PROVIDENCE, R.I. (March 21st, 2016) — The world’s fastest-growing mixed martial arts promotion, CES MMA, kicks off the spring of 2016 with its busiest month yet, two dynamic shows in two different states in a whirlwind two-week stretch.
The new season begins Friday, April 1st at The Fox Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn., with “CES MMA 34” featuring the return of CES MMA Welterweight Champion Chris Curtis defending his title live on AXS TV and continues Saturday, April 16th with “CES MMA 35” at the North Shore Music Theatre in Beverly, Mass., with a stacked pro-am card that includes Massachusetts standouts Pedro Gonzalez and Rico DiSciullo and an added twist with a handful of amateurs competing for a CES MMA promotional contract.
The next two events mark the promotion’s first venture outside of its homebase in Rhode Island since November of 2013, also at Foxwoods. In addition, “CES MMA 35” marks the promotion’s Massachusetts debut while “CES MMA 34” is its 10th televised event on AXS TV since its network television debut in 2014.
Tickets for both events can be purchased online at www.cesmma.com or by phone at 401-724-2253/2254. Tickets for “CES MMA 34” are priced at $40.00, $60.00 and $100.00 (VIP) and can also be purchased online at www.foxwoods.com, by phone at 800-200-2882 or at the Fox Theater Box Office while tickets for “CES MMA 35” are priced at $35.00, $50.00 and $100.00 (VIP) and can also be purchased online at www.nsmt.org, by phone at 978-232-7200 or at the North Shore Music Theatre Box Office. All bouts are subject to change. Showtime for both events is 7 p.m. ET.
Curtis (13-4, 5 KOs), a Cincinnati native who captured the CES MMA title in January with a knockout win over Gil de Freitas at “CES MMA 32,” makes his first title defense in the five-round AXS TV main event at Foxwoods against Philadelphia’s Nah-Shon Burrell (12-6, 8 KOs), one of televised bouts on the main card.
A two-time Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC) and three-time Bellator vet, Burrell owns wins over Jesus Martinez and Brazilian Yuri Villefort, the younger brother of former UFC standout and current World Series of Fighting contender Danillo Villefort, in addition to competing in Bellator’s welterweight tournament in 2014.
The main card of “CES MMA 34” also features a middleweight bout between Calvin Kattar (14-2, 6 KOs) of Methuen, Mass., and Cortland, N.Y., vet Kenny Foster (11-10, 1 KO), a seven-time Bellator vet. Johnny Campbell (11-7, 5 KOs) of Boston battles Matt Lozano (5-3, 2 KO) of Red Lion, Pa., in a bantamweight bout and heavyweight Steve Skrzat (8-7, 7 KOs) of Burrillville, R.I., faces Rollinsford, N.H., vet Kevin Haley (4-3, 1 KO). Also on the main card, Ludlow, Mass., lightweight Leon Davis (7-3, 1 KO) faces Lorawnt-T Nelson (7-4, 5 KOs) of Arvada, Colo.
The “CES MMA 34” preliminaries feature four exciting bouts, including a flyweight showdown between unbeatens Carlos Candelario (2-0) of New Britain, Conn., and Syracuse’s Luay Ashkar (2-0), plus the professional debuts of bantamweight Geoffrey Then and Michael Maldonado, both fighting out of Danbury, Conn. Then battles Merab Dvalishvili (1-2, 1 KO) of Long Island, N.Y., and Maldonado faces Stoughton, Mass., native George Nassar (1-0). The prelims also feature a light heavyweight bout between Cape Cod’s Matt Thompson (19-10, 7 KOs) and Anton Berzin (3-1) of Philadelphia. The 29-fight veteran Thompson appeared for CES MMA in 2014 and defeated Eric Bedard via submission.
“CES MMA 35,” the promotion’s first foray into The Bay State, features several of Massachusetts’ rising stars, including the Gloucester veteran Gonzalez (10-5, 9 KOs), who battles Boston bantamweight Andres Jeudi (7-5, 3 KOs) in the main event.
Quincy middleweight Mike Rodriguez (2-0, 2 KOs) puts his perfect record on the line against Buck Pineau (1-2) of Ashland, Maine in a rematch of their amateur bout in which Pineau won by third-round submission. Pineau returns to CES MMA for the first time since October when an arm injury cut short his match against Pat McCrohan at “CES MMA XXXI.”
Rounding out the pro portion of “CES MMA 35,” Medford lightweight Lewis Corapi (6-2, 3 KOs) faces Keenan Raymond (3-2, 1 KO) of Providence, R.I., who scored his first career knockout win in January at “CES MMA 32,” and Boston’s Devin Carrier (0-1) searches for his first win as a pro in a lightweight bout against Meriden, N.H., native Wayne Ahlquist (1-2, 1 KO). DiSciullo (5-0, 2 KOs), an undefeated Peabody native with three appearances each for Bellator and CES MMA, will be featured in a separate bantamweight bout.
On the amateur side, Yardy Kim faces Nick O’Connell in a bantamweight bout; welterweight Jamie Collins battles Jon Ciampa and Aaron Reverdes faces Joao Ramos in a featherweight bout. Providence’s Marquis Brewster, 5-1 as an amateur with two knockouts, faces Billy Keenan (6-2, 2 KOs) of Salem, Mass., and Boston’s Sean Murrin (1-0, 1 KO) battles featherweight John Douma (2-1) of Providence. All amateurs on the undercard are competing for a promotional contract with CES MMA.
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