When fighters are given their release (or choose to sign elsewhere) from a major North American MMA promotion like the UFC or Bellator – unless they’re a major star – they often fall into obscurity on the regional/overseas circuit unless they rack up a few wins and end up signing with one of the aforementioned promotions. In this regular feature for MMAOddsBreaker.com, I take a look at some regional/overseas MMA matchups for the month of April and rather than listing off the top fights outside these major organizations, I highlight some familiar names that you might recognize on upcoming fight cards.
Xtreme Fight Night 357 (Tulsa, Oklahoma) – Apr. 4
Emily Ducote (7-5) vs. Katherine Roy (2-2)
Ducote looks for her second straight win after losing three straight fights under the Bellator banner to Ilima-Lei Macfarlane, Kristina Williams and Veta Arteaga. Roy meanwhile looks to avoid back-to-back losses for the first time in her career.
Fights Night Global 92 (Moscow, Russia) – Apr. 6
Ali Bagautinov (17-6) vs. Vartan Asatryan (21-8)
UFC veteran Bagautinov looks for his fifth win in a row when he faces 25-year-old Asatryan who has won seven of his last eight fights.
Shamrock FC 317 – (Kansas City, MI) Apr. 6
Bobby Voelker (32-13) vs. Cameron VanCamp (11-4-1)
Former UFC/Strikeforce welterweight Voelker aims to push his winning streak to four straight when he faces VanCamp who has been undefeated in his last four-fights.
Rumble In The Cage 61 (Lethbridge, Alberta) – Apr. 12
Jesse Bongfeldt (22-7-1) vs. Micah Brakefield (7-7)
UFC veteran Bongfeldt competes for the first time since Nov. 2011 against fellow Canadian Brakefield who looks for his second straight win.
RWC 2 (Golina, Poland) – Apr. 13
Damian Stasiak (10-6) vs. Nikolay Kondratuk (11-4)
Former UFC bantamweight Stasiak looks to snap a three-fight losing streak when he takes on Kondratuk who has won three of his last four fights.
Fusion Fight League: Diesel’s Last Ride (Great Falls, Montana) – Apr 13.
Joe Riggs (49-18-1) vs. Jared Torgeson (18-20)
Former UFC title challenger Riggs moves up to 205-pounds in what the promotion is calling his final MMA bout in the USA. Torgeson meanwhile has lost four straight fights.
Fusion Fight League: (Butte, Montana) – Apr. 20
Ariel Beck (4-5) vs. Ashley Deen (4-5)
TUF 26 competitor and former UFC fighter Beck looks to snap a three-fight skid when she faces Deen in a flyweight matchup
RIZIN 15 (Yokohama, Japan) – Apr 21
King Mo (21-8) vs. Jiri Procházka (23-3-1) – Light Heavyweight Title
Bellator veteran Lawal looks to snap a two-fight skid, while Prochazka looks to push his winning streak to eight straight.
Kyoji Horiguchi (26-2) vs. Ben Nguyen (17-8)
A pair of former UFC flyweights clash, in Nguyen’s first fight outside the UFC since Oct. 14.
Ulka Sasaki (22-6-2) vs. Kai Asakura (12-1)
Former UFC flyweight Sasaski looks for back-to-back wins while Asakura is currently riding a four-fight win streak.
Damien Brown (18-12) vs. Koji Takeda (8-0)
UFC veteran Brown looks to build off his RIZIN debut where he submitted Daron Cruickshank as he faces undefeated 23-year-old Takeda.
Titan FC 54 – (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) – Apr. 26
Marcel Fortuna (9-3) vs. Andreas Michailidis (10-3)
Former UFC light heavyweight Fortuna drops to middleweight and looks to snap a two-fight skid against Michailidis who will also be making his Titan FC debut.
Cage Warriors 104 (Carfidff, Wales) – Apr. 27
Tom Watson (17-9) vs. Aaron Khalid (10-4-1)
UFC veteran Watson returns to the MMA cage for the first time since Aug. 2015 and looks to snap a two-fight skid when he faces Khalid who has won three-straight.
XKO 45 (Arlington, Texas) – Apr. 27
Rashad Coulter (9-4) vs. Veron Lewis (6-4)
Despite coming off a win in the UFC over Yaozong Hu, Coulter faces Lewis for the promotions heavyweight title. Speaking of Lewis, he’s won two of his last three fights.
Is there a notable MMA veteran competing this month that I missed? Or is there a matchup that has been changed? Hit me up on Twitter @LynchOnSports, and I’ll add it in or fix it up. Thanks.