With MFC 34: Total Recall, Maximum Fighting Championship President Mark Pavelich has promised MMA fans his organization’s most violent card ever, and looking up and down the bout sheet it’s hard to pass off this claim as the usual hyperbole followers of the sport have become accustomed to from promoters. From outstanding strikers to sublime submission artists this card seems guaranteed to deliver the kind of pugilism hard-cores have come to expect from Canada’s longest running promotion. To top things off the evening’s main event will see the coronation of a new lightweight king pin. Without further ado, let’s have a look at some of the night’s most intriguing matchups.
Adam Lynn (17-9) vs. Mukai “The Afrikan Assassin” Maromo (7-2), MFC lightweight title
The last time these two men met at MFC 33 the bout resulted a split-decision win for Mukai Maromo, which snapped Adam Lynn’s six fight winning streak, in what MMA legend Pat Miletich called easily the worst decision he had ever seen. Ever! That says a lot coming from a man who has been around the sport since near its inception. In that bout Lynn was able to avoid sustaining too much damage on the feet against Maromo, who is a Muay Thai specialist with vicious kicks and devastating knees, while using his range effectively to counter Maromo and land well timed takedowns. On the ground though Lynn, a former U.S. marine, was able to control Maromo and land some deadly elbows as his superior wrestling skills allowed him to dictate the matchup on the mat. Maromo’s ground game has been developing since he transitioned into MMA, however Lynn’s experience and persistence proved that his more well-rounded skill set was enough to get the best of the still evolving “Afrikan Assassin”. That is, to everyone in attendance, including Maromo, but unfortunately and most importantly not to two of the judges scoring the bout. It will be interesting to see if Maromo’s game has developed enough to withstand the challenge that Lynn poses or if we are just going to see a replay of their first meeting, although with a more accurate outcome.
Joseph “Leonidas” Henle (7-0-1) vs. Luke Harris (9-0), middleweight
Hometown favorite Luke Harris has been waiting for a war to fully test his mettle but up until this point in his career it has yet to happen as the Hayabusa Gym head trainer has yet to see the second round of a fight, as all nine of his victories have come by way of first round submission. In his last outing at MFC 33 Harris made UFC vet Edwin Dewees, a man with more than fifty fights under his belt, look absolutely amateurish as he submitted him in just over two minutes with an extremely slick guillotine choke. This time out though Harriss may just find the war he’s been waiting for as he faces the as yet undefeated Joseph Henle. Fans of The Ultimate Fighter ma recognize Henle, who trains out of the Reign MMA camp in California alongside the like of Mark Munoz and Krzysztof Soszynski, as a participant from Season 11 of the show. Since his time spent on camera he has continued his unbeaten ways in the SoCal MMA scene by displaying a diverse skill set that has seen him earn victories by any means necessary, be it submission, decision or KO. It’s been a while since we have seen a middle weight champ in the MFC but this bout might as well serve as a default title fight, as the winner will definitely have bragging rights to being the best man at that weight in the organization.
Mike “The Honey Badger” Hackert (5-1) vs. Tim “The Thrashing Machine” Hague (14-6), heavyweight
Back in May, Mike Hackert pulled off what is easily the upset of the year in Canadian MMA when he defeated the country’s long reigning top heavyweight in a clear cut three round decision, thus usurping his throne. He did so by employing his superior hand speed to pepper the far bigger Hague while staying on his bicycle to keep away from the big man. Tim should have learned a lot from their first meeting and to reverse the previous outcome he’ll need to use his size advantage to get in on “The Honey Badger” and out muscle him in close, turning the fighting into a dirty boxing match rather than allowing Hackert to keep the contest at a range more suited to his assets. Although we almost never see it, Hague has a solid, if basic, jiu-jitsu game that he might look to use given that Hackert would have a tough time getting out from under the mountain that is “The Thrashing Machine”. Whichever way the fight goes though, you can count on Canada’s top two heavyweights to put on a show sure to entertain.
Nick “The Juggernaut” Hinchliffe (19-8) vs. Dhiego “Maluca” Lima (6-1), welterweight
This fight features one man trying to regain some of the thunder he lost when he suffered his first defeat, Lima, while the other, Hinchliffe, is aiming to find the consistency that has eluded him as he has tried to break into the upper tier of mixed martial artists. Since losing for the first time in his career back in January at MFC 32 to the newly minted MFC welterweight champion, Nathan Coy, Lima has been diligently trying to shore up the lone hole is his otherwise outstanding arsenal, his wrestling. Hinchliffe will perhaps look to exploit that opening in Lima’s game as he makes his MFC debut after fighting it out in the trenches of the regional circuit over the last six years. In that time the Impact MMA product from Nanaimo has shown that he can hang with some of the top up and comers in the sport but has thus far fallen short when taking the next step up in competition, with notable losses to current UFC contender Rory MacDonald and former MFC contenders Travis Galbraith and Ryan Ford. The bout promises to be a tactical battle between two talented strikers. Although Lima has very solid Muay Thai skills, “The Juggernaut” has the boxing ability to stand and bang with “Maluca” and if all else fails take the fight to the mat, where if he’s able to nullify Lima’s solid jiu-jitsu game as Coy was able to, we could see a new star begin to shine under the bright lights of the MFC.
MFC 34: Total Recall takes place at the Mayfield Conference Centre and airs live in the United States on AXS TV Fights (formerly HDNet Fights) beginning at 10 p.m. ET/8 p.m. MT/7 p.m. PT. MFC 34 will then be shown on tape-delay at a later date across Canada on TSN2.
Mukai Maromo (7-2) vs. Adam Lynn (17-9) – 155 lbs. Lightweight Title Fight
Luke Harris (9-1) vs. Joseph Henle (6-0-1) – 185 lbs.
Tim Hague (14-6) vs. Mike Hackert (5-1) – 265 lbs.
Jacen Flynn (10-2) vs. Elvis Mutapcic (10-2) – 185 lbs.
Nick Hinchliffe (19-8) vs. Dhiego Lima (6-2) – 170 lbs.
Cody Krahn (11-4) vs. Jason Zentgraf (5-1) – 195 lbs.
Dan Ring (5-0) vs. Derek Boyle (7-5) – 155 lbs.
Paul Grandbois (4-3) vs. Derek Parker (1-1-1) – 185 lbs.
Smealinho Rama (2-0) vs. Lee Mein (5-11) – 265 lbs.
(Photos from MaximumFighting.com)