THE recent departure of Pacific X-Treme Combat featherweight champion Joe Taimanglo has opened the door for four contenders who now get a shot at the title.
Mark Striegl, Yusuke Yachi, Jang Yong Kim, and Nate Thorell vie in a virtual featherweight eliminator tournament when the PXC stages its 37th edition on May 18 at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
The Filipino-American Striegl takes on the Japanese Yachi, while South Korea’s Kim faces Thorell of Hawaii with the winners facing each other in a title fight in August for the featherweight belt vacated by Taimanglo, who has transferred to Bellator MMA, one of the top outfits in the US.
Not only will he be representing the Philippines, but the 24-year-old Striegl is expected to be one of the favorites in the tournament as he boasts a spotless record of 12 wins, 10 coming from submission.
The Shooto champion, Yachi, however, will not be easy pickings for Striegl as the 22-year-old Japanese is on a five-fight winning streak with his latest win coming just last month.
Kim, the Korean dubbed as 'The Beast,' is out to bounce back from his technical knockout loss to Taimanglo last July as he battles the six-foot Thorell, who made a successful PXC debut last March when he beat Robert Wusstig via unanimous decision.
“This tournament will showcase everything we love about international MMA. Different fighters training in different styles, but all extremely game, and eager to show the world that they deserve a championship,” PXC CEO EJ Calvo said.
PXC 37 is presented by San Mig Strong Ice and Sports 5 with special thanks to Axe Apollo, Fitness First, FHM Philippines, FHM.com.ph, Premiere Condoms, Healthway Agility Phil, Beer Below Zero, Real Sports Radio, Loqal.ph, Filquest Media Concepts, Ultimate Fitness in Metro Walk, Spin.ph, SM Tickets, and TicketWorld.