Updated: Apr 7, 2021
Travis Lizotte "Full Contact Writer"
Turn the clocks back New England MMA fans, way back to well before all this pandemic bullshit put the brakes on the sport we all love, well at least I would imagine most of our readers have some sort of passion for MMA. But I digress, we pick back up in August of 2017, nearly four years ago; New England's most promising Flyweight prospect; Carlos "The Cannon" Candelario (7-0) put his name on the UFC radar with a dominant Unanimous Decision victory over Jose Aldo sparring partner and Jiu-Jitsu coach; Ronaldo "Pac-Man" Candido (6-1) in front of UFC brass on week 4 of the 2017 season of Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series. Candelario looked like he had secured his spot on the UFC roster but there was one issue, Candelario suffered a torn ACL in the fight and his celebration would be cut short, by a long and arduous rehabilitation process.
Candelario admittedly reconsidered his career many times during his nearly four year hiatus from competition, questioning if his fire to compete still burned as bright it did prior to the knee injury. Well someone at Underdog MMA must have lit a match, because Carlos has rekindled his love affair with violence and will make his long awaited return to the cage April 16th at LFA 104 (First reported by Nolan King of MMAJunkie) against Yuma Horiuchi (7-3). Horiuchi the 23 year old Japaneese Kickboxer will be looking to snap his current streak of back to back losses, coming up on the wrong side of the coin flip in two straight split decisions. Horiuchi made his LFA debut in January of last year at LFA against Leandro Gomes (6-1) in a Split-Decision loss but has been inactive in the MMA arena ever since.
What can we expect from the man I had ranked as the number one ranked Flyweight prospect in the Northeast in 2017, as he returns from injury looking to put his named back on the cusp of the UFC's Flyweight roster you ask? As his nickname suggests "The Cannon" has tremendous power in both hands for someone fighting in the 125 pound division, owner of two first round knockouts through his seven professional fights Carlos has a knack for finding his opponent's "Night Night Button." Pair those heavy hands with some elite level grappling on the mat, leading to 3 career submission victories and you have a 29 year old wrecking machine, ready to return to grab the prime of his career by the...*clears throat*...horns...
Candelario returns to the spotlight Friday April 16th in Shawnee, Oklahoma as LFA 104 comes to you live Worldwide on UFC Fight Pass. If Connecticut's Candelario is to return to his pre-injury form, I predict that the Flyweight prospect will punch his ticket to the UFC at LFA 104, I thoroughly expect Candelario to improve to 8-0 and "Fire Up" the talk about the East Coast's best unsigned Flyweight once again. New England MMA fans will not want to miss the return of "The Cannon."