Rising Star – Modestas Bukauskas

Rising Star – Modestas Bukauskas

With a record of 10-2 with 9 finishes, Modestas Bukauskas became the first Lithuanian born fighter in the UFC and is one of the most exciting prospects coming out of Europe. Now Modestas is on a six-fight win streak and is ready to take the UFC by storm with his entertaining and fan-friendly fighting style.
Going 7-1 at an amateur level with three finishes, two by submission and one by knockout, Modestas believed his amateur career helped him to get ready for the professional career. It allowed Modestas to fix holes in his game and developed his ability to perform in front of crowds. After going 7-1 it was difficult for Modestas to find an amateur fight and was forced to go pro at 21 years old.
Modestas’ first professional fight was in May of 2015 at UCMMA 43, where he won by a unanimous decision being the only time as a professional where Modestas has gone the distance. After this fight, he would continue his winning streak going 4-0 at professional with three stoppages, two coming by TKO and one by submission.
Modestas would then go on a two-fight losing skid, in which he lost to Pavel Doroftei by heel hook at UCMMA 47 however, despite this Modestas then moved into the Cage Warriors Middleweight division. At Cage Warriors 77, Modestas fought John Redmond in which he was caught with a right hand and dropped. The fight was stopped shortly after. After this Modestas’ father Gintas urged him to make changes. Modestas then focussed on two factors of his game, nutrition and incorporating boxing sparring into his training. Gintas Bukauskas took over Modestas’ strength and conditioning and made changes to his training as Modestas was going into his fights consistently over-trained. Modestas said that incorporating boxing sparring into his game helped him develop aggression in the octagon, of which he says he lacked before the losses. Once Modestas was able to fight again he tore his meniscus which pushed back his comeback six months further.
Modestas said it was difficult for him to find a fight after his layoff, saying people thought that the hype train had sailed. After not being able to find a fight, Modestas took a kickboxing fight in which he knocked out his opponent in a minute. After this Modestas was booked to fight Pelu Adetola, during the fight, Adetola shot in to take Modestas down, but he was able to reverse the position and quickly took the back of his opponent where he was able to sink in a choke and re-enter the winning column.
A month later, Modestas was fighting Kristian Lapsley, the fight showed significant improvements in Modestas’ ground game as he was able to takedown Lapsley and after a barrage of ground and pound Lapsley gave his back and Modestas extended his win streak and added another submission to his record.
Modestas would go on a four-fight win streak before being offered to fight Marthin Hamlet for the then-vacant Cage Warriors Light Heavyweight World Championship. Marthin Hamlet proved to be a good wrestler and was able to take down Modestas on a few occasions. However, Modestas’ heart, grit, and his new strength and conditioning proved to be too much for the Norwegian and he was dropped by a right hand in the fourth round, ground and pound forced referee Leon Roberts to stop the fight.
At Cage Warriors 111, Modestas fought a dangerous wrestler, Riccardo Nosiglia. Modestas was taken down early in the fight but was able to get back to his feet, and when the Italian dropped down to secure another takedown, Modestas was able to land elbows on the side of his opponent’s head which rendered Nosiglia unconscious. Modestas was declared the winner and once he got the mic, he quickly called out for the UFC to sign him. Modestas’ dream of being in the UFC was fulfilled as he was signed into the UFC in January of 2020. Now people are excited to see what is next for Modestas and his journey is only beginning.

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