XFC's Young Gun Series coming to FireLake Arena Saturday

Brian Johnson
Shawnee News-Star, USA TODAY NETWORK
This photo from the most recent event, XFC 43, on Nov. 11, 2020 at the Tabernacle in Atlanta.

The future of Mixed Martial Arts will be on display Saturday at the FireLake Arena in Shawnee as the Xtreme Fighting Championships Young Guns Series makes an appearance.

Thirteen bouts will be on the card, including six amateur fights, beginning at 5 p.m., followed by seven professional fights, starting at 9 p.m.

The Young Guns are fighters who are in the development stages of their MMA or XFC careers. Some are trying to break in as pros while others, who are young pros, are trying to progress into the high ranks of the profession.

“This is world class entertainment,” said promoter Myron Molotky. “You don't have fighters playing it safe as in trying to not lose. These kids are gangbusters. They give everything they've got from the opening bell. This is what differentiates us from other pro sports organizations.”

According to Molotky, the Young Guns Series was initially started in Sao Paulo, Brazil in 2016-17.

“We looked at its as development league for rising stars,” Molotky said.

It was placed on hiatus for a couple of years, but is being brought back as Shawnee will serve as one of the first events since the reboot of the league last fall.

The Young Guns develop into tournament participants in which the champions and runners-up of those tournaments qualify for the XFC Series, the top tier of the organization.

Some of the participants bring an Oklahoma flavor to the event. Two of the competitors – Braden Smith and Kris Vereen – are from Oklahoma as well as one of the female fighters – Kristina Williams.

As for the amateurs, several are on the brink of turning pro.

“Some will turn pro right after this night,” said Molotky.

VIP and premium floor seats have been sold out. However, gold floor seats ($45) and general admission seats ($25) are available. Tickets may be purchased by going to the FireLake Arena website or going to stubwire.com.