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  • Mirsad Bektic brutalizes Lucas Martins, stays unbeaten
    Mirsad Bektic brutalizes Lucas Martins, stays unbeaten

    GOIANIA, Brazil – Mirsad Bektic fought like he was being paid by the minute, and he had a short night of work against Lucas Martins. Bektic (10-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC) swarmed Martins (15-3 MMA, 3-3 UFC) and overwhelmed him in the first before throttling him early in the second, extending his unbeaten streak. The featherweight bout was part of the preliminary card of today’s UFC Fight Night 67 event at Goiania Arena in Goiania, Goias, Brazil. It aired on FOX Sports 1 following additional prelims on UFC Fight Pass and ahead of a main card on FOX Sports 1. It was all over at the 0:30 mark of the second round. Braziliian Martins wore a hugely swollen left eye from an opening flurry with Bektic, who came out swinging with fast, tight combinations that found their mark before he executed a big takedown. Martins was smothered for much of the opening frame as Bektic held top position and punched away. Martins briefly stood and was promptly taken back to the mat. An overhand right dropped Martins in the opening exchange of the second. Bektic swarmed, throwing punches overhead until referee Mario Yamasaki finally stepped in to stop the action. “I got my job done,” Bektic said. “My plan was to go with the flow and use my speed. I’m climbing the ladder to be top 10. So I have to stay humble and work hard for more fights.” Bektic now owns three straight wins in the UFC and steps closer to ranked competition. Martins, meanwhile, has now dropped two straight after a split-call loss to Darren Elkins. Up-to-the-minute UFC Fight Night 67 results include: Mirsad Bektic def. Lucas Martins via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 0:30 Juliana Lima def. Ericka Almeida via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-25) Tom Breese def. Luiz Dutra via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 4:58 For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 67, check out the UFC Events section of the site. (MMAjunkie’s John Morgan contributed to this report on site in Brazil.) www.mmajunkie.com

  • Mirsad Bektic vs. Renato Carneiro on UFC Fight Night 67 in Brazil
    Mirsad Bektic vs. Renato Carneiro on UFC Fight Night 67 in Brazil

    Two undefeated fighters will collide in Brazil. The UFC announced Tuesday that Bosnia’s Mirsad Bektic will take on Brazil’s Renato Carneiro in the preliminary portion of May 30’s UFC Fight Night 67 in Goiania, Brazil. Bektic (9-0), an unbeaten featherweight prospect from Bosnia, looks for his third win in the UFC after back-to-back decision victories over Chas Skelly and Paul Redmond. Before signing with the UFC, Bektic finished six of his seven opponents. Carneiro (9-0-1) impressed in his UFC debut in December, replacing TUF: Brazil winner Rony Jason on short notice and submitting Tom Niinimaki in the second round. Former Jungle Fight interim champion "Moicano" earned four of his pre-UFC wins via submission. UFC Fight Night 67 takes place at the Goiania Arena in Goiania, Brazil, and is headlined by Carlos Condit vs. Thiago Alves. www.mmafighting.com

  • UFC on FOX 14 results: Paul Redmond has no answers for dominant Mirsad Bektic
    UFC on FOX 14 results: Paul Redmond has no answers for dominant Mirsad Bektic

    STOCKHOLM – In a dominant – if unspectacular – performance, Mirsad Bektic mopped the mat with Irish newcomer Paul Redmond. Bektic (9-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) earned his second UFC win and extended his unbeaten streak with a lopsided unanimous decision over Redmond (10-5 MMA, 0-1 UFC), who failed to make weight for the bout. The catchweight bout was part of the preliminary card of today’s UFC on FOX 14 event at Tele2 Arena in Stockholm. It aired on FOX Sports 1 following additional prelims on UFC Fight Pass and ahead a main card on FOX. The final scores were 30-27 twice and 30-25, which was a closer reflection of the dominance on display. Redmond never got in the fight as Bektic controlled him and did damage at every turn. From the opening exchange, it was clear the two were not equals. Redmond, who came in three pounds heavy, pushed for a takedown and wound up on his back, where elbows from Bektic opened up a cut that bled across his eyes and forehead. Things didn’t get much better for the Irishman in the second, as Bektic rocked him with a left hook and then nabbed a quick takedown, ending the frame in mount. Elbows and punches followed, but Redmond managed to survive. “I feel good you know; I won,” Bektic said. “I didn’t expect him to shoot so much. I wanted to knock him out and I hurt him a couple of times. He’s a tough guy. What’s next? Whatever the UFC gives me. I want to keep on winning and just keep climbing the ladder.” That was about all Redmond did in the third, as well, when Bektic planted him on his back and controlled from top position. Bektic, an American Top Team product, is now 9-0 as a professional, while Redmond sees a two-fight streak snapped. http://mmajunkie.com

