Yoshiro Maeda Set To Face Cole EscovedoAn exciting bantamweight matchup has been added to the upcoming Dream.13 card on March 22nd. Long-time Pancrase standout and former WEC title challenger Yoshiro Maeda will square off with current Tachi Palace Fights Bantamweight Champion Cole “The Triangle” Escovedo.

Escovedo, the first WEC Featherweight Champion, has won four straight fights since returning to MMA in 2009 after nearly three years away. He suffered a serious paralysis due to an unchecked staph infection in late 2006, but is now one of the fastest-rising stars at 135 pounds.

Maeda (26-7-2) reigned undefeated through his first 14 fights and holds notable career wins over the likes of Mitsuhisa Sunabe, Fredson Paixao, Atsushi Yamamoto and WEC veterans Charlie Valencia and “Maverick” Micah Miller. Maeda is coming off of one of his biggest wins to date when he submitted embattled former WEC Bantamweight Champion Chase “The Rage” Beebe at Dream.12 in October. The victory was the second in a row for the heavy-handed Maeda, who was knocked out of the second round of the 2009 DREAM Featherweight Grand Prix by Hiroyuki “Streetfight Bancho” Takaya at Dream.9.

Escovedo (15-4-0) is an inspiration for anyone in the sport. Thought at one point to potentially be paralysed for life after a staph infection spread to his spine, Escovedo has made an incredible comeback over the past 10 months. Nicknamed after the fact that he has won a remarkable eight times by way of triangle choke, Escovedo is a serious threat to many in the bantamweight division if the fight hits the floor. Engaging in a striking battle may not be in his best interests against Maeda, but a victory over the successful veteran could propel Escovedo into the division’s top ten.

Dream.13 is headlined by a DREAM Featherweight Championship bout between Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes and former DREAM Lightweight Champion Joachim “Hellboy” Hansen, who will drop down in weight to challenge for Fernandes’s crown. Also on the card, former EliteXC Lightweight Champion “King” KJ Noons will face Andre “Dida” Amado and former UFC Heavyweight Champion “The Babyfaced Assassin” Josh Barnett will also compete.

The event takes place on April 22nd at the Yokohama Arena in Yokohama, Japan.


(Photo Credit: Sherdog.com)