Weekly MMA Prospect Report: Russian Standouts and More
Each week MMA prospect expert Shawn Bitter looks at the top up and coming fighters stepping in the cage around the globe. From the tiniest shows to Bellator prelims we give you the cream of the crop.
FNG 91, Thursday. (Russia)
Middleweight, Roman Kopylov (7-0)
Kopylov’s is a three-time hand-to-hand combat fighting world champion. That background has made him a very bright talent and given him the potential to be the future of Russian MMA. Kopylov is quite advanced on the feet favoring combinations with up to four strikes at a time. His ability to cover the distance with kicks and step-in knees is great. He fights Yasubey Enomoto (18-10) who isn’t too good.
Brave CF 21, Friday. (Saudi Arabia)
Middleweight, Ikram Aliskerov (6-0)
Aliskerov is a two-time world combat sambo champion out of Makhachkala, Russia along with other accomplishments. From what I’ve seen from Aliskerov is with the wrestling background he likes to stand and trade with his opponents. He has a good jab he throws along with some impressive accuracy and timing on both his strikes and level changes. A lot is still unknown about him but with the power, speed, and accuracy he shows on the feel while being an accomplished wrestler I like his future at only 26-years-old. He fights Geraldo Coelho (12-3) where I worry about his TDD and cardio.
Lightweight, Akhmed Magomedov (4-0)
Magomedov doesn’t have much footage nor experience but showed in his last fight he can be someone to watch for. Magomedov has a background in freestyle wrestling and was the Russian National Jiu-Jitsu champion in 2017. The Russian only has four fights but with 3 finishes getting it done on the at with submissions and ground and pound. He fights Gabriel Miranda (13-4)
Featherweight, Gabriel Miranda (13-4)
“Fly” is a dangerous fighter where if you look at his record you will see he has finished all 13 of his wins all in the first round. Miranda is a very dangerous Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner who holds 12 submission wins with a diverse attack on the mat no matter where he’s at. Miranda, although he has mainly all his career, wins on the mat, his stand up is solid. He has very good footwork and does a great job mixing in leg kicks, jabs, and body shots but on the mat is where he wants to be. He fights Akhmed Magomedov (4-0).
Rizin, Sunday. (Japan)
Flyweight, Kai Asakura (11-1)
Asakura has excellent striking with a lot of power in his hands, especially for a Flyweight. He is explosive, athletic, quick, and his accuracy is amazing. I have seen good TDD and good counter wrestling and ability to take the back and get the choke. He does hold 7 KO/TKO with 2 submissions and has shown he can neutralize an opponent with his wrestling if needed. He looks like the real deal. He fights Je Hoon Moon (11-11) who is the only person to beat Kai so this is a big fight.