The Legacy Fighting Alliance returns this Friday with one of its most anticipated events to date. Aside from the highly-awaited headliner, the LFA 108 main card features a slate of bouts guaranteeing excitement.
LFA 108: Fremd vs Rodrigues is scheduled to take place May 21st at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The event can be viewed worldwide on UFC Fight Pass beginning at 9 PM (ET).
Prior to the middleweight title fight main event, viewers will be treated to back-to-back intriguing flyweight bouts. In the co-main event, Mark Climaco will put his undefeated record on the line against rising Hawaiian talent Rodney Kealohi. The first flyweight contest on the main card pins Clayton Carpenter up against LFA debutant Nick Clem. Aside from that, three additional fights will round out a very intriguing LFA 108 main card.
Main Card Fight Breakdowns
Rodney Kealohi (5-1) vs Mark Climaco (5-0)
This flyweight matchup contains two men who are going to be around for a long time. First and foremost, the coaching that both guys receive is top-notch. Kealohi spends the majority of his training at Jackson Wink Academy, getting in work with Aaron Pico and John Dodson. Meanwhile, Climaco is an AKA (American Kickboxing Academy) trainee who has been making noticeable strides in his evolving game.
“The Captain” made his LFA debut last year with an impressive first round TKO victory. The 27-year-old fights out of the southpaw stance and he’s already proven to have power in his left hand. While many fighters like to gauge distance with their jab, it appears as though Kealohi prefers to initiate the striking with his left body kick. The Hawaiian starts fast out of the gates and he knows how to hunt finishes early and often.
A fellow southpaw, Climaco displayed a strong grappling prowess in his LFA debut in March. At just 23-years-old, the AKA affiliate keeps his hands high as he walks his opponents down until he shoots for takedowns. There’s no question that the unbeaten Climaco looks to dominate fights with his grappling.
The LFA 108 co-main event will ultimately be decided by who can enforce their game plan more effectively. Kealohi has the edge on the feet, especially in terms of power, but he’ll have to stuff takedowns if he wants to keep it standing. Conversely, Climaco will dictate this fight if he’s able to get it to the ground where he’s most comfortable. No matter the result, expect to see these young talents for years to come.
Clayton Carpenter (3-0) vs Nick Clem (3-1)
The first flyweight matchup of the LFA 108 main card presents two well-versed competitors. Carpenter is an IBJJF Gi/No-Gi world champ, as well as a Junior Golden Gloves Boxing champion and a Muay Thai National champion. Meanwhile, Clem has an extensive amateur MMA resume to accompany two boxing bouts.
Carpenter trains at the MMA Lab where he’s worked closely alongside UFC bantamweight Kyler Phillips. The southpaw is only 24-years-old, but his game exemplifies his advanced maturity. Frequently one to switch stances, Carpenter is both dangerous on the feet and on the mat. One minor critique is that he was once prone to loading up on his shots, which left him vulnerable to counters, but surely he’s improved upon that with the crew at the MMA Lab.
As is the case with his counterpart at LFA 108, “Krakken” Clem is a versatile mixed martial artist. A purple belt in BJJ along with his aforementioned boxing experience has the 32-year-old peaking at seemingly the right time. LFA 108 will mark the promotional debut for the Mark Montoya-coached Clem.
As far as physical traits are concerned, these two are pretty comparable. Moreover, both guys will be comfortable going wherever the fight ends up. Hand-speed is going to determine the outcome of this fight, but it’s nearly impossible to project who has the edge in that department until they get in the cage.
Tiani Valle (3-2) vs Kathryn Paprocki (2-1)
The second Hawaiian native on the LFA 108 main card is Tiani Valle, who has taken her talents to Xtreme Couture for this fight camp. Her opponent Kathryn Paprocki trains at her hometown gym DCO MMA & Fitness in Denver, Colorado. Both strawweights are making their LFA debuts.
In her lone fight for Bellator, despite being stopped in the opening round, Valle proved her willingness to duke it out on the feet. Her wildness may actually aid her against the more technical Paprocki. However, Valle has been susceptible to submission defeats which opens a clear path to victory for Paprocki. Both ladies can go a full 15 minutes, but Paprocki might come out the victor by scoring points in top position and winning the clinch battles.
Thomas Peterson (4-0) vs Richard Foster (5-4)
Heavyweights will grace the cage on the LFA 108 main card when Thomas Peterson welcomes Richard Foster to the promotion. Peterson has rattled off a trio of first-round finishes since joining LFA professionally last year. The 6’1″ heavy hitter has spent his time training at Rio Jitsu in Minnesota. Meanwhile, the promotional newcomer Foster is working hard in the Pacific Northwest at American Top Team (Portland).
Peterson stands southpaw and carries devastating power in his left hand. It took him merely 19 seconds and one left hand to finish Kimo Luis at LFA 97. Foster has been fighting at the pro level for several years now, but he’s still searching for consistency in terms of wins. It will be interesting to see how sizeable the improvements are via Foster against a very tough foe in Peterson. Notably, Foster will possess a five-inch height advantage.
Tyler Ray (7-2) vs Renato Valente Alves (7-4)
Welterweight Tyler Ray made his debut in Sioux Falls for LFA back in 2017 and since then he’s amassed several wins with the organization as well as picking up a first round stoppage victory at Bellator. The Sanford MMA product is a finishing machine and a must-watch competitor. Renato Valente Alves is making his second appearance for LFA after losing by split-decision in his debut last month. The Black House affiliate joins his LFA 108 opponent in possessing a victory at Bellator.
Ray’s experience is most exuded through his composure inside the cage. He’s adept at backing his opponent up against the cage and shooting for timely takedowns. Sleeping on his striking would be foolish because he’s crisp and precise with his boxing. Alves has faced adversity in his young career, so don’t expect him to wilt in the face of pressure. If this fight goes into the latter stages, watch to see how his cardio holds up because it will be a key factor.
Make sure to tune into the LFA 108 main card this Friday for a ton of mixed martial arts action! Drop your predictions in the comment section, including who you have winning the LFA 108 main event between Josh Fremd and Gregory Rodriguez!
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Featured Image Credits to LFA