NEW YORK: Combate Americas, the world’s premier Hispanic Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) sports and media franchise, today announced the completion of the live, pay-per-view televised portion of the ‘Tito vs. Alberto – What Side Are You On?’ extravaganza at Payne Arena in McAllen, Texas on Saturday, Dec. 7, with the addition of a featured, featherweight (145 pounds) showdown between ferocious, young rivals from Mexico and the U.S., respectively, in Levy “El Negro” Marroquin (12-3) and Enrique “Baby Bull” Gonzalez (8-3).
The 24-year-old Marroquin of Monterrey, N.L., Mexico became an overnight sensation on November 11, 2017 when he defeated three opponents in one night to emerge the first “COPA COMBATE” eight-man tournament champion in history and collect the $100,000 grand prize.
Fighting out of Chicago, Ill., the 21-year-old Gonzalez originally hails from Laredo, Texas and will look for his third straight win after he edged out a split decision over Mexico’s Alejandro “Pato” Martinez at the Combate Americas live television event at Payne Arena on June 21.
Gonzalez relocated from Laredo to Chicago to train with Valle Flo Striking (VFS), the all-star fight squad led by head trainer Mike Valle.
In the first of two preliminary bouts announced today for the ‘Tito vs. Alberto’ mega-event, Jose “Luke” Flores (8-1) will square off with Ismael “Marreta” Bonfim (13-3) in a lightweight (155 pounds) contest.
The 31-year-old Flores of Mission, Texas is coming off a first round (:40) technical submission (injury) of Eduardo Bustillos at the Combate Americas live television event on June 21.
To date, Flores has earned 7 of his 8 career wins via (T)KO or submission.
Bonfim is an explosive, 23-year-old finisher hailing from Brasilia, F.D., Brazil and fighting out of Birmingham, Alabama.
He will put on the line a seven-fight win streak, and look to continue a run that has seen him produce 10 of 13 wins by way of (T)KO or submission.
In the second preliminary card matchup announced today, hard-hitting Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios (11-2) will face off with former training partner-turned-nemesis Jose “The Ghost” Ceja (5-6) at featherweight.
Palacios, a 32-year-old native of Mission was discovered by Combate Americas when the franchise cast him in its award-winning reality television series in 2014.
Palacios, who has produced some of the most memorable highlights in Combate Americas action, went on to compile a stellar, 8-1 record after his reality television debut, and will look to rebound from his first defeat since 2014, a first round (4:02) submission (arm triangle choke) at the hands of Cooper Gibson on June 21.
The 34-year-old Ceja of Port Arthur, Texas is looking to settle a personal score with Palacios, after a bitter falling out between the two former teammates.
Ceja’s career-best performance to date unfolded at the Combate Americas event in Verona, N.Y. on October 14, 2016, when he scored a brutal, first round (4:22) TKO (punches) on Irwin “The Beast” Rivera.
Priced from $30, tickets for the Combate Americas ‘Tito vs. Alberto – What Side Are You On?’ live pay-per-view television event hosted by TS-1 Promotions at Payne Arena, are on sale at Ticketmaster.com.
The event will be headlined by the previously announced and highly-anticipated, 210-pound catchweight showdown between UFC Hall of Famer and former World Light Heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz (20-12-1) of Huntington Beach, Calif., and multiple-time WWE Heavyweight Champion and former PRIDE and DEEP MMA star Alberto “El Patrón” Rodriguez (9-5) (formerly “Alberto Del Rio” of the WWE) of San Antonio, Texas by way of San Luis Potosi, SLP, Mexico.
At stake in the matchup between Ortiz and “El Patrón” is the winner-take-all title belt challenge that will see the victor walk away with the loser’s coveted, championship belt.
In the previously announced co-main event and first Combate Americas women’s world championship fight in history, undefeated, 21-year-old knockout artist Melissa “Super Mely” Martinez (6-0) of Mexico City, Mex. will collide with fellow ferocious, world-ranked star Desiree “Dirty Dez” Yanez (5-1) of Waco, Texas for the world strawweight (115 pounds) title.
Additional preliminary card bouts for the Combate Americas ‘Tito vs. Alberto – What Side Are You On?’ live pay-per-view television extravaganza at Payne Arena in McAllen will be announced soon.
COMBATE AMERICAS ‘TITO VS. ALBERTO – WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON?’ UPDATED FIGHT CARD
CATCHWEIGHT (210 LBS.) MAIN EVENT:
Tito Ortiz (20-12-1) vs. Alberto “El Patrón” Rodriguez (9-5)
WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STRAWWEIGHT CO-MAIN EVENT:
Melissa “Super Mely” Martinez (6-0) vs. Desiree “Dirty Dez” Yanez (5-1)
FEATURED FLYWEIGHT BOUT:
Dani Barez (11-4) vs. Joby Sanchez (13-5)
FEATURED FEATHERWEIGHT BOUT:
Levy “El Negro” Marroquin (12-3) vs. Enrique “Baby Bull” Gonzalez (8-3)
FEATURED CATCHWEIGHT (150 LBS.) BOUT:
Gaston “Tonga” Reyno (8-2, 2 NC) vs. Angel “Tito” Cruz (6-4)
FEATURED CATCHWEIGHT (118 LBS.) BOUT:
“Sexy” Dulce Garcia (1-0) vs. Marisol Ruelas (1-2)
PRELIMINARY BOUT CARD
Jose “Luke” Flores (8-1) vs. Ismael “Marreta” Bonfim (13-3)
Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios (11-2) vs. Jose “The Ghost” Ceja (4-5)