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Brothers with finishing power highlight Contender Series lineup


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Brothers with finishing power highlight Contender Series lineup

Aug 18, 2020Marc RaimondiESPN Staff Writer Dana White was feeling very generous last week.The UFC president doled out five contracts to competitors on Dana White’s Contender Series — one for the winner of each fight on the card. That’s eight UFC contracts awarded over the first two weeks of the fourth season of the show.Episode…

Brothers with finishing power highlight Contender Series lineup

Aug 18, 2020

  • Marc RaimondiESPN Staff Writer

Dana White was feeling very generous last week.

The UFC president doled out five contracts to competitors on Dana White’s Contender Series — one for the winner of each fight on the card. That’s eight UFC contracts awarded over the first two weeks of the fourth season of the show.

Episode 3 is ready to go on Tuesday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Five fights in four different weight classes begin at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN+. Here are three things to watch out for.

Brothers Louis Cosce and Orion Cosce compete

For the first time in Contender Series history, siblings will fight for contracts on the same card. Both Cosce brothers, who hail from Eureka, California, are 6-0 as pros. Louis, 24, is the younger brother, but he’s in the welterweight headliner against Victor Reyna. Louis is a finisher. He has stoppages in all of his pro wins and has TKOs of 8 seconds and 18 seconds on his résumé. Orion, a 26-year-old welterweight, trains out of the famed Team Alpha Male in California. He fights fellow undefeated fighter Matt Dixon. Orion also has six finishes in six pro victories, with five coming by knockout. It would be an incredible story if both brothers can somehow make their way into the UFC on the same night.

Cheyanne Buys coming into her own

Buys started fighting as an amateur four days after her 18th birthday, and by the time she was 20 she had already fought current UFC flyweight up-and-comer Gillian Robertson. Now, at 25 years old with a ton of experience under her belt, the taekwondo black belt has won three straight going into this strawweight bout with Hilarie Rose. Buys trains out of Fortis MMA in Dallas, as well as in South Africa with her husband, JP Buys. JP was supposed to compete on the Contender Series last week but had coronavirus-related travel issues. Buys is also a former champion of the BTC promotion in Canada. The well-traveled «Warrior Princess» has a huge opportunity on her hands in Las Vegas, where she was once a champion in the amateur promotion Tuff-N-Uff.

Kevin Syler fighting back from COVID-19

The debut episode this season of Contender Series was supposed to be headlined by Syler taking on Kenny Cross. That bout was scrapped on Aug. 1 when Syler tested positive for COVID-19. Syler wrote on Instagram that he was experiencing symptoms earlier that week. Well, three weeks later, the bout is back on and Syler is attempting to turn around his month in a big way. Syler, a Bolivia native who trains out of American Top Team in Florida, is a perfect 10-0 with seven finishes. He beat Lance Lawrence on DWCS last year, but did not earn a contract. The 27-year-old, who is studying psychology at Florida Atlantic University, will look to rebound from his health scare and failing to receive a contract the first time around on DWCS on Tuesday night.

Tuesday’s fight schedule

Welterweight: Victor Reyna (11-4) vs. Louis Cosce (6-0)

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Strawweight: Cheyanne Buys (4-1) vs. Hilarie Rose (4-1)

Welterweight: Orion Cosce (6-0) vs. Matt Dixon (9-0)

Heavyweight: Josh Parisian (12-3) vs. Chad Johnson (6-1)

Lightweight: Kevin Syler (10-0) vs. Kenny Cross (10-3)

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