(Question: What is distinguishes one of these fighters from the rest? Answer: All but one can grow facial hair.)
Knockout Entertainment Canada announced the line-up today for its historic first sanctioned mixed martial arts event held in the province of Ontario in a press release sent out this morning.
MMA: The Reckoning will take place on April 2 at Casino Rama in Orillia and will feature a range of veterans from several notable promotions. The main event will feature a welterweight tilt between UFC veteran Josh Burkman and up-and-coming Canadian fighter Jordan Mein. A former training partner of Jason Day, Mein, who defeated Joe Riggs via second-round TKO in January and won his last bout in February by rear-naked choke is said to be on the UFC’s radar, so a win over an Octagon vet like Burkman, who is 3-0 since being dropped by the promotion would likely elicit an invitation to fight for the Vegas-based promotion. Conversely, a win over a highly-touted prospect like Mein would almost definitely earn Burkman a call back from UFC matchmaker Joe Silva.
Also on the card will be former IFL and WEC lightweight Chris Horodecki, Shooto veteran Antonio Carvalho, three-time Sengoku fighter Nick Denis, TUF 9 contestant Dean Amasinger, and Canadian grappling standout Misha Cirkunov.
The event, which promoters say could feature at least one additional big name bout, is the first of several shows already approved by the Ontario Athletic Commission for the first quarter of 2010.
The following weekend will see the Maximum Fighting Championship take its Edmonton, Alberta-based show on the road for the first time when it touches down at The Colosseum at Caesar’s casino. That card will feature the first title defense of newly-crowned MFC light heavyweight champ and CagePotato.com guest blogger Ryan “The Big Deal” Jimmo as well as a handful of other notable veterans such as Drew Fickett, Marcus Davis, David Heath, Marvin Eastman and Pete Spratt.
Two weeks later the UFC will bring its powerhouse production to the Rogers Centre in Toronto to shatter North American attendance records with UFC 129, which will feature a main event championship showdown between welterweight kingpin Georges St-Pierre and challenger Jake Shields. The card will also feature the promotion’s first featherweight title fight between champ Jose Aldo and Mark Hominick as well as a light heavyweight showdown between Randy Couture and Lyoto Machida.
With the province now sanctioning the sport, it’s likely that Ontario will soon establish itself as an MMA hotbed. Strikeforce has applied for a promoters license with the OAC as have at least two dozen other established organizations and first-time promoters, which means that there will be no shortage of events for fans in or within driving distance to Ontario.
MMA: The Reckoning
April 2, 2011
Jordan Mein (20-7-0) vs. Josh Burkman (21-8-0) (170lbs)
Chris Horodecki (16-3-0) vs. TBA (155 lbs)
Antonio Carvalho (12-4-0) vs. Tony Hervey (10-10-0)
Nick Denis (9-2-0) vs. TBA (135 lbs)
Misha Cirkunov (2-1-0) vs. Ion Cherdivara (1-0-0) (205 lbs)
Dean Amasinger (7-3-0) vs. Louis-Philippe Carles (8-2-0) (170 lbs)
Jorge Brito (12-6-1) vs. Jason Young (7-3-0) (155 lbs)
Jason Saggo (3-0-0) vs. Taylor Solomon (2-1-0) (155 lbs)
Joel Powell (1-2-0) vs. Igor Caetano (2-1-0) (170 lbs)