Our experts are back to provide you with more insight on the upcoming LFC fights on March 20th. Â This time around, they are picking 6 fights, including the 3Â titleÂ fights on the card (You can view the entire cardÂ HERE.). Â Mike, Justin and Rich not only tell you who’s going to win, but they tell you why.
Do you agree with them or do you think they are crazy? Â Either way, let ’em know! Â When you’re done reading all the pics, feel free to leave your own picks and comments below and let our experts and Houston know who you think is going to win and why.
Meet the experts
Mike Calimbas (mopthemats.com) – (2-2-0) Mike Calimbas is an MMA Writer, devotee, and fan that has been a part of the Mixed Martial Arts community for over fifteen years. He has served as a ring official & timekeeper for amateur MMA in numerous local events in Texas with the USACA/Lonestar Beatdown. Mike has also written and provided analysis on the topic of MMA & Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for various online publications, including FightLine, Ploomy, and MoptheMats.com. Mike has been training BJJ, etc. on-and-off for the past six years. Off the mats, he spends most of his time with his family, including his baby son, Nicholas and girlfriend, Megan. For more on Mike, check him out on http://twitter.com/mikecalimbas.
Justin Trapp (fighterportraits.com) – (3-1-0) Justin Trapp is a photographer, designer and one of the premier marketing minds in the MMA industry. He manages the branding and marketing for mma companies, fighters and gyms. He has been a loyal fan of the sport since its inception and works to educate the biased. To see some of his work visit his website, fighterportraits.com.
Richard Burmaster (thecagedoor.net) – (4-0-0)Â Richard Burmaster is co-owner of (and a writer for) thecagedoor.net. He has been active in the MMA scene for close to 8 years and has trained in MMA for the last 5 years. His job keeps him on the go across the United States, and thus has afforded him the opportunity to train in many of the top gyms across the nation. From Army combatives to the Militech Fighting Systems, he has been able to try out many of the martial arts from coast to coast. When Richard is not working on his full time job, training in MMA or working on thecagedoor.net, he enjoys spending time with his wife and son.
|Patrick Hutton||Name||RJ Knepp|
|Rising Sun Karate||Gym||646 MMA|
|Mike Â Justin Â Rich||Picks|
Mike: Do I smell a stand up war? Yup, it’s in the air. This one’s not hitting the ground unless one of the fighters trips on their way to the ring or falls on it after getting hit. Â Prediction: Bam! Bam! Patrick Hutton via knockout.
Justin: I don’t know a lot about RJ but what I do know is, Patrick has some slick boxing and take-down defense. Â Prediction: Look for a Hutton 1st round KO in this one.
Rich: This will be a battle of two talented strikers . Both have fast hands and are very good counter strikers. I give Hutton the power advantage in this one. Â Prediction: Hutton via KO
|Artenas Young||Name||Brian Lightfoot|
|Not Ranked (debut)||TCD rank||Not Ranked|
|Hoger MMA||Gym||Gracie Barra Texas|
|Mike Â Justin Â Rich||Picks|
Mike: Fight with highest probably to end in a knockout? If it stays on the feet, I think so. Â These big boys are going to come outÂ swinging for the fences! AndÂ both have the ability to end the fight quickly. X-Factor -Â Artenas, who is looking to break into the pro ranksÂ with a bang, was recently sponsored byAtama and is sure to be training hard out at Greg Jackson’s in New Mexico. Â Prediction: I think this could go either way but I’lll have to go with Young via knockout.
Justin: Brian comes from the prestigious Gracie Barra Texas camp so we can expect him to have pretty good Jiu Jitsu and I’ve heard he likes to bang, but I think Artenas (who is a rising star himself) will be too much for Brian standing. Â Prediction: Young, TKO Round 1
Rich: Will the Machine Gun walk in the cage as a pro with the same swagger that we last saw when he won the LoneStar Beatdown 205lb Amateur Title? Brian likes to exchange punches but I am not sure he has seen the combination of power and speed that Artenas brings to the cage. If Artenas can control the pace of the fight he can end it quickly, If he cannot look for Brian to draw Artenas into a slug fest which Brian has the power to win. Â Prediction: Young via knockout
|Ray Blodgett||Name||Aaron Barringer|
|Sting Ray||Nickname||Bad Man|
|Elite MMA-Baytown||Gym||Hoger MMA|
Mike: Two fighters with undefeated records. All seven of their combined victories come by way of submission. Both very nice guys with respectful attitudes towards competition yet relentless in the cage. “Bad Man” and “Sting Ray” has more in common that anyone may realize.
I’ve seen someone in the forums refer to Aaron as “The Fedor of TX” or something along those lines. During his last fight against Kenny Burke, he did display that sort of Fedor-like cage IQ in terms of finding the right time to time the submission. As for Ray, he had a similar display in waiting for the same thing against Kierre Gooch!
This might be the closest fight of the night and its going to come down to who wants it more. Both guys are technical and very evenly-matched by all accounts. With that being said, I’ve only heard of good things about Aaron but I ‘ve known Ray for a long time and I know what type of heart this guy has. Â Prediction: Ray Blodgett for the win.
Justin: Tough fight to call! Both fighters are evenly matched, but I wsa told I have to pick one. Â Prediction: I’m going with the “Bad Man” with the decision win in this fight.
