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Fight to Win is back in Philadelphia this weekend for Fight To Win 157. In this edition, Tom DeBlass will step out of retirement to challenge for the no-gi masters belt against a masters wrecking ball, Chad "Kodiak" Fields. In the co-main event, Gabriel Almeida will take on Vagner Rocha.
Main Event: Tom DeBlass vs Chad “Kodiak” Fields
Tom DeBlass will step out of retirement for this masters title matchup against Fight Sports’ Kodiak Fields. Both men are No-Gi Masters World Champions. DeBlass won the title in 2015; Fields won it in 2018 and 2019.
Tom DeBlass vs Tex Johnson
Fields remains a commensurate competitor. He holds a 4-0 fight to win record, and recently competed at Pans. While DeBlass has been away from competition for some time, he’s competed against some of the best around. He’s a three-time ADCC veteran who earned his way there through the trials each time.
Throughout his competitive career, DeBlass has focused on greuling, entertaining matches. And he may come to this match with new vigor, as he signed a contract with the MMA promotion One FC earlier this year and will be looking to resurrect his 9-2 MMA career. This may inspire him to return to his top competitive form, and if that’s the case, this matchup should be nonstop grinding from both guys.
Watch Chad Fields vs Scott Morton 2018 World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship
Watch: Tom DeBlass wins at Fight to Win Pro 72 via heel hook
Co-Main: Vagner Rocha vs Gabriel Almeida
Gabriel Almeida will keep on his apparent pursuit to have the most jiu-jitsu matches of anyone in 2020. He’s 5-2 in the Fight to Win ruleset this year, alone. He hasn’t been taking the easy route this year, either. He’s faced legends like Romulo Barral and Xande Ribeiro, and some of the toughest new black belts on the scene: Roberto Jimenez and Fellipe Andrew.
He’ll take on another ADCC veteran in this no-gi matchup, Vagner Rocha. Rocha, who is 3-2 in his Fight To Win career, has been comparatively less active in 2020, but has big wins over Ronaldo Junior and Kody Steele. He’s an enigmatic challenge for anyone. He’s nearly impossible to take down, and equally challenging to sweep. These traits give him can stick even the most explosive competitors in quicksand.
Watch: Vagner Rocha vs Ronaldo Junior at Who's Number One
If there’s one thing we’ve learned of Almeida this year, it’s that he’s willing to take risks. That could help open him up against Rocha, who sometimes intimidates his opponents into inaction.