Top 10 Maple Leaf Match Ups In February


Top 10 Maple Leaf Matchups THUMBWelcome back MMA fans and welcome back to MMA promotions as for the first time in a while we can finally put together a proper Top 10 Maple Leaf Match Ups. With five impressive live professional cards taking place from coast to coast this month, there’s a bevy of spectacular match ups with rankings implications on every single card. Well, almost every card as the exciting BFL match up between Colin Daynes and Matt Dwyer was scratched as the latter was injured during training. As we mourn the loss of SFS, it’s great to see that we still have plenty top-level promotions that will continue to put on top-level fights for the rest of the great fight north. As always, this list excludes all fights under the Zuffa umbrella as they will get their usual attention in breakdowns and radio. Now without further ado, let’s get on to what you all came to see this month’s Top Maple Leaf Match Ups.

UFC Fights

10. Raphael Bergmann (4-3) vs. Jon Ganshorn (4-3)
Fivestar Fight League 4: Resurgence – Grande Prairie – February 22
An intriguing Light Heavyweight match up starts off our TMLMU this month as former national top 5 Heavyweight Raphael Bergmann takes on up and comer Jon Ganshorn. Bergmann started off his career going 4-0 but hit an 0-3 skid when he stepped up in competition with losses to Tyler East, Tony Lopez and Ryan Fortin. Ganshorn is almost an exact parallel as he started out his career 3-0 but suffered some defeats when he faced tougher competition in Tim Chemelli and Nick Penner. Now these two men face off in the main event of FFL 4 with a lot on the line. For Bergmann who hasn’t fought in over 18 months this drop in weight could be the rebirth of talented young fighter’s career and for Ganshorn a win here will be a tremendous way to right his proverbial ship. It’s Ganshorn’s hands and power versus Bergmann’s submissions and finesse in a 205 lbs brawl that could very well have ranking implications all over it.

Ryan Machan trading blows with Kajan Johnson (photo by J. Bouwmeester|

Ryan Machan trading blows with Kajan Johnson (photo by J. Bouwmeester|

9. Ryan Machan (17-8) vs. Michael Madrid (10-8)
Hard Knocks 30 – Calgary – February 8
Sylvan Lake’s own Ryan Machan will look to make it four in a row when he challenges veteran Michael Madrid in the main event of HKFC 30. Machan, who now reps Arashi-Do Martial Arts, has finally achieved some consistency, stringing together three solid back to back wins over the likes of Keto Allen, Dan Chambers and Brandon MacArthur. Madrid, a member of Wand Fight Team, has also surged as of late winning his last four outings including impressive victories over Waachiim Spiritwolf and Dave Terrel. A lot will be riding on this Welterweight contest as both men have put together their most impressive runs in their career as of late.  For Machan, a victory here could propel him into a bigger show with a much bigger payday, while a loss will send him right back to the drawing board. Either way on a cold February night in Calgary, Alberta, someone’s career will continue to blossom while the other’s will wither.

8. Mike Kent @Mike_The_Titan (8-1) vs. Cody Krahn (11-6)
Extreme Cage Combat 15 – Halifax – February 16
Finally, all the smack talk and trash tweeting will come to a head as the Middleweight pairing between Mike Kent and Cody Krahn is set to go down February 16th.  Thankfully, the tatted up Kent, a product of Titans MMA, will return to his regular weight class after a unsuccessful 205 lbs debut where he was thrashed by Tim Chemelli. Prior to the chubby bellied Light-Heavyweight attempt, Kent was an 8-0 Middleweight who finished 7 of his 8 wins between the bells. “Genghis” Khan, Canadians are so good at nicknames, prior to his MFC debut was a highly sought after Middleweight prospect with a 10-3 record who held wins over Shannon Ritch, Dan Chambers and Marcus Hicks. Once in MFC, Krahn began to falter going just 1-3 with his only win inside the small ring coming against undersized Ryan Chiappe. Now with the smell of grudge in the air, Kent looks to rebuild his image with a big win in his Middleweight return.  For his part, Krahn will be no one’s stepping stone as he looks to rebuild himself and his career with a W over a top prospect and 9th ranked national competitor. Sadly, since this card will not be televised, the lucky few that pack the Olympic Hall in Halifax will be the only one’s to witness the violence.

Stephane Pelletier (photo by Mike Fischl)

Stephane Pelletier (photo by Mike Fischl)

7. Stephane Pelletier (6-1) vs. Syd Barnier (4-3)
Extreme Cage Combat 15 – Halifax – February 16
Its kinda funny that this is a bout between a surging prospect and stalwart veteran yet they both have the same amount of fights under their belts. Stephane Pelletier, Canada’s 10th ranked Bantamweight, is the Ringside MMA Bantamweight champion with a 100% finishing percentage splitting those victories evenly between TKO and sub. Syd Barnier, who splits his training between MAS Martial Arts and Gracie Barra Niagara, has been fighting professionally since 2007 but recently returned after a three year hiatus and has gone undefeated since his return going 2-0 with 2 second round stoppages via punches over Sajid Rizvi and Chucky Mady. This match up will crown an inaugural ECC Bantamweight champion and both men are salivating at a chance to not only wrap some gold around their waist but to just get into the cage as both men have over 10 month layoffs. Can the young lion continue his rise up the rankings? Or will the grizzled veteran prove experience over youth? Either way this will be an incredibly exciting fight to watch and slightly depressing since the card is not televised.  Only the lucky fans at Olympic Hall will witness this epic Bantamweight brawl.

