Richie Gates plans June 2017 return

Richie Gates poses after weigh-ins for PA Cage Fight 21. Photo Credit: PA Cage Fight.

Richie Gates (4-2 MMA) is eyeing a June return.

The lightweight suffered the second loss of his career when he tapped to a first-round arm-triangle choke against Mike Pope at PA Cage Fight 26 Oct. 15, 2016. As Pope won the belt, the champion won another strap with the CFFC on Dec. 17, 2016.

Although the defeat snapped a four-fight win streak for Gates, he made the situation a positive one.

“Truthfully, it was a big opportunity against a really good fighter. I think I just got a little caught up in trying to win impressively in the spotlight, instead of being relaxed,” Gates said. “On one hand though, it’s sort of been a blessing in disguise because it’s just a different set of circumstances to be motivated by moving forward.”

After Gates returned to training , he sprained his elbow. He returned to training mid- March, working out in the gym for two straight weeks.

Gates is a five-time PACF veteran, fighting his last four bouts for the promotion. Despite the long history, Gates said he is willing to compete wherever the best fight available is.

“I definitely wouldn’t mind fighting for them (PACF) again, but I wouldn’t be opposed to fighting elsewhere either,” Gates said. “I think I could definitely benefit either way.”

Before losing to Pope, Gates won his last four bouts under the PACF banner.

In the PACF 24 main event, Gates finished Mervin Rodriguez by a rear-naked choke in the first round June 11, 2016. In his other three bouts with the promotion, the 25-year-old defeated Paul Sweda, Aleksey Itunin and Jake Anderson.

His other loss came in his professional debut, a first-round TKO to Dave Marfone  at Xtreme Caged Combat: Adrenaline June 1, 2013.

As an amateur, he finished (4-1), capturing a title at Central Pennsylvania Warrior Challenge 18. He submitted Luke Robinson with an arm-bar in the opening round June 22, 2012.

By NJ MMA News Staff

Writing for NJ MMA New since 2011, Connor is passionate about covering local mixed martial arts. He graduated from Temple University’s School of Media and Communications with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. His love for MMA stems from his past as a high school wrestler and jiu-jitsu blue belt. Former UFC fighter Kurt Pellegrino coached Connor in his senior year of high school. He worked as a Rally Sports Desk report for The Philadelphia Inquirer and interned as a sports reporter for the Philadelphia Daily News.