Top Maple Leaf Match Ups In November 2015

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Top 10 Maple Leaf Matchups THUMBSeriously, Canadian fight fans, this is one of the most memorable months so far this year in Canadian MMA. From Valerie Letourneau fighting for the UFC Strawweight title to Andrew Cseh fighting for the GPG Flyweight title and everything in between the bouts this month have an incredible impact on the athletes’ careers.

Every single fight listed below is a make it or break it tilt for everyone involved – either they win and their careers progress exponentially or they lose and fall to the pool of the forgotten. Sad for the fighters, yet good for the fans. That’s what makes the fights even more interesting to watch.

As always, this list features fights outside the eight sided elephant as every UFC fight will get their proper break down in other facets of the site.

Now, please folks, with this month being so crucial in the athletes’ careers, click on the Twitter links and follow and support your favorite fighters in the lead up of their memorable bout.  Now, without further ado, let’s get to this month’s Top Maple Leaf Match Ups:

Honorable Mentions:

  • Dave Hale (2-2) vs. Anthony Facchini (4-2) – GPG 22 Legends & Rising Stars 1 – November 21
  • Nick Ghaeni (1-0) vs. Craig MacLean (1-0) – Battlefield Fight League 40 – Chilliwack – November 14

10. Andrew Cseh @AndrewCseh (6-4) vs. Desmond Moore @Dez_M80 (4-0)
GPG 22 Legends & Rising Stars 1 – November 21
Team Ascension’s Andrew “Animal” Cseh quietly amassed a four fight win streak between 2012 and 2013. You’d be forgiven for not knowing as the Welland, Ontario native garnered three of his four wins throughout the northeastern US regional scene. As quietly as his win streak started, he stepped away from his passion for almost two years. The “Animal” returned in January 2015, this time on the midwestern US regional scene and his win streak was snapped at the hands of Josh Robinson. Now Cseh returns, albeit in a smaller form, as the one time Featherweight has made the cut down two weight classes to 125 lbs to challenge for the Global Proving Grounds new minted Flyweight title. Across the cage will be Desmond “M80” Moore, an American Top Team product who debuted June of last year and has already racked up four wins all by way of TKO stoppage. For Cseh, this is a chance to drape gold around his waist while confirming his decision to return to the sport he loves, while Moore will look to pick up a win over his stiffest test to date while continuing his rise up the sport’s 125 pound rankings.

Miles Anstead (photo: Alicia Hamilton)

Miles Anstead (photo: Alicia Hamilton)

9. Miles Anstead @MilesAnsteadMMA (6-1) vs. Aaron Shmyr (5-5)
Saturday Night Fights 10 – Regina – November 14
Up until Anstead’s June scrap with Brandt Dewsberry, he was an undefeated prospect finally looking to make some noise in the Welterweight division. After that fight, “Deep” had the first blemish on his record and turned back to the gym and the drawing board. Miles Anstead had previously finished the likes of Teddy Ash and Ash Mashreghi, but the loss to the veteran Dewsbery was quick and brutal and hit him hard. For Aaron Shymr, a veteran that started his career 4-2, this is important fight as he has recently gone 1-3 over his past four outings and needs a strong win to keep himself relevant in Canada. Sadly for Shymr, this is definitely a showcase fight for Anstead, a tilt booked to get the heavily favoured prospect a shot a getting back in the win column. “Iron man” is not a can and is perfectly capable of handling Andstead especially with more experience under his belt, but he will need to use every trick he has learned. Miles will come in bigger, stronger and powerful but, as we know, in MMA things do not always go as planned.

8. Yoni Sherbatov (3-0) vs. Freddy Arteaga (7-3)
Front St. Fights VII – November 13
It will have been eight months since fans last saw Yoni Sherbatov inside the cage when he meets Freddy Arteaga at Front St. Fights. That is a real shame as young heralded prospects like Sherbatov deserve to get as much cage time as possible to hone his skills. Fortunately for him, this will be his first of two scheduled bouts in two months as he also scheduled to meet Adrian Woolley at XFFC in December. Yoni, though, will need to have his full attention on Arteaga as he is a worthy test and not a mere stepping stone. Arteaga, who trains out of Combat Fitness in Boise, Idaho, is currently riding a two fight win streak both by way of stoppage and both during 2015. While both of these athletes are still young in the game, a win here is a must to continue their meteoric rise through the Flyweight division.

