Monday, May 16, 2011

Fight Watch: Mamed Khalidov vs. Matt Lindland at KSW 16 this Weekend

KSW takes to the Ergo Arena in Gdansk, Poland for the first time to present KSW 16. The headliner features a clash of muscle as highly decorated World's Strongest Man Mariusz Pudzianowski steps into the cage for the fourth time against British fighting veteran James Thompson.

While fans will flock to see the muscle-vs-muscle match in the main event, there is another bout on the card that deserves equal, if not more, attention. The card pits former world class wrestler Matt Lindland against up-and-coming Polish prospect Mamed Khalidov in a middleweight contest.

At 40 years old, Matt Linland is still active in the cage. The 2000 Olympic Greco-Roman Wrestling Silver Medalist looks to bounce back from a first round knockout loss to Robbie Lawler last December. Meanwhile outside the cage, Lindland is wrapped up in a legal suit with former training and business partner Dan Henderson over ownership of Team Quest. For Lindland's sake, hopefully these matters haven't presented a distraction to his training camp.

Mamed Khalidov is the national favorite, as he prepares to display his talents before the home crowd in Poland once again. Khalidov lost to Jorge Santiago in March of 2010 for the Sengoku Middleweight Title. He had previously beaten Santiago in his 2009 WVR debut. Mamed currently rides a two fight win-streak, following a draw with Yuki Sasaki at WVR's New Year's event. The Polish fighter, who has fought at the heavyweight, lightweight, and middleweight divisions, sports a 22-4-2 record of which 21 of his wins occurred via early stoppage (10 ko's and 20 submissions).

This bout will serve as yet another proving ground for Mamed Khalidov. This time he will face an established veteran in Matt Lindland. In fact, it will be Mamed Khalidov's first time against a wrestler of Lindland's caliber. If Khalidov can get past Matt Lindland's wrestling prowess, refusing to engage him in the clinch, Mamed Khalidov could use this bout as a stepping stone to a deal with a top shelf promotion such as Strikeforce, the UFC, or Bellator (Khalidov would make an excellent opponent for a fighter like Hector Lombard or Tim Kennedy). As for Matt Lindland, old man time is quickly catching up with him. His game plan for this bout should be simple -- secure the clinch early, work takedowns and throws, and get the fight to the mat. Lindland will have to end the fight early. The longer the fight progresses, the more age will show itself.

Enjoy the video promo for Saturday's KSW 16 event. Full bout card follows:

Konfrontacja Sztuk Walki (KSW):
KSW XVI - Konfrontacja
May 21, 2011
Ergo Arena,
Gdansk, Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland

Mariusz Pudzianowski vs. James Thompson
Mamed Khalidov vs. Matt Lindland
Jan Blachowicz vs. Toni Valtonen
Michal Materla vs. James Zikic
Karol Bedorf vs. Grigor Aschugbabjan
Artur Sowinski vs. Cengiz Dana
Marcin Rozalski vs. Vitali Shemetov

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