REPORT: The GOAT is Free and in Talks With BareKnuckle FC

By Dazzler

Artem Lobov Has Been Released by the UFC and is Believed to be in Discussions With Bareknuckle FC Over Potentially Signing for the Promotion… Will the GOAT be Missed? 

Say what you like about Artem Lobov, the man has a heart. With a bizarrely lopsided record of 13 wins and 15 losses, the Russian fighter has often been a figure of fun amongst MMA fans. Many believe that the main reason that he ended up in the UFC was that of his close friendship with his training partner, Conor McGregor.

Lobov entered the UFC by way of the Ultimate Fighter reality series. Despite losing his first bout to Mehdi Baghdad, he was brought back after Dana White decided that both coaches (McGregor and Urijah Faber) could bring back one wildcard.

‘The Russian Hammer’ went 2-5 in the UFC. He has wins over Andre Fili and Teruto Ishihara but lost to the likes of Cub Swanson, Ryan Hall and Michael Johnson. Now the Goat is looking for pastures new, and Bareknuckle FC has explicitly made it clear that they’d like to sign him.

Fighter’s Fighter

Lobov has said in the past that he’s a true fighter’s fighter. He says that the reason his fight record is bizarrely lopsided is that he took fights he really shouldn’t have in the past. If ever somebody needed replacing, Lobov was there and ready to fight. He’s openly flirting with basically every mixed martial arts promotion out there, but one especially niche organization has already answered his call.

Bareknuckle FC surged into life in 2018, with cards held so far in Wyoming and two in Mississipi. They’re set to have a ‘USA v Mexico’ event in Cancun on February 2 and seem very excited to open talks with Lobov over a potential contract. BKFC have a number of former UFC and Bellator fighters on their roster, including the likes of Bec Rawlings and Chris Leben.

However, signing Lobov would be next level because it would more than likely see Conor McGregor attend one of their events. If you don’t think this would be a big deal, then let’s put it in perspective for you. The official BKFC Instagram page has 58 thousand followers. ‘The Notorious’ has 30 million.

Screenshot: Instagram.

Boxer?

True to his word, ‘The Russian Hammer’ seems ready to fight literally anybody who’ll take him on. He has shown an interest in both boxing and kickboxing. He called out Paulie Malignaggi and Amir Khan on Twitter. While the first one is actually possible, Khan probably doesn’t know what an Artem Lobov is.

When you add in the fact that Lobov has a bizarrely short reach, the GOAT would be much better suited to the bare-knuckle style. He’s famously developed a method of blocking punches with his incredibly conditioned face, so all he needs to do is wait for opponents to break their hands off his face and then move into finishing them off. Or something like that.

Money

Lobov wants to be back in action by March. It’s been reported that the UFC was prepared to offer him a fight in April, but agreed to cut him after talks with the former ballroom dancer (He really is.) Kickboxing is an option for him, as he tweeted:

“K1 has always been on my radar, proper fights!!! Buakaw, Senchai… .send them my way, it would be a huge honour to share the ring with them!!! @GLORY_WS.

Yeah alright. Bellator have a card in Dublin at the end of February, packed to the brim with Irish talent. Perhaps they will consider bringing the GOAT on board.