Halloween is the scariest night of the year.

This year, Halloween is going to be the night “where the big boys play,” as Tony Schiavone might have said back in the day on World Championship Wrestling broadcasts.

But make no mistake:

This isn’t Halloween Havoc, the former WCW pay-per-view eventit’s PFL 9, the last of the PFL playoff shows from Las Vegas.

PFL 9 features playoff contests from the Light Heavyweight and Heavyweight divisions.

Our focus this time around is on the Light Heavyweights in postseason action.

As you know by now, with the exception of the Women’s Lightweight playoffs, all postseason tournaments in the PFL have eight-contender brackets.

Quarterfinal and semifinal fights take place on the same evening.

Quarterfinal fights are a maximum of two rounds at five minutes per round, with semifinal fights being three rounds at five minutes per round.

As always, we will refrain from making calls on championship fights until the appropriate time.

In the Light Heavyweight bracket, No. 1 seed Emiliano Sordi (19-8, 2-0 this season in the PFL) fights No. 8 seed Sigi Pesaleli (1-2, 1-1 this year in the PFL) in the quarterfinal.

The winner progresses through to the semifinal to face the survivor of the contest between No. 4 seed Bozigit Ataev (21-4, 1-1 this season in the PFL) and No. 5 seed Viktor Nemkov (30-7, 2-0 this season in the PFL).

On the other half of the bracket, No. 2 seed Maxim Grishin (30-7-1, 2-0 this season in the PFL) fights No. 7 seed Jordan Johnson (11-1, 1-1 this season in the PFL) in the quarterfinal.

The winner progresses to the semifinal to meet the victor of the fight between No. 3 seed Vinny Magalhaes (19-11, 1-1 this season in the PFL) and No. 6 seed Rashid Yusupov (11-2, 1-1 this season in the PFL).

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Quarterfinal: No. 1 seed Emiliano Sordi vs. No. 8 seed Sigi Pesaleli:

Contender Comparison:

Heading into the quarterfinals, Emiliano Sordi is the taller contestant, standing 6-foot-2, two inches taller than Sigi Pesaleli at six feet even.

Sordi has posted a 3-2 mark in his last five fights, sweeping the PFL regular season in 2019.

Most recently, he scored a first-round knockout against Bozigit Ataev in PFL 6 on Aug. 8, giving him 11 points total in the standings, clinching the top seed in the bracket in the process.

In the other corner, Sigi Pesaleli was defeated by No. 7 seed Jordan Johnson in PFL 6 by unanimous decision on Aug. 8.

The Tale of the Tape:

Tapology shows that Sordi has a 1 ½ inch reach advantage (76.5 inches to 75 inches) over Pesaleli heading into the fight.

Prediction: Emiliano Sordi by first-round knockout.

Quarterfinal: No. 4 seed Bozigit Ataev vs. No. 5 seed Viktor Nemkov:

Contender Comparison:

Viktor Nemkov is the taller fighter in this contest, standing 6-foot-1, an inch taller than Bozigit Ataev at six feet even.

Bozigit Ataev has posted a 3-2 mark in his last five fights, most recently losing against top-seeded Sordi by first-round KO in PFL 6 on Aug. 8.

Viktor Nemkov has gone 4-1 in his last five fights, entering this quarterfinal on a three-fight winning streak.

Most recently, he scored a split decision vs. sixth-seeded Yusupov in PFL 6.

The Tale of the Tape:

Tapology shows that Viktor Nemkov has a four-inch reach advantage (78 inches to 74 inches) over Bozigit Ataev heading into this match.

Prediction: Viktor Nemkov by decision.

Quarterfinal: No. 2 seed Maxim Grishin vs. No. 7 seed Jordan Johnson:

Contender Comparison:

Maxim Grishin is the taller fighter, standing 6-foot-3, two inches taller than Jordan Johnson at 6-foot-1.

Grishin has posted a 4-0-1 mark in his last five fights, most recently scoring a first-round knockout due to a right cross against Mikhail Mokhnatin in PFL 6.

In the other corner, Johnson has gone 4-1 in his last five fights.

Last time out, he defeated No. 8 seed Pesaleli by unanimous decision in PFL 6.

The Tale of the Tape:

Tapology shows that Jordan Johnson has a three-inch reach advantage (79 inches to 76 inches) over Maxim Grishin.

Prediction: Maxim Grishin by first-round KO.

Quarterfinal: No. 3 seed Vinny Magalhaes vs. No. 6 seed Rashid Yusupov:

Contender Comparison:

Heading into the last of the quarterfinals, Vinny Magalhaes is the taller contestant, standing 6-foot-3, two inches taller than Rashid Yusupov’s 6-foot-1 frame.

Magalhaes has gone 3-2 in his last five fights, most recently scoring a first-round submission (armbar) vs. Rakim Cleveland in PFL 6.

In the other corner, Yusupov has also gone 3-2 in his last five fights.

Last time out, he lost to No. 5 seed Nemkov by split decision in PFL 6.

The Tale of the Tape:

Tapology shows that Rashid Yusupov has a two-inch reach advantage (77 inches to 75 inches) heading into this contest.

Prediction: Vinny Magalhaes by second-round KO.

Semifinal: No. 1 seed Emiliano Sordi vs. No. 5 seed Viktor Nemkov:

The semifinal round of the playoffs will be predicated wholesale on stamina, with the winners having already fought up to two rounds earlier in the card.

Prediction: Emiliano Sordi by first-round KO.

Semifinal: No. 2 seed Maxim Grishin vs. No. 3 seed Vinny Magalhaes:

Again, with these winners coming off of a maximum of two rounds from earlier in the event, stamina is going to be the most vital key in this stage of the postseason.

That being said, it’ll be interesting to see if this fight comes to pass.

Prediction: Maxim Grishin by first-round KO.

PFL Light Heavyweight Playoffs: Thursday, Oct. 31, ESPN+ & ESPN2

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Author Details
Content Creator at Armchair MMA , The Armchair All-Americans, LLC.
My name is Drew Zuhosky and I’m the MMA writer here at Armchair All-Americans. I’ve been an MMA fan for the better part of the last decade and I always make time to watch the fights. Whether it’s a Saturday night pay-per-view, an online exclusive, or a cable broadcast, there’s one certainty: Somewhere in my house, the TV will be on and I’ll be yelling at it. I sincerely hope that you will enjoy my articles on MMA. I pledge to you that my articles will be knockouts, not judges’ decisions. (Everybody hates judges’ decisions, anyway because there’s a chance for the element of human error involved in the outcome.) In any event, please check back to see what I have for you in terms of MMA material. Let’s get going.
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Content Creator at Armchair MMA , The Armchair All-Americans, LLC.
My name is Drew Zuhosky and I’m the MMA writer here at Armchair All-Americans. I’ve been an MMA fan for the better part of the last decade and I always make time to watch the fights. Whether it’s a Saturday night pay-per-view, an online exclusive, or a cable broadcast, there’s one certainty: Somewhere in my house, the TV will be on and I’ll be yelling at it. I sincerely hope that you will enjoy my articles on MMA. I pledge to you that my articles will be knockouts, not judges’ decisions. (Everybody hates judges’ decisions, anyway because there’s a chance for the element of human error involved in the outcome.) In any event, please check back to see what I have for you in terms of MMA material. Let’s get going.
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