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On FIGHT PASS: Fedor-smasher returns Saturday

EFN 52 Preview (live on UFC FIGHT PASS this Saturday, 10am ET/ 7am PT)

Former UFC veteran Fabio Maldonado returns to EFN coming off of that thrilling three-round war with Fedor Emelianenko in June.

After almost knocking the famed former PRIDE FC champion out in the opening minutes and dominating much of the fight, many observers believed the Brazilian was the clear victor in what was one of the wildest fights in FIGHT PASS history.

But now he returns to EFN to take on the talented 26-year-old Mokhnatkin. Experience is on Maldonado's side, of course, but the momentum lies with Mokhnatkin – the submission specialist is undefeated since a loss in his 2010 professional debut.

Mokhnatin's record includes wins over Valentijn Overeem, brother of UFC heavyweight contender Alistair, and a first-round submission win over UFC veteran Ednaldo Oliveira.

This weekend he's looking to do the same to Maldonado, whose own record features 11 UFC appearances, but the Brazilian is as tough as they come.

This is the biggest challenge of Mokhnatkin's career thus far and a victory over the man many believe defeated the iconic Fedor will do much to boost his credentials.

Pancrase 281 (live on UFC FIGHT PASS this Sunday, 2am ET, 11pm PT)

The iconic Japanese organization Pancrase returns to the Differ Ariake Arena in Tokyo for Pancrase 281, featuring two King of Pancrase fights and a card stacked with veterans and new talent of the apanese MMA scene.

In the main event, the King of Pancrase Middleweight Championship is on the line as “Rocky” Kawamura faces Yuki Niimura.

In the co-main, Akihiro Murayama faces Hiromitsu Miura with the welterweight title on the line.

Also on the card is Satoru Kitaoka, well-known internationally from his run in the now-defunct SENGOKU promotion. He faces Brazil's Leonardo Texeira.

Victory FC announce stacked end to 2016

Victory Fighting Championship will round out its 2016 schedule with a firestorm of fights highlighted by VFC five title bouts.

The #3Shows30Days campaign begins on November 23rd in Waterloo, Iowa, and continues on December 9th in Omaha, Nebraska, before wrapping up on December 23rd in Topeka, Kansas. All three events will air live on UFC FIGHT PASS.

“We are extremely excited to be bringing these title fights and this much first-class action to our great fans before the end of 2016,” said Ryan Stoddard, Owner and President of Victory Fighting Championship.

“These are big opportunities for all the fighters involved. They want to close the year by making a massive statement and there is no better forum for that than a title fight.”

Here’s what the US Mid-West promotion have announced:

On the night before Thanksgiving, VFC 53 will see the return newly crowned middleweight champion Mike “Biggie” Rhodes (10-4) as he makes his first title defense inside the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center in his home town of Waterloo, IA.

Since a gut-wrenching 0-3 stint in the UFC®, Rhodes has rattled off four straight wins in dominant fashion, highlighted by a second-round submission victory over Rakim Cleveland to claim the title at VFC 51 back in June.

Hoping to swipe the middleweight crown and halt Rhodes’ winning streak is Ron Stallings (14-8, 1 NC), who went 1-2 in his own UFC stint but then returned to winning ways with a split-decision outcome over Rashaun Spencer. Carrying a balanced line of finishes with six knockouts and six submissions, Stallings earned a decision win over Justin Jones in the UFC, and most notably, his career log sports a first-round knockout win over Mike Massenzio.

VFC’s welterweight title will be at stake at VFC 54 with Maki “Coconut Bombz” Pitolo (10-1) vies for the belt in a rematch against Kassius “Killa Kayne” Holdorf (8-3).

Not only is the native of Nanakuli, Hawaii, on a terrific tear of nine straight wins, but he has captured three impressive victories inside the VFC cage including a decision win over Kayne at VFC 52. But that was Kayne taking the fight on short notice. This time around Kayne will have a full camp to prepare for the rematch, and he’ll get another crack at the title in his own home town.

And at VFC 55 former VFC lightweight champion Jake “The Librarian” Lindsey (11-4) will look to reclaim the belt in friendly confines of the Kansas Expocentre. The Manhattan, Kansas, product captured the crown at VFC 50 with a third-round TKO against Zak Bucia. A nine-time veteran under the VFC flag, Lindsey has racked up finishes in 10 of his 11 victories, including six by knockout.

But Lindsey can expect a stiff challenge from Mandel Nallo (5-0), a top-rated prospect out of the renowned Tristar Gym in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Firas Zahabi protégé has blown through his past opposition and stayed undefeated in his most-recent outing with his fourth first-round finish in taking out Shawn Wallace in only 1:38. The win was Nallo’s fourth via submission.

Co-headlining the VFC 53 lineup is a heavyweight title bout that puts defending champion Daniel “Big Kansas” Gallemore (5-3) up against challenger Derek “Marshmallow” Bohi (8-4).

The 6-foot-5 Gallemore, who hails from Emporia, Kansas, has notched four knockouts but his submission victory is perhaps his most notable as he tapped Abe Wagner in only 1:37 at VFC 50.

Bohi, who fights out of Kansas City, Missouri, has won three of his four outings and needed just over a total of six minutes to accomplish that feat. Six of his eight wins have come inside the first round.

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