John Albert vs. Erik Perez
The Ultimate Fighter 14 competitor John “Prince” Albert (7-2) will attempt to get back in the winner’s circle at the TUF Live Finale when he meets promotional rookie Erik Perez (10-4) in a preliminary card bantamweight bout.
Albert, 25, is a Reno, Nevada born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Washington with Victory Athletics. “Prince” made his professional debut in March 2007 and went on to win his first six bouts before losing his first career contest prior to entering the TUF 14 competition. After clinching his spot inside the house, Albert was chosen by Team Bisping and was defeated by eventual winner John Dodson in the quarterfinals of the competition. He was awarded a bout in the December 2011 TUF 14 finale where he took advantage and came up with a TKO victory over fellow housemate Dustin Pague. In his follow up bout this February at UFC on Fuel TV, Albert was submitted by Ivan Menjivar in the first round of their preliminary card bout.
Perez, 22, is a Mexican born mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts in New Mexico. “El Goyito” made his professional debut in 2008 and lost back to back bouts to begin his career. Perez bounced back to win his next five bouts while competing on the regional circuit. He hit another roadblock in 2010 when he dropped back to back bouts for a second time in his career, but once again bounced back to put together an impressive five fight winning streak. His most recent win came by unanimous decision at BAMMA 8 this past December defeating Paul McVeigh.
Prediction – Albert TKO
Jeremy Larsen vs. Joe Proctor
Team Cruz’s Jeremy Larsen (8-2, NC) will attempt to right his early round loss in the TUF: Live tournament when he meets quarterfinalist Team Faber’s Joe Proctor (7-1) in a Live Finale preliminary card bout that will be contested at 155 pounds.
Larsen is an Arizona based mixed martial artist who has been competing as a professional for over five years. Larsen made his debut in late 2006 and has won eight of his eleven career fights. A veteran of Rage in the Cage, Cage Supremacy, and Trilogy FC promotions, Larsen lost his only contest in January 2011 via submission against TUF winner and UFC veteran Efrain Escudero. Since his loss, the 5’10” Larsen has won back to back bouts in the Trilogy FC organization near Phoenix, AZ. The 8th pick by Team Cruz lost during the first round following the preliminary contests, falling via decision to finalist Mike Chiesa.
Proctor is a Massachusetts based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Aggression in Bridgewater. Proctor made his professional debut in 2008 and won his first four before losing a November 2011 bout in his home state. Since suffering his only career loss, Proctor has rebounded to win his last three fights. A veteran of regional organizations Reality Fighting, AFO, and FFP, the 5’10” submission specialist was chosen fourth by Team Faber during the draft. An impressive submission victory over Chris Tickle in the first round advanced him into the quarterfinals where he lost to James Vick via decision.
Prediction – Proctor Submission
Cristiano Marcello vs. Sam Sicilia
A pair of TUF Live participants will go at it in the live finale when Team Faber’s Cristiano Marcello (12-3) battles with Sam Sicilia (10-1) of Team Cruz in a lightweight scrap on the preliminary card.
Marcello is a Brazilian native who fights out of the legendary Chute Boxe academy where he holds a fourth degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The 5’9” Marcello won twelve of his first fifteen while competing in Brazil, Japan, Korea and the United States for organizations like MARS, Art of War and PRIDE. Prior to earning a position on TUF Live, Marcello won his final three bouts. He was then selected by Team Faber fourth overall. Marcello fought tough in his preliminary round bout but was ultimately knocked out by Justin Lawrence.
Sicilia is a Spokane, Washington based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Sikjitsu team. Sicilia made his professional debut in September 2007 and won four bouts before suffering his first career defeat. Bouncing back from his first career defeat, Sicilia won his final six bouts before earning his way into the TUF Live house. A veteran of regional promotions like Square Ring Promotions, Conquest of the Cage, and Ringside Ticket was chosen third overall by Team Cruz and was defeated by Chris Saunders in the opening round of the TUF Live tournament.
Prediction – Marcello Submission
Myles Jury vs. Chris Saunders
Undefeated Team Cruz prospect Myles Jury (9-0) will make his first post-TUF Live appearance in the live finale against Team Faber’s Chris Saunders (9-2) in lightweight action on the preliminary card.
Jury, 23, is a Michigan native who fights out of The Arena team. The 5’11” Jury made his professional MMA debut in 2005 before taking nearly three years off of competition. He returned in late 2008 and won his next eight bouts. The Shooto, King of the Cage, and XCC veteran picked up his most recent victory in September 2010 in a KOTC event submitting Sam Oropeza in the 1st round. Jury earned his way into the TUF Live show and was chosen by Team Cruz with their third pick (5th overall). He was defeated by Al Iaquinta in the preliminary round via split decision.
