1 Breakout Fighter to Watch from MMA's Best Fight Camps

Riley KontekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 15, 2013

1 Breakout Fighter to Watch from MMA's Best Fight Camps

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    MMA's best camps are jam-packed with top fighters in the sport and some guys who are largely unknown to the average fan.

    I mean, when you mention Roufusport, I bet you immediately think of Anthony Pettis and not a guy like Chico Camus. It's these lesser-known guys at the top gyms who are just waiting for their shining moment.

    Here is one breakout fighter from some of the top camps to keep an eye out for.

Team Alpha Male: Andre Fili

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    Team Alpha Male is home to some of the best lighter weight fighters in the world, from Chad Mendes to Urijah Faber.

    One guy you never hear about is Andre Fili.

    The weird-haired featherweight is 11-1 in his career, with that one loss coming via knee injury. Fili is a large featherweight who would fit in great with the UFC should he ever get the call.

    He's an exciting finisher as well. All but three of his wins have come via knockout or submission. Hopefully, the UFC snags him soon.

Team Quest: Tarec Saffiedine

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    The legendary Team Quest is home to guys like Dan Henderson, Chael Sonnen and Yushin Okami. With fighters like that at your gym, it's no surprise that there is a struggle for the spotlight.

    Tarec Saffiedine finally got a marquee moment with his victory over Nate Marquardt at the final Strikeforce card to win the welterweight championship. With his move to the UFC, Saffiedine figures to be a guy to watch in the Octagon.

    Snappy striking and good takedown defense could make him a threat at 170. We will see if Saffiedine fully breaks out in the impending future.

Alliance MMA: Myles Jury

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    Myles Jury's road to the Octagon is a feel good story.

    After getting on Season 13 of The Ultimate Fighter, Jury blew out his knee and lost his spot on the show. That would spell the end for many, but he was given another opportunity on the 15th season of the show, where he showed his skill.

    Jury is now 2-0 with the organization, beating fellow TUF alums Michael Johnson and Chris Saunders. He has a third TUF graduate in his sights when he takes on Ramsey Nijem in a couple of months.

Xtreme Couture: Cezar "Mutante" Ferreira

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    Cezar "Mutante" Ferreira is the prodigy of Vitor Belfort, but he has been a ghost since winning TUF: Brazil against Sergio Moraes.

    Mutante is a vicious striker with a good ground game. Training with Xtreme Couture has likely balanced his game out with some wrestling, especially considering he's working with guys like Randy Couture and Mike Pyle.

    When Mutante returns, expect him to start gaining big-time momentum.

Tristar Gym: Ryan Ford

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    Tristar Gym is home to some of the best fighters in the world. Georges St-Pierre calls Tristar home, as do Rory MacDonald and many others.

    Ryan Ford is flying under the radar right now and could become a breakout fighter in the near future.

    Ford was thought by many to be considered for this season's Bellator tournament, but a visa issue stemming from his regretful past (he was in prison for robbery) has nixed that thought.

    Ford is pure power and an amazing athlete who is quickly picking up the sport. For a guy who is just getting the type of training to be successful, he has already accomplished a good amount in a short time.

Roufusport: Rick Glenn

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    Never heard of Rick Glenn?

    Now you have.

    The Roufusport featherweight is a guy who many fans do not know, but will get to know in the coming times. Glenn is 12-2, not losing since 2010 and finishing all but one opponent in his winning efforts.

    Glenn is a tall, lengthy 145-pounder with awesome striking and an underrated ground game (sounds like a lot of the Roufusport fighters).

    At just 23, his future looks to be extremely bright.

American Kickboxing Academy: Shawn Bunch

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    It's hard to say a guy is going to be a breakout fighter when they have just one fight under their belt.

    That is how much potential Shawn Bunch has.

    A great collegiate wrestler, Bunch has enlisted the help of American Kickboxing Academy to make him a complete fighter. Look what they did with guys like Daniel Cormier and Cain Velasquez.

    With a strong wrestling background like Bunch has, the sky is the limit in this mixed martial arts game. He just needs to get some more experience under his belt before he jumps in the deep end.

    Expect a star to be born.

Jackson's MMA: Rustam Khabilov

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    You may remember Rustam Khabilov from his suplex-filled debut with the UFC not long ago. Well, the Russian is a Greg Jackson pupil with big upside.

    Khabilov has been a guy I have considered a top prospect for a while. The Russian is a part of this new breed of talent from the "motherland" that is taking the sport by storm.

    With great wrestling and an aggressive style, Khabilov looks like a man destined for stardom.

Blackzilians: Abel Trujillo

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    Brutality is the best way to describe Abel Trujillo's debut stoppage of Marcus LeVesseur. Throwing haymaker knees to the body on the ground, I actually thought the Blackzilian team member was going to split LeVesseur in half.

    Trujillo is a small fish in a big pond of Blackzilian fighters. From Rashad Evans to Alistair Overeem to Tyrone Spong, Trujillo is not a name you think of when discussing that gym.

    That may change soon.

    His exciting style and purely violent methods have him on the fast track to becoming a breakout fighter. Time will tell how far the young man goes.