Maximo Blanco, one of the top lightweights fighting for Sengoku, has exited the promotion and signed on with U.S. representation. He plans to land on American soil for his next fight.

The native Venezuelan is currently riding a six-fight win streak and has become known as one of the most devastating fighters in the sport, knocking out five of his last six opponents.

He exits Sengoku after spending six fights with the promotion, but Blanco says there are no hard feelings and he values the time he spent there.

“I really like SRC, and they have supported me over the last couple years and I truly appreciate that. So if SRC continued then I would have stayed in Japan and fight for them, but since they are basically done, as a pro MMA fighter, I had to look into fighting outside Japan,” Blanco told MMAWeekly.com.

“I spoke with everyone, and I believe everyone understood that I wanted to test my skill against the best in the world.”

As Blanco makes his move to compete in the United States, he’s signed on with Suckerpunch Entertainment to help him get the fights he wants in America, and looks to conquer a new market after leaving Japan.

“I have spoken with more than (a) few managements in the States, but at the end, I decided to go with the management company that has the worldwide network. Suckerpunch has great roster of not only just U.S. fighters, but also many international fighters as well, and I wanted to be a part of this team,” he stated.

While Blanco and his new management team haven’t inked a deal for him to make his U.S. debut just yet, he’s ready to test himself against the best of the best.

The former Pan Am Games medalist in wrestling isn’t going to shy away from fighting any of the top lightweights in organizations like the UFC or Strikeforce. He’s even thought of a few match-ups that intrigue him.

“I would love to fight an exciting fighter like Clay Guida. I really like his style,” Blanco revealed. “Also, he is in the Strikeforce, but I would like to fight Josh Thomson.”

Blanco says that while he respects Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez, he actually would prefer a fight with Thomson.

“Not really,” Blanco responded when asked if he’d like to face Melendez. “For some reason, for me, I think Thomson is a tougher opponent.”

Whoever he signs with, Blanco will be an instant shot of adrenaline to anyone’s lightweight roster. Having only gone to decision once in his career, Blanco brings blinding knockout power and a solid ground game in his arsenal to any promotion.

While there has been no timeline determined for when he’ll make his U.S. debut, look for Maximo Blanco to make waves stateside in the near future.


Damon Martin is the lead staff writer and radio host for MMAWeekly.com.
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