By TXMMA Staff
Previewing Legacy Fighting Championship 31 on AXS TV’s Friday Night Fights
HOUSTON, TX, July 13, 2014 – Legacy Fighting Championship 31 takes place tonight at the Houston Arena Theater with the main card to be broadcast live nationwide on AXS TV. The promotion’s middleweight title is on the line in the main event with champion Bubba Bush taking on Alfonso Gonzales. The card also features plenty of up-and-coming prospects and pros, including UFC vet Damacio Page.
Check out our complete preview and predictions below as a preview of what to expect from tonight’s professional MMA action.
Legacy FC 31 – Preliminary Card Preview and Predictions
130 lbs.: David Acosta (0-0) vs. Angel Zamora (0-0)
Opening up the evening, 2x Legacy amateur title fight winner David Acosta makes his pro debut against fellow debuting pro and amateur journeyman Angel Zamora. Acosta should be an interesting fighter to watch given his successful track record as an amateur. He’s well-rounded both on the feet and the ground. He’s one of those guys that practically lives in the gym, putting in a lot of hours with mentor Jorge ‘Macaco’ Patino.
As for Angel Zamora, he has a lot of heart and certainly season 11 amateur fights under his belt but he only won 3 of those. He’s a fighter one would certainly say has lots of heart and that’s the area where he stands out most. In all 11 fights he’s only been finished twice so he’s definitely a fighter that keeps going and going. Acosta is definitely the favorite heading into tonight. All of his amateur fights ended before the final bell. The true test for him in this one is whether he can get the finish in his pro debut. The prevailing bet to make is that he can.
Prediction – David Acosta over Angel Zamora by submission, RD1.
155 lbs.: Delis Borges (0-0) vs. Kolton Englund (0-0)
In another matchup of debuting pros, Houston’s Kolton Englund takes on DFW rep Delis “Cuba” Borges. This is definitely a fight to watch considering how seasoned both guys were at the amateur level. Without a doubt both are ‘pro ready.’ Likewise both guys are powerful lightweights not afraid to slug it out and because of that reason this fight is a ‘fight of the night’ candidate.
At 20 years old Kolton is just coming into his own in MMA and at the right time heading into his first pro fight. “White Assassin” is another gym junkie and splits his time between 4OZ Fight Club for the bulk of his MMA training and Rilion Gracie Academy for more work in the gi. He’s also put in more work than Cuba with 10 amateur fights under his belt but that’s not to see Borges is that far behind. The DFW native has put it his own work and has kickboxing and boxing experience to go along with his 3 amateur fights.
Kolton may have the edge in this one given his overall body of work but Borges is a sleeper. If this fight stays up it’s anybody’s ballgame but we’re still giving the edge to Kolton.
Prediction – Kolton Englund over Delis Borges by unanimous decision.
170 lbs.: Aaron Reeves (1-0) vs. Steven Rodriguez (3-2)
Next up, Metro Fight Club’s Aaron Reeves looks for his second pro win against Steven Rodriguez. Reeves enters this fight having won against a gritty opponent in Julius Holmes this past January. As for Steven Rodriguez, he’s coming off a loss to a top prospect in Marty Usman in his last bout.
This should be an interesting fight between 2 tough guys. Rodriguez will have the range advantage considering he’s about 3 inches taller but Reeves is the type of fighter that doesn’t mind doing the dirty work to get inside. He’s also plenty strong considering his amateur KO of James Powell back in March of last year. Rodriguez is a developing fighter himself but Reeves’ more refined overall game should place him as the favorite here.
Prediction – Aaron Reeves over Steven Rodriguez by TKO, RD3.
185 lbs.: Trevin Giles (1-0) vs. Patrick Hutton (4-8)
A battle of youth vs. experience pretty much defines this next bout between Trevin “Problem” Giles and Patrick “Bam Bam” Hutton. Fighting out of Elite MMA, this will be Trevin’s second pro fight following his inverted triangle choke win over Angelus McFarlane in his pro debut. Patrick has 12 fights to his name but is coming off 6 losses in his last 7.
Looking at this fight objectively it’s clear to see that Giles has more ways to win but his best bet is to take it to the ground. Whatever anyone can say about him Patrick is still always a threat with his hands and has the KO power to put anybody in danger or point them out for a decision. All that gets nullified if the fight hits the floor where Trevin has his biggest advantage. He’s probably a BJJ belt level or 3 above Hutton in that respect and that’s where this fight has the greatest probably of ending.
Prediction – Trevin Giles over Patrick Hutton by submission, RD1.
Legacy FC 31 – Main Card Preview and Predictions
170 lbs.: Charlie Ontiveros (4-2) vs. Artenas Young (10-7)
Opening up the main card is this long-awaited clash between 2 flashy fighters in “American Bad Boy” Charlie Ontiveros and Artenas “Machine Gun” Young. While both were once known as top prospects they’ve also been shaky as of late with 2 losses in their last 3.
