This week, the complete Submission Underground 3 (January 29th, Roseland Theater, Portland) card was released, including an undercard that features a heavy focus on Pacific Northwest talent. Many of the undercard participants are standouts on the regional MMA circuit and will certainly bring with them a good feel for working inside a cage. Additionally, there are a slew of Sub-League winners, North American Grappling Association (NAGA) medalists, and IBJJF Invitational competitors. In total there are 18 matches scheduled for the event and the capacity crowd will certainly be as intense as usual. The entire card is listed below, as always this card is subject to change.
- Dillion Danis VS AJ Agazarm
- Hector Lombard VS Garry Tonon
- Jeff Glover VS Chad Mendes
- Gordon Ryan VS Jeff Monson
- Andrew Alexander Vs Joe Baize
- Phil Dunlap VS Morgan Mainz
- Aaron Marti VS Mike Dewitt
- Tom Burns VS Abel Briceno
- Justin Mark VS Austin Springer
- Roma Pawelek VS Hannah Sharp
- Micah Brakefield VS Lee Flores
- Daniel Swain VS Ricky Simon
- Brian VanOrnum VS Billy Yi – Gi
- Dan Walsh VS Taylor Ron Murders
- Logan Skinner VS Brian Travis
- Zach Force VS Andrew Sidelinger – Gi
- Derrick Flaig VS Niko Hughes
- Joey Elsmore VS Kyle Stafford
There are a few names on the undercard you may know and some you may not. Let’s take a closer look at a few of the matches you might want to pay a little extra attention to.
Roma Pawelek VS Hannah Sharp
This is a matchup that immediately caught my eye. Those of you who happened to attend or watch SUG1 might remember seeing Hannah Sharp in action. Sharp, who trains with Renzo Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Portland, found quick success against Misty Davison securing a triangle to win by submission in under a minute. She is an IBJJF World No Gi Medalist and is certainly a threat to repeat her success from SUG1. Some of you might recall hearing about Sharp as the jiu jitsu practitioner who quit her job and moved into her van so that she could spend more time training and less time stuck behind a desk. A dedicated jiu jitsu practitioner, she will have certainly improved since her SUG1 performance. Her counterpart in this matchup is Roma Pawelek. At one time, Pawelek was considered one of the hottest MMA prospects in the state of Oregon. Her professional debut was hugely successful and she was quickly signed on to fight for Invicta FC. Injury forced Pawelek out of her first scheduled bout with Invicta and shortly thereafter life would change for the Eugene based fighter when she became pregnant. Some of you might know Pawelek as the woman who famously practiced jiu jitsu into her 8th month of pregnancy. The videos are out there; pregnancy didn’t seem to slow her down a bit. Today, Pawelek continues her jiu jitsu training and has medals in IBJJF competition, NAGA, and many others. Both of these competitors are very strong and I expect a forceful match that will see positions earned, not given.
Ricky Simon VS Daniel Swain
On paper this could look like a pure wrestling match. Both of these MMA standouts have solid wrestling backgrounds, especially Simon. However, Swain has proven himself more than capable in the submission department with half of his 16 professional MMA wins coming by submission. Swain’s power has proven effective, as he has been able to pull off armlock submissions on multiple occasions in the cage. Swain has legit black belt caliber jiu jitsu to go along with his size; I expect he will try to overwhelm Simon early in this bout. For Simon, I see an advantage in diversity. He trains on a regular basis with Fabiano Scherner and crew at Gracie Barra in Portland. For him, that means being able to team up regularly with Ed Herman, Dave Jansen, Chael Sonnen and so many more great athletes. Additionally, you will find Simon training at Eastside Grappling with Pat “Bam Bam” Healy or over at 10th Planet Portland training with Phil Schwartz and Nathan Orchard. This matchup will certainly be one worth keeping an eye on. I would expect a hellacious pace and battle for control between these two Northwest MMA standouts.
Micah Brakefield VS Lee Flores
For Impact Jiu Jitsu’s Lee Flores, this matchup might seem like business as usual. Flores secured a win over Brad Pole at SUG2 in December and recently has been on quite the run as he also took the gold at the Seattle Open in 2016. Flores is certainly battle tested and ready for a challenge, but I am not sure if he has ever faced anyone quite like Micah Brakefield. Brakefield wanted on this card bad. He knocked on every door he could until they opened it up and let him in (just ask Chael Sonnen, Frontrow Brian, Flograppling, or Heather Standing). Brakefield competes with a bit of flair. He has an admitted love for the belly to back suplex, flying armbars, and even flying triangles. This style is likely going to get him a highlight reel finish or set him up for a huge disappointment. Either way the brown belt from British Columbia is on my radar and he should be on yours as well.