MANILA, Philippines – Team Lakay's Mark Eddiva might become a future mixed martial arts (MMA) star in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), if he can sustain the impressive form he showed in "UFC Fight Night: Macau."
According to MMA Fighting's Dave Meltzer, the 28-year-old fighter had the makings of a future star even before he stepped into the cage to fight China's Jumabieke Tuerxun.
“The first thing notable when the show started was the crowd going wild for Filipino fighter Mark Eddiva (6-0). Eddiva, who hadn't fought in three years, and never in the UFC, had something about him even before the match started, where you could sense he could be a star,” Meltzer said in his blog.
Despite the 3-year hiatus and Tuerxun’s 14-0 MMA record, Eddiva dazzled the crowd with an impressive array of accurate striking and superior wrestling skills.
He eventually notched a unanimous decision victory and became the first full-blooded Filipino to win in a UFC match.
“Eddiva showed flashy striking, with kicks from all angles and quickness at both defending and attacking with takedowns coming from his Wu Shu background. In some ways, he felt like a cross between a young Cung Le and '90s Muay Thai world champion, the late Alex Gong,” said Meltzer.
“Provided he could compete at a high level, he could be a national star in his home country.”
Eddiva, for his part, was appreciative of the support extended by local MMA fans.
"Thank you for all the prayers, to my family, team mates, friends, church mates and to all those who supported and believed. Keep believing not on us but to God who set the end from the beginning," said Eddiva through Team Lakay’s Facebook page.