FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 31st, 2016
DAVID BRANCH DEFENDS WORLD SERIES OF FIGHTING MIDDLEWEIGHT TITLE AGAINST CLIFFORD STARKS THIS SAT., APRIL 2, LIVE AT 11:30 PM ET ON NBCSN
Jon Fitch (27-7-1) Faces Joao “The Brazilian Samurai” Zeferino (20-7) for Welterweight Title
NBC Sports Live Extra to Stream All Bouts
STAMFORD, Conn. – March 31, 2016 – World Series of Fighting returns to NBCSN this Saturday, April 2, live at 11:30 p.m. ET, with David Branch (17-3) defending his middleweight title against Clifford “Big Cat” Starks (13-2) from the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nev.
Branch also holds the promotion’s light heavyweight belt, putting him alongside legend Dan Henderson as the only fighters to hold two titles simultaneously in a major MMA promotion. Branch downed Danillo Villefort (WSOF5, September 2013) and then Jesse Taylor (WSOF10, June 2014) to claim World Series of Fighting’s inaugural middleweight belt. He then defended his belt in November 2015 (WSOF15) with a stunning fourth-round TKO over Yushin Okami before entering the promotion’s 205-pound tourney and earning wins over Jesse McElligott (WSOF20, April 2015) and Teddy Holder (WSOF23, September 2015) to claim his second title.
Starks fights for fourth time under the WSOF banner on Saturday, with WSOF wins over Jake Heun (WSOF19, March 2015), Mike Kyle (WSOF22, August 2015) and Krasimir Mladenov (WSOF23) to run his current win streak to five fights.
In the co-main event, Jon Fitch (27-7-1) faces Joao “The Brazilian Samurai” Zeferino (20-7) for World Series of Fighting’s vacant welterweight title. Fitch first challenged for the welterweight title in December 2014 (WSOF16), though he suffered a submission loss to then-champ Rousimar Palhares. Fitch then rebounded with an October 2015 win over Yushin Okami (WSOF24) to earn his title shot.
Zeferino made his World Series of Fighting debut in November at the promotion’s historic WSOF25 event, where he took part in the eight-man, single-night lightweight tournament. Zeferino scored submission wins over Brian Foster and Jorge Patino to make his way to the finals, though he was upset there in a rematch with Foster, who was allowed back into the field due to injuries to other competitors.
Saturday’s card also features bouts between Vinny “Pezao” Magalhaes (13-7) and Jake “The Honey Bear” Heun (4-9) in the light heavyweight division, and Abu “Gladiator” Azaitar (11-1-1) and Danny “Dee1” Davis Jr. (11-10-1) in the welterweight division.
Play-by-play announcer Todd Harris will be joined by mixed martial artists and analysts Bas Rutten and Joey Varner to call the action.
NBC Sports Live Extra: World Series of Fighting will be streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Windows Store, Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.
ABOUT WORLD SERIES OF FIGHTING
“World Series of Fighting” (WSOF) is a worldwide premier professional Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fight promotion dedicated to delivering the best action-packed fights for fight fans by producing the best possible match-ups between elite fighters from around the world. For more information please visit WSOF.com and follow “World Series of Fighting” on Twitter @MMAWorldSeries. WSOF and World Series of Fighting are registered trademarks of MMAWC, LLC.
ABOUT NBC SPORTS GROUP
When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January 2011, the sports assets of the two companies combined to form NBC Sports Group, which serves sports fans 24/7 with premier live events, insightful studio shows, and compelling original programming. The sports media company consists of a unique array of sports assets, including NBC Sports, NBC Olympics, NBCSN (NBC Sports Network), Golf Channel, 10 NBC Sports Regional Networks, NBC Sports Radio and NBC Sports Digital. NBC Sports Group possesses an unparalleled collection of television rights agreements, partnering with some of the most prestigious sports properties in the world: the International Olympic Committee and United States Olympic Committee, the NFL, NHL, NASCAR, PGA TOUR, PGA of America, Royal & Ancient, Churchill Downs, NYRA, Breeders’ Cup, Premier League, Tour de France, French Open, Formula One, IndyCar and many more.