6. Clay Davidson (7-3) vs. Jason Zentgraf (6-1)
MFC 36: Reality Check – Edmonton – February 15
Luke Harris’ misfortune is Clay Davidson‘s gain as the BJJ phenom’s injury has allowed Davidson and his patented guillotine choke a chance to conquer the MFC’s Middleweight division. Davidson will meet Jason Zentgraf, who hails from Montana, and has spent time training with Heavyweights Roy Nelson and Josh Barnett. Having only started his pro career in 2010, his career highlight is a decision loss to UFC veteran Mario Miranda, he does however hold victories over two other Canadian Middleweights – Dan Chambers and Cody Krahn. Davidson and his guillotine now train out of Champion’s Creed. In 2012, Davidson returned from a brief career hiatus to choke out both Tony King and Caleb Grummet. Both men hold 100% finishing percentage by way of submission and considering the pedigree of their training partners, expect this match to take place on the canvas.  With Davidson bringing in a slight size advantage, he may be able to control top position if he can dictate the fight’s position and a win here could just be enough to nudge Davidson into nation’s top 10 rankings.


Kurt Southern throws a high kick at Cardinal (photo by Jason Bouwmeester|TKO Photography)

Kurt Southern throws a high kick at Cardinal (photo by Jason Bouwmeester|TKO Photography)

5. Kurt Southern @KurtSouthern (10-3) vs. Jonatas Novaes @JonatasNovaes (10-4)
MFC 36: Reality Check – Edmonton – February 15
An intriguing Canada versus Brasil match up takes place at MFC 36 as former national top 10 Lightweight Kurt Southern takes on a surging competitor in Jonatas Novaes. Southern, a key member of Alliance Martial Arts Systems, will finally return to the cage after a nearly two year absence. Prior to the lay off, he had knocked off some top Canadian competition in Mukai Maromo, Brad Cardinal and Jorge Britto. Novaes, who’s trained out of many top Brazilian camps, most recently dispatched Drew Fickett by way of TKO in just 51 seconds. He also has fought other notables in UFC veteran Ryan Thomas, Sherron Leggett, and legend Johil de Olivera. Considering Southern’s reputation as a decision friendly fighter, he’s actually only won three of his 10 wins by 15 minute snoozefest.  He’s the clear favorite in this match up as Novaes has been to the judges six times but the suits only sided with him twice. On the flip side, Novaes holds 7 victories by way of submission and Southern’s only 3 losses have come back way of twist. torque and choke. With all that being said, what you have here is a cool calculating character in Southern and a wild card Novaes and whomever’s personality can surface in the cage will walk away the victor and bolster their international cachet.

4. Gavin Tucker (6-0) vs.  Lyndon Whitlock @LyndonWhitlock (7-3)
Extreme Cage Combat 15 – Halifax – February 16
Two of the top Featherweight prospects in eastern Canada will throw down in Halifax to see who can finally crack the nation’s top 10 rankings. Lyndon Whitlock, who currently sits just outside the top 10 rankings, holds a 100% finishing percentage winning all seven of his W’s between the bells. Having stepped up in competition in his last three outings, Whitlock’s gone a meager 1-2 but losses to 4th ranked Tristan Johnson and international prospect Rick Glenn are nothing to be ashamed of. Gavin Tucker, a member of Titans MMA, sports an unblemished record in his short career and has finished 5 of 6 opponents before the final bell. However, if you take away Tucker’s notable win over Jeremy Henry, the combined record of his other five opponents is 3-14, so you could say he’s a bit untested. Now in Olympic Hall, one of these prospects will prove who’s the real deal.  Is Whitlock truly the beast he’s been built up to be? Or is Tucker the true east coast phenom who’ll ring his bell of arrival with a win over Lyndon? Either way this exciting Featherweight affair will surely be a contender for fight of the month.

Gavin Tucker mounts Robert Rende (photo: Martin Blais)

Gavin Tucker mounts Robert Rende (photo: Martin Blais)

3. Stephen Beaumont @StephenBeaumont (6-1) vs. Jose Rodriguez (7-2)
AFC Contender Series 2 – Edmonton – February 22
AFC launches their Contender Series this month and what two better fighters to main event it than their former Lightweight champion and the most overlooked Lightweight in the country. “Big Bad” Beaumont, a member of the Hayabusa Training Centre, is a tremendous top positional wrestler who sports an impressive 70% finishing percentage. Jose Rodriguez, who fights out of Scheer’s MMA and Team Ringshark, will be returning from a two year layoff and besides a decision loss to Advin Omic at Welterweight in 2010 has gone undefeated since 2008. Considering both men have finished the same amount of fights via TKO as submission (2-2 for Beaumont and 3-3 for Rodriquez), they are both incredibly well-rounded. A win in this bout means a lot to both men as it will set them up as the top 155 lbs contender in the promotion and inch them ever so closer to the nations top 10 rankings.

