The announcement of his Bellator MMA arrival had “Baby Slice” Kevin Ferguson Jr. trending on social media for two-straight days, and today, Bellator Officials have confirmed that his first challenge as a professional mixed martial artist will be Jonathan Tomasian in a welterweight attraction at “Bellator 160: Henderson vs. Pitbull.”
In addition, Ferguson’s teammate at “Body Shop Gym,” Joey Davis will also make his professional debut, when he takes on Keith Cutrone (1-0) at 170-pounds.
The stacked event takes place on August 26 at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., and will air LIVE and FREE on SPIKE at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT.
These two welterweight matchups join a card that features a stellar 155-pound main event between Benson Henderson (23-6) and Patricio “Pitbull” (25-3). Additionally, two standout featherweight fights have also been announced, seeing the young and undefeated A.J. McKee (4-0) meet former KOTC titlist Henry Corrales (12-3) and NCAA National Champion Wrestler Bubba Jenkins (11-2) take on Georgi “Insane” Karakhanyan (24-6-1).
Signed to a developmental deal in April, “Baby Slice” makes his pro debut on the event’s Bellator.com-streamed preliminary card. The son of the late, great “Kimbo Slice,” Ferguson Jr. broke onto the scene very quietly earlier this year in an amateur bout in Western Massachusetts, where he scored a knockout victory just 83 seconds into the first round. MMA reporter Chuck Mindenhall was on-site to cover the story. ‘Baby Slice’ trains at Antonio McKee’s “Body Shop Gym” in Long Beach alongside other “Bellator 160” competitors McKee, Jenkins and Davis.
Tomasian makes his professional debut under Bellator’s bright lights in a high profile situation that he hopes to make the most of. The 20-year-old Santa Clara, Calif., native has slightly more cage time than Slice, winning both of his amateur outings, once by knockout and the other by decision. Tomasian is currently training with Manny Rocha at Strive Jiu Jitsu Academy in Lodi Calif., where he has earned a purple belt in the art.
Davis is a 21-year-old standout wrestler who competed at Notre Dame College, where he accumulated an incredible undefeated 131-0 record and four consecutive NCAA Division II Championships during his college tenure, becoming the only Division II wrestler to ever win four national titles and go unbeaten in a career. Now, Davis looks to parlay his wrestling success in the mixed martial arts cage on Aug. 26 in the Anaheim, where Davis will have plenty of hometown fans in attendance.
Amassing an 8-1 record on the amateur circuit, Cutrone has previously gotten his feet wet professionally, winning his pro debut via stoppage this past March. “The Bone” is a Strikeforce veteran, competing at the promotion’s “Challengers 11” card in 2010. With a strong base in wrestling and jiu-jitsu, Cutrone held a regional title at 185-pounds before permanently moving to welterweight as a professional.
Bellator 160: Henderson vs. Pitbull
Lightweight No. 1 Contender Main Event: Benson Henderson (23-6) vs. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (25-3)
Lightweight Feature Bout: Saad Awad (19-7) vs. Derek Anderson (13-2)
Featherweight Feature Bout: A.J. McKee (4-0) vs. Henry Corrales (12-3)
Featherweight Feature Bout: Bubba Jenkins (11-2) vs. Georgi Karakhanyan (24-6-1)
Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Joey Davis (Pro Debut) vs. Keith Cutrone (1-0)
Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Kevin Ferguson Jr. (Pro Debut) vs. Jonathan Tomasian (Pro Debut)Check out our latest podcast episode featuring a conversation w/James Lynch.