Absolute Championship Akhmat (ACA) returns today with ACA 145 from St. Petersburg, Russia. The main event will pit Vitaliy Slipenko against Murad Hunter Abdulaev while the co-main event will feature a heavyweight collision between Tony Johnson Jr. and Evgeny Goncharov. ACA 145 can be streamed on the promotion’s website as well as Russian MATCH TV channel.
Ukrainian Slipenko rebounded from his first loss in ACA to Gadzhimurad Khiramagomedov in a big way earlier this year when he took down UFC veteran Stefan Sekulić with a spinning backfist knockout in the waning seconds of the second round. Khiramagomedov will compete for the promotion’s welterweight championship in October, but rival Slipenko is looking to set himself up as the next challenger in the meantime.
Slipenko will look to upend Abdulaev, who will step in the cage on Friday for his seventh consecutive appearance in ACA. He is a .500 fighter in the promotion but is yet to be stopped. Slipenko’s fight with Sekulić notwithstanding, the Ukrainian went to a decision in seven straight fights. Abdulaev has fought a steady slate of competition, however, and debuted for the promotion against UFC veteran Albert Tumenov back in 2019. Tumenov will take on Khiramagomedov for the welterweight championship next month.
Slipenko is currently valued by most sportsbooks as a -185 favorite, while Abdulaev can be had at a +155 value. No matter which way the fight goes, a hard-fought decision could be in the cards for Friday’s main event in St. Petersburg.
Rest of the Card
The co-main event will see Johnson and Goncharov meet in the ACA cage for the first time in three years. Johnson has fought Goncharov twice previously. The first fight, which occurred at ACA 96 in June 2019, ended in a no contest after an accidental eye poke halted the fight in the third round. The rematch took place two months later and saw Goncharov pick up a unanimous decision victory. Johnson has since gone 3-1, making two title defenses of the ACA heavyweight championship. Goncharov, meanwhile, is 2-for-3 since his last fight with Johnson.
The main card will be fleshed out with a welterweight bout between Georgiy Kichigin and Ciro Rodriguez, and a featherweight fight between Musa Khamanaev and Sergey Klyuev. Brazilian Charles Henrique, a victor in three of his last four will headline the prelims against Ukrainian Musa Khamanaev. Khamanaev has put together a streak of his own, most recently defeating Brazilian Francisco Maciel who is also set to compete on Friday.
The would-be opening fight of the night between UFC veteran Rousimar Palhares and Yuriy Virchakov will not take place as scheduled after Virchakov missed the welterweight limit by nearly eight pounds.
ACA 145 Results
Vitaliy Slipenko def. Murad Abdulaev via Unanimous Decision
Evgeniy Goncharov def. Tony Johnson via Knockout (right hand) at 4:38 of Round 1
Ciro Rodrigues def. Georgiy Kichigin via Unanimous Decision
Sergey Klyuev def. Musa Khamanaev via Submission (Triangle Choke) at 2:17 of Round 1
Charles Henrique def. Alexander Podlesniy via Unanimous Decision
Francisco De Lima Maciel def. Nikita Chistyakov via Split Decision
Kurban Taigibov def. Cleverson Silva via TKO (punches) at 1:55 of Round 1
Aren Akopyan def. Kylymbek Altymysh via Unanimous Decision
Elmar Gasanov def. Evgeniy Erokhin via Split Decision