2. Mukai Maromo @AfrikanAssassin (8-2) vs. Graham Spencer @Gspence145 (9-1)
MFC 36: Reality Check – Edmonton – February
This time the Lightweight strap is on the line as Mukai Maromo and Graham Spencer will rematch to see who is the 155 lbs kingpin of the MFC. Maromo, a member of House of Champions, has strung together an impressive series of wins since dropping a unanimous decision to Spencer in December of 2010. Since that defeat, Maromo’s outlook on his MMA career has changed drastically – he started training specifically for MMA while joining some impressive MMA camps. Spencer, who splits his time between Impact MMA and Team Alpha Male, has spent his time since defeating Maromo at Featherweight garnering upper echelon wins over Bruno Capdeville, Shawn Albrecht and Shane Nelson. Spencer also has drastically changed his training regime since the December 2010 win by traveling down to California to train with the best little men in the business at Urijah Faber’s Team Alpha Male. Now  three years later and two completely different fighters from their first outing yet still masters of their original disciplines, this striker versus grappler rematch will determine who wraps the gold around their waist and who will take the next giant leap in their career.

Mike Hackert vs Hague I (photo by Dave Scantland)

Mike Hackert vs Hague I (photo by Dave Scantland)

1. Mike Hackert @MikeHackertMMA (6-1) vs. Smealinho Rama @SmailRama (5-0)
MFC 36: Reality Check – Edmonton – February 15
The two men responsible for completely rejuvenating the Canadian Heaveyweight division in 2012 will finally meet face to face in the cage. Sure it’s not for the MFC Heavyweight title, not really sure why, but the winner will be the undisputed kingpin of the Canadian Heavyweight division and for the first time in a ling while that actually means something. Mike Hackert, who captured both of TMN’s Comeback Fighter and Upset of the year for 2012, returned after a two year absence to give former top Heavyweight Tim Hague a double thrashing – first in the form of a decision and secondly by way of viciously fast TKO. What was most surprising was Hackert’s display of crisp clean boxing coupled with fleet footwork. Smealinho Rama, TMN’s Rookie of the year in 2012, made his pro debut in February and by October had amassed a 5-0 with just over 12 minutes spent in the cage combined, impressive! Now the comeback kid meets the new kid on the block in what is probably the most sought after Heavyweight match up in Canada in… well… probably ever. Will Hackert’s boxing and speed be too much for the young’un? Or will Rama’s size mixed with power and technique keep Hackert off his feet? No matter how the fight plays out, it’s sure to be quick and brutal and the winner will reign supreme over the rest of Canada’s big men.

15 Responses to “ Top 10 Maple Leaf Match Ups In February ”

  1. mike Kent says:

    Wow what a kick in the nuts . I thought I was ripped my last fight

    Well-loved! Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  2. Cody Krahn says:

    No reason why Hackert vs Rama couldn’t have been a title fight.

    Well-loved! Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  3. Cody Krahn says:

    You had 3 layers of rolls when you were sitting on the stool in between rounds for your last fight Mike.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 9

  4. Jeff Harrison says:

    Fight factory hasn’t existed since I closed the doors in 2007.. Syd trains out of MAS Martial Arts and Gracie Barra niagara

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  5. mike Kent says:

    3 rolls of abs cody, show some respect

    Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  6. Don Wilson says:

    @Jeff Harrison sorry for the nostalgia, I’ve updated the post to reflect the correct camps.

    @mike Kent just being funny Mike, but very happy to see you back at Middleweight… warms the cockles

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  7. Jeff Harrison says:

    Stay sexy Don

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  8. Dean Panas says:

    No mention of Jimmo in the UFC match ups. Ryan and Te Huna is a very interesting match up.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  9. Don Wilson says:

    @Dean Panas can’t believe I missed that one, its updated now :)

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  10. MMAPolice says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    Poorly-rated... Thumb up 2 Thumb down 19

  11. Idolmaker says:

    Better than kotc?? You epic flamer!!

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  12. BigDaddyKane says:

    Is that show still in business?

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  13. BDC says:

    So pissed i cant watch krahn n kent. Someone must record this and youtube it. Or is it possible for tmn to get a video since i think your fan base has seen alot of the hype on here. Thanks

    Well-loved! Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  14. Cody Krahn says:

    I’m making arrangements to have it filmed and thrown on youtube afterwards. Lots of disappointed people wanted to see that fight in Edmonton so I will make sure we have a vid at the very least.

    Well-loved! Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  15. Mathew says:

    Today, I went to the beach with my kids. I found a sea shell and gave it
    to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her
    ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.
    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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