July 1, 2011, 5:24 AM
Antonio (Mandingo) McKee has re-signed with the MFC and will defend his lightweight championship against Brian (The Bandit) Cobb at MFC 31 on Oct. 14.
The location and host venue for the event, which will air on HDNet, is still to be determined.
“Antonio is back, but he’s walking right into the fire against Brian Cobb. He talked his way into this and
now he’s going to have to back it up,” said MFC president Mark Pavelich.
“Antonio needs to show that he still has a burning desire to compete. That’s been called into question
by many people and that’s why for a time he was no longer considered our champion because there was
this doubt that he was still interested in competing. Now he has the shot to prove everyone wrong.”
McKee (25-4-2) face a tough test in Cobb, who had a great debut in the organization at MFC 30, stretching his winning streak to four with a stunning first-round TKO victory over Drew Fickett — a defeat which stopped Fickett’s five-fight winning streak and halted his quest for a title shot.
“Brian Cobb is one of the best lightweights in the world, there’s no doubt about that,” added
Pavelich. “His effort against Fickett was sensational — turning the bout around in a split-second and then
finishing it in a big way.”
Before entering the MFC, Cobb, who fights out of Bakersfield, California, and is the assistant wrestling
coach at California State University-Bakersfield, picked up notable career wins over Kazunori Yokota and
McKee, who fights out of Lakewood, California, claimed the MFC lightweight title at MFC 20 with a
resounding decision win over Derrick Noble. He would go on to topple Carlo Prater at MFC 22 (non-
title fight after Prater missed weight), and then defend his title in convincing fashion with a first-round
stoppage of Luciano Azevedo at MFC 26.
McKee also boasts notable career wins over Marcus Aurelio and Edwin Dewees.