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November 22, 2016

CES 40 Preview 11/23/2016

CES MMA: Classic Entertainment Sports 40 Preview

Travis Lizotte:

There will be plenty to be thankful for November 23rd at Twin River Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island as CES returns from Plymouth Rock. On Thanksgiving Eve if you are hungry for action look no further than CES 40! With a Lightweight  Main Event featuring a CES mainstay that needs no introduction; Nate “the Snake” Andrews made his professional debut at CES 11 and hopes that his 9th win in the CES cage will put him on the radar of the largest National MMA Promotions. Andrews will be looking to notch his 10th professional win against only one loss when he squares off with George Sheppard, who will be stepping into the cage for the 27th time as a pro and looking to make it 16 fights in the win column.  The nights Co-Main Event will have another CES Veteran and Bantamweight Contender Dinis “Sweetbread” Paiva will step back into the CES cage after over a year long layoff and try to start a new winning streak when he throws down with Las Vegas’ Zane Behrend who fights out of Xtreme Couture gym.  Joe “Lights Out” Pingitore looks to overcome a loss to Matt Bessette at CES 37 when he calls upon Hawaii’s Lightweight Spencer “Masaru” Higa. Featherweights Dylan Lockard and ”Ruthless” Russell Campbell lock horns. Richard Hazard and 47 years young Joe “Julio” Reverdes show down at 135 pounds. Gary “Tiger” Balletto Jr. faces Montoyia “The Son of God” Swilling in a Welterweight bout. Bantamweight, Richard Santiago, fresh off a win at CES 39 looks to go 3-0 when he faces Raymond “the Reaper” Yanez. Pedro Gonzalez squares off against Russian Featherweight Vadim Ogar.  Kris Moutinho versus Mike “the Beast from the Middle East” Karam will round out the exciting Thanksgiving eve card when they throw down in the Bantamweight division.

Richard Santiago (2-0) v. Raymond Yanez (3-8) Fight has been scrapped (Raymond Yanez has backed out, according to Santiago's facebook page) we wish the best for both fighters!


Richard Santiago

Affiliation: BST MMA & Fitness

Record: 2-0 (2 Submissions)

Summary:  Santiago is currently on a 6 fight winning streak that spans into his Amateur career. His last 5 fights have been finished by first round Choke Submissions.

Last fight: First round Submission (Choke) against Devin Pilkington at CES39

Raymond Yanez

Affiliation: Fight Farm

Record: 3-8 (5 Submission losses)

Summary: Ohio’s Yanez has showed up on the wrong side of his last 6 fights.

Last fight: Decision loss to Anthony Flemming at Michigan Mixed Martial Arts: Series 1.

Breakdown: Santiago has made his name of late for first round chokes and Yanez has been on the short side of some first round finishes. This fight is going to be Yanez’s first in the Northeast and he is hoping to change his string of bad luck but is certainly going to have his hands full with the speedy Santiago.

Richard Hazard (0-0) v. Joe Reverdes (2-3)


Richard Hazard

Affiliation: Hazzard MMA 

Record: 0-0 (Pro Debut)

Summary: Hazard was 0-3 as an Amateur and lost all of his fights inside the first two rounds falling twice to submission and once to KO. Hazard will be taking to the cage for the first time since 2014. 

Last fight: First round KO loss to Montez Jordan at Art of War FC 10.

Joe Reverdes

Affiliation: Tri-Force MMA 

Record: 2-3 (1 KO and 1Decision win)

Summary: Joe is making his long awaited return to the CES cage and is stepping into the cage for the first time since 2014.  

Last fight: First round KO win against Randy Campbell at CES 24.

Breakdown: Both fighters are making their first appearances in the cage in over 2 years. For Hazard, he will be looking to notch his first MMA victory, for Joe, it will be to add another win to his record at the ripe old age of 47. Both fighters here are undoubtedly pleased to be back in the cage and to be able to perform for the CES fans.

Kris Moutinho (1-0) v. Mike Karam (0-1)


Kris Moutinho

Affiliation: Rivera Athletics

Record: 1-0 (1 decision win)

Summary:  Kris has gone the distance in his last 3 fights and his last loss came as an amateur against Manny Bermudez. Moutinho would like to add a finish to his undefeated professional record.

Last fight: Decision win against Matthew Moldanado at CES 38.