7. Rob Hanna (6-0) vs. Matt DiMarcantonio @DiMarcs15 (8-5)
IT Fight Series 38 – Ohio – November 21
Matt “The Cat” DiMarcantonio is a name many Canadian MMA fans may not be familiar with as he has spent his entire career fighting in the USA Midwestern and Northeastern regional circuits. He may not have the glossiest record, but two of his three losses in the last three years have come against big show prospects Desmond Green and Rob Font. He also recently won the IT Fight Series KO of the Year for 2014 for his brutal head kick KO of Reggie Merriweather (see video HERE). Rob Hanna, who fights out of EFS MMA, is an undefeated prospect coming out of the US Midwestern scene and has been fighting professionally since 2012. This will be for the IT Fight Series Featherweight title. Since the promotion has seen many of its veterans go onto the big shows, this a great opportunity for DiMarcantonio to not only get some recognition in his home country but international recognition as well.

Lenny Wheeler (photo by Rob Trudeau |Rob T Sports Photography)

Lenny Wheeler (photo by Rob Trudeau |Rob T Sports Photography)

6. Lenny Wheeler @LennyWheeler45 (9-3) vs. Gabriel Solorio @_GabeSolo (12-10)
Hard Knocks 47 – Calgary – November 13
Wulfrun MMA’s Lenny Wheeler has been on an absolute tear since a trip to Asia in mid 2014 to sharpen his striking skills. Since that trip, “The Show Stealer” has won three straight all by way of TKO/KO all of which he finished in under 40 seconds each. This will actually be Wheeler’s first fight on Canadian soil since before those impressive victories and he will look to keep the streak alive when he meets WSOF veteran Gabriel Solorio. Solorio may not have a glossy record but he is undefeated in the great white north dispatching Shawn Albrecht at WSOF 7 and Rolando Cespedes at Hard Knocks 44. A member of AKA, Solorio is known to wear his opponents out with his grinding style and earn decision wins. Considering Wheeler’s new found blitzkrieg style, fans can bet he will come out firing and look to finish the American early in vicious fashion.

5. Adam Lorenz @AdamLorenz1 (7-4) vs. Adrian Vilaca @AVilaca145 (5-1)
Saturday Night Fights 10 – Regina – November 14
Saturday Night Fights will hold their first professional event on November 14th and they have lined up a very intriguing Featherweight main event between Saskatchewan’s own Adam Lorenz and Hamilton, Ontario’s Adrian Vilaca. For Lorenz, this is a long overdue return to the cage as he has not fought since February 2014.  Lorenz may be the hometown hero, but he has had a rough go of late dropping three in a row albeit to the likes of UFC veteran Alvin Robinson, Lenny Wheeler and Josh Machan. Vilaca, on the other hand, is currently riding a three fight win streak and fought more recently earning a decision win this past April. This is a career defining bout for both men as Lorenz needs this win to reignite his career as a four fight skid is hard to fight back from; for Vilaca, he has had his battle with mid-carders and needs a career highlight win to prove himself among Canada’s elite 145 pounders.

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4. Noah Ali @TheNoahAli (6-2) vs. Lyndon Whitlock @LyndonWhitlock (9-5)
Hard Knocks 47 – Calgary – November 13
Hard Knocks continues to spoil Canadian MMA fans with putting out monthly cards that features fighters from across the country facing off against each other in anticipated matchups. Their 47th card continues that theme with this tremendous Bantamweight tilt. Noah Ali, a Champion’s Creed protégé, is one of Canada’s most dynamic fighters to watch and always comes with brutal blitzing speed that has allowed him to finish five of his six professional wins. Most recently, “The Chosen Defender” defeated David “Bo” Harris at Havoc FC 9 this past June. Lyndon Whitlock, who recently spent some time training with the Blackzillians, will look to get back on the winning track as he dropped his last bout this past May to Mike Hernandez. This will very much be a battle of pace as Ali will look to come out swinging and quickly impose his vicious stand up game while Whitlock, a master of control, will look to slow down the pace and impose his will through takedowns and top position grappling. Both men are in need of a win and with Canada’s Bantamweight division starting to bolster, a “W” in the win column is needed to stay on top and relevant.