Saunders, 26, is a California native who fights out of All in MMA in Buena Park. The three year professional won nine of his first ten bouts while fighting in regional organizations like Battle in the Ballroom and Long Beach Fight Night. In his most recent fight, Saunders lost a decision to UFC veteran Chris Horodecki at Bellator 47 in July 2011. After fighting his way onto TUF Live, Saunders was chosen by Team Faber as the 16th pick overall. He defeated Sam Sicilia by split decision in the preliminary round before losing to Vinc Pichel in the quarterfinals.
Prediction – Jury Decision
Daron Cruickshank vs. Chris Tickle
Team Faber’s Daron Cruickshank (10-2) will attempt to earn himself a long term UFC contract when he meets Team Cruz’ Chris Tickle (7-4) in a TUF Live Finale lightweight bout that is positioned on the preliminary card.
Cruickshank, 26, is a Michigan native who fights out of Wayne, MI with the MASH Fight Team. The former division III wrestler made his professional MMA debut in late-2009 and won six of his first eight while fighting mostly for King of the Cage. Prior to making his way onto TUF Live, Cruickshank won his last four fights. Once fighting his way past the elimination round on TUF 15, Cruickshank was chosen by Team Faber with the 6th overall pick. During the preliminary round he was knocked out by James Vick.
Tickle, 30, is an Illinois born mixed martial artist who fights out of One Step Fitness. The kickboxing specialist made his professional MMA debut in 2008 and won only twice out of his first six bouts. Tickle remained the course and rebounded with five straight victories, including four via KO, before earning a place on TUF Live. The Illinois and Iowa regional fighter was chosen thirteenth overall by Team Cruz and lost his fight during the preliminary round via submission against Joe Proctor.
Prediction – Cruickshank TKO
Justin Lawrence vs. John Cofer
TUF Live’s first overall pick Justin Lawrence (3-0) will attempt to secure a UFC contract when he meets Team Faber’s John Cofer (7-1) in a lightweight bout that will be part of the TUF Live Finale main card.
Lawrence, 22, is a Missouri native who fights out of Blackhouse MMA in Los Angeles, CA. The well rounded Lawrence made his professional debut in 2010 and won all of his first three bouts while competing for regional events in Missouri and Ohio as well as one bout for Strikeforce. Once fighting his way into the TUF Live house, Lawrence was chosen first overall by Team Cruz and picked up a victory over jiu-jitsu specialist Cristiano Marcello via KO in the preliminary round. In the quarterfinals however, Lawrence’s momentum was stopped with a TKO loss t Mike Chiesa.
Cofer is an Athens, Georgia native who fights out of the Hardcore Gym. The 5’9” Cofer made his professional debut in 2008 and won three bouts before losing his first bout via TKO in February 2010. The submission specialist rebounded by winning his next four bouts and was chosen to appear on TUF Live. Team Faber made Cofer their sixth pick (12th overall) and lost to Vinc Pichel by submission during the preliminary round.
Prediction – Lawrence Decision
Jonathan Brookins vs. Charles Oliveira
The Ultimate Fighter 12 winner Jonathan Brookins (13-4) will attempt to make it two in a row at 145 pounds when he meets Charles “Da Bronx” Oliveira (15-2, NC) in a TUF Live main card bout.
Brookins, 26, is an Oregon born mixed martial artist who fights out of Orlando, Florida with the Gracie Barra Orlando team. The submission specialist made his professional debut in 2006 and won eight of his first ten while competing across regional organizations in Florida, Texas, and Hawaii. After only one WEC bout, which he lost via TKO against Jose Aldo, Brookins rebounded to win his next three bouts before earning a spot on TUF 12. After being chosen by Team GSP, Brookins went on to eventually win the competition by defeating Michael Johnson by decision. After the TUF 12 finale, Brookins dropped to featherweight and lost his first bout at UFC Fight Night 25 against Erik Koch. He rebounded in his most recent fight at UFC on Fuel TV by knocking out Vagner Rocha this past February.
Oliveira, 22, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Houston, Texas with Bronx’s Gold Team USA. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2008 and won his first twelve bouts while competing in regional events in his native Brazil. In August 2010 Oliveira was brought into the UFC and won his first two inside the octagon by defeating Darren Elkins and Efrain Escudero. With an undefeated record after fourteen bouts, he went winless over his next three bouts under the UFC banner. In a must-win situation, Oliveira submitted Eric Wisely at UFC on Fox this past January.
Prediction – Brookins TKO
Max Holloway vs. Pat Schilling
Two of the organizations youngest competitors will be featured in a TUF: Live Finale main card bout as Max Holloway (4-1) meets Pat Schilling (5-1) for a chance to advance in the featherweight division.
Holloway, 20, is a Hawaii born mixed martial artist who fights out of Waianae, HI. The youngest fighter currently in the UFC began competing as a professional in 2010 and picked up four quick victories while fighting on the regional circuit in his native island. The X-1 veteran faced top contender Dustin Poirier in his UFC 143 debut in February and was submitted 3:23 into his bout for his first career loss.
