Gulf Coast MMA will host its 8th event this Saturday, January 23rd, as they return to Biloxi for GCMMA 8. The card is absolutely stacked, with 15 matchups scheduled, including 2 professional bouts and 4 title fights closing it out! Follow along as we take a quick look at each of the 4 title fights from GCMMA 8 and a look at the fighters who will be competing!
Nakia Brown vs. Braxton King – Featherweight Title Fight
In the first of the title fights at GCMMA 8 we’ve got TWebb MMA’s Nakia “The Great” Brown taking on Juggernaut’s Braxton King for the GCMMA amateur Featherweight title. This is a highly anticipated matchup, with two of the most promising young Featherweight prospects on the Gulf Coast, who have appeared to be on a collision course since Braxton King made his debut back in late 2019. Braxton won that matchup for Atlas Fights 38 with a stunning 34-second guillotine choke – followed by 2 more first-round submission wins. Braxton experienced his first taste of defeat back in November of 2021 at GCMMA 7 against Darrius Jackson, losing by way of submission. Nakia Brown will be Braxton’s most-seasoned opponent yet, so it will be a great barometer to see exactly where he stands at this point in his career.
Nakia Brown will be making his 15th walk to the cage Saturday night – an incredible feat considering that he first started his career back in late 2018. Nakia has a high-level wrestling pedigree, and his striking is much-improved, complimented by his long reach and aggressive style. Nakia began his career on a 7-0 run with a finish rate of 100%, the majority of which ending in the very first round. Since then, Nakia has had a few setbacks, but with the increase in competition, came immense opportunities for growth for the 21 year old fighter.
Nakia was featured on episode 31 of the Fight Sport Focus Podcast. Check it out here:
Omar Smith vs. Elliot Hebert – Lightweight Title Fight
Next up, we’ve got TWebb MMA’s Omar “Terror” Smith taking on Gladiators Academy’s Elliot “Be Good” Hebert. Omar Smith is a 4-0 prospect from Trinidad and Tobago, making his debut appearance in Mississippi and for GCMMA. Omar is the #1 ranked Caribbean amateur Featherweight, and he sports a 100% finish rate (at least 3 of which occurred in the very first round). Elliot Hebert is a 3-1 amateur fighting out of Gladiators Academy in Lafayette, Louisiana. Elliot is a freak athlete, who, with much improved striking and grappling technique, is becoming a serious contender – and problem, for fellow Lightweights. Elliot, like Omar, has a 100% finish rate (all occurring in the first round), so this is a fight that could end in spectacular fashion.
Xavier Franklin vs. Donzeill Marshall – Flyweight Title Fight
The co-main event features a phenomenal matchup between Texas’ Xavier “Mr. Benjamin” Franklin and Performance Evolution’s Donzeill Marhshall. Both of these Flyweights have 5-0 amateur records, and this very well could be the fight of the night. Xavier Franklin has an incredible resume – not only is he undefeated, but 4 out of 5 of his fights were with LFA, and his debut was on Legacy’s Amateur Series. He hasn’t competed in over 2 years, however, so it will be interesting to see if ring-rust plays a factor for this up-and-comer. Donzeill Marshall is currently the #1 ranked amateur Flyweight in the state of Louisiana, #1 in Mississippi, and #2 in the Southeast US. After a decision win over a tough Melvin Lopez in his debut, Donzeill has finished his last 4 opponents, all in the first round. In his last bout, Donzeill derailed his toughest challenger to date – the then 6-2 Joshua Langley, at Atlas Fights 55, in August of last year.
Carlton Terrance vs. Johnny Smith – Welterweight Title Fight
In the main event, we’ve got Gracie United Amite’s Carlton “DK” Terrance fighting Campuzano MMA’s Johnny Smith for the GCMMA amateur Welterweight title. Johnny Smith will be making just his 4th walk to the cage this Saturday night, however, after a stunning first-round knockout of Darence Dewayne Brooks at GCMMA 7 back in November of 2020, he has earned himself a shot at the title, and a spot on the main event. Carlton Terrance, like Johnny Smith, fought and finished his last opponent at GCMMA 7. Terrance is 3-0 with a 100% finish rate, and he trains with top talent at Gracie United Amite.
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