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Lloydminster MMA fighter returns to the octagon after end of COVID-19 fight halts

Andrew Mavridis didn’t let a year and a half of no professional fights slow him down, as he makes a return to the octagon on August 14th.

The Lloydminster welterweight won his debut fight in 2019, but with the COVID-19 pandemic putting a hold on sporting events, he was left without a sophomore match. As restrictions have begun to ease, Mavridis will be on the card for Unified 40 in Edmonton this Saturday.

This fight has been a long time coming as on top of the pandemic, Mavridis has had several opponents have to drop out from the bout for several reasons, including his expected challenger Cole Campbell. In a change to the card, he will now be fighting Kelowna’s Tyler Vankill Saturday.

Mavridis says despite the waiting, he’s mentally focused and has been training hard to re-harness his momentum during the lost time.

“It’s been good, just [getting] that mental back to normal feeling, as normal as it can get when you’re stepping into a cage, I guess, but it’s been good. It’s wonderful having the gym open, everyone back and getting things rolling.”

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Mavridis says the key for him this bout is keeping the standing game going, as Vankill has been seen to be a strong ground fighter.

He notes that being able to be back in the Fight Farm, his local sparring ground, as well as being back amongst his fellow fighters and coach Garrett Tepper have been a big help in readying him for a new match, and making him feel confident getting back into the swing on Saturday.

“We’re a pretty light group, me, my coach and my cornermen. We like to goof around and make jokes, it doesn’t get too serious until you hear that music and it’s time to make that walk. So it’s pretty loosey-goosey. [We’re] just kind of sweating out the few pounds here, staying loose and crisp and relaxed.”

While tickets are sold out for Unified 40 at the River Cree Casino, people can watch live on the UFC FightPass, and the event will also be shown at the Canadian Brewhouse Saturday evening.

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