year, and is listed on their web-site, but has never fought for the organization.
CFFC 28 - 26 Oct - Atlantic City, NJ
Johnny Curtis (10-2) might wonder what he could have accomplished if he got serious about MMA a little earlier in life. Thank to Mike Riordan for pointing out that Curtis was a 2 x D1 All-American, who had an outside shot at the 2000 Olympics. Curtis is now on a 9 fight winning streak as he smoked very highly regarded prospect Chris Birchler (5-1) in :41 seconds... but at age 43 it is hard to see UFC giving him a chance. Bellator keeps running Ron Sparks out there, so maybe they would take a flyer on Curtis and see what he can do before father time catches up with him.
Jordan Stiner (6-0) took a Unanimous decision victory over Jarred Mercado (10-1). It is the second straight fight where Stiner has handed his opponent their first loss.
Bison Fighting Championships - 27 Oct - Sao Paulo, Brazil
Thomas de Almeida (14-0) vs. Renato Carneiro (7-0-1) appears to have been rescheduled for December.
In other prospect news.. Patrick Cummins (4-0) LHW, and former NCAA D-1 wrestling finalist offered up his services to UFC in order to fill Robert Drysdale's slot at UFC 167 but was turned down. UFC likely still wants him to get a couple of more fights under his belt, but he has had multiple fights between now and the end of the year fall through recently.