Ricardo Arona. Photo by Scott Petersen/MMAWeekly.com.
Former PRIDE Fighting Championships standout Ricardo Arona looked rusty in his first fight in over two years, but managed to put together enough offense to stifle challenger Marvin Eastman en route to a unanimous decision victory in the main event of Saturday night’s Bitetti Combat 4 event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Arona (14-5) started the fight on a high note, connecting with a pair of leg kicks to Eastman’s thigh, one of them sending the UFC veteran falling to the canvas. A couple of successful takedowns saw Arona control the majority of the first round on the mat. However, Arona’s infamous lack of cardio began to show at the start of the second round, which featured very little, if any offense from either fighter.
Ricardo Arona. Photo property of PRIDE FC Worldwide.
Former PRIDE Fighting Championships standout Ricardo Arona will return to active competition for the first time in over two years when he takes on fellow veteran Marvin Eastman at Bitetti Combat 4 this Saturday in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
It will be the first fight for Arona since losing three out of four bouts under the PRIDE banner, including a brutal knockout at the hands of a streaking Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou at PRIDE 34 in April 2007. Eastman is coming off of a second-round TKO of Aron Lofton at a Maximum Fighting Championship show in May.
K.J. Noons. Photo by Esther Lin/EliteXC.
— Former EliteXC lightweight champion K.J. Noons and UFC veteran Terry Martin each picked up respective wins in the world of boxing this weekend. Noons earned a unanimous decision over Randy Pogue on Saturday night in Pala, California while Martin knocked out opponent Rayvon Wilson in the second round of their Friday night bout in Hammond, Indiana. [MMA Junkie]
— Chute Boxe product Murilo “Ninja” Rua has reportedly been tapped to replace Antonio Rogerio Nogueira against Alex Steibling on the Bitetti Combat 4 card, which takes place on September 12 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Nogueira withdrew from the card last week and current speculation has him joining his older brother, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, in the light heavyweight ranks of the UFC. [Fighters.com]
Stefan Struve. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
— Towering heavyweight prospect Stefan Struve has reportedly been tapped to face undefeated All-American collegiate wrestler Chase Gormley at UFC 104, which takes place on October 24 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.. Bout agreements have apparently been signed. Gormley was originally slated to face Ben Rothwell at the event but Rothwell was recently moved into a main card matchup against Cain Velasquez. [Fighters Only Magazine]
— A number of notable MMA veterans are in action this weekend. Art of Fighting’s latest offering in Tampa, Florida includes Seth Petruzelli, competing for the first time since his 14-second win over Kimbo Slice, going up against Chris Baten. Marcio Cruz and Delson Heleno will be on the AOF card as well. Neil Grove and Brad Pickett will also be defending their respective Ultimate Challenge UK titles in London, England while Dokonjonosuke Mishima, Masakazu Imanari, and Ryo Chonan are in action at DEEP 43 in Japan. [Bloody Elbow]