British Trio Feature On UFC Fight Night: Chiesa vs Magny

It goes without saying that many MMA fans will be waiting with bated breath ahead of UFC 257’s main event of Conor McGregor vs Dustin Poirier on Saturday however, Wednesday night’s UFC Fight Night: Chiesa vs Magny is a monumental night for British MMA, with a trio of UK athletes featuring on the card.

Lerone Murphy:

Photo Credit: @lpresi145 instagram

Lerone ‘The Miracle’ Murphy is one of British MMA’s best kept secrets.

After Murphy decided to stop pursuing his dream of becoming a professional footballer following an injury, the Mancunian was left looking for a different sport to get involved in. So, when a new MMA gym opened in Manchester, he decided to give it a go- with no intention of becoming a professional mixed martial artist.

Although he never saw his future landing him in the octagon, Murphy has always been a fighter, something rooted in the origins of his nickname ‘The Miracle’. Back in May 2013, the then 21-year-old was shot twice in the face and miraculously survived. Murphy credits MMA for adding much needed discipline and focus to his life.

In a huge step up in opposition, ‘The Miracle’ faces 29 fight veteran Douglas Andrade on the main card portion of Wednesday’s fight night. Andrade has had a tough run since signing with the UFC, going 4-3 in his 7 bouts for the organisation.

Murphy knows he is in for a challenge on Wednesday but believes his skillset and Fight IQ will be enough to secure his second UFC victory. Speaking to the press during Media Day he said:
“It’s a big fight, he’s fought the best of the guys outside of the top 15 at Featherweight and he’s fought Petr Yan and Rob Font which are the (Bantamweight) Champion and top 5 so he’s fought good guys in the UFC.

“He’s tough, he’s got good striking, he’s powerful and tough but I feel like I’m just going to be the smarter fighter in there on Wednesday.”

Mason Jones:

Photo Credit: Dolly Clew/ Cage Warriors

Mason ‘The Dragon’ Jones possibly had the greatest 2020 of any British Mixed Martial Artist.  In March, he was crowned Cage Warriors Lightweight Champion after dismantling Joe McColgan inside one round. In September, Jones moved up to 170lbs and added the Cage Warriors welterweight strap to his collection, finishing Adam Proctor in emphatic style. With this, he became the promotions first champ-champ since a certain Conor McGregor. Weeks later, Jones received his much deserved UFC call up.

Jones faces a tough challenge in his first UFC outing, in the shape of Mike “Beast Boy” Davis. The Florida native has serious power,7 of his 8 victories coming by way of strikes.

Speaking to John Gooden for the UFC’s YouTube channel Jones recalled his last Cage Warriors post fight interview. He said:
“I shouted out Dana White and Sean Shelby and challenged them to find me the biggest beast, the biggest monster they could dig out for me and I’ll put them away in two. I’ve set myself up, I’ve got a tough opponent coming up and I’ll just do what I do best and destroy whoever’s in front of me and start making my climb.”

The 25-year-old is one of a number of athletes leading the charge of Welsh MMA’s meteoric rise over the last year with the likes of Jack Shore, Brett Johns & Lewis Long all playing a vital role too. There’s a lot of hype surrounding ‘The Dragon’ and when fans who may be unfamiliar with him tune into UFC Fight Night on Wednesday, they will see why!

Tom Breese:

Long time British MMA fans will be delighted to see Tom Breese having 3 bouts in the space of a year, you’d have to go back to 2016 to find the last time that happened.

The Birmingham based middleweight looked to be back to his best in his last bout, taking out KB Bhullar less than 2 minutes into the first round. Breese will square off against 33-year-old Russian, Omari Akhmedov. The bout was originally scheduled for the Holloway vs Kattar card but following ‘COVID-19 related issues’ the bout was pushed back to the midweek card.

Breese, a former IBJJF world championship runner-up is known for his grappling prowess and there’s a strong possibility he will have to rely on it against his Team Dagfighter opponent, who trains alongside the likes of Zabit Magomedsharipov, Magomed Magomedov & Said Nurmagomedov.

It has been a tough few years away from the cage, struggling with anxiety and mental health issues, a topic Breese has been extremely open about. Following his victory against Bhullar, Breese told the media:
“When we face challenges we have to go looking deep inside and for me, I didn’t just want to hide away from it at home and settle for an average life.

“I’ve put too much time into this game, I want to be a great fighter and that’s my mission.”

Away from his bout, Breese is building a solid stable of fighters under the renegade banner with the likes of Leon & Fabian Edwards, Aiden Lee & Jai Herbert all fighting out of his gym.

The Renegade man will be hoping for an active 2021, having only made the walk 3 times since May 2018.

UFC Fight Night: Chiesa vs Magny is live on UFC fight pass & BT sport on Wednesday, January 20th, 2021.