Three of PFL’s six divisions will wrap up their regular season on Friday night when the promotion hosts a card from the Overtime Elite Arena in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Along with one lightweight bout, heavyweights and featherweights will be the focus of Friday’s show. In the main event, 2021 PFL Heavyweight Champion Bruno Cappelozza will look to finish his already strong regular season with a win over Matheus Scheffel.
Here’s a full preview of the card.
Preliminary Card (5:30PM EDT) (ESPN+ / TSN Direct)
Bout 1: Brendan Loughnane (22-4) vs. Ago Huskic (8-4) (Featherweight)
Friday’s card will kick off with a featherweight fight between Brendan Loughnane and Ago Huskic.
This card suffered an unusual amount of changes this week, as many fighters were swapped out. As you read on, you will notice that will be a recurring theme for the show.
In the case of the opening fight, Loughnane was originally scheduled to face UFC alum Boston Salmon. That won’t be the case after all.
Loughnane, a 2021 semi-finalist, only has three points in the 2022 season thus far. His first fight came against Ryoji Kudo, which he won via technical decision.
Huskic is an LFA alum. He is currently on a two-fight losing streak, including a loss he took in February against Ignacio Capella.
Bout 2: Alejandro Flores (21-3) vs. Ryoji Kudo (10-3-1) (Featherweight)
Featherweights Alejandro Flores and Ryoji Kudo will meet next.
Flores opened his year with three points, defeating Saba Bolaghi on scorecards. He’ll likely need more points from this weekend to secure a playoff spot.
As mentioned before, Kudo lost his first PFL fight due to a technical decision against Brendan Loughnane. He succeeded on the Japanese regional scene before then.
Bout 3: Sam Kei (8-5) vs. Juan Adams (9-4) (Heavyweight)
In the sole heavyweight bout of the prelims, Sam Kei will face Juan Adams.
Both fighters will be making their PFL debut in this bout.
Kei was scheduled to debut at the promotion’s April card against Denis Goltsov, although that bout didn’t end up happening. The fight was then re-booked for this card, except it was then pulled once again as part of a reshuffling of the lineup.
Before his PFL run, Kei went on a two-fight winning streak from 2019 to 2021.
Adams is a former UFC fighter. He has fought in Texas promotion Fury FC since 2021, attaining four wins through five fights for them.
Bout 4: Lance Palmer (22-6) vs. Sheymon Moraes (14-5) (Featherweight)
The brief prelims will wrap up with a featherweight bout between Lance Palmer and Sheymon Moraes.
Palmer most notably was the 2018 and 2019 PFL Featherweight Champion. He has been through a rough patch since then, however, going winless in the 2021 season and losing his first fight this year to Chris Wade. He’ll look to get out of this slump on Friday night.
Moraes won his first fight of the year, beating Boston Salmon on scorecards. However, three points won’t be enough to earn a playoff spot.
Main Card (8:00PM EDT) (ESPN / TSN 2)
Bout 5: Denis Goltsov (28-7) vs. Maurice Greene (10-6) (Heavyweight)
PFL’s lengthy spotlight on network TV channel ESPN will kick off with a fight between Denis Goltsov and Maurice Greene.
Goltsov already has six points in the PFL season, as he beat Cody Goodale in just over three minutes with strikes in April. The two-time PFL semi-finalist will fight to secure a good spot in the playoffs this weekend.
Greene is best known for his UFC run. He first joined the promotion in 2018 through Season 28 of “The Ultimate Fighter.” He started strong for them, scoring a trio of wins. However, after losing four of his last five for the promotion, he was cut.
Greene bounced back on the regional scene earlier this year, submitting Danyelle Williams within a round at CES 68.
Bout 6: Bubba Jenkins (17-5) vs. Reinaldo Ekson (18-5) (Featherweight)
Bubba Jenkins and Reinaldo Ekson will meet on Friday’s main card.
Jenkins, like many featherweights on this card, just has three points in the division currently. He earned those in April, defeating short-notice opponent Kyle Bochniak.
