In the hopes of crowning a new bantamweight champion, LFA is set to have undefeated fighters Zviad Lazishvili and Ricky Steele face off on Friday night. The fight headlines an eight-fight card which is set to take place from the Sanford Pentagon, the temporary residency for LFA, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA. Here’s a preview of the show.
Bout 1: Calvin Harbaugh (2-1) vs. Alden Coria (2-0) (Bantamweight)
The first of two preliminary bouts on the card sees Calvin Harbaugh return for a second LFA bout, this time facing Alden Coria. Harbaugh made his LFA debut in July, defeating Nate Morrow in the first round via heel hook. Coria will make his LFA debut in the fight. His rookie year as a pro saw him pick up two victories in Fury FC.
Bout 2: Jackson Filho (3-1) vs. Daniel Argueta (4-0) (Featherweight)
The other preliminary bout sees featherweights Jackson Filho and Daniel Argueta battle. Argueta has remained undefeated through four fights, all of which have been stoppage victories. He made his MMA debut in 2019 under LFA, but has also gone on to fight twice in Combate Americas.
Filho will return from an extended absence in the bout, as his last fight, a win, took place in March of 2018.
Main Card (9:00PM EDT / 8:00PM CDT) (UFC Fight Pass)
Bout 3: Tabatha Ricci (2-0) vs. Kelsey Arneson (0-0) (Strawweight)
Set to battle on the main card, Kelsey Arneson will make her professional MMA debut against Tabatha Ricci. Arneson fought in the amateur scene, including a win last December over Jessica Plascencia. The fight will be Ricci’s return to MMA, as her last fight was back in 2014.
Bout 4: Sean McPadden (4-0) vs. Allan Begosso (3-0-1) (Bantamweight)
Returning to LFA after one bout outside the promotion, Sean McPadden will face fellow undefeated bantamweight Allan Begosso. McPadden made his professional MMA debut in late 2018, stopping Jesse Wannemacher in the second minute on an LFA card. He returned to LFA two more times, defeating his next two opponents. Last December he took a fight in Shamrock FC, and like his three fights before, McPadden finished his opponent.
Begosso will be making his first MMA appearance since 2017. Undefeated, Begosso’s fight will be his first in the United States, as the majority of his career has taken place in Brazil so far.
Bout 5: Mando Gutierrez (4-0) vs. Mo Miller (3-0) (Bantamweight)
Similar to preliminary fighter Calvin Harbaugh, Friday night will be a quick turnaround for Mando Gutierrez, who is booked against Mo Miller. Gutierrez fought on an LFA card last July, earning a second-minute rear naked choke win over Jeff Jepsen. The fight was his LFA debut, with his three previous wins all being first-round submissions as well.
Coming out of his rookie year in MMA, Miller will step into the LFA cage for the first time in his career. His first year as a pro saw three fights, two of which that saw him finish his opponent with punches.
Bout 6: Ignacio Bahamondes (9-3) vs. Chris Brown (5-2) (Welterweight)
Both aiming to bounce back from losses, welterweights Ignacio Bahamondes and Chris Brown will battle on LFA’s main card. Brown appeared at LFA 80 last January, not being favoured in a decision against Carrington Banks. The loss ended a three-fight winning streak that Brown had in late 2018 and 2019.
Bahamondes last competed in November, losing to Salvador Becerra on a Combate Americas card. A three-year-long five-fight winning streak was attained by Bahamondes before. While Bahamondes will be making his first LFA appearance, he has fought in notable promotions like Titan FC, Island Fights and LUX Fight League.
Bout 7: Devin Smyth (9-2) vs. Maycon Mendonca (9-4) (Welterweight)
In the co-main event of the evening, Devin Smyth will make his return to the regional MMA scene against Maycon Mendonca after a bout on “Dana White’s Contender Series.”
Smyth competed on the UFC’s 2019 season of the “Contender Series,” losing a decision to now-UFC fighter Brok Weaver. Before then he had picked up nine wins, a streak interrupted by a no-contest bout in 2018.
Mendonca doesn’t present an easy return to the scene for Smyth. Mendonca looks to win his fourth consecutive fight on Friday. His last fight was in early July, stopping Kassius Kayne in the second round with a triangle choke. Friday’s fight for Mendonca will be his seventh under LFA.
Bout 8: Zviad Lazishvili (12-0) vs. Ricky Steele (6-0) (Vacant LFA Bantamweight Championship)
In a classic “two O’s, one’s got to go” situation, undefeated bantamweights Zviad Lazishvili and Ricky Steele will battle in the main event to become the fourth LFA Bantamweight Champion.
With an impressive record of 11 wins in total, Lazishvili made his LFA debut in late 2019 to pick up victory number 12. His performance saw him get a decision win over 34-fight veteran Josh Huber.
Steele has had a shorter career, although, like Lazishvili, it has been a perfect one on paper. Steele has had ties to the UFC in slight ways, having participated in season 27 of “The Ultimate Fighter” and the third season of “Dana White’s Contender Series.” His last fight was his “Contender Series” bout, getting a split decision win over Phil Caracappa.
As has been demonstrated recently by fighters like Vanessa Demopoulos and Jimmy Flick, winning an LFA belt can be a fast track to getting a shot on the “Contender Series.” It’s safe to say the main event on Friday has more than title implications.