NEW YORK: Combate Global and Univision Communications, Inc. today announced that a one-night, four-man lightweight (155 pounds) tournament will headline the next Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) live television event on Friday, April 23, on Univision (12:30 am ET/PT) and TUDN USA (12:30 a.m. ET/9:30 p.m.PT) in the U.S. and on TUDN MX (11:30 p.m. local time) in Mexico from Univision’s studios in Miami, Fla.
The show will also re-air in Mexico on Televisa Nu9ve the following day, Saturday, April 24 at 5 p.m. local time.
The winner of the tournament will have defeated two opponents that night and will be crowned the first Combate Global North American lightweight champion in history.
“One-night tournaments have become a part of Combate’s DNA, and we couldn’t think of a better way of crowning a new lightweight champion than making the champ earn the title by beating two opponents in one night,” said Combate Global CEO Campbell McLaren.
In one of the two semifinal stage matchups of the tournament, Anthony “The Shark” Avila (18-5) will square off against Alejandro “Hulk” Sanchez (9-3).
In the other semifinal stage bout, Tommy “The Spaniard” Aaron (7-4) will battle Luis “El Tigre” Gomez (7-4).
Representing the U.S., the 32-year-old Avila of Sacramento, Calif. is a member of MMA legend Urijah Faber’s Team Alpha Male, and is riding a five-fight win streak that last extended with his epic and gutsy performance against Mexico’s Pablo “El Gallo Negro” Sabori that resulted in a unanimous decision in favor of Avila.
Standing opposite Avila and representing Mexico will be the 27-year-old Sanchez of Tijuana, B.C. has earned an astounding eight of nine career victories by way of (T)KO or submission, and is coming off a first-round (3:12) TKO (leg kicks) of Ruben Lozano on March 12.
In the opposite bracket, the 26-year-old Aaron of Los Angeles, Calif. via Tampa, Fla. is a hard-hitting, prolific puncher who is also well-versed in submissions. After a near three-year hiatus from competition, he returned to form on February 19, forcing Gerald Scott to tap out from a rear-naked choke in the third round (3:57) of their matchup.
Also 26 years of age and fighting out of Miami, Gomez, who originally hails from Cuba, holds a black belt in Judo and is the only fighter in history to record a win by way of the judo throw technique, “ippon seoi nage.” He will see action for the first time since June 2019.
In a tournament “alternate bout,” undefeated Cristian “Puas” Perez (3-0) of Ensenada, B.C. will take on Geraldo Almonte (3-2) of Miami via Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
Should either of the two semifinal stage tournament bout winners be unable to continue their tournament bid in the championship stage due to injury, the winner of the tournament alternate bout will replace the injured winner in the championship matchup.
In a featured women’s catchweight (119 pounds) affair, Anali Lopez Hernandez (0-1) of Minneapolis, Minn. via Reynosa, T.M., Mexico will collide with Andrea “Fortaleza” Soraluz (1-4) of Miami via Lima, Peru.
Leading off the undercard lineup will be a featherweight (145 pounds) matchup between unbeaten Miguel Lugo (1-0) of Yuma, Ariz. and Christopher Boasso (2-1) o Miramar, Fla.
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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