Your MMA weekend begins this Friday night (9 pm ET/ 6 pm PT) as UFC Fight Pass presents Legacy Fighting Alliance’s LFA 113 from Belton, TX’s Bell County Events Center.
In total, LFA 113 will feature seven MMA fights beginning with prelims on the LFA"s Facebook channel and culminating in a battle for supremacy at heavyweight in its main event. The LFA 113 headliner will pin Vernon Lewis (8-2) up against Thomas Petersen (4-0) for the newly-vacant LFA Heavyweight Championship — with its winner becoming the fourth different man to hold the 265-lb. strap.
Former champion Brett Martin was stripped of his belt nearly two years ago upon missing the 265-lb. maximum for a title fight by 10 lbs., thus disqualifying him from a defense against Daniel James. That fight proceeded as scheduled, won by Martin, and the championship has remained vacant ever since.
As with all MMA championship events, the LFA 113 main event will be a maximum of five rounds at five minutes per round to decide the king of the heavyweights.
LFA 113 Main Event Fighter Comparison
Heading into Friday night"s main event, Lewis is the taller gladiator in the cage, standing 6-foot-3, with Petersen standing 6-foot-1. In addition, Lewis owns a 6 1/2-inch reach advantage (78 1/2 inches to 72 inches) over Petersen going into your LFA 113 headliner.
Lewis Comes Off A Year-Plus Layoff
Vernon Lewis has posted a record of 4-1 in his last five MMA appearances but has not fought in the cage in almost 15 months due to COVID-19 and its effect on the sport.
Most recently, he stopped Austen Lane (first-round knockout due to ground and pound shots) on March 6, 2020, at LFA 83. Just days after the card, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus as a pandemic, forcing a shutdown of the entire sporting calendar for a few months.
After his knockout, the victorious Lewis summed up his efforts that winter"s night in Dallas thusly:
“I have to get a finish," he said. “You know, I"ve been going to three-rounder wars, and then people stay in there longer than they should. This fight, we were like, ‘We"re going to finish, first round, if not, early second.'"
Later in the same interview, Lewis described his mentality against Lane more than a year ago, saying:
“I was trying to kill him. You know, [stopping the fight], that"s the referee"s job. He wasn"t moving, and I was going to hit him in the same place another 15 times. I appreciate Austen Lane coming in, taking this fight. It is hard to get fights, but it is part of the game. You guys have got to work with it, roll with the punches, no pun intended, but I"m glad I was able to come out and get a win and I"m on to the next one."
Petersen Aims To Win Heavyweight Strap in Fifth Pro Appearance
That “next one" for Lewis comes in the form of Thomas Petersen, who enters the LFA 113 main event this weekend having yet to lose in his MMA career, professional or amateur, as part of an ongoing nine-fight winning streak.
Back in April of this year, he stopped Odell Pantin (first-round knockout, punches) during LFA 104"s main card. No post-fight interview was conducted following Petersen"s knockout in the spring.
Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction
Stylistically, the LFA 113 main event looks to be a toss-up, but with heavyweights, the fight can end with as little as one blow, as both men have shown on film.
Watch Out for Lewis"s Ground and Pound
One need look no farther than both men"s most recent appearances for textbook examples of ground and pound.
Last year, Lewis was able to cut Lane open with a vicious elbow shot, continuing to pour it on from there in a first-round where both fighters attempted to jockey for position on the ground.
All Lewis would need to do in order to make the LFA 113 main event a short one is getting his opponent on the cage mat and establish control.
It could be the opening he needs to take that championship.
Petersen Can Get It Done From Back Mount
At the same time, however, Petersen has shown that he can be just as vicious as his opponent with his ground and pound.
In his last fight against Pantin, he was able to dump him and score with nasty forearm shots before landing vicious elbow shots, finally taking back mount and repeatedly hitting him with shots to the head to end the fight.
Look for Petersen to try and take Lewis down at LFA 113 and once he"s on the ground, look for him to mix up his positions and try to keep Lewis guessing.
Expect the LFA 113 main event to be one for the ages, and don"t miss it. You could be seeing the UFC"s next big star in the making in this one.
The fridge run can happen before the fight — after all, you can"t miss a heavyweight title bout.
Prediction: Vernon Lewis by First-Round Knockout.
Featured Image Credits To Legacy Fighting Alliance