Jenkins was originally meant to face Saba Bolaghi at this weekend’s card. Instead, he will face Ekson.
Ekson appeared on PFL’s “Challenger Series” show earlier this year, defeating Mike Barnett on scorecards. While he won on the card, he was not able to secure a PFL contract later in the show. The fight was his fourth consecutive win, when including previous appearances in the South African promotion EFC.
Bout 7: Ante Delija (20-5) vs. Shelton Graves (9-5) (Heavyweight)
In the final short-notice booking of the card, 2021 finalist Ante Delija will face Shelton Graves.
Delija was first meant to face Stuart Austin on this card, but that won’t be happening. He has a strong five points in the season currently, which he attained with a second-round victory over Matheus Scheffel in April.
Graves will be appearing for the first time in over two years. His last appearances put him on a two-fight losing streak and both came via finish. The odds are stacked against Graves this weekend.
Bout 8: Chris Wade (21-7) vs. Kyle Bochniak (11-6) (Featherweight)
The featherweight season will come to a close with a fight between Chris Wade and Kyle Bochniak.
Wade was a finalist in the 2021 season. He came up short in the end, losing a five-round decision to Movlid Khaybulaev. He picked up three points to start his 2022 season in April, beating former champ Lance Palmer via decision.
Bochniak lost his first PFL fight in April to Bubba Jenkins. The former UFC fighter was on a roll before then, stringing together a trio of wins in regional promotion XMMA.
Bout 9: Renan Ferreira (9-2) vs. Klidson Abreu (16-5) (Heavyweight)
Back to focusing on the heavyweight division, Renan Ferreira and Klidson Abreu will meet on Friday’s main card.
Ferreira wasted no time in his first fight of the 2022 season, stopping Jamelle Jones in just 25 seconds in April. He now has an undefeated promotional record of three wins and one no-contest since he first came on board in 2021.
Abreu handed undefeated prospect Adam Keresh his first pro loss to start the season, beating him via unanimous decision. While this fight only earned Abreu three points and likely didn’t secure him a playoff spot yet, it marked the first time he won since 2019, ending a three-fight run of his that resulted in two losses and one no contest. He’ll try to ride that momentum this weekend.
Bout 10: Anthony Pettis (25-12) vs. Stevie Ry (23-10) (Lightweight)
In the sole lightweight bout of the card, Anthony Pettis and Stevie Ray will fight.
Most lightweight matchups took place last week, confirming three of the four spots in the bracket for this year. One of those spots was secured for Pettis, due to the first-round finish win that he earned against Myles Price in April.
Because of this, Pettis actually doesn’t have to worry about making the playoffs this weekend. As long as he can exit this show ready to fight again later this year, he’s a lock for the bracket.
Ray, on the other hand, has a chance to play spoiler. He currently has no points in the season due to a loss against Alexander Martinez in April. However, if he can earn a first or second round finish over Pettis, he will surpass fourth-place Raush Manfio and take a spot in the playoffs.
It would be a big upset, but it’s what Ray needs to be seen in a playoff spot later this year.
Bout 11: Bruno Cappelozza (15-5) vs. Matheus Scheffel (15-8) (Heavyweight)
2021 PFL Heavyweight Champion Bruno Cappelozza has the chance to finish his 2022 regular season with a perfect score on Friday night. He’ll aim to do that when he faces Matheus Scheffel in the card’s main event bout.
Cappelozza started his regular season with a quick win, stopping Stuart Austin in the first round to earn six points. This came after a flawless 2021 season, where he scored four wins and the $1 million grand prize. As part of that year, he had a clean 12 points in the regular season. He can do that once again with a quick victory on Friday night.
Standing opposite of Cappelozza will be Scheffel. He is aiming to bounce back from a failed PFL debut, getting stopped in the second round of a fight against 2021 finalist Ante Delija. Despite that loss coming just two months ago, the “Dana White’s Contender Series” alum is back and looking to cause an upset for the ages.