UFC Debuts in Missouri April 15

While some Missouri-based fight fans are still going to have to wait for the UFC to come to St. Louis’ Scottrade Center, the organization will touch down in “the Show-Me state” for the first time in its 23-year history on Saturday, April 15.

Taking place at Kansas City’s Sprint Center, the event is still taking shape at the time of this writing. Already slated to compete are Andrew Sanchez originally of Shiloh, Illinois along with Tim Elliot and Zak Cummings of Lee’s Summit, Missouri.

Sanchez previously wrestled for McKendree University and spent time competing in the St. Louis area for Shamrock Fighting Championships. He then spent 2013-2015 with the Resurrection Fighting Alliance (now the Legacy Fighting Alliance,) a premier developmental organization before appearing on the 23rd season of The Ultimate Fighter reality show—which he won to earn a UFC contract.

He is 10-2 overall and 2-0 in the UFC with both wins coming by unanimous decision.

Tim Elliott the appeared on TUF’s 24th season after a previous stint in the UFC. The season was dubbed “the tournament of champions” as 16 titleholders from various promotions across the world fought for bragging rights and an opportunity at UFC flyweight (125-pound) champion Demetrious Johnson’s belt.

Elliott, a flyweight champion for the developmental Titan FC, came up short in the UFC title fight against Johnson, but by winning season 24 of the show and performing well against “Mighty Mouse,” he is once again a part of the world leader in mixed martial arts.

This will be his first fight in the organization since TUF 24 ended last December.

Cummings, a wrestler for Missouri State following time at Meramec Community College, has fought in the UFC dating back to 2013 and enters his Kansas City bout at 5-2 in the UFC (20-5 overall) and having finished 75 percent of his total wins by racking up ten submissions and five KO/TKOS.

Sanchez will face Anthony Smith (2-1 in the UFC, 26-12 overall.) Elliott is set to battle hot prospect Luis Smolka (5-3 in the UFC,11-3 overall) while Cummings will square off against Nathan Coy (2-0 in Bellator MMA, 1-1 in the UFC, 15-6 overall.) Also featured will be RFA veterans Jake Collier of St. Louis (2-2 in the UFC, 10-3 overall) taking on Devin Clark (1-1 in the UFC, 7-1 overall.)

While the headliners for this event have not yet been announced, the big attraction at the moment is a showdown between “Thug” Rose Namajunas and fighting mother, Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Waterson at 115 pounds.

Namajunas has been looking to capture the women’s strawweight title from champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk while Waterson recently put UFC poster-girl and “Dancing with the Stars” runner-up Paige VanZant to sleep with a rear-naked choke in December.

InsideSTL.com will have more information as it becomes available.