  • After fleeing Bosnian War, life as a refugee prepared Mirsad Bektic for UFC career
    After fleeing Bosnian War, life as a refugee prepared Mirsad Bektic for UFC career

    Mirsad Bektic doesn’t remember much about Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was 3 when his family left near the height of the Bosnian War, too young to understand anything except that the fighting had gotten too bad and it was time to go. He also doesn’t remember much about Italy, where Bektic, now 23, first fled with his mother and brothers. But Germany, the country where they settled as refugees for the next five years? The UFC featherweight remembers Germany quite well, maybe because it was there that he first became a fighter, more out of necessity than anything else. In a way, his journey as a refugee child is directly related to how he eventually ended up here, as an undefeated pro readying for his second fight with the UFC at Saturday’s UFC on FOX 14 event in Stockholm (FOX, 8 p.m. ET). “In Germany, I always felt like I was the odd one out,” Bektic (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) told MMAjunkie. “I remember playing soccer with the other kids, the teachers coming home all the time because I was getting in trouble for fighting. I remember being in class once and I had done something to mess up the keyboard on this computer, and the teacher came behind me and slammed my face onto the desk. My nose was bleeding everywhere. I remember that very well.” He also remembers the day his mother took him and his brothers to the U.S. Embassy. He remembers her crying, pleading to be let into the U.S. He remembers the Americans asking about the status of his father, who hadn’t made the trip to Germany with the rest of the family. He remembers his mother telling them that he’d been killed in the fighting back home, which at the time the family believed to be true. “It wasn’t until later we found out he was still alive,” Bektic said. “It was a crazy time, but I remember it so crystal clear, my mother crying at the embassy, begging.” When word finally came that the Bektic family would be relocated to Lincoln, Neb., none of them – not his mother or brothers or Bektic himself – knew what to expect of such a far off place. “I didn’t know anything about Nebraska,” Bektic said. “I didn’t even know much about the United States, other than Tupac (Shakur). So when we came here, I remember I tried to dress like Tupac, wearing my hat sideways and stuff like that, baggy pants, all that. That’s what I thought America was.” He found a different world from what he expected once he and his family reached Lincoln, but he also found that, as the new kid from the strange place, the need to defend himself against every perceived slight hadn’t disappeared. If anything, it only increased. To his brothers, Bektic’s willingness to fight all comers was “an attribute,” he said. It was something they could be proud of. Win or lose, their brother Mirsad would always stand up for himself. It helped form a mentality that still sets the young fighter apart, according to his coaches at Coconut Creek, Fla.’s famed American Top Team gym. “One of the first things he showed us what that desire to fight, to train,” ATT co-founder Conan Silveira said. “Even though technically, he wasn’t at that high a level at first, he had such a hunger to train and learn. That motivation and mental strength really caught my attention.” Silveira knows what it’s like to be an immigrant, lost in a new country where the language and the customs seem alien and inscrutable. He went through it when he came to Florida in 1989, intent on starting a new life in the United States, yet having no clue how to do it. What he sees in Bektic, he said, is the mental strength forged by an experience similar to, but in many ways more extreme and formative than his own. “When you come from the kinds of things he has, either it’s going to make you or it’s going to break you,” Silveira said. “And it didn’t break him.” He’ll need that mental toughness when he faces debuting Irish fighter Paul Redmond (10-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC) in Stockholm. After being forced to pull out of a higher profile bout against Max Holloway due to injury late last year, Bektic now finds himself starting over in some ways. He’s on the prelims, against a largely unknown opponent, fighting on foreign soil to maintain a perfect record. That all makes for one of those challenges that looks easier on paper than it’s likely to be in reality. But for Bektic, a little struggle is nothing new, or even anything to be avoided. “Growing up the way I did,” Bektic said, “I think it brought some different things out of me. I always felt like I needed to prove myself. That’s never really gone away.” Maybe it never will. And maybe, in a business as tough as professional fighting, that’s a good thing. http://mmajunkie.com

