clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Beyond the Octagon: UFC vet Nick Ring, Bellator's Ronnie Mann

New, comments

Former UFC middleweight Nick Ring has his first fight since being cut from the UFC, and Sengoku and Bellator veteran Ronnie Mann looks to capture a regional UK title.

When it comes to UFC veterans on the regional circuit, the big event to watch last weekend was KSW 31 out of Poland. Karim Zidan has your full results for that event here. The event featured UFC alum Tomasz Drwal (21-5-1, 3-3 UFC) challenging Michal Materla (22-4-0) for the promotion's middleweight title. Drwal would fall to strikes in the first round, making for the first loss in his post-UFC career, which now stands at 4-1. It is only the second time that Drwal has ever lost outside the UFC.

Also on the card, of course, was Rolles Gracie (8-4, 0-1 UFC, 0-1 WSOF) who found himself laid out by Mariusz Pudzianowski (9-3-0) in no more than half a minute. It's Gracie's third loss in a row, all of which have come by (T)KO.

Goran Reljic (15-4-0) would be the only UFC veteran to win on the night's card, beating former Bellator champion Attila Vegh (29-6-2, 5-1 Bellator) by split-decision for the vacant KSW light-heavyweight title. Reljic entered the UFC with a fair amount of hype, and he seemed poised to make good on it with his debut TKO of Wilson Gouveia. However, a severe back injury sidelined him for two years and, after his ostensible recovery, Reljic would lose his next three bouts in the Octagon and then be released. This latest victory moves him to 7-1 since then. As for Vegh, this was his first post-Bellator bout, and it's the second title fight in a row he's lost by split-decision--he dropped a split-decision to Emanuel Newton in the first defense of his Bellator championship in March, 2014.

Also of note is Aziz Karaoglu's (8-6-0) first-round TKO of Jay Silva (9-10-1, 0-2 UFC, 1-1 Bellator). That knockout pushes Silva's record below the .500 mark for the first time in his career. And Maciej Jewtuszko (11-3, 0-1 UFC, 1-0 WEC) saw his post-UFC record drop to 3-1 following a unanimous decision loss to Kamil Szymuszowski (13-4-0).

And on Saturday, at Made4TheCage 17, "Kid Ninja" Ronnie Mann (24-8-1, 3-3 Bellator, 2-1 Sengoku) faced Shajidul Haque for the organization's vacant bantamweight title. In 2009 Mann advanced to the quarterfinals of the Sengoku featherweight tournament, where he lost to Hatsu Hioki, and he also contended in Bellator's 2011 bantamweight tournament, losing to eventual champion Pat Curran in the semifinals. Despite having a distinct edge in experience on Saturday, Mann would wind up dropping a unanimous decision to Haque. The loss moves him to 3-2 since his departure from Bellator. It's the worse run Mann has ever experienced on the regional circuit.

Finally, we have former UFC middleweight Nick Ring, who returned to the cage after a year and a half on the sidelines for a bout with Jason Zentgraf (8-3-0) in the main event of Alberta, Canada's Hard Knocks 43. Ring entered the UFC through TUF 11, which he'd been favored to win before an injury removed him from the competition. His subsequent UFC career, which yielded a 3-3 record, would be characterized by narrow judges' decisions, both for and against him. The bout with Zentgraf, his first outside the UFC in over five years, would also go to the scorecards, all of which read in Ring's favor. This latest victory improves Ring's overall record to 14-3-0.