Tomorrow afternoon in Nice, France GLORY returns in rapid-succession with GLORY 35. The GLORY 35 SuperFight Series starts at 2:30pm Eastern on UFC Fight Pass, the main card at 5pm Eastern on ESPN3. The card has been updated along the way (as it always does), but here's a chance to look at the fights on the main card.
Artem Vakhitov vs. Zack Mwekassa
Mwekassa's hands are what brings him to the dance here and made him the Interim Champion, but he's gonna need more than his incredible speeches and those bombs of hands to overcome the overall package that is Artem Vakhitov. Vakhitov is not only a tough veteran, he's one of the best in this weight division and quietly earned that spot. Chances are that he's able to simply out-kickbox Mwekassa here, but damn would it be a story if Mwekassa overcame these odds, huh?
Zinedine Hameur-Lain vs. Pavel Zhuravlev
Pavel Zhuravlev has been one of those names fighters that have existed on the fringes for years, but never was able to carve out a definitive spot for himself as a heavyweight. There seems to be a simple reason for that; he's much better at light heavyweight. He was picked to win the contender tournament at GLORY 32, but Ariel Machado beat the odds with a victory over him, with Hameur-Lain going on to win the tournament. Zhuravlev gets another crack at contendership here by fighting the number one contender and while Hameur-Lain has power and skill, it's hard to see Zhuravlev losing here.
Jafharr Wilnis vs. Mladen Brestovac
This tournament is one of their better contender tournaments in a while, right? Wilnis proved himself to be a worthy contender in the last tournament he was in, only for Ismael Londt to win a decision he may have no deserved. Now it seems like Londt isn't getting a title shot anyway -- or is he? Nobody is talking about it and I've never gotten a definitive answer as to what was going on with that. Brestovac is absolutely a legit contender at this point, but it feels like this is Jahfarr's time. Imagine the story here if Wilnis challenged Rico for the title and took it, making both himself and his brother Jason as GLORY champions in two of their most popular divisions.
Benjamin Adegbuyi vs. Hesdy Gerges
Just like the last fight, this is a really great fight. Adegbuyi has had his chance against Rico and it just doesn't seem like a fight that he can win, but that being said, he has evolved as a fighter every time that we've seen him and his mix of power and heart has gotten him very far in a short amount of time. A win over Hesdy would really cement his status as a top three heavyweight because Gerges is very much a heavyweight gatekeeper in kickboxing. That being said, Hesdy is one of those guys that can easily upset a favorite and pick up a win.
GLORY 35 NICE
Light Heavyweight Title Headline Bout: Artem Vakhitov vs. Zack Mwekassa
Light Heavyweight Co-Headline Bout: Zinedine Hameur-Lain vs. Pavel Zhuravlev
Heavyweight Contender Tournament Bout: Jahfarr Wilnis vs. Mladen Brestovac
Heavyweight Contender Tournament Bout: Benjamin Adegbuyi vs. Hesdy Gerges
GLORY 35 SUPERFIGHT SERIES
Heavyweight Bout: Nicolas Wamba vs. Nordine Mahieddine
Welterweight Bout: Karim Benmansour vs. Eyevan Danenberg
Super Bantamweight Bout: Amel Dehby vs. Jiwaen Lee
Lightweight Bout: Josh Jauncey vs. Christian Baya
Featherweight Bout: Petpanomrung Kiatmoo9 vs. Stanislav Renita
Featherweight Bout: Cedric Castaigna vs. Vang Moua