  • Mirsad Bektic out, newcomer Clay Collard meets Max Holloway at UFC Fight Night 49
    Mirsad Bektic out, newcomer Clay Collard meets Max Holloway at UFC Fight Night 49

    The UFC’s return to Tulsa has a late change for this week’s card. Mirsad Bektic (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) has suffered an injury and is out of his featherweight bout against Max Holloway (9-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 49. In his place will step promotional newcomer Clay Collard (13-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC). UFC officials announced the change on Monday. UFC Fight Night 49 is set for Saturday at BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla. The main card will air on FOX Sports 1 following prelims on FOX Sports 2 and UFC Fight Pass. “Cassius” Clay Collard, who trains with The Pit Elevated team in Utah, has won three straight and four of his past five, with just a no-contst keeping him from being perfect over a nearly two-year stretch. Included in his current run is a unanimous decision victory over Team Alpha Male’s Justin Buchholz, a UFC veteran. Ten of his 13 career wins have come by stoppage, including eight knockouts. Holloway has won two straight after the first two-fight skid of his career. After decision losses to Dennis Bermudez and Conor McGregor, the Hawaiian rebounded with a second-round TKO of Will Chope in January and a third-round submission of Andre Fili in April at UFC 172. The American Top Team-trained Bektic was looking to stay unbeaten. He actually was a replacement against Holloway for Ernest Chavez. In April, the 23-year-old from Nebraska made his UFC debut and took a majority decision from Chas Skelly at UFC on FOX 11 in Orlando. The RFA veteran has six stoppages in his eight career wins, but now he’ll have to put his run on hold. http://www.mmajunkie.com

  • Max Holloway replaces Ernest Chavez at UFC Fight Night 49 and meets Mirsad Bektic
    Max Holloway replaces Ernest Chavez at UFC Fight Night 49 and meets Mirsad Bektic

    The UFC’s return to Tulsa continues to evolve with an amended featherweight bout on the card. With Ernest Chavez (7-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) forced out of his first drop from lightweight, Max Holloway (9-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) now will meet Mirsad Bektic (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 49. UFC officials recently announced the change. UFC Fight Night 49 is set for Aug. 23 at BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla. The bulk of the card is expected to air on FOX Sports 1 following a few prelims on UFC Fight Pass. Holloway has won two straight after the first two-fight skid of his career. After decision losses to Dennis Bermudez and Conor McGregor, the Hawaiian rebounded with a second-round TKO of Will Chope in January and a third-round submission of Andre Fili in April at UFC 172. The American Top Team-trained Bektic will look to stay unbeaten when he meets Chavez. In April, the 23-year-old from Nebraska made his UFC debut and took a majority decision from Chas Skelly at UFC on FOX 11 in Orlando. The RFA veteran has six stoppages in his eight career wins. Chavez was making the drop to 145 pounds following a to Elias Silverio in the third round at the TUF Brazil 3 Finale. In February, he won his first UFC fight when he took a split decision from Yosdenis Cedeno at UFC 170. http://mmajunkie.com

  • Mirsad Bektic vs. Ernest Chavez at UFC Fight Night 49
    Mirsad Bektic vs. Ernest Chavez at UFC Fight Night 49

    The UFC’s featherweight division has a new competitor, and a new fight for August’s card in Tulsa. Ernest Chavez (7-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) will drop from lightweight to featherweight and meet Mirsad Bektic (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 49. UFC officials announced the new booking Thursday night. UFC Fight Night 49 takes place Aug. 23 at BOK Center in Tulsa. The main card airs on FOX Sports 1 with a lightweight headliner between former champion Benson Henderson and Rafael dos Anjos. Chavez makes the drop to 145 pounds following a loss three weeks ago in Brazil. The Californian who started his career undefeated, including a win in his UFC debut earlier this year, was tapped out by Elias Silverio in the third round at the TUF Brazil 3 Finale. In February, he won his first UFC fight when he took a split decision from Yosdenis Cedeno at UFC 170. The American Top Team-trained Bektic will look to stay unbeaten when he meets Chavez. In April, the 23-year-old from Nebraska made his UFC debut and took a majority decision from Chas Skelly at UFC on FOX 11 in Orlando. The RFA veteran has six stoppages in his eight career wins. With the addition, the latest UFC Fight Night 49 card includes: Rafael dos Anjos vs. Benson Henderson Thiago Alves vs. Jordan Mein Timothy Elliott vs. Wilson Reis Tom Niinimaki vs. Chas Skelly Mirsad Bektic vs. Ernest Chavez http://www.mmajunkie.com