Schilling, 23, is a Minnesota based mixed martial artist who fights out of Ambition MMA. “Thrilling” made his debut in January 2010 and won his first five bouts while fighting mostly in the Midwest United States regional circuit. Four straight submission finishes were strong enough to earn him a UFC contract this year. In his UFC on FX debut this January, Schilling was submitted with a rear naked choke at 1:37 of the 1st round of his debut against Daniel Pineda.
Prediction – Holloway Decision
Jonathan Brookins vs. Charles Oliveira
The Ultimate Fighter 12 winner Jonathan Brookins (13-4) will try and build off his recent knockout victory when he meets Charles Oliveira (15-2, NC) in a TUF Live Finale main card bout contested in the featherweight division.
Brookins, 26, is an Oregon born mixed martial artist who fights out of Gracie Barra in Orlando, Florida. The submission specialist made his professional debut in July of 2006 and won eight of his first ten while earning experience on the Florida regional fight circuit. His impressive start earned him a WEC bout opposite Jose Aldo in November of 2008. At WEC 36, Brookins was defeated by TKO and soon left the organization. He followed his WEC loss with three straight victories including one for Bellator before earning a position on TUF 12. After fighting his way into the house, Brookins was chosen by Team GSP and completed his sweep with a TUF 12 Finale victory over Michael Johnson. Brookins left the lightweight division after losing to Eric Koch at UFC Fight Night 25 last September. In his return to 145, Brookins looked refreshed and earned a KO victory over Vagner Rocha at UFC on Fuel TV this February.
Oliveira, 22, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Houston, TX with Bronx’s Gold Team USA. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in March of 2008 and went 12-0 while spending two years fighting in his native country. Oliveira was brought into the UFC in August 2010 and won his first two bouts inside the octagon submitting both Darren Elkins and Efrain Escudero. Oliveira went winless over his next three fights that included losses to Jim Miller and Donald Cerrone and a no contest against Nik Lentz. After his 0-2, NC run, Oliveira dropped to 145 and picked up a submission win over Eric Wisely at UFC on Fox 2 this past January.
Prediction – Oliveira Decision
Mike Chiesa vs. Al Iaquinta
Team Faber’s fifth choice Mike Chiesa (7-0) will try and become the TUF Live lightweight winner, however he will have to defeat hard hitting and fellow Team Faber teammate Al Iaquinta (5-1-1) in a TUF Live Finale co-main event.
Chiesa, 24, is a Washington born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Fancy Pants Fight Team in Spokane. The undefeated submission specialist made his professional debut in 2008 and won all seven of his bouts while competing in regional events in Idaho, Washington, Canada with organizations like Cage Sport and Lords of the Cage. Chiesa was chosen by Team Faber with their fifth choice and defeated Jeremy Larsen, Justin Lawrence, and James Vick to land in the tournament final.
Iaquinta, 25, is a New York born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Serra Longo Fight Team. The purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu made his professional debut in 2009 and went undefeated through his first six fights while competing for Ring of Combat. Iaquinta was defeated in his last bout before earning his way into TUF Live. On the show, he was chosen as the 1st pick by Team Faber and defeated Myles Jury, Andy Ogle, Vinc Pichel to punch his ticket into the final.
Prediction – Chiesa Decision
Jake Ellenberger vs. Martin Kampmann
Welterweight contenders Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger (27-5) and Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann (19-5) will meet in The Ultimate Fighter: Live Finale main event in search of a potential title opportunity.
Ellenberger, 27, is a Nebraska born mixed martial artist who fights out of Reign Training Center as well as Kings MMA. The former division II wrestler made his MMA professional debut in 2005 and won 21 of his first 25 during his first four plus years in the business. Stints with the IFL, Bodog Fight, M-1, Bellator and other mid-level organizations earned him the chance to fight for the UFC in 2009. “The Juggernaut” dropped his UFC Fight Night 19 debut against Carlos Condit by tight split decision, however has won his last six that followed. Among the opponents that he defeated during his current six fight winning streak include Mike Pyle, Jake Shields, and Diego Sanchez in his most recent at UFC on Fuel TV this past February.
Kampmann, 30, is a Denmark native who fights out of Las Vegas, Nevada with Xtreme Couture. “The Hitman” made his professional debut in 2003 and won 9 of his first 10 while competing overseas in England, Russia, Wales, Sweden and Denmark. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt earned his way into the UFC in 2006 and won his first four inside the octagon before losing to Nate Marquardt at UFC 88. Overall, Kampmann was 4-1 as a middleweight before he moved to welterweight division in January 2009. As a welterweight, Kampmann won four of his first five before falling in back to back contests against Jake Shields and Diego Sanchez. Since losing two in a row, Kampmann has picked up wins in his last two fights defeating Rick Story at UFC 139 and Thiago Alves at UFC on FX in March.
Prediction – Ellenberger Decision
ProFightingFans Staff Writer