Ontarians abroad: Five Ontario fighters to watch in December
5. T.J. Laramie (6-2) vs. Charles Jourdain (5-0)
UFC Fight Pass
Since T.J. Laramie’s MMA debut in 2015, he has been one of the most highly touted prospects in the Canadian fight scene. Rumours of his talent had permeated gyms across the country before he made his debut.
Barely 20 years of age, Laramie will be looking for his first note-worthy championship when he faces Quebec’s Charles Jourdain for the TKO featherweight championship.
Laramie is coming off of a gruelling win against Jimmy Spicuzza at TKO 39 in June. Before that was a shocking knockout loss to Alex Morgan. Suffering two early losses in his career, Laramie has shown an ability to bounce back in a big way.
What’s the best part of a young prospect like Laramie? The growth they show between fights. Expect Laramie to come with some new tricks in his bag as he looks to capture the championship and gain the attention of a certain promoter down south (cough Mr. White* cough)
4. Jesse Ronson (18-8) vs. Derek Gauthier (8-7)
UFC Fight Pass
After suffering three straight losses in late 2015 and early 2016, London’s Jesse Ronson was at a bit of a crossroads. He had to decide whether or not he still wanted to fight, and if so, was he going to put in the time necessary to compete.
It looks like he has.
Ronson has put together three straight victories in late 2016 and early 2017, showing some of the skills that put him on the UFC’s radar in the first place.
Gauthier and Ronson put on a classic in their April 2017 meeting at TKO 38 and the two veterans are expected to put on another must-see fight on December 8. This time, it’s for the gold.
3. Alexis Davis (18-7) vs. Liz Carmouche (11-5)
UFC Fight Night 123
Ontario’s Alexis Davis doesn’t just want to be the woman that got destroyed by Ronda Rousey in 16 seconds; she wants to leave a legacy. And while Canadian fans know that Davis is amongst the best fighters in the bantamweight division, there are others who can’t look past the Rousey defeat.
On December 9, the Alexis Davis redemption tour continues with a second fight against Liz Carmouche. In the first fight, Davis used her range to win a unanimous decision. She’ll be looking to do the same this time out.
Davis is currently ranked 10th in the women’s bantamweight division, with Carmouche ranked 11th. A win could move Davis into the top 8, edging her close to an elusive second chance at the women’s bantamweight championship.
2. Chad Laprise (12-2) vs. Galore Bofando (5-2)
UFC on FOX 26
After back-to-back losses to Francisco Trinaldo and Ross Pearson, London’s Chad Laprise has looked good in his last two bouts against Thibault Gouti and Brian Camozzi.
He’ll be looking to make it a three-fight winning streak when he takes on Galore Bofando in Winnipeg.
Both knockout artists will be looking to use their fists to continue their ascension in the UFC rankings.
For Laprise, a win could put him on the doorstep to the top 15. The less experience Bofando is looking to use Laprise as a launching pad into notoriety as a fighter worth watching.
1. Misha Cirkunov (13-3) vs. Glover Teixeira (26-6)
UFC on FOX 26
It looked dicey for a while whether or not Misha Circunov would be back in the UFC, but the Latvian-born Ontario-based fighter is back in the Octagon looking to get back on track.
Last time out, Circunov suffered his first defeat since 2012 when Volkan Oezdemir shockingly knocked him out in 28 seconds. Now it’s time to see if the 30-year-old can get back on track.
Of course, Teixeira is no easy task. The durable, hard-hitting Brazilian is looking to get back on track himself after losing two of his last three bouts.
The bout promises to be an exciting one, with both fighters having heavy hands and the potential for a knockout.
Don’t expect a decision in this one.
*Photo courtesy of UFC.com