LOCKED IN THE CAGE 15 IS MAKING ITS 2013 DEBUT IN PHILADELPHIA
Philadelphia, PA — Locked in the Cage (www.Lockedinthecage.com) have announced their
fight card (as of March 14, 2013) for Locked in the Cage 15 on April 13th, 2013 in Philadelphia,
PA at the Locked in the Cage Arena, located at 3824 Jasper St in the Kensington neighborhood.
Mervin Rodriguez (5-6) will be taking on the always exciting and extremely impressive Brazen
MMA & Boxing product Thomas Backman (3-0) in a Lightweight bout.
Mervin Rodriguez is another Ring of Combat veteran featured on the LITC 15 card. Rodriguez
started off his professional career with a loss against eventual TUF 15 runner-up Al Iaquinta,
but since then has gone 5-5, winning his most recent fight in April of 2012. Rodriguez has faced
many experienced opponents including the aforementioned Iaquinta, Steve McCabe, and AMA
Fight Club product Andy Main.
Brazen is one of the top MMA gyms in Philadelphia, and Thomas Backman is one of its
brightest future stars. Backman is undefeated as a Pro with a record of 3-0. Backman has
defeated two of his opponents by submission including a victory over Michigan fighter James
Carrow at Locked in the Cage 11 this past October, which many thought to be the “fight of the
The co-main event will feature 37 year old Neil Johnson (7-5) as he takes on Ring of Combat
veteran, and up and comer James Jenkins (5-1).
Johnson has fought for numerous organizations including Locked in the Cage, Cage Fury
Fighting Championships, and Bellator. He lost fights against tough opponents such as former
UFC fighter Joey Gambino, Bellator fighter Will Martinez, Jr, and LITC Lightweight Champion
Scott Heckman. He has also defeated the likes of Bellator fighters Jay Haas and Brylan
Vanartsdalen. Johnson lost his last fight in October of last year via first round submission, but is
looking to rebound with a win on April 13.
James Jenkins as an Amateur gathered an 8-2 record. Since turning pro, Jenkins went on a five-
fight win streak before dropping his last fight in June of last year. Jenkins is 10 years younger
than the 37-year old MMA veteran. Johnson has twice as many fights as the up and comer.
The third and (currently) final Pro fight scheduled for LITC 15 is Corey Popanz vs. Joey Del
Viscio. Popanz is 1-1 as a Professional. Former Stephen Haigh Martial Arts Academy (formerly
known as Philadelphia Fight Factory) product and current Martinez BJJ product Joey Del Viscio
will be making his professional debut. Del Viscio was scheduled to make his debut at Locked in
the Cage 14 in December of last year, but was forced off the card the day of the event.
The featured Amateur fight scheduled to be on the card pits Rocco MMA product Bekbolot
Baktybek (3-0) against current XFE: Cage Wars Champion Ryan Cafaro (5-3). Bekbolot is a
Matrix Fights and Locked in the Cage veteran. He has finished all three of his opponents by
submission. Cafaro is currently on a three-fight win streak, including wins over LITC veteran
Matt Ibbotson and XCC product Sharif Jones.
Information regarding tickets are available at www.Lockedinthecage.com/tickets . For additional
information on the event, please visit www.Lockedinthecage.com or “like” the Locked in the
Cage Facebook fan page at www.Facebook.com/LockedinthecageMMA.
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