BKFC 53 Preview: Champion Against Undefeated Contender
Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, is the venue for BKFC 53. This card has a rich range of different weight division contests, as it displays just how bare-knuckle boxing is growing as a sport. The main event pits David Mundell against the undefeated challenger, Doug Coltrane, with the BKFC Middleweight Championship on the line, as well as some other enthralling matchups.
Mundell vs. Coltrane: Belt Against Record
Before finding his niche in bare-knuckle boxing, David ‘Redneck’ Mundell hobbled MMA, finishing with a 10-5 record. His MMA career height was a singular fight in Bellator back in 2017, which he lost in the second round. He’s currently 7-1 in BKFC, having picked up the Middleweight Championship in his last fight in July 2023 at BKFC 47. Can he keep hold of it and continue to make online boxing news?
His first challenger for the belt is Doug ‘Cold Red’ Coltrane. He might not be nearly as well-versed in the fight game as the champion, but Coltrane is undefeated in his BKFC career, currently 3-0. Yet, it’s not just the Ws in the column but the performances in how he’s won. Both Brian Jackson and Blake LaCaze were knocked out just seconds into the second rounds of their respective fights with Coltrane. These empathetic victories escalated his stature in BKFC, leading to this championship fight. The question is, will he be able to land another knockout win to go 4-0 and become the champ?
Kazgan vs. Lane: Emerging Talent Takes on Fight Veteran
Known as ‘Lord Pitbull’ to his fans, Murat Kazgan is one of the few European fighters in the BKFC right now. This Turkish competitor is a specimen of the welterweight division and wants to elevate his stature after a successful debut in the promotion earlier this year. He’s already said he wants BKFC to visit his homeland so he can fight in front of his countrymen. A win would certainly increase any chance of that happening. Turkish boxing news sites will certainly sit up and take notice if he wins his second BKFC bout.
Julian Lane is potentially one of the hardest-working and most determined fighters in the BKFC, even if his promotional resume is a lackluster 4-7. He enters this bout with 18 months of separation from his last bare-knuckle fight and off the back of three losses. That’s not to say he’s not been busy. He stepped back into the MMA circuit earlier this year, where he won a bout on the Caged Thunder 23 card. A win here could get him back involved with BKFC more often.
MMA Converts Continue Bare-Knuckle Journey: Romo vs. Baxter
Diego Romo, the Ecuadorian fighter, is set to make his bare-knuckle and BKFC debut after a decent start to his MMA career, having gone 3-1 after his first four fights. The chance to fight in America proved to be enough incentive to switch disciplines. Using his fists isn’t a complete unknown to Romo, as he won his last MMA contest after a flurry of punches stopped his opponent in the first round.
The man tasked with stopping the South American from having an enjoyable debut fight is Ravon ‘Big Shot’ Baxter. The American has consistently switched between MMA and boxing throughout his career and could be considered the favorite due to experience alone – especially given that this is his third BKFC bout.
Bare-Knuckle Purists Go At It: Miller vs. Depee
A lot of former MMA or kickboxing participants find themselves in BKFC. That’s not the case here, as two bare-knuckle enthusiasts who’ve never fought professionally in any other discipline get it on. Jonathan Miller and Sawyer Depee fight in a cruiserweight contest. Miller is looking to extend his unbeaten streak from two wins to 3-0, while Depee is looking for consistency as his current record stands at a shaky 3-2.
Raulston: Amateur to Pro Ranks Against Pittman
Jordan Raulston has switched from the amateur fight ranks to the professional participant pool, albeit in different disciplines. She had 10 fights in the amateur MMA circuit, with a 3-7 record. After a brief stint of kickboxing training, she’s now ready for her BKFC debut as she tries to find her wheelhouse in combat sports. Raulston has only ever won a fight by decision, meaning that she might be in for another long night here.
By comparison, Crystal Pittman is a lot more experienced in bare-knuckle boxing, and this is already her specialty, having never fought in any other fight discipline. Her current record stands at 2-3, coming off a powerful first-round stoppage win over Toni Tallman at BKFC 47. If she can notch up another win, she’ll potentially elevate her stature to a championship bout in the women’s ranks.
Aguero Makes Bare-Knuckle Switch
No, not THAT Aguero (Sergio). This is Dagoberto Aguero, the Dominican Republic-born boxer who had gone undefeated in his first 15 boxing fights. He fought in numerous cards in his homeland, Colombia, and the undercards of American events until being handed two consecutive losses when taking the next step up. Now Aguero is plying his trade in the bare-knuckle world as he makes his debut in this fight discipline.
Chancey Wilson couldn’t be a more different opponent for Aguero. For one, Wilson was never a boxer. Before joining the BKFC, he participated in both MMA and kickboxing. He undoubtedly found his calling in the bare-knuckle game, having amassed a better record (3-1) in three years than in the entirety of his other endeavors.
Two South Carolinians Open the Show in Orlando
The Florida crowd’s first piece of entertainment from BKFC 53 will be the prelim bout between Devonte Jeffrey and Jeff Janvier, two men hailing from South Carolina. Both men are making their BKFC and pro-fight debuts, meaning the end product is somewhat of an unknown with no prior history to go by. A winning start could lead to further success in the cruiserweight division for either of these fighters.
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