Glory Kickboxing heads to Miami’s James L Knight Center this Saturday with an event featuring its middleweight champion Alex Pereira’s first trip to light heavyweight and the most promising fighters in the US, Asa Ten Pow and Troy Jones. Let’s take a look at the main card’s matchups.
Alex Pereira (40-6, 29 KOs, Glory middleweight champion) vs Donegi Abena (24-6, 6 KOs), Interim Lightheavyweight Title
Pereira definitely cemented his claim as the king of Glory’s middleweight division with his demolition of Jason Wilnis (whom he’d lost to twice earlier in his career) back in May. He is now moving up in weight and in the absence of light heavyweight champion Artem Vakhitov, who is sidelined by a recurring hand injury, he will face the last title challenger, Donegi Abena for the interim title.
Pereira is one of the finest boxers in the sport and is the owner of a particularly devastating left hook, which he used to knock out Israel Adesanya. While he was relatively one dimensional in the early stages of his career but he has since supplemented his boxing that with a decent kicking game and excellent knees to round his style and turn into an elite fighter.
Abena will be a good test to see if Pereira can handle the size of light heavyweights and if his power carries over to a higher weight, but technically his style is probably a bit too stiff to really trouble the Brazilian. This should be a good opportunity for Pereira to get his feet wet in a new division and build some hype up for a very interesting superfight with Vakhitov when the Russian is back from his injury layoff.
Asa Ten Pow (10-1, 5 KOs) vs Bailey Sugden (12-4, 2 KOs), Featherweight
Asa Ten Pow could become one of the best kickboxers the US has produced in years. He’s a very good boxer with good power who has stringed together five wins in Glory. He’s looked very good in his run but has looked a bit vulnerable to pressure and suceptible cardio trouble late in fights at times. Sugden, a British prospect whose career has stagnated a bit after going 3-3 in Glory, could test those areas a little bit. He’s a quick high volume pressure fighter and has a nice inside low kick which might give Ten Pow some trouble given his stance. However Sugden’s chin is a bit suspect and while he should prove a stiffer test than Ten Pow’s previous Glory opponents, it is still one I expect the American Ninja to pass.
Troy Jones (12-1, 10 KOs) vs Ammari Diedrick (19-7, 5 KOs), Welterweight
As I said in the introduction, Jones is a great prospect, combining tremendous athleticism and a very solid and complete technical game. He’s established himself as the top welterweight in the US. He’s facing Ammari Diedrick, a crafty southpaw but who is on the smaller side of the division and will likely lack the athleticism to really trouble the American.
Mike Lemaire (22-5, 8 KOs) vs Richard Abraham (14-7, 4 KOs), Welterweight
A clash of US veterans of the organization settling into gatekeeper roles. Lemaire recently moved down from middleweight and is huge for welterweight, Abraham is a tough and hard nosed scrapper but don’t expect that to be enough to overcome Lemaire’s size and athleticism.
Josh Jauncey (30-9, 15 KOs) vs Lorawnt-t Nelson (7-1, 3 KOs), Lightweight
Jauncey is an excellent fighter who has fought and figured well against some of the very best fighters in the world like Sitthichai or Giogio Petrosyan, but has not managed to quite break into the elite yet. He’s a great distance fighter with accurate punch/kick combos. He’s looking to rebound after a couple of losses and Nelson should be a good opponent to shine against. Nelson has shown decent boxing against low level opposition so far in Glory but is coming off a loss and doesn’t seem ready for someone of Jauncey’s caliber.
Glory 67 airs on Saturday, September 28th on UFC Fight Pass with the main card starting at 9:00pm ET / 6:00pm PT and the Superfight Series staring at 7:00pm ET / 4:00pm PT
Main Card –UFC Fight Pass – 9:00pm ET / 6:00pm PT
Alex Pereira vs. Donegi Abena
Asa Ten Pow vs. Bailey Sugden
Troy Jones vs. Ammari Diedrick
Mike Lemaire vs. Richard Abraham
Josh Jauncey vs. Lorawnt-t Nelson
SuperFight Series –UFC Fight Pass – 7:00pm ET / 4:00pm PT
Tiffany van Soest vs. Jady Menezes
Ivan Galaz vs. Matt Baker
Abraham Vidales vs. Justin Greskiewicz
Omari Boyd vs. Charles Rodriguez
Chommanee Sor Taehiran vs. Aline Pereira
Preliminary Card –YouTube– 5:45pm ET / 2:45pm PT
Nick Chasteen vs. Keemaan Diop
Ross Levine vs. Sean Choice