Mike Karam

Affiliation: Dojo1 

Record: 0-1 (1 Decision Loss)

Summary: Mike has shown finishing abilities as he stopped his opponent in each of his final 2 Amateur fights. Karam will also be testing the waters of New England MMA for the first time.

                Last fight: Lost decision to Xavier Alaoui at Rivals MMA: 1 in Canada.

Breakdown:  Both fighters will be looking to make a statement in this fight. Karam is looking to avenge a loss and looking to do so against a talent pool from an unfamiliar region of the United States. While Moutinho hopes that he can use the Hometown advantage to finish the fight without going to the judges table for a decision.

Dylan Lockard (1-0) v. Russell Campbell (0-2)


Dylan Lockard

Affiliation: Sityodtong Boston

Record: 1-0 (1 Decision win)

Summary:  Dylan has been the winner of each of his first 5 fights spanning his Amateur and Pro career including a submission and TKO to his record.

Last fight: Decision Win over Mak Kelleher at CES 37

Russell Campbell

Affiliation: Team Campbell

Record: 0-2 (2 Submission losses)

Summary:  Campbell is also making his New England debut coming from Michigan and looking to add a win to his professional record.  

Last fight: Second round Submission loss to Mike Taylor at Wartime Promotions: Kalamazoo Invasion

Breakdown: Another New England fighter; Lockard, looks to defend his home turf against Michigan native Russell Campbell. Many fighters on the card tonight are looking to revitalize their careers and are taking to the tough class of the Northeast to attempt to do so, Lockard will be looking to show Campbell that the Northeast is not the easiest place to pick up a win.   

Pedro Gonzalez (11-5) v. Vadim Ogar (6-1)


Pedro Gonzalez

Affiliation: Sityodtong Boston

Record: 11-5 (10 Submission wins)

Summary: Pedro has won his last 4 fights by submission chokes and 10 of his 11 pro wins came by way of the choke.  Pedro has not lost since 2012 and has fought all over the Northeast.

Last fight: Third round Submission victory over Andres Jeudi at CES 35

Vadim Ogar

Affiliation: K-Dojo Warrior Tribe

Record: 6-1 (3 Submissions and 3 Decision wins)

Summary: Ogar has been the victor in this last 6 fights including 2 first round submissions and 3 total wins by limb lock, 2 leg locks and an arm lock. If Ogar harvests a limb he could use it to finish a fight early.

Last fight: First round submission of Chaitanya Gavali at WSOF Global Championship 1: China.

Breakdown:  This fight is shaping up to be a submission and grappling battle. Both fighters have impressive lists of Submissions on their records and will be looking to add a win to their records with their yet another tapout. I am forecasting some ferocious grappling in this match and waiting for one of these fighters to capitalize on a mistake or holes in the others game.

Gary Balletto Jr. (1-1) v. Montoyia Swilling (0-6)


Gary Balletto Jr.

Affiliation:  New England Combat

Record: 1-1 (1 Submission Victory)

Summary: This will be Balletto’s third fight in the CES cage and he is looking for his second victory. He will look to do so in exciting fashion against an opponent looking for his first win in their professional career. 

Last fight: First round Submission Leglock victory over Cruz Johnson at CES 33

Montoyia Swilling

Affiliation: Champions in Christ

Record: 0-6 (2 KOs and 4 submission losses)

Summary: Swilling is looking for a change of scenery and a change of fortune when he steps into the cage for the seventh time in search of his first professional win. This will be his first fight for the CES banner and hopes it can breathe new life into his career.

Last fight: First round knockout loss to Addison O’Neil at Premier FC 21

Breakdown:  Balletto Jr. will see great success if he can get this fight to the ground or into close quarters, Swilling is a Muay Thai fighter who will be looking to find his range from the outside and strike his way into the win column. If Balletto can get inside and close the range on Swilling this could be a quick night for these two.

Joe Pingitore (6-2-1) v. Spencer Higa (5-6)


Joe Pingitore

Affiliation: Tri-Force MMA 

Record: 6-2-1 (2 KOs and 1 Submission)

Summary: Pingitore is New Englands 11th ranked Featherweight and has fought some of the best competition in his weight class including fighting Matt Bessette for the CES Featherweight strap.

Last fight: Second round Leg Lock Submission loss to Matt Bessette at CES 37.