This fight is either going to be a “knockout of the night” candidate or really boring or both. What we mean is that both these guys have a tendency to be counter-strikers, and matchups are everything. If they fight the way they have in the past, they could literally backpedal for the majority of the rounds and turn this one into a rhythmic dance contest. On the other side of the coin they could also make this a beautiful fight if they engage in the fashion that both are capable of, if they are also willing. This is a tough fight to call and it’s also one that is winnable for both. Fought at range, Charlie should have the advantage. If it turns into an ugly fight fought on the inside, Chico may have the edge. For now we’re going with the more seasoned “Machine Gun” for the win.
Prediction – Artenas Young over Charlie Ontiveros by decision.
145 lbs.: Eric Valdez (4-1) vs. Alex Black (6-3)
Now this is a truly intriguing fight between two 26 year olds headed into their MMA prime. Overcoming a rough patch earlier in his career, Alex Black heads into this one with 5 wins in a row. Eric Valdez has 3 straight wins of his own and has also looked impressive as of late.
Though both well-rounded, these guys also have contrasting styles. Alex is more of a rangy fighter and can close the distance quickly with his hands and feet. Eric seems to fight a little tighter and likes to do his work on the inside. Both guys like the clinch and don’t mind the ground either. With that said, this one can go all over the place. Definitely another tough fight to call but Alex’s momentum is stronger headed in.
Prediction – Alex Black over Eric Valdez by decision.
155 lbs.: Jared Chaffee (4-0) vs. Justin Reiswerg (6-3)
If we had to rank them this would definitely be our most anticipated fight of the evening and arguably one a lot of people would have liked to see for years. Justin Reiswerg and Jared Chaffee are both Houston MMA fan favorites and rightfully so. Both guys are likeable and skilled. In fact, they’re so closely matched it’s hard to pick a winner in this one.
Justin Reiswerg should be the bigger fighter come fight time given his history of competing at 155 lbs. versus his opponent’s history at featherweight. With that being said, Chaffee also has a history of man-handling people in the strength department so he could have the advantage here too, it’s hard to say. The striking advantage could go to Justin but that could be nullified by Chaffee’s wrestling. And both guys are BJJ brown belt level on the ground so who knows that happens there. As far as picks go, we’ll give this one a pass.
Prediction – Pick’em
170 lbs.: Diego da Silva (5-1) vs. Alex Morono (6-2)
Here’s what we know. 23 year old Alex Morono will be heading into this fight looking to progress up the ranks. He’s been labeled as a ‘prospect’ for far too long and with 8 fights under his belt it’s time for him to perform and make the jump. Here’s what we don’t know and that’s pretty much everything about Brazilian Diego Henrique Da Silva. Kind of hard to pick this fight then doesn’t it?
All things considered we’d be inclined to believe in Morono’s skillset over most unknown opponents. Da Silva is said to be an exceptional grappler first but Alex is strong there also. He’s also someone who prefers striking so he’ll score points there when he needs to, all while looking to end things as well. Call it a hunch but if this one goes to the scorecards we see it going to Morono.
Prediction – Alex Morono over Diego Da Silva by decision.
125 lbs.: Damacio Page (17-10) vs. Elias Garcia (4-1)
In the co-main event of the evening “The Angel of Death” Damacio Page looks to stay undefeated in Legacy FC opposite Corpus Christi’s Elias Garcia. The Texan steps in for Henry Cejudo, the US Olympian who pulled out of this bout due to personal reasons.
This should be a fast-paced bout between two guys who (like most flyweights) have a huge motor. Expect this bout to go at a frenetic pace until it ends, which should be prior to the end of the third round. Short of his hiccup to Cejudo, Elias has been on a roll as a pro. He hasn’t been tested against a fighter as seasoned as Damacio though, nor one quite as big and powerful. In this type of fight between 2 fighters who are looking to throw caution to the wind and engage everywhere that could make all the difference.
Prediction –Damacio Page over Elias Garcia by KO/TKO, RD2.
185 lbs.: Bubba Bush (7-2) vs. Alfonso Gonzales (6-0) * TITLE
In the main event of the evening Legacy FC middleweight champion Bubba Bush defends his title for the second time opposite Tacoma, WA native Alfonso Gonzales. This looks like a classic striker vs. grappler matchup but it is more complex than that and should be a formidable test for both men.
Bubba Bush has won 3 in a row for the first time in his career and seems to be coming into his own. His submission game has advanced to where it really complements his wrestling and he’s gotten more comfortable in the standup exchanges as well. This bout will prove to be a test of just how comfortable he is there. By all accounts more people see Gonzales as being a hard hitter / striker ala perhaps a young Jon Kirk but he’s also been working his overall game in preparation to take the next leap in his career. Bush may be a strong wrestler but Alfonso has been exposed to that, driving over an hour regularly to train with UFC vet and former Iowa State standout Trevor Smith. Bubba is exactly the type of opponent he’s been doing that for.
This is an interesting fight and hard one to pick. Bubba has the potential to treat Alfonso like the rest of his opponents, putting him down and grinding him out but the Washingtonian is said to have good cardio and is reputed to be the type of fighter who maintains his power as the fight goes along. As the champion Bubba will walk into this bout as the favorite and rightfully so but this one also has ‘upset special’ written all over it. Proceed with caution.
Prediction – Bubba Bush over Alfonso Gonzales by decision.