Rich: Ray is a solid striker with a great all around game. Arron has shown tremendous heart in his win over Kenny Burke and the Greg Jackson/ Sam Hoger fighter has yet to show is full bag of tricks. This has the potential to be the fight of the year with two tough guys who do not know how to quit. Â Prediction: “Bad Man”Â Barringer via submission
|Humberto Deleon||Name||Brian Garmon|
|2Â (145 & under)||TCD rank||Not Ranked(debut)|
|Bushi Ban||Gym||Silverback MMA|
|Mike Â Justin Â Rich||Picks|
Mike: Another fight I’m looking forward to!
I’ve been a fan of Humberto ever since his exciting fight against Joe Cruz way back in last April’s Lonestar Beatdown. Talk about a guy who loves his submissions! Garmon’s no slouch either at 2-0. And these fighters at the lighter weights fight at such a relentless pace that this fight is bound to hit every single corner of the Legacy cage. Another fight of the night favorite! Â It will be an exciting battle from bell to bell. Â Prediction: Look for a lot of scrambles en route to an arm bar transition to the submission victory for…. ….. Humberto Deleon.
Justin: I have never seen Brian fight and Humberto’s last fight was really quick. Â You can’t deny that Humberto is pretty slick on the ground. Â Prediction: Deleon via submission in Round 1.
Rich:Brian is a tough scraper with a ton of heart. He has good striking and likes to trade punches. Humberto has a nasty ground game and cardio for days. This will be a tough fight and I look for Humberto to take it to the ground at his first chance. Â Prediction: Deleon via Submission
|Ray Trujillo||Name||Jesus Rivera|
|Metro Fight Club||Gym||4 oz Fight Club|
Mike: In my opinion, this should be every one’s odds on favorite to win Fight of the Night honors. Getting straight to the point, both these fighters impress the hell out of me. Trujillo for his 6-0 record and penchant for winning some exciting fights. Ray strikes me as the type of fighter who doesn’t just play it safe for the win. This guy is a finisher and has produced that result in 80% of his contests. Pretty impressive, if you ask me. (flying side kicks anyone?)
Standing across from Trujillo will be Jesus Rivera (4-1), a fighter out of 4oz. Fight Club known for his extremely technical stand up and relentless pace. Mr. Rivera was very impressive at the last Legacy against a game and impressive Jaca Pitre en route to a decision victory. Jesus’ lone loss is a split decision against Randy Vera. Â Prediction: Tough fight to call. Rivera has been impressive but Trujillo has been a world beater and has never lost. I can’t bet against that but I will say this one makes it to the scorecards. Ray Trujillo by decision!
Justin: This is a classic, “techincal fighter vs brawler”. Â Jesus looked really crisp in his last fight and Ray overwhelmed his opponent from the get go. Â Look for both fighter to slow the pace and feel eachother out early on, with Jesus trying to frustrate Ray. Â I eventually think that Ray will catch him for the win though. Â (TKO rd 3) Â Prediction: Trujillo via TKO round 3.
Rich: Ray has power in both hands and a solid chin. He is not afraid to go toe to toe with anyone. Ray has a solid ground game and will have the advantage there in this fight. Jesus may be the best striker in the city and has a hell of a chin. Not many will stand in front of him for very long and those that choose to usually end up battered. Watch out for his vicious leg kicks.
Jesus showed great improvement in his take down defense in his win over the tough Jace Pitre. If Ray cannot get Jesus to the ground he could be in store for a very long nightâ€¦..Or this could be a very short fight with either fighter landing the big blow. Â Prediction: Rivera via Decision
|MikeÂ Bronzoulis||Name||Levi Forrest|
|Metro Fight Club||Gym||Gracie Barra â€“ The Woodlands|
Mike: Mike B is 8-1-1 with fights/wins over some high quality fighters, including his latest W over Cleburn Walker. Bronzoulis’ fight against Kamal Shalorus, an Olympic-caliber wrestler who has since been on a 3-fight tear in the WEC, ended in a controversial draw, with Bronzoulis on the winning side in the eyes of many observers.
He is going up against Levi Forrest, a fighter out of Gracie Barra with an equally impressive 5-0 record. The only thing is, out of those wins, only his win over Brent Mason (3-2) comes against a fighter with a winning record. Â Prediction: In this title fight featuring two great strikers, I’m taking TCD’s #2 ranked pro welterweight, Mike Bronzoulis, for the win over “The Barbarian”.
Justin: Having just beaten a guy that made it on this next season of TUF, Mike looks to finish Levi like he has his last few opponents, by getting an exciting knockout win. Â That being siad, I am going to say that Levi pulls out a shocker in this one. Â Prediction: Forrest via submission in Round 1.
Rich: Not many people make it out of the first round with Levi and no one has yet to beat the Gracia Barra fighter. Mike Bronzoulis has not been beat since his 07 debut and last year went 5 rounds with current WEC fighter Kamal Shalorus taking him to a draw. This fight matches up two of the best 170lbers in the state. Levi is very dangerous in the clinch and on the ground. Mike is the stronger fighter and has more experience against tough fighters. Look for Levi to try and take this to the ground quickly. Mike is no slouch on the ground and loves to control from the top and land big shots. Â Prediction: Mike B via TKO.
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