  • Mirsad Bektic survives illegal knee, tops Chas Skelly
    Mirsad Bektic survives illegal knee, tops Chas Skelly

    American Top Team product Mirsad Bektic survived a pair of illegal knees and outworked Team Takedown fighter Chas Skelly for a majority decision. The undefeated fighters waged a back-and-forth fight that should have been stopped after Bektic was concussed by the illegal blows. But despite a point deduction to Skelly, Bektic outpointed him on two of three scorecards. The featherweight bout was part of the preliminary card of today’s UFC on FOX 11 event at Amway Center in Orlando, Fla. It streamed on UFC Fight Pass ahead of additional prelims on FOX Sports 1 and a main card on FOX. The final tallies were 29-27 twice for Bektic and one score of 28-28 after three rounds. Afterward, Bektic admitted he saw two of Skelly but wasn’t aware he sustained an illegal blow. The octagon newcomers looked a little too conscious of their records at the start of the bout, staying just out of range of a serious fight. Skelly broke the stalemate with a hard right hand, but Bektic scored the most significant damage of the opening frame when Skelly rolled to his back after an unsuccessful takedown. A series of hard left elbows roughed up Skelly’s face. Bektic began to find his range in the second round, scoring with combinations as Skelly struggled to counter. With 90 seconds left, however, he rocked Bektic with a right hand. What happened next threatened to end the bout. Against the cage, Skelly landed a pair of illegal knees as Bektic posted his hand on the mat, prompting the ref to deduct a point and allow him five minutes to recover. Bektic clearly was hurt and wobbled as he returned to his feet, and yet the bout was continued before the time had elapsed. Bektic continued to fight the remainder of the round. When the two emerged for the third round, he quickly shot for a takedown and initiated a ground exchange. Skelly escaped and managed to hurt Bektic again with punches, but Bektic countered with a huge takedown. A mad scramble for leglocks ended the bout. “I’m usually very aggressive when I fight, but my coaches wanted me to work on staying composed this time,” Bektic said. “I picked my spots carefully against him. The illegal knee definitely hurt, but I was able to weather it and move on as soon as we got back to action. Overall, I’m happy with my performance over a pretty tough opponent.” Bektic (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) extends his unbeaten streak to eight while Skelly (11-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) suffers the first loss of his professional career. Up-to-the-minute UFC on FOX 11 results include: •Mirsad Bektic def. Chas Skelly via majority decision (29-27, 29-27, 28-28) •Derrick Lewis def. Jack May via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 4:23 For complete coverage of UFC on FOX 11, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site. http://mmajunkie.com

  • LIVE on UFC Fight Pass
    LIVE on UFC Fight Pass

    You can watch Mirsad Bektic take on Chas Scelly in his first UFC fight via UFC Fight Pass. The action begins at 3:30 EST. Team Bektic  

  • Mirsad Bektic signs 4 fight contract with the UFC
    Mirsad Bektic signs 4 fight contract with the UFC

    On March 21st, 2014 top featherweight prospect Mirsad Bektic signed a 4 fight deal with the UFC and will be fighting April 19th in Orlando Florida. Here is what he had to say on that day on his official Facebook page: "I want to personally thank everyone that's helped me get here and all of you that have always supported me along this journey. I wouldn't be here without gods guidance in my life and him orchestrating the right people to come in my life. It's been a dream of mine sense I started fighting and although now I have made it, now begins a new chapter in my career with the same goal!! To be a world champion!! All the love I've been getting makes me feel on top of the world and I just look forward to this opportunity and everything this year has to offer..." www.mirsadbektic.com

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