Rodriguez-Poppie middleweight showdown headlines loaded preliminary card at CES MMA 38

Photo courtesy of Will Paul
MIDDLEWEIGHT MIKE RODRIGUEZ of Quincy, Mass., seen here during his win over Buck Pineau at “CES MMA 35” in April, will return Friday on the preliminary card of “CES MMA 38” against 10-fight vet John Poppie of Wisconsin, one of five prelim bouts before the televised main card begins at 9 p.m. ET on AXS TV. Rodriguez is coming off back-to-back wins since suffering his first career loss in January.

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. (Sept. 21st, 2016) — With Quincy, Mass., middleweight Mike Rodriguez set to face 10-fight veteran John Poppie Friday night at Foxwoods Resort Casino, the final piece of the puzzle for “CES MMA 38” is now in place.

The Rodriguez-Poppie bout is one of five fights on the preliminary card, which begins at 7 p.m. ET from The Fox Theater. The six-fight main card airs live on AXS TV and begins at 9.

Coming off back-to-back wins, Rodriguez (4-1, 2 KOs) now steps up to face Wisconsin native Poppie (7-3, 2 KOs), a three-time Resurrection Fighting Alliance (RVA) alum who recently battled Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC) vet Joe Gigliotti in April. Rodriguez suffered his first career loss at “CES MMA 32” in January, but rebounded with wins over Buck Pineau and Stephond Ewins.

Tickets for “CES MMA 38” are priced at $40.00, $60.00, $100.00 and $150.00 and can be purchased at, or, by phone at 401-724-2253/2254 or 800-200-2882 or at The Fox Theater Box Office. All bouts are subject to change.

UFC featherweights Levan Makashvili (8-2-1, 3 KOs) of Oceanside, N.Y., and Sean Soriano (9-4, 4 KOs) of Miami square off in the main event while Methuen, Mass., featherweight Calvin Kattar (15-2, 6 KOs) battles Middletown, Conn., vet Chris Foster (9-4, 5 KOs) in the co-main event.

Born in Providence, R.I., and now training out of Miami, the three-time UFC vet Soriano ends a six-month drought in Friday’s main event and fights under the CES MMA banner for the first time since 2012 when the 5-foot-9 featherweight stopped Lee Metcalf in 34 seconds. Makashvili returns following his unanimous decision win over Ryan Sanders at “CES MMA 36” when he filled in for injured CES MMA Lightweight Champion Luis Felix. Kattar aims for his eighth consecutive win in the co-feature against Foster, a former CES MMA title challenger who has won two of his last three suffering a knockout loss to current UFC vet Rob Font in 2013. Kattar recently ended a three-year layoff in April when he beat Kenny Foster by split decision at “CES MMA 34,” also at Foxwoods.

The televised main card also includes the return of undefeated flyweight Carlos Candelario (4-0, 1 KO) of New Britain, Conn., who makes his fourth consecutive CES MMA appearance in a three-round bout against Ovid, N.Y., vet Brandon Ware (2-1).

Also on the main card, Peabody, Mass., bantamweight Rico DiSciullo (6-0, 3 KOs) aims for his fourth consecutive win under the CES MMA banner and fifth overall when he faces Illinois’ David Garcia (3-1-1, 2 KOs), who has won three of his last four, including two by knockout. The popular DiSciullo last fought in April at “CES MMA 35” when he knocked out Jake Constant with a body slam in the opening round.

“CES MMA 38” also features the return of former CES MMA title challenger and submission specialist Kody Nordby (6-4) of Woonsocket, R.I., who hopes to rebound from his loss to Andre Soukhamthath in March when he faces Brandon Seyler (5-3-1, 1 KO) of Frisco, Tex. Rounding out the main card, Peabody, Mass., heavyweight Pat Walsh (7-2, 2 KOs) faces Carlos Zevallos (3-3, 1 KO) of Florida.

The preliminary card features five exciting bouts, starting with Norwich, Conn., featherweight Pete Rogers Jr. (2-3, 2 KOs) battling Maine’s Derek Shorey (3-7, 2 KOs) and lightweight Lionel Young (7-15, 1 KO) of Brockton, Mass., facing Meredith, N.H., vet Wayne Alqhuist (1-3, 1 KO). In the bantamweight division, Kris Moutinho of Milford, Mass., and Matthew Maldonado of Brooklyn face one another in their professional debuts and Richie Santiago, also from Milford, debuts against Elmira, N.Y., vet Quentin Gaskins (1-3).