Patrick Barry: Dave Mandel | Sherdog.com
Dangerous kickboxer Patrick Barry will face heavy-handed Joey Beltran on the main card at UFC “Fight for the Troops 2,” going down Jan. 22 from Fort Hood outside Killeen, Texas.
Both fighters confirmed the matchup on Thursday afternoon over Twitter. The UFC's first “Fight for the Troops” event in 2008 raised a reported $4 million for wounded U.S. military personnel and their families.
Barry had a successful kickboxing career before transitioning to MMA, fighting in K-1 and Chuck Norris' World Combat League. The Duke Roufus product began his mixed martial arts career in 2008, earning quick, first-round knockouts in each of his first three outings, the latest of which was a three-second head kick KO over Simon Diouf in August of that year.
“Hype or Die” was also victorious in his UFC debut four months later at UFC 92, scoring a first-round TKO over Dan Evensen. Known for his whipping leg kicks, Barry tasted defeat for the first time in his next Octagon appearance, falling to Tim Hague by first-round guillotine choke. The 31-year-old would come back strong, however, earning “knockout of the night” for his second-round KO of fellow kickboxer Antoni Hardonk at UFC 104 a year ago. Barry did not fight again until June of this year, when he was defeated by former Pride Fighting Championships star Mirko Filopovic by rear-naked choke at UFC 115.
Though he holds a blue belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Beltran is anything but a submission specialist, as “The Mexicutioner” has collected 10 of his 12 victories by KO.
The 28-year-old made his debut in 2007 on Strikeforce's “Young Guns” card, losing by unanimous decision to Yohan Banks. Beltran would then go on a four-fight winning streak before being submitted by Tony Lopez at a King of the Cage event in 2008. Beltran is also a veteran of Bellator Fighting Championships, winning his one and only fight in the promotion by TKO over Sherman Pendergarst at Bellator 5 in May of 2009.
Beltran then went on to knock out former UFC light heavyweight threat Houston Alexander in January of this year before being signed to the Zuffa brand. The Californian went 2-0 in his first two UFC bouts, knocking out Rolles Gracie and earning a decision over Tim Hague at UFC 109 and 113, respectively. His last appearance in the cage was at UFC 119 in September, where he dropped a unanimous decision to “TUF 10” alum Matt Mitrione.
Though not officially announced by the UFC, the event is expected to feature two pivotal lightweight matchups: Evan Dunham vs. Kenny Florian and Melvin Guillard vs. Yves Edwards. Additionally, Mitrione and Hague will likely take part in a heavyweight tilt, and welterweight Mike Swick will look to rebound from back-to-back losses as he takes on David Mitchell.