RCC bantamweight Denis Lavrentyev (10-2)
In almost five years, Russian judoka DenisLavrentyev (10-2) has only lost one fight. Since then, he’s gone on to win his next four fights.
That lone loss came at the hands of a really talented fighter in DEEP champion Victor Henry. In fact, in his most recent fight, a November win, Lavrentyev exacted some revenge, beating Henry by decision.
The 5’8″ bantamweight’s win streak of four has a combined opponents’ record of 77-24, which is a superb combined record of opposition on the international scene.
The Russian native is a product of renowned American gym Jackson-Wink MMA and red-hot Thai gym Tiger Muay Thai. He has an extensive background in judo, where he has won multiple championships, as well.
On the mat, Lavrentyev has dominant positional grappling and very effective ground and pound. On the feet, his game is still a work in progress, but he has shown improvements.
“I’ve been competing at the highest level for my whole life, in judo, sambo, and MMA,” Lavrentyev told MMA-Prospects. “I already bashed a lot of great fighters, including UFC veterans. Current UFC fighters turned down the chance to fight me on short notice multiple times. I have no doubt I deserve my spot on the UFC roster.”
“I will stay ready and wait for my opportunity.”
Titan FC bantamweight champion Danny Sabatello (9-1)
Titan FC bantamweight champion Danny Sabatello (9-1) just recently fought on the Contender Series, but although he had a dominant performance, he was denied a UFC contract.
Many believe he should have been getting his name on a UFC contract that night, but UFC President Dana White, the namesake of the show, disagreed.
Sabatello, with an impressive 9-1 record in MMA, made his bones in wrestling. He’s a three-time NCAA Championships qualifier and a two-time 141-pound Big Ten Championship winner.
He’s an insanely good wrestler with a frantic forward pressure, and he has a high pace he put on until the finish or a decision. He was called one-dimensional by White, but why switch anything up when you are so good at a certain thing?
“I watch these guys in the UFC and it makes me sick because I should be fucking these guys up!” Sabatello vented to MMA-Prospects. “It’s only a matter of time before I get my hands on these dudes.”
Standout Fighting Tournament lightweight Manoel Sousa (6-0)
On this list of prospects, Brazil’s Manoel Sousa (6-0) has the least amount of experience, but he has been running through good fighters. He has a win against Mauricio Ruffy, who is a fighter this author was very high on at the time of the match.
Sousa is a heavy-handed fighter who slings powerful right and left hooks. He does a good job going to the body and throwing kicks behind his strikes. He has good head movement and good footwork, as well. He looks like a really dangerous fighter that can be a good prospect for the coming years.
Only 23-years-old, time is on his side if he doesn’t get signed to a big organization right away. With that said, a promotion like Bellator would benefit from signing a young Brazilian stud and building him into a possible star.
Combate Americas bantamweight Eduardo Matias Torres (11-0)
Despite a big impressive 11-0 record, Chile’s Eduardo Matias Torres (11-0) is still underrated among other prospects.
In all likelihood the best prospect out of Chile, Torres holds an impressive undefeated record. The competition Torres has beaten hasn’t been great, but he’s disposed of his opponents the way he should given their caliber.
On the mat is where Torres wants the fight, where he is most dominant. He has very technical grappling, where he makes all the right moves, and his BJJ IQ is terrific at just 25-years-old.
In his most recent win in November, Torres won the Live Fight Night bantamweight title, which is a local promotion out of Chile. In the past, he has competed for Hispanic MMA organization Combate Americas, which boasts a sizable television audience.
“I feel ready to reach the big leagues,” Torres told MMA-Prospects. “I feel stronger and faster than ever, and what makes me worthy of going big is my will, my undefeated record. and the fact that I am Chilean and we Chileans live fighting all days.”
“My vision for the future is to become a champion of the world.”
Brave CF lightweight Akhmed Magomedov (7-0)
Russia’s Akhmed Magomedov is only 7-0, but it was in late 2018 he jumped out to an even larger fanbase when he beat a talented Brazilian in Gabriel Miranda.
Magomedov has a background in freestyle wrestling, and he was the Russian National Jiu-Jitsu champion in 2017. The Russian only has seven pro MMA fights, but with three finishes, it is clear that he is getting it done on the mat with submissions and ground and pound.
Like Sousa mentioned above, this author does think a guy like Magomedov would be a smart signing from Bellator. He’s a top-notch prospect who could make waves in the Bellator lightweight division quite quickly.