BoxNation will be the only place to see the next generation of superstar mixed martial artists with a bumper night of combat sports action taking place exclusively live this Saturday, beginning with M-1 Challenge 74 from Saint-Petersburg, Russia before Enfusion Live 46 from Eindhoven, Netherlands featuring a thrilling kickboxing card.
The fighting world has been riddled with talk of MMA hotshot Conor McGregor stepping up to face pound-for-pound boxing legend Floyd Mayweather, but with so much exciting talent on show this Saturday the next crossover star may well emerge from these two brilliant bills.
The main event from M-1 Challenge 74 will see undefeated light-heavyweight champion Rashid Yusupov defend his title against the experienced 29-year-old Stephan Puetz.
Puetz goes in as the taller and rangier fighter and has racked up an impressive 14 wins with just two defeats, but against Yusupov he faces a skilled operator who has won all eight of his contests.
M-1 Challenge lightweight champion Alexander “Iron Capture” Butenko will also feature on the card as he takes on challenger Abukar Yandiev in the co-feature event.
A strong Ukrainian with superior wrestling skills, Butenko is an eight-year MMA veteran who has found a welcome home in the M-1 Challenge competition.
Riding a six-fight win streak, the 29-year-old Butenko captured the vacant M-1 Challenge lightweight title last June at M-1 Challenge 67, when he took a five-round unanimous decision over Artiom Damkovsky.
Against Yandiev he will be up against one of the most popular MMA fighters in Russia, with an exhilarating fighting style, having attained first-round endings in all his pro fights to date.
Furthermore, top bantamweights Vitaly Branchuk and Moktar Benkaci will also be in action, with the winner positioning themselves for a potential title shot with M-1 Challenge bantamweight champion Pavel Vitruk.
M-1 Global, the organisation behind M-1 Challenge, have established themselves in MMA as the premier entity for discovering and developing the world’s next-generation of superstar fighters, including names such as Alistair Overeem, Keith Jardine and Fedor Emelianenko.
M-1 Challenge 74 will be live from 5.30pm GMT on BoxNation before attention switches to Holland and Enfusion Live 46 with some top class kickboxing action.
Headlining the bill will be the world title showdown at 67kg between Moroccan rivals Ilias Bulaid and Zakaria Zouggary.
Bad blood between the two spilt over into their press conference in the build up to the fight resulting in the pair having to be separated.
Bulaid goes in as the champion with a vast amount of experience having racked up a staggering 162 wins, with only 8 losses.
Zouggary, however, is regarded as one of the best young talents around and has won all but one of his 30 fights.
The showdown is certain to produce fireworks with this grudge match set to reach an explosive conclusion on Saturday night.
The overall fight card has all of the ingredients to be one of the most entertaining events of the kickboxing year.
Co-headlining is a match-up from the 72.5kg Enfusion League and one of the most anticipated rematches with Nordin Ben Moh facing Mohammed Jaraya.
Ben Moh and Jaraya had previously fought each other at Enfusion Live 37 last year.
That encounter was widely regarded as ‘Fight of the Year’ with both knocking each other down in the semi-finals of the 70kg Enfusion Max tournament, with Jaraya the victor from a right cross knockout in an invigorating third round.
BoxNation will conclude the live fight action on Saturday night with a fantastic bill of live boxing from Cincinnati, Ohio when the brash and flashy Adrien Broner makes his ring return against the tricky Adrian Granados, with Lamont Peterson battling David Avanesyan.
Jim McMunn, BoxNation Managing Director, said: “This Saturday sees a global "Fight Fest" on BoxNation. We are all excited about the return of Adrien Broner against Adrian Granados in the USA but before that we will be broadcasting MMA action from Russia in M-1 Challenge 74, and then we come west to the Netherlands for kickboxing and Enfusion Live 46. Boxing will always be the heart and soul of BoxNation but we know our customers enjoy other combat sports and what a night of live action they are going to have on Saturday."