PREVIEW: NEF 28: Invincible

| April 28, 2017 | 1 Comment

Photo courtesy of New England Fights

The weigh-ins are in the bag and it’s time to prepare for NEF 28: Invincible. Tomorrow night, at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee, in Lewiston, Maine, futures will be determined, hearts will be shattered, legacies will be bolstered, and careers will be altered forever.

In a card plagued by tragic events, injuries, and illness, the individuals who remain standing now may lay claim to being Invincible after Saturday night. Even the weigh-ins were interrupted by a fire alarm. The list of bouts has nearly been cut in half, but five pro fights and four amateur fights remain.

In one of the untouched programs, “The” Ryan Sanders smashes heads with Jon Lemke for the NEF Lightweight Championship. The story on this one has been told: Lemke fights from underneath, as Sanders has been on a run, winning six of his last seven fights. The previous encounter between these two was marred by a stoppage in the third round due to a cut from the cage, leaving an unsatisfactory answer to the question of who would have won that fight. The definitive answer comes on Saturday, and having spoken to both men, I can say that though they are collected and professional, an intense fire burns within them both. The controversy surrounding their last fight will finally be put into the ground and buried. I believe that Lemke’s best chance for success is to go for an early kill with strikes… Sanders has insane conditioning and will most likely show more and more dominance as the fight continues.

Speaking of fires, featherweight Derek “Shatterproof 2.0” Shorey is fighting for a cause, after a blaze brought down the apartment in which his children lived. Though his kids are okay, Shorey will be in the cage to raise money for his family. His opponent will be professionally undefeated Josh “Hook On” Harvey, who was originally slated to fight the now injured Eric Mendiola. Harvey looks to extend his streak, and is the odds on favorite to win, but Shorey is dangerous, as any man fighting for the futures of his children would be. This one will most likely be short and violent. Shorey’s game should be to throw punches in bunches, while Harvey must weather or avoid the storm and try to end it on the mat.

Matt “Ken Doll” Denning and Josh Parker will collide in another featherweight contest. Denning is coming off a four fight losing streak, last suffering a loss against Ricky Dexter at NEF 27. Parker won his previous fight against Derek Shorey, and drew Elias Leland before that, but had a prior three-loss streak of his own. This win could mean the difference between moving forward in the division and hanging up the gloves. Both of these men have either won or lost nearly all of their fights by submission or decision. Look for a tactical contest.

Bellator veteran Walter Smith-Cotito looks to return to his winning ways as he returns to NEF to take on featherweight Andre “The Finisher” Belcarris. Smith-Cotito initially signed a contract to fight “Relentless” Aaron Lacey, but after Lacey pulled out due to a nasty ligament tear, Belcarris stepped up to take the fight after his opponent, Elias Leland, also suffered an injury. Smith-Cotito comes off a loss to Blair Tugman at Bellator 163, but is undefeated in the NEF cage. This will be Belcarris’s first pro fight, but he is an experienced amateur fighter with over 30 contests under his belt. Smith-Cotito is more dangerous early, and can win both on the feet and on the mat. Belcarris specializes in Muay Thai. I predict this one will be over by the second round.

The final pro fight pits Tollison Lewis against Dominic “Dominaton” Jones. It has been over a year since Lewis has fought in the cage (not counting boxing). His record is not stellar, but he was able to submit his last opponent Zenon Herrera, in less than 30 seconds. Jones, a newly minted professional, is coming off a split decision loss, but aside from that fight, his amateur record is spotless, full of unanimous decision wins. I would put my money on Lewis trying to end it quick with strikes, while Jones (the heavy favorite) tries to drag Lewis into the deep waters of the later rounds.

With 4 amateur fights on the undercard, tomorrow night will be an MMA spectacular that can’t be missed!



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Category: Event Preview, News

About the Author ()

Thomas Mallory is a group fitness instructor, English language tutor, and author of psychological horror novels. He has a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the University of Maine.

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  1. Dan Bonnell says:

    Great preview!
    Glad to see some of the top fights remained. Every promotion deals with injuries and drop outs every card. Some worse than others. Glad to see NEF was able to salvage a really good card still despite the fall-outs.

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