M-1 Challenge XXII: Pat Bennett vs. Alexander Volkov Preview

On December 10th at M-1 Challenge XXII in Moscow, Russia, New Jersey native and Team Bombsquad fighter, Pat Bennett, brings an established 6-2 combined amateur and professional mixed martial arts record in to the ring to face the staunch Red Devil Sports Club stand-out, Alexander Volkov, in a bout with significant heavyweight contention ramifications. Fans can capture the action starting at 11:00am EST / 8:00am PST on the official M-1 website, www.M-1Global.com.

Known for his wrestling skills, Bennett has proven to be a multidimensional mixed martial artist able to transition into a touted striker at will; doubters can be quickly silenced by his record which is heavily weighted in the ‘win’ column with five first-round TKO’s. Bennett’s path through the 2010 Selections tournament allowed him to display a wide array of talents. With an opening fight against Nick Smiley that lasted a total of 37 seconds before getting stopped due to TKO, Bennett moved on to the semi-finals against American Top Team prospect Mehdi Hassan; this bout proved to be a marathon war ending in a unanimous decision victory. The run was halted in the finals however as Bennett fell victim to Kenny ‘Deuce’ Garner at the midway point of the opening frame.

though it seems he has set his wrestling on the back burner in favour of striking throughout the 2010 Selections tournament, the heavyweight contention bout against Volkov is sending Bennett back to his fundamental and highly decorated base. “I’m a dominant wrestler and seemed to have gotten away from what I do best,” says Bennett. “I’ve watched Volkov’s videos. I know a lot about him and his striking abilities. Stylistically this is a great match-up and I know what I have to do to be successful.” At 6’ 3”, 240 pounds, Bennett will have to successfully defend takedown attempts and push the pace as he sees fit while being cautiously aware of Volkov’s lengthy reach.

Volkov is obviously setting up a game plan of his own designed to stop Bennett and his proud wrestling pedigree. At only 22 years of age, Volkov is a real threat to anyone in M-1 Global’s heavyweight division; standing 6’7” and a nimble 220 pounds, the young fighter stands confidently on the canvass.

The exposure to training alongside the likes of Fedor Emelianenko, Viktor Nemkov, Gegard Mousasi and Amar Suloev is apparent as Volkov is highly capable of fighting from his back, able to strike with the precision of a surgeon, effective in the clinch and possesses a tough chin.

Volkov’s most notable win came after only eight months of professional fighting when he faced the highly experienced Ibragim Magomedov at M-1 Challenge 20: 2009 Finals. Coming in as the fight’s massive underdog, Volkov wasn’t even expected to make it out of the opening round, let alone go the full 15 minutes. Giving his all, Volkov won via unanimous decision and was awarded the M-1 Global ring for ‘exceptional performance’.

Kicking off his participation in the 2010 M-1 Selection Eastern European tournament, Volkov took victories in the opening round and the semi-finals over Vitali Yalovenko and Alexander Romaschenko respectively. His run for the Selection heavyweight crown was halted in the finals as the young Red Devil fell victim to Maxim Grishin via rear naked choke submission in the first round.

This heavyweight bout with serious title contention ramifications brings together two fighters on the quest for redemption. Both warriors are clearly in control of their own destinies with the winner catapulted into the title picture for 2011 and loser having his hopes at a title shot flicker away.

Fans around the world can catch the heavyweight contention battle at the Druzhba Arena in Moscow, Russia LIVE and for free on Friday December 10th by tuning in to the official M-1 website, www.M-1Global.com starting 11:00am EST / 8:00 PST.

Alexander Volkov highlight video:

About William Smith

After watching the first Ultimate Fighting Championship I became instantly hooked. I've been a huge fan of the sport of MMA ever since. Haven't missed a UFC event & thanks to fight pass I've witnessed some of the all time greatest fighter & athletes the sport through Pride, Strikeforce, WEC, Glory, Pacrase, EliteXC.............. I resently joined MMA-paradise.com & will use this site to continue to bring the latest news from the world of MMA to all our loyal followers.