Updated: Oct 14, 2020
Travis Lizotte "Full Contact Writer"
Sityodtong Boston’s Fabio “The Water Buffalo” Cherant (4-1, #3 ranked Light Heavyweight in New England) will make his highly anticipated return to the cage this Friday, July 24th in Sioux Falls, South Dakota as he takes on Erick “Dream Chaser” Murray Jr. (5-3) as part of the main card at LFA: 86 Fischer vs. Flick in what will be Cherant’s LFA debut. A veteran of top regional promotions CES MMA and Cage Titans; Cherant racked up a 4-0 professional record under the CES banner with all four wins coming by submission, before getting the call up to the Contenders Series in July of last year. Cherant would ultimately suffer a second round TKO loss to Aleksa Camur (6-0) in that appearance on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, the first loss of his young career. Now nearly a year to the day removed from that loss in Vegas; Wrentham, Massachusetts’ Cherant continues to grow as a fighter. At just 25 years of age Cherant has received top prospect status both regionally and now nationally as Fabio will be looking to add to his accolades at LFA: 86 by scoring a victory over his most seasoned opponent to date in Nebraska’s Murray.
Cherant admits that a year off may have not been in his initial plans following the Camur fight, but it has allowed him to rejuvenate his mindset as well as heal up some nagging injuries. With a clean bill of health and a bunch of “speakeasy” type training sessions under his belt during quarantine, Fabio is ready to open some eyes Friday night as he looks for nothing short of a finish against the three fight LFA veteran Erick Murray. However, Murray knows a thing or two about finishing fights himself, recording stoppages in all five of his professional wins across his three year pro career. Hailing from Nebraska one may assume Murray to be a grappler, while Murray will not shy away from grappling exchanges, Murray relies heavily on his striking, leading to four career victories by knockout. With 13 professional bouts between the two, neither Cherant nor Murray have made it to the judges' scorecards in their careers and I don’t see that tradition ending Friday night in Sioux Falls.
I believe that Fabio Cherant will hold a decisive advantage in the grappling department in this matchup, although Fabio continues to improve what can be a powerful striking game, I think it makes the most sense to close the distance and bring this fight to Murray. Murray has fared relatively well against grapplers in the past, but none have been the physical type specimen that is Cherant. Cherant’s physicality and strength should result in dominant positions for the New Englander throughout this fight as I look for Cherant to soften Murray up with some heavy ground and pound before sinking in one of his patented chokes, sometime late in the first or midway through the second round. If Fabio does struggle to close the distance and take Murray down I think the pendulum does swing slightly in the favor of Murray from a technical striking standpoint, but Cherant should still possess the heavier hands between the two Light-Heavyweights.
Cherant, and his corner; friend and main training partner, Sean “The Unpredictable One” Lally, will be heading to South Dakota this week to represent New England, steal the show at LFA: 86 and further propel the Top Prospect status of one of New England’s finest Light-Heavyweights; Fabio “ The Water Buffalo” Cherant. With a banger of a Main Event between Greg Fischer (10-1) and Jimmy “The Brick” Flick (13-5) for the vacant LFA Flyweight World Title LFA: 86 promises to be a great stage for Cherant to display his talents to the world, a Friday night slot on UFCFightPass will also help Cherant get the attention he will need to return to the UFC’s radar. Fight fans can tune into LFA:86 Friday night July 24th at 9:00 pm live on UFCFightpass.com