The story of this one is a bit of a wild one. I was originally supposed to fight this weekend in Hong Kong for Impi World Series, but that event got cancelled and postponed to August. So then I was offered a fight in Underground Battle MMA in the Philippines. I wasn't super-excited about cutting down to 125 lbs in the Philippines away from the comforts of home, so I turned it down.
A new guy started training at our gym in the meantime, and he accepted the fight. But he effectively pulled out of the fight over the weekend, so I decided hey, I'm in shape, I've been training for months without a fight, and I'm only 139 lbs right now anyway. Fighters fight, so let's do this shit. I called up our contact, and here we are.
My opponent is named Joco Mabute. He turned pro with a loss last October and is officially 0-1, but actually has close to 15 total fights. Here is the best-quality video I could find on him, from his older amateur fights:
There's also another poor-quality video of him winning by first-round armbar, so his ground game is no picnic either:
I am very excited for the challenge. I suspect this will be a very tough opponent, but I have a good game plan and my MMA game is as sharp as it has ever been. I have been working very hard on strength and conditioning as well. For the first time in a fight, I will be the much bigger man (he's only 5'2"!) and look forward to bullying him around.
My Hong Kong-based teammate Nosh Khan (also fighting that night) and BJJ coach and world-class competitor Rodrigo Caporal will be in my corner. My girlfriend Robyn looks like she will also make the trip too.
I might need a tranquilizer to sleep tonight; I am too excited!