Ryan Dickson (photo: Mike Fischl)

Ryan Dickson (photo: Mike Fischl)

3. Ryan Dickson @RydMMA (11-4) vs. Nah-Shon Burrell @NahShonBurrell (11-5)
GPG 22 Legends & Rising Stars 1 – November 21
It’s a peak and valley career for Ryan Dickson so far in his MMA career. From starting off as a 5-0 prospect to quietly dealing with testicular cancer and returning to his passion six weeks later by taking on Alex Garcia in what turned out to basically be a winner gets a UFC deal fight. The Burlington, Ontario native had his most recent four fight win streak snapped when he made an ill-advised drop to Lightweight that caused him to lose his power advantage and he dropped two bouts in a row to stern competition in the form of Jason Fischer and Jason Witt. Most fighters would take a step back and look for some easy wins to get back in the win column, but not Mr. Dickson as he always looks for the toughest test and that’s exactly what he got in the form of Nah-Shon Burrell. The man known as “The Rock-N-Rolla” is only 2-4-1 over his last seven bouts but just look at the competition he lost to: Stephen Thompson, Andrey Koreshkov, Michael Page and Lyman Good. Literally both men are in dire need of a win in this fight and, with their careers on the lines, this could be the most explosive bout of the month.  Just thank the MMA gods that this card is available to be streamed via Go Fight Live.

2. Julia Budd @JuliaBudd (7-2) vs. Roberta Paim Rovel (4-0)
Bellator MMA 146: Manhoef vs. Kato – November 20
It seemed like amazing news for Julia Budd last year as Bellator announced it would form a woman’s Featherweight division and Budd, along with Marloes Coenen, would be their crowning jewels, no pun intended. Sadly, “The Jewel” only fought once last year and it was not the epic super fight against Coenen as everyone had hoped. Budd is currently riding a five fight win streak over a very lengthy, five year span. The leading female from Gibson Kickboxing and Pankration will be squaring off against Roberta Paim Rovel, a Brazilian who trains out of the Astra Fight Team. Known as “Crusher”, Rovel has four professional bouts under her belt finishing all between the bells – three by way of TKO and one submission. Having referenced Budd’s lack off activity earlier, Rovel is in the same boat as she has not fought since August of last year. With all that being said, what we have here are two hungry athletes that prefer chucking leather as opposed to lay and praying so in the end the fans win as this bout should produce fireworks.

Mike Ricci (photo: Mike Ricci)

Mike Ricci (photo: Mike Ricci)

1. Mike Ricci @MikeyRicci (10-4) vs. Brian Cobb @BanditCobbMMA (20-8)
World Series of Fighting 25 – November 20
Mike Ricci has been on this list many times since his last outing.  However, either by his doing or his opponent’s, the fights always seem to fall through. Hopefully, for all of us Canadian fans, he could fight all those scratched bouts in one night as he needs three wins in a 24 hours span to get his well deserved shot at the WSOF champion Justin Gaethje. Unfortunately for Ricci, he has one of the toughest draws in the opening bracket taking on Brian Cobb, a former WSOF title challenger. On top of it being one of the hardest draws, stylistically it is a rough bout for both men as they have similar grinding styles and you can almost put money down on this tilt going the whole 10 minutes. Luckily for Ricci, he is no stranger facing down fight veterans known for their durability. In his last two bouts he destroyed Jorge Gurgel and decimated George Sotiropoulos over the course of 15 minutes. Hopefully, this will finally be the night many have anticipated for the Tristar alumn.

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