Morgan Hill – Two lightweight Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighters
will take to the cage around 4:30pm on June 22 at the HP Pavilion
on the internet card in what could be the largest North American
MMA event in history.
Morgan Hill – Two lightweight Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighters will take to the cage around 4:30pm on June 22 at the HP Pavilion on the internet card in what could be the largest North American MMA event in history.
Strikeforce (or Strikeforce Fighting Championship) is an American professional kickboxing and mixed martial arts promotion company based in San Jose.
With his second opportunity to fight at the highest level, Gilroy’s Anthony Figueroa (2-0-0 in MMA) hopes to maintain his undefeated record against San Francisco’s Chris Cariaso (4-0-0 in MMA) who hopes to do the same.
Being the only 135 lbs fight on the card both Cariaso and Figueroa expect it to be an explosive fight showcasing both fighters’ speed.
“There will be a lot of fast punches and kicks and a lot of exchanging,” Figueroa said. “You’re going to see a flurry of punches.”
Cariaso, who is a Muay Thai kickboxing champion, expects it to be a standup fight, but is prepared for the fight to go to the floor.
“If the fight goes to the floor I’m going to take him (Figueroa) on his back and choke him,” Cariaso said.
Figueroa, who has gone from 125 lbs up to 135 lbs, said that he is in better shape than ever, and prepared to go three full rounds with Cariaso if need be.
“This time around I put on the weight lifting weights, and I feel stronger and I have stronger kicks,” Figueroa said. “It’s going to be an exciting fight, but it’s hard to choke someone out when your getting hit.”
Figueroa’s last fight was on December 8, 2006 when he defeated David Barrios in the Strikeforce Triple Threat event.
Similarly, Cariaso’s last fight was against Barrios back on May 12, 2007 when he knocked out Barrios in the second round.
Both Cariaso and Figueroa consider themselves the top up-and-comers in their class.
“I’ve made the two big Strikeforce events,” Figueroa said. “People are noticing and this fight is the only 135 lbs weight class on the card.”
Figueroa is a father of two, he holds a full time job in Santa Clara doing quality assurance for medical and industrial devices and probes, and he still trains six days a week with the UsH! Fight Team.
The UsH! Fight Team is led by famed kickboxer and middleweight MMA Champion Cung Le (3-0-0 in MMA), who is slated to fight Anthony “the Freak” Fryklund (14-8-0 in MMA) in the 180 lbs class on the June 22 bill.
“I’m always training with Cung, and he’s been punching really hard,” Figueroa said.
Also on the bill from the UsH! Fight Team is Sam “the Ram” Spengler (4-0-0 in MMA) who will be fighting Seth Kleinbeckk (6-3-0 in MMA) in the 185 lbs class.
With the event only a week away, the fighters are in their final preparation mode.
“He has stamina and I have stamina, so I’m prepared for three full rounds whether it goes to the ground or not,” Figueroa said. “We’ll just have to wait for June 22.”
The title bout is between Frank Shamrock and PhilBaroni. For tickets to this event call (408) 729-4468.