Dmitry Salita’s series of summer events at Detroit’s legendary Kronk Gym kicks off on August 20th with one of the promoter’s stronger up-and-comers at the helm. ShoBox veteran Vladimir Shishkin headlines against journeyman Oscar Riojas on UFC Fight Pass.
29-year-old Shishkin (10-0, 6 KO), the WBC’s 10th-ranked super middleweight, took a wide decision over Ulises Sierra in January despite injuring his left bicep. He looks like a legitimate talent, which makes this matchup all the more pathetic; Riojas (21-13-1, 10 KO) is a farcical step down from the likes of Sierra, DeAndre Ware, and Nadjib Mohammedi, having not beaten an opponent with a winning record since 2014. His only claims to fame are surviving the distance against such luminaries as Immanuwel Aleem and Ronald Gavril.
“It is an honor to be fighting in the first event at the legendary gym where I train and have learned so much about fighting as a professional,” said Vladimir Shishkin. “And with the reach of UFC FIGHT PASS, my fight can be watched by my fans across the USA and back home in Russia. I will work hard to put on a spectacular performance worthy of this recognition.”
“I always come for war, no matter who I face,” said Riojas. “My Russian opponent is undefeated, but he has never been in the trenches with a true warrior. We are going to see if he is what they say he is on August 20. Tell him to be ready.”
As of this writing, the card will run unopposed on a Thursday. The following Saturday, August 22nd, features Dillian Whyte vs. Alexander Povetkin, Shawn Porter vs. Sebastian Formella, and Eleider Alvarez vs. Joe Smith Jr.