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GFL Top 5 Fights to watch this weekend: Phoenix Jones returns to the regional scene

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) may be dominating the mixed martial arts (MMA) headlines this week, but MMA fans have a ton of regional events to fall back on, as is the place to be this weekend for combat sports. Once again, as a gift to MMAmania readers, GFL is offering 20 percent off any event, using the exclusive coupon code GFLMania.

Without further ado, let's take a look at the Top 5 fights to watch on GFL this weekend:

5. Ira Sherrod vs Dakota McFerson - V3Fights

The big boys steps into the V3Fights cage this weekend on GFL, and fight fans should grab their popcorn in anticipation of an epic battle when Ira Sherrod looks to defend his Heavyweight championship against Dakota McFerson.

Sherrod, a Tennessee native, has fought all three of his amateur bouts inside the V3 cage, earning knockout victories in 47, 13, and 56 seconds respectively. The gargantuan Heavyweight easily dispatched of Doug Billips to earn the V3 Heavyweight crown back in August, and he hopes a quick turnaround earns his another W.

McFerson, a Tennessee native in his own right, is looking to steal everything Sherrod has worked for, as he brings an undefeated 2-0 record into the cage this weekend. McFerson will be the shorter man inside the cage by at least three inches, but that hasn't stopped him previously from brutally knocking out his opponents.

In a Heavyweight fight, anything can happen, and with five knockouts between the two competitors, you can expect someone is going to sleep in this title fight.

If Sherrod lands one of his haymakers in the first 30 seconds, McFerson will probably be unable to recover. If the fight goes past a minute, meaning unchartered waters for the V3 Heavyweight champ, McFerson could pull off the upset and earn his biggest career win to date.

4. Francisco Obando vs Dominick Perez - Cage Combat 26

Undefeated Flyweights battle for the Cage Combat title this weekend, and you can bet UFC brass will be keeping a close eye on the winner of this bout as a potential addition to UFC's Flyweight ranks.

Francisco Obando and Dominick Perez both fight out of Texas, and both bring a 3-0 record into the cage on Saturday night. In a combined six fights, both men have only been able to accrue one finish each, but you can bet they will look to make a statement in their first title fight.

Obando heads into the fight with a three inch height advantage, towering over most Flyweights at 5'9. The 24 year old is coming off a hard fought decision victory over Dequette Reed at Cage Combat 25 back in August, and will look to make it four in a row on Saturday night.

As for Perez, the aspiring prospect has been trying to replicate his success in his amateur debut that led to a beautiful knockout victory, but two hard fought decision victories have given the 24-year old a ton of confidence heading into his first title bout.

This fight may lack bad blood, but it certainly doesn't fall short of intrigue. The Flyweight division across MMA is starving for challengers, so a pair of undefeated amateurs going to war on Texas should be on everyone's radar.

I wouldn't expect a finish, but you can expect a hard fought battle that should leave fans on the edge of their seat.

3. Grant Dawson vs Mike Plazola - KC Fighting Alliance

KC Fighting Alliance will "Fight For The Cure" on Saturday night in Missouri, and fight fans will be treated to a stacked card featuring some very intriguing bouts and prospects.

In the main event of the evening, Lightweight prospect Grant Dawson will look to prove he is ready for the big show when he takes on late replacement Mike Plazola for the KCFA 155 pound title.

Dawson, a Nebraska native, is 10-1 in his professional MMA career, with an additional seven submission victories in his impressive amateur career. "The Prophet" is a finishing machine, having won all 10 of his bouts via knockout or submission.

At one point, Dawson had 14 straight victories via submission from his Amateur career into the start of his professional career. Suddenly, the grappling aficionado decided to keep his next few fights on the feet, which led to three impressive KO's, but also saw him take his first knockout loss.

Dawson was initially slated to take on Nick Rhoads in what would have been an exceptional fight, but 12-5 Mike Plazola has decided to step in on very short notice to take a crack at Dawson and the chance at becoming the 155 pound champ.

Plazola was born in California, but fights out of Iowa. A natural 145'er, Plazola will be the smaller man inside the cage, but he won't have to cut any weight heading into the title fight.

"Plazilla" has had a strange pro MMA career thus far. After five straight finish victories to kick off his promising career, Plazola lost four straight fights via submission, including losses to UFC veteran Marcus LeVesseur and Bellator veteran Brandon Girtz. Since then, Plazola has gone 7-1 with all of his victories being violent finishes.

Plazola's five losses all came via submission, and with Dawson earning 14 over his career thus far, you can expect "Plazilla" to try to keep this fight on the feet. Even if he does, Dawson has proved he has the power to put his opponents away in devastating fashion.

This is Dawson's fight to lose, but Plazola is most certainly a live dog. Expect to see a barnburner of a fight, capped off with a savage finish that will likely make GFL's Top 5 highlights next week.

2. Tanner Boser vs Joey Yager - Unified MMA 28

Unified MMA Heavyweight Champ Tanner Boser is out to prove he is UFC ready this weekend when he defends his crown against the uber tough Joey Yager.

Boser, the 25-year old Canadian prospect, is 10-2 in his pro career, having victories over UFC veteran Tim Hague, and MMA journeyman Tony Lopez. "The Bulldozer" has proven he can finish fights with six knockouts and two submissions, while also showcasing his stamina in his 25 minute war against Lopez this past June.

While the Canadian has certainly had his setbacks, it is clear he has the talent to compete at the sport's highest level, and this weekend's battle is an absolute must win if he hopes to join UFC's roster.

Standing in his way will be Joey Yager, a 34 year old behemoth from Arizona that really has no business competing against a young stud like Boser. "Yagerbombz" is far from the prolific finisher Boser is, taking home only three finish victories in 11 career wins.

In his career, Yager has fought some notable names, and has lost to every single one of them. Brandon Halsey, Clifford Starks, and Marcus Sursa have all defeated Yager in the last three years. To his credit, the Heavyweight has defeated Tony Lopez in back to back impressive performances.

In all honesty, this should be a showcase title defense for Boser where he makes his statement to UFC brass that he is ready for the limelight. Will he fold under pressure, or come out victorious?

1. Ben Fodor (Phoenix Jones) vs. Albert Tadevosyan - Coga Combat Games: Rumble On The Ridge 36

Seattle's caped-crusader returns to action at Coga Combat Games: Rumble On The Ridge 36, as Ben Fodor battles Armenian powerhouse Albert Tadevosyan in the main event of the evening.

"Phoenix Jones" utilized his crime fighting escapades as a catapult into the MMA industry, and after an unsuccessful 1-2 run in the World Series of Fighting -- including a very strange fight against his brother Caros Fodor -- Jones has opted to return to the regional scene for a tune-up fight.

Unfortunately for Fodor, his opponent is no pushover, and may in fact be his most difficult test to date.

Albert Tadevosyan is undefeated in his pro MMA career, boasting an impressive 7-0-1 record with five finishes. "K-9" has won four straight fights since his draw against Taki Uluilakepa, and in their highly anticipated rematch, Tadevosyan came out with the unanimous decision victory.

In his most impressive performance to date, Tadevosyan made quick work of UFC veteran and MMA journeyman Dennis Hallman, dispatching of his opponent via knockout in the first round this past July.

You would think Fodor would return to the regional scene in order to fight an opponent not up to his caliber, but all signs point to Tadevosyan being the heavy favorite this Saturday night in Washington.

If Fodor is unable to hurt Tadevosyan early on and earn his respect inside the cage, it will likely be a long night for "Phoenix Jones" and his fans.

That's a wrap!

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