Hardrock MMA 90 is set to go down at Expo Five in Louisville on Saturday night, and 16 bouts are set for the event.
Lawler dropped a decision to Ruben Warr at Hardrock MMA 86 back in February. Two of his wins have come via TKO, with the other coming via submission. After flirting with retirement Lawler will return as will Bishop. Bishop’s last fight was a win at Hardrock MMA 51 in 2012 over Shane Robinson.
“I’ve never been main event before so I think it’s pretty cool,” Lawler told BluegrassMMA. “It’s kind of like the culmination of one step closer to a bigger show at the end of the day I just want to be on TV once, win lose draw just once if you knew my story and background you’d understand why I want to be able to tell my kids, my friends, the people I mentor if you work hard and never give up you can accomplish anything.”
“I broke my hand in two places in my last fight,” Bishop said. “My entire purse went to medical bills for my hand and I was forced to take six weeks off work. That really hurt my pocket and forced me to consider ever fighting again. But, fighting is a part of who I am and when given the opportunity to get back in there, I didn’t want to overthink it. So, here I am.”
Abbott returned from a layoff of nearly two years just last month, as he topped Brock Walker via TKO to at Middlesboro Mayhem to claim the Warrior FC light heavyweight title. He’s ranked as the No. 8 light heavyweight in Kentucky by Tapology.
Burgun comes in looking to rebound from the first loss of his career, as he was submitted by Apineru Vele in the second round at Hardrock MMA 90. None of his first three bouts lasted longer than two minutes, all of which were wins via strikes. He’s ranked as the No. 2 amateur heavyweight in Kentucky by Tapology.
“I feel no pressure,” Burgun said. “I went into [my last fight] injured and put on a good show. I took this fight honestly because it’s a heavyweight title fight and I need this belt for my collection.”
Check out the full lineup below.
Ian Lawler vs. Branden Bishop
Justin Burgun vs. Raleigh Abbott – Heavyweight Title
Erin Palmer vs. Starr Pinchbeck
Ryan Hutchinson vs. Neil Mullins
Eli Mefford vs. Joseph Boarman
Matthew Schofield vs. Bryan Hamilton
Kalen Ray vs. Jason Keller
Jeffrey Wipfel vs. Cody Smith
Joel Benette vs. Stone Beverly
Derrick Smith vs. Justin McMillian
Joseph Parker vs. Travis Branum
Nicholas Maupin vs. William Sirles
Mordecai Zodinliana vs. Dustin Purcell
Dalton Coleman vs. Dale Tossi
Donshay White vs. Ricky Muse
Zack Arflact vs. Jacob Stewart