In our first Cage 23 Preview piece, we take a look at the undercard bouts of the event. Undercard features talented up-n-comers from Finland, Sweden and France.


WW: Jussi Halonen (3-2-0), Finland vs. Romain Perras (3-1-0), France: wrestling powerhouse Jussi Halonen suffered a nasty muscle tear at Cage 21 that lead to his corner throwing in the towel. The young Finn has now fully recovered from the injury. Halonen has been working hard on his game with Kuivanen and Puolakka at the GB Gym. Frenchman Romain Perras hasn’t fought since his lost to tough Shamil Ismailov in April of 2012.

FW: Mika Hämäläinen (3-0-0), Finland vs. Simon Sköld (2-4-0), Sweden: Undefeated Hämäläinen meets Sweden’s Simon Sköld who is a tougher opponent than what his record looks like. Stocky Hämäläinen is a powerful grappler who has won all of his fights by submissions. Sköld got submitted by Jaakko Väyrynen at Cage 21 but athletic Swede shouldn’t be counted out as he probably holds the advantage on the feet.

LW: Rasul Khataev (3-0-0), Finland vs. Mikael Nyyssönen (2-0-0), Finland: Khataev won his last fight by decision at Cage 22 while Nyyssönen took his win by judges decision at Cage 21. Both won their fights after a grueling grind. Grinding will be probably the name of the game in this fight too. Khataev tries to take his opponent head off with each strike he throws. Durable Nyyssönen might hold the edge on the ground.

Women Flyweight: Tina Lähdemäki (3-0-0), Finland vs. Stephanie Page (0-0), France: In the lone women’s out Finland’s undefeated Tina Lähdemäki faces France’s Stephanie Page. Lähdemäki is a solid allrounder who has been honing her skills recently with Nordic’s #1 women fighter Katja “Killer Bunny” Kankaanpää. Pro debutant Page has fought before in kickboxing and Muay Thai.

WW: Aleksi Nurminen (0-0), Finland vs. Mikko Ahmala (0-0), Finland: Both guys have done well as amateurs with Nurminen going 8-2 and Ahmala sporting a 7-1 ammy record.  It will be interesting to see how the evenly matched duo performs under pro rules.