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Josh Lanier (left) talks witch coach Lenny Lovato (right)

Triple-A-MMA “North Vs. South”: A Jiu Jitsu Ace And Pro Boxer Highlight Two Professional Main Card Fights

Tomorrow afternoon, the Crowne Plaza Hotel Ballroom will be the host avenue for Triple-A-MMA “North vs. South”. The Orthrus Promotions event will follow the “Win To Get In” moniker that it’s first event carried back in April where the two main bouts will have an opportunity to compete for Bellator MMA on the line. This event will be headlined by FIT NHB’s Ray Borg and Warrior Training Center’s Angelo Sanchez.

Coca (right) will make his MMA Debut

Coca (right) will make his MMA Debut

Before that main event fight, there will be two other professional bouts featured on the fight card. One of those fights will be a “Win To Get In” fight and the other an interesting bout featuring a professional boxer making his MMA debut.

In one of the most intriguing bookings in recent memory for a local MMA event, Michael Coca-Gallegos will throw aside his boxing gloves to make the move inside the cage. Coca-Gallegos is a professional boxer with thirteen fights of experience; while he has several losses, over 50% of them have come by way of split or majority decision. He has been competitive in every bout and has stepped into the ring with MMA veteran Donald Sanchez, stand-out boxer Josh Torres and Christian Cabral.

Stepping in to welcome Coca-Gallegos into MMA action is Derek Perez. While Perez doesn’t exactly have an extensive professional record to marginally be in advantage, he does have a very solid amateur career behind him. Perez has fought for King of the Cage and Shark Fights accumulating five amateur bouts.

Coca-Gallegos will be representing the Lovato Total Fitness gym which is rich in wrestling and grappling. Bringing in the professional boxing pedigree, Coca-Gallegos of course would have to work extensive on his grappling. Head Coach Lenny Lovato Sr. boasts several top notch wrestlers in his gym’s stable and his Jiu Jitsu Coach Josh Lanier is very technical from the guard position.

Perez comes from the Perez Boxing gym that houses their own mixture of professional boxers and MMA fighters. Derek Perez has found is talented in the stand up game as well as grappling, owning wins by both knockout and submission.

The bout will be intriguing from the fan perspective. Coca-Gallegos will have to adjust to being hit with much smaller gloves now that he is competing with four ounce gloves in the place of eight ounces. Perez will have to deal with a fighter comfortable fighting in close and who throws from angles that traditional MMA strikes hardly throw from. It is a style mismatch between two fighters from different sports. It should be interesting not only on the feet but should the fight hit the mats as Coca-Gallegos has never been in a fight where a fighter is looking to ground and pound or submit him.

Josh Lanier (left) talks witch coach Lenny Lovato (right)

Josh Lanier (left) talks witch coach Lenny Lovato (right)

Fighting as the headlining act in the co-main event of the evening, Coca-Gallegos’ grappling coach Josh Lanier will look once again to get his shot amidst the Bellator MMA ranks with a “Win To Get In” victory. The Lovato Total Fitness fighter will take on Independent fighter Henry Ramos in a 220-pound Catchweight bout.

The booking of Lanier vs. Ramos is also a very interesting one as Ramos hasn’t seen sanctioned MMA action since 2007. The MMA world has changed tremendously since then, making this re-emergence of Ramos intriguing as we will get to see basically a debut fighter. Ramos will enter into the cage against a fighter in Lanier who ironically started his career in 2007 just when Ramos went inactive.

Lanier is an elite level Jiu Jitsu specialist and has extensive professional experience in several regional circuits around the country. He has a tall and lengthy frame and will enjoy a reach advantage in the bout with Ramos. Lanier last fought for Bellator 91 where he was enjoying some success on the ground with his opponent and he should enjoy the same type of advantage on Sunday afternoon.

The fight could come down to Ramos and what type of fighter returns to MMA action. Lanier is a wizard on the mat and if Ramos is able to stifle the grappling attempts, he has shown in his past fights that he possesses knockout power but ring rust very well may play a factor. Ramos has been out of action for six years and Lanier justifiably should be the fresher fighter.

Stay tuned to SWFight.com for more event coverage, fight breakdowns and analysis. As always we encourage the fight fans to show their support for all the hard-working, local athletes competing this weekend at Triple-A-MMA “North vs. South”.

About Phillip Lujan

Phillip Lujan is one of the lead contributors and a featured writer for SWFight.com. Specializing in MMA breakdowns and analysis, Phillip is considered the MMA aficionado on staff. With nearly ten years of experience in combat sports, gazing through the eyes perceptively as a fan and a cornerman and from fight manager to analyst. He can be reached on twitter at @KingStark24 or through email at marcello.lujan@gmail.com.