Another weekend approaches at pace, with a handful of intriguing fights taking place away from the UFC’s octagon on Friday.
From ONE Championship to Combate, to the Legacy Fighting Alliance. There are some fights well worth keeping an eye on across the weekend.
Before we get into what’s upcoming on Friday, here’s a rundown of what took place last weekend.
At Future FC 7 on Friday Maria Silva (4-0) handed Jainne Lais (6-1) the first defeat of her career. It took Silva only 49 seconds to submit Lais in Sao Paulo, improving the 23-year-old’s record to 4-0 as a pro.
Also in Brazil Daniela Maria da Silva (8-3) stopped battle-tested veteran Aline Sattelmayer (12-13) in the third round. Sattelmayer has now lost seven of her past 10 fights, but regularly faces quality opposition. The 29-year-old is a sort of Brazilian MMA version of Jan Finney, speaking of which…
On Saturday in Macau Jan Finney (11-13) lost via unanimous decision against emerging Brazilian talent Vanessa Melo (10-5). The event has been much maligned, with officials pulling out beforehand and fighters struggling to get paid. Thankfully the latter issue appears to have now been resolved.
At Eternal MMA 46 in Australia Casey O’Neill (2-0) submitted Jada Ketley (0-1) in the main event to defend her strawweight title. Also on the same card transitioning Muay Thai talent Chelsea Hackett (1-0-1) earned her first professional MMA win, defeating Danielle Hayes (0-2) by unanimous decision.
In Prague, Czech Republic on Saturday Eva Borodacova (1-0) beat Katerina Klinderova (0-1) via split decision. The bout was contested as part of the Oktagon MMA promotion’s Projekt Y reality show.
Rounding out the weekend was a pair of women’s fights at RIZIN 17. Seo Hee Ham (21-8) furthered her claim to be the best fighter under 115 pounds in MMA, with a violent finish of DEEP Jewels champion Tomo Maesawa (12-10). Also on the card Invicta FC veteran Stephanie Egger (4-1) dominated “King” Reina Miura (11-3) over three rounds to win via decision.
Friday August 2
ONE Championship kick off the action this weekend with another strong card. Say what you will about the way the promotion regulates themselves and works the media, but in terms of in-cage product ONE rarely disappoints.
Japanese Pancrase star Ayaka Miura (8-2) will be looking to extend her four-fight win streak on Friday when she faces Brazilian Samara Santos (11-6-1). Santos came up short in her ONE title challenge against Jingnan Xiong last time out.
Save Mart Center, Fresno, California
How to Watch: DAZN
In the main event of Combate Americas upcoming event in Fresno, Zoila Frausto (14-5) steps into “La Jaula” to meet Reina Cordoba (9-1).
Frausto was once, briefly, considered one of the sport’s top strawweights following her Bellator season three tournament win in 2010. Jessica Penne, Jessica Aguilar and all-time great Megumi Fujii were all beaten en route to the championship win.
The rest of the decade has been rough on Frausto, with injuries, weight struggles, and a number of defeats setting the 35-year-old back. Frausto impressed in February, making her return to the sport after three years away, with a first round stoppage of Jaimee Nievara at Combate 31.
Frausto’s opponent Reina Cordoba has long been the top flyweight in the Central American region. In 2015 Cordoba was handed her first career defeat by prodigious talent Sabina Mazo, but rebounded well with a submission win over Alejandra Orozco last time out.
Legacy Fighting Alliance 73
The Bomb Factory, Dallas, Texas
How to Watch: AXS TV
Friday is definitely the day for quality mixed martial arts action, as the latest Legacy Fighting Alliance event is also in the mix on August 2. Rising LFA star Hailey Cowan (3-1) meets Jessica Middleton (5-5) at flyweight at that event.
Cowan has fought all of her professional career inside the LFA cage. After a debut defeat against Victoria Leonardo in 2018, the 27-year-old has won three straight, all inside the distance.
Jessica Middleton represents another step up in competition for Cowan. Middleton is a Bellator veteran who has shared the cage with the likes of Ilima-Lei Macfarlane, Emily Ducote and Denise Kielholtz, and is much more experienced than any of Cowan’s previous opponents.