In the main event of the evening, top 5 heavyweight Hesdy Gerges takes on Englishman Chris Knowles.
Hesdy Gerges has once again had training for a fight interrupted with his legal issues. He was extradited to Belgium for questioning for suspicion of being part of a cocaine trafficking ring. Gerges was also arrested a week before his fight with Daniel Ghita, one of the top heavyweights in the world and still managed to come back out of prison and get the win. This time Gerges comes out of prison for another challenge, although not quite of the same stature as Daniel Ghita.
Chris Knowles is one of the top heavyweight fighters in England. Despite his weight, he's quite agile for someone his size and can throw a plethora of techniques that we're used to seeing from guys fighting at -70kg. Knowles and Gerges were originally supposed to fight at It's Showtime's Christmas event on December 18. Unfortunately, Knowles could not make it to the fight due to heavy snowfall. The fight is back on now and Knowles is hoping he can give Hesdy Gerges the Christmas present of a loss that he was unable to last time.
Gerges has proven himself against top competition. Knowles, not so much. Knowles has fought a lot of guys from the British scene who have no business being in the ring with him. Gerges is a huge step up in competition - and one that I think Knowles is not ready for. While Knowles is a tough guy, Gerges will probably end up being too much for him.
I think a telling fight about Knowles would be his fight with Gokhan Saki from 2008. Saki low kicked him to death and eventually stopped him in the third round. I see a similar finish for Gerges here, probably a bit quicker. Once Gerges gets started on his low kicks, it's very hard to stop him. At times Gerges even gave Semmy Schilt trouble with his low kicks. Knowles would like to come forward and tee off but against the taller fighter in Gerges, he'll have to walk through some low kicks and counter punches that are without a doubt going to slow him down.
I think Gerges will be too much for Knowles here, chopping Knowles down with low kicks en route to a stoppage in the second or third round.