Randy Mahon is ready to put on a show for his hometown fans on Friday night, and his opponent Nick Hrabec is fully onboard.