After several days of negotiations, Absolute Championship Berkut (ACB) has officially announced that Alex Enlund and Kane Mousah will face off at ACB 70 on Sept. 23 in Sheffield.
Despite reports that the fight had been signed last week, MMA Plus spoke to Enlund’s management on August 6, who clarified that paperwork had not been completed.
On Thursday morning, the news was finally confirmed by the promotion through their social media channels. Announcing the lightweight contest for ACB’s next UK visit, which will be headlined by former UFC middleweights Luke Barnatt and Scott Askham.
“I don’t think he’s ever fought anyone with my experience level and I think it’s a step up for him but isn’t that what he’s meant to do?,” asked Enlund.
“He wants to step up to fight someone as skilled as I am, with the reputation I have. I only have five more wins than him, I don’t think it’s too much of a mismatch on his behalf.”
The former Cage Warriors featherweight champion moves up to the 155-pound division to face Mousah, who has fought the entirety of his career at lightweight. Mousah will compete for the second time under the ACB banner.
“For now, making featherweight takes a big toll on my body, I don’t think I’m small for a lightweight, I was gigantic for a featherweight,” he said.
“I don’t think my body needs to be put through what I’ve put it through in the past to make featherweight.”
Enlund, 30, will step into the cage for the first time since June 2016 after the SBG South Shields gym runner was forced to spend the past year on the sidelines following a suspected brain lesion. This was discovered upon signing to the UFC in August 2016.
He was released from the promotion in May.
“I saw a neurologist in March who said that what there’s no more than a birth mark,” he explained.
“It’s been there all my life and then I had to wait until recently to see a neurosurgeon again, who was investigating for some form of tumour. He also ruled that out with the latest scan which was in June.”
The North East fighter must now grapple with a realisation, which for a long time, he thought may never come. Despite being prematurely cut from the UFC and losing a year of his career in the process, Enlund now insists he will no longer take the sport for granted as he resumes his personal journey inside the cage.
“When a doctor tells you [that you shouldn’t fight again] you have to be content. I realised that there’s more to life than fighting,” Enlund explained.
“I thought I had a brain tumour and I was still grappling hard, I was still rolling hard, probably doing things my doctor wouldn’t want me to do. It is who I am and it’s how I live my life. I think now it’s kind of a blessing, I don’t take fighting for granted anymore.
“If I end up fighting in the UFC or whenever I sign, it doesn’t really matter. It’s just a personal journey now. The days of hoping and praying for putting my dreams in someone else’s hands are gone, I just do what I do and enjoy fighting.”