Lights Out Championship is ready to once again deliver high octane MMA, as the promotion resumes business on Saturday, June 25. LOC 8 was originally booked to go down in May of 2020, but like so many others, they were forced to pause operations during the height of the pandemic. The event was ultimately scrapped, as many in the Michigan area were left without any way to train.
Fast forward two years, and we have ourselves some fights. Lights Out Championship 8 is expected to take place at the DeltaPlex arena in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The event features a featherweight championship bout, as Mando Gutierrez (7-1) faces Sean McPadden (5-1) in the main event. Both fighters are moving up from bantamweight, as they try to attain some hardware.
The co-main will have us all on the edge of our feet, as we get to see two top bantamweight prospects go head to head. Austin Bashi (6-0) makes a quick turnaround, as he’ll face Chris San Jose (8-1) in what’s expected to be an all out war.
Lights Out Championship 8 is expected to be available to watch, as the promotion intends to stream the event live. Details of where one can tune in are still being worked out, and have not yet officially been announced.
Lights Out Championship 8 Main and Co-Main Event Breakdown
Mando Gutierrez vs. Sean McPadden (145lbs)
Gutierrez is rocking a three-fight win streak going into the fight against Sean. The man they call ‘El Toro’ has one of the most dangerous choke games in MMA, as six of his seven victories have come via submission. The LFA veteran last fought in February of this year, when he beat Matthew Elliot via unanimous decision at Total Warrior Combat.
The win over Elliot was the first time Mando had ever even seen the third round. Gutierrez is a quick starter, and if you’re not ready, the night will be over before it starts. All six of Mando’s finishes have come before the first round has ended. He’s quick, powerful, and as slick as they come. If McPadden isn’t ready for an early storm, he could be in trouble.
Sean McPadden is no stranger to the deadly art of choking your opponent to sleep though. ‘Lucky’ has an outstanding 100% finish rate. Four of Sean’s five victories have come via submission in the form of chokes. McPadden began his pro journey in 2018 and has been climbing the rankings since. Like Gutierrez, Sean has spent most of his time with the LFA. It’s surprising that the two haven’t crossed paths until now.
Gutierrez vs McPadden is expected to be insane. The scrambles that are anticipated, as each combatant attempts to take one another’s back could be next level. Two highly skilled warriors searching for a neck, in hopes of gaining gold around their waist.
Austin Bashi vs. Chris San Jose (135lbs)
Austin Bashi has been on fire since turning pro in November of 2020. The Michigan native was a staple in the XFC until things went south for the promotion. Bashi is something special, and MMA fans should be paying attention to this young stud.
The two-time all-state wrestler has a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and his stand-up game appears to be improving with every fight. In his last outing, Bashi won gold, as he manhandled Erion Zekthi to take the Shamrock FC bantamweight belt. His scrap against Zekthi just went down in April, so Austin is wasting no time getting back in the cage.
Chris San Jose began his pro career in 2017, where he strung together five straight victories, before taking a loss to UFC veteran Journey Newson. Born in Hawaii, and now fighting out of Oregon, San Jose is riding a three-fight win streak. The CageSport bantamweight champion currently has 4 submission victories, along with 4 decision nods. Chris will have to out-pressure Bashi and stay off the fence in this one. San Jose will have his hands full with the young star but has the skills to compete on the ground.
Both the main, and co-main events have huge implications career-wise. All four fighters involved are on the doorstep of the next chapter in their MMA lives. Each one of them is a win or two away from getting a call from one of the top promotions.
The card is subject to change
Featured Image Credits to Lights Out Championship