This Saturday, the World Series of Fighting will be at the Foxwood Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn. for what looks to be a great night of fights. The main event is between two former UFC fighters in Jon Fitch and Yushin Okami, but what people really should be paying attention to is the co-main event between Blagoi Ivanov and Derrick Mehmen for the heavyweight title.

Back in June 2015, Ivanov was coming off the only loss in his career where he would face Smealinho Rama, the reigning WSOF heavyweight champion, in his first appearance under the WSOF banner. Ivanov would take this fight to the third round, where he would sink a guillotine choke and take home the WSOF heavyweight strap. Before losing in the Bellator cage, Ivanov was on 9 fight win streak, only to lose to former Bellator heavyweight champ Alexandre Volkov in May 2014. The heavyweight submission specialist and sambo practitioner will look to keep his belt in his first title defense.

Derrick Mehmen last fought in WSOF in October 2014, where he would lose a title fight against Rama, the same man that Ivanov would go on to take the belt from. Prior to that loss, Mehmen was on a 6 fight win streak. This fight is a true striker vs grappler matchup and we will get to see who can best utilize their style and take home the victory.

In The Clinch

Ivanov, being a sambo practitioner and judo black belt, will want to come and close the gap where in the clinch he can use his judo to get the fight where he does his best — on the mat. I’m not saying that Ivanov doesn’t have what it takes to knock out Mehmen, but he has a much better chance at winning by getting the fight to the floor where he can go for the submission. Mehem is a knockout specialist and fights best when he can keep the fight on the feet.

Advantage: Ivanov

Stand Up

Mehmen has 11 wins by KO and has a clear advantage on the feet. Mehmen is going to want use his standup game to make sure this doesn’t happen. If Mehmen can keep the distance and utilize his better striking to keep Ivanov at bay, this might be one and done for the Bulgarian as the champion. Mehmen is a true one-hit knockout artist and has sent many opponents to sleep with his heavy hands. Use the jab, keep Ivanov on the outside and go for that one shot that will put the gold around your waist.

Advantage: Mehmen

Ground Game

Ivanov, with 6 career wins by submission, has much more success on the ground than Mehmen, with only 2 submissions to his name. If the fight does make it to the ground, this will make it hard for Mehmen to use his best weapon, which is knocking his foe out. Ivanov feels more comfortable on the ground and has a far superior submission game. This is where Ivanov will shine and keep what he has earned — the WSOF heavyweight belt.

Advantage: Ivanov

About The Author

Jeremiah York
Staff Writer

In 1993 at 16 years old my Mom let me order UFC #1 on PPV. Then and there my life changed! To find a sport that put man against man, skill against skill in the rawest form was absolutely amazing! My love for MMA was found and I have been following all aspects of Combat Sports since. If I'm not traveling to watch fights I am studying and catching up on everything MMA at home. I am a Denver Native, but I live in TX now where the fight scene is booming! When I'm not watching and dissecting fights I'm out in the market selling beer as the TX Area Sales Manager for Uinta Brewing.