Written by @NickRiznerMMA
One week after the announcement of the CES MMA XXXIII main card, a thrilling featherweight bout has been added to the lineup.
Fresh off his first round heel hook victory over BJJ black belt Kevin Roddy at Bellator 144, Matt Bessette is scheduled to return to CES MMA on March 11th.
The aforementioned first round finish was good enough to earn Bessette the New England MMA Awards pro selection for Submission of the Year. The bout marked his fourth in 2015, leaving the Mangler with a 3-1 record; all finishes.
On March 11th, he will bring his tremendous fan base to the Twin River Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island to welcome Floridian Tito Jones to the cage. Jones has had an up-and-down career thus far, but looks to have been clicking as of late, going 4-1 between 2012 and 2014. He capped off the stretch with a head kick knockout of Elvin Leon Brito.
That knockout was good enough to earn Jones an invite to WSOF 23, where he fell short in his promotional debut, dropping a unanimous decision to the 10-1 Russian, Timur Valiev. Now he’ll be looking to get back to his winning ways by traveling up to Matt Bessette’s back yard and getting his hand raised in Rhode Island.
It won’t be an easy task.
Matt Bessette, who is on his last of a three fight deal with CES MMA, looks UFC bound at 145 pounds. With a reputation as a finisher – less than half of his 16 wins having come by decision – and a loyal following, it’s likely that the 31 year old is just a few fights away from getting his break.
Both men are undoubtedly hungry and we should have a great show on our hands. Bessette and Jones shared their thoughts on the upcoming fight with CES MMA.
“I’m always excited to fight for CES MMA and this one is no different. I’ve seen a few of Tito’s fights online. He’s a striker — that’s his strength and where he likes to be. My fans have seen me enough to know that I’m comfortable with strikers and I’m comfortable with grapplers. I’m going out there to do what I’ve gotta do to get the job done.”
“I want to do the best that I can do. That’s what I’m focused on. If I do my best, I have full confidence that I’m going to win. I try to maintain a certain level of happiness all the time. If I win, I win. If I lose, I lose. I’m happy to be there — that’s the biggest thing, and fans are going to know that right away — but of course I’m preparing to do my best.”
Full updated fight card information can be found below:
Main Card (AXS TV, 9 p.m. ET) [Official Order TBD]
Kody Nordby vs. Andre Soukhamthath
for the CES Bantamweight Championship
Middleweight: Chuck O’Neil vs. Dennis Olson
Heavyweight: Juliano Coutinho vs. Chaz Morgan
Heavyweight: Greg Rebello vs. Keith Bell
Lightweight: Nate Andrews vs. Julian Lane
Featherweight: Matt Bessette vs. Tito Jones
Featherweight: Joe Pingitore vs. Taylor Trahan