Spencer Higa

Affiliation: Top Notch (Honolulu, Hawaii) 

Record: 5-6 (2 Submissions, 2 KO wins)

Summary: Spencer is on a 3 fight win streak with 2 finishes in his last 3 fights.  This is his first time fighting on the East coast and he has come a long way from Honolulu, Hawaii to fight one of New England’s best featherweights.  

Last fight: Second round submission choke win over Anthony Bain at TXC Legends 8.

Breakdown: This could be one of the more intriguing fights on the card. Higa is pretty much an unknown commodity on the Northeast MMA scene, but he has reeled off 3 straight wins which is pretty impressive no matter where you are. Joe Pingitore is the know commodity here and he is known for fighting some of the top Featherweights around, he looks to prove that a loss in the title fight is not going to define his path back to the top. I do not see this fight going to the judges as both of these veterans will likely look to finish this fight early.   

Zane Behrend (2-1) v. Dinis Paiva (7-6)


Zane Behrend

Affiliation:  Xtreme Couture

Record: 2-1 (1 Submission, 1 KO)

Summary: After starting off his Professional career 2-0 Behrend will be looking to avenge the only blemish on his record when he faces off with Paiva.  

Last fight: Second round Submission loss via Submission to David Archangel at RFA 31.

Dinis Paiva

Affiliation: Cape Cod Fighting Alliance 

Record: 7-6 (4 KOs and 2 Submissions)

Summary: Paiva has a record that spans all the way back to CES 6 when he made his Professional debut. Each of Dinis’ 13 Professional fights have been in the CES cage where he has delivered 7 wins with 6 of them coming by finish.

Last fight: First round Submission loss to Kody Nordby at CES 31.

Breakdown: If Las Vegas’ Behrend is going to add his third win to his Professional record his is going to have to do so against one of the more talented Bantamweights in New England. Behrend has showed his ability to finish fights as he has in each of his 2 Professional wins. CCFA’s Paiva will be making his 14th appearance in the CES cage and will again draw a tough opponent, something he is very familiar with. Dinis will look to continue a successful run in the CES cage which includes wins in 4 of his last 5 fights. Stylistically this fight is a hard one to predict given the somewhat unknown game of the out of town guy Behrend, Paiva has the veteran where with all to clash with fighters of all styles. If either of these fighters can establish a game plan early I can see this fight being finished in the second or third rounds.  

Nate Andrews (9-1) v. George Sheppard (15-11)


Nate Andrews

Affiliation: New England Combat 

Record: 9-1 (5 KOs, 4 Submissions)

Summary: Rhode Island’s Andrews is not only considered one of New England’s best Lightweights, but one of its top Pound for Pound fighters. Nate “the Snake” is hoping that a win at CES 40 will launch him into the national scene and award him a fight with one of the top national promotions.

Last fight: Third round Submission victory over Manny Maro at CES 36.

George Sheppard

Affiliation: MMA Institute 

Record: 15-11 (9 KOs, 2 Submissions)

Summary: Richmond, Virginia’s Sheppard is a veteran of 26 fights spanning over a 7 year Professional career. This will be Sheppard’s 2nd fight in the CES cage, his first resulting in a TKO loss to New England staple and top talent Gil de Freitas at CES 25.    

Last fight: First round Submission loss to Gregor Gillespie at Ring of Combat 51.

Breakdown:  These fighters are undoubtedly on different paths that just happen to meet in the CES cage. Providence’s Nate Andrews is likely one win away from a call up to fight for a national promotion, with an impressive 9 Professional wins in 10 fights. Andrews has fought some of the top guys at 155 in the Northeast and his only loss was a decision to Gemiyale Adkins at CES 25, aside from that fight none of Andrews’ opponents have made it to the final bell. There is no secret here Sheppard will be looking to derail the Nate Andrews hype train. Sheppard is a veteran of 26 MMA fights where he has amassed 11 finishes of his own over his 15 victories. Andrews brings some exciting talent to the cage but with 26 Pro fights, it will be hard to come up with a game plan that Sheppard has not seen or encountered before. Sheppard hopes that he can figure out a way to end his personal 3 fight losing streak at the expense of Andrews, meanwhile it Nate will be looking to make a statement and win his 4th contest in a row vaulting him on to the National MMA scene. This fight should be full of action as both fighters will be looking to take each other’s heads off, this is another fight where I do not think judges will be needed.