One of the best parts of sports is seeing a rivalry renewed, as whether it’s a college football game like Ohio State vs. Michigan, a college basketball game like Duke vs. North Carolina, or an MMA fight between two combatants looking to settle some bad blood, sports fans love to see rivals going at it, and that’ll be true again this Friday in the LFA 136 main event in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The LFA’s holding an entire card based on the premise of rivalries, this Friday’s LFA 136, a 12-fight card (barring any postponements between now and then), is an all-Brazilian showcased comprised of fighters who hail from Rio de Janeiro pitting adversaries from Sao Paulo.
Italo Gomes Takes on Wellington Prado in LFA 136 Main Event This Friday
Your LFA 136 main event will see Team Rio de Janeiro’s Italo Gomes (11-1 MMA, 1-0 LFA) face off against Team Sao Paulo’s Wellington Prado (12-2 MMA, LFA promotional debut) in a featherweight showdown to close the night’s activities.
Being a nontitle affair, this headliner will be an advertised maximum of three rounds at five minutes per round.
LFA 136 Main Event Fighter Breakdown
Heading into the LFA 136 main event on Friday night, Italo Gomes stands as the taller man at 5-foot-11, compared to the 5-foot-8 frame of Wellington Prado.
Additionally, Gomes owns a 71 1/2-inch reach, with no such information accessible for Prado going into the headliner this weekend.
Stakes Even Higher For Italo Gomes on Friday With Territorial Rivalry
Italo Gomes enters this main event having posted a record of 4-1 in his last five fights and is currently on a three-fight winning streak.
With a rivalry, the stakes are high to begin with, but for Italo Gomes and his camp, the stakes are magnified even further when you consider that the LFA 136 main event, as well as the entirety of the show on Friday night is a rivalry based on geographic location.
In his last fight, Gomes had a home game, as Rio de Janeiro played host to LFA 132, but this time around, he’ll be entering hostile territory, as the Centro Esportivo Municipal Ubaldo Goncalves in Caraguatatuba will serve as the host arena for LFA 136 and the LFA 136 main event.
To borrow some verbiage from the squared circle of sports entertainment, Italo Gomes will be playing the heel on Friday, so can he silence the critics with authority here?
Could Italo Gomes Be On UFC’s Radar With A Win?
Another interesting plot that’ll unfold on Friday night is whether or not Italo Gomez gets on the UFC’s radar with a victory against the debuting Wellington Prado.
Earlier this month, Nolan King of USA Today’s MMA Junkie ran a column outlining five fighters who could be among the next to make the jump to MMA’s big leagues, and although Italo Gomes wasn’t listed among the five, King did say he has the potential to be listed in the future with a win here.
Tune into see what happens.
Wellington Prado Looks To Make Good In LFA Debut on Friday
In the other corner, Wellington Prado has posted a record of 4-1 in his last five contests, having won two bouts in a row inside the MMA cage.
Most recently, he scored a second-round knockout due to punches against Thiago Silva in the SFT 30 main event on Oct. 30, his final bout in the Sao Paulo-based promotion.
Having lost only twice on the regional circuit in Sao Paulo, Prado, who is nicknamed “Predador”, now turns his attention to the LFA in Friday’s main event, and since this is going to be a rivalry bout, the LFA 136 main event will undoubtedly be the biggest contest he’s had to-date in his career.
Prado has had a history of fighting in front of his hometown crowd before, but can he feed off of the energy that his local fanbase gives him again on Friday and defeat his adversary from Rio?
Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction
Stylistically, the LFA 136 main event on Friday night looks to be another toss-up, as both of these men hold black belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu.
Thus, it stands to reason that we could be looking at a fight that’s predicated on which man takes his opponent down first.
Italo Gomes Can Be Brutal With Armbars
One aspect of Italo Gomes’ fight game that’s shown itself on video is his ability to score the submission by way of armbar, as he did back in 2016 vs. Joao Francisco.
Although the fight was scheduled for three rounds, Gomes needed half of one to dispose of Francisco, as he started the fight out by absorbing a leg kick and then went into a Francisco clinch, eventually finding himself on the bottom of a takedown.
Francisco briefly controlled the fight by softening Gomes up with punches for a possible submission attempt, one that would ultimately prove to be in vain, as Gomes would successfully reverse the hold to secure a leglock and gain top position himself.
From there, he was able to apply the necessary torque and get Francisco to roll over to lock in the armbar for the victory.
If Gomes is able to secure top position, look for him to land ground and pound shots to soften Prado up, as it could be the opening he needs to secure a submission.
Wellington Prado Can Hunt For a Quick Knockout
In the other corner, Wellington Prado could make it a short night on Friday with his punches, something that Thiago Silva knows all too well from their fight in October.
During the second round of a scheduled three in the SFT 30 main event, with Prado already having banked the first round, he started off with a takedown and a brief burst of ground and pound shots before the fight returned to the feet.
A little later in the round, while Silva scored with some leg kicks, Prado landed a three-punch combination, including a body shot, to send him down, and from there, he landed a barrage of ground and pound shots, punctuated with elbows to the head and strikes to the body, to knock him out.
If Prado is able to land punches in bunches, the LFA 136 main event could be his for the taking.
As mentioned earlier, a rivalry is the best part of sports, and with the LFA offering MMA fans a night full of rivalries this Friday night, LFA 136 and the LFA 136 main event are not to be missed.
Pay the pizza man before the fights start because you can’t afford to be away from the screen for a second.
Prediction: Wellington Prado by First-Round TKO.
Featured Image Credits to LFA