World Bare Knuckle Fighting Federation (WBKFF) announced today that its inaugural event, “Rise of the Titans”, will be held Saturday night, October 20, to air on worldwide pay-per-view live from Casper Events Center in Casper, Wyoming.
Full PPV details will soon be announced.
WBKFF also announced it will host a star-studded meet-and greet for fans during fight week, “Fandamonium”, featuring an appearance by the Queen of MMA, Cris Cyborg, along with former UFC champions and other celebrities.
The co-featured event is a dream match-up between two of the most polarizing MMA fighters of all time, Chris “The Crippler” Leben and “The New York Bad Ass” Phil Baroni. for the WBKFF light heavyweight title.
The 37-year-old Leben, who lives in Portland, Oregon, is coming out of a five-year retirement
A veteran UFC title contender, Leben’s victims include Wanderlei Silva, Yoshihiro Akiyama, Alessio Sakara, Patrick Cote, Terry Martin and Mike Swick
Baroni, 42, came out of a four-year retirement earlier this year. Fighting out of Long Island, New York, he is a former pro kickboxer (7-0) and wrestler, who has successfully fought in the UFC, Bellator, PRIDE, Strikeforce, Dream and other MMA organizations.
Another sighed fight will match Ultimate Fighter contestant and UFC veteran Christina Marks and professional boxer Jasmine Clarkson for the WBKFF Women’s Flyweight Championship.
WBKFF will also launch its $100,000 Grand Prize 8-Man Lightweight Tournament, showcasing eight fighters in four separate bouts to determine the semifinalists for WBKFF’s second event, culminating with the championship final in its third event.
Tournament contestants include UFC veterans Melvin “The Young Assassin” Guillard, Tom “Da Tank” Gallicchio, Josh Neer and Issac Vallie Flagg, as well as professional boxers Nick Casal (23-4, 18 KOs) and undefeated Joey Bryant (16-0, 12 KOs).
Newly adopted rules including holding and striking, spinning backfists and hammer fists will be used in all WBKFF fights, which will be contested in a traditional boxing ring for optimum viewing and safety. All men and women’s matches will feature five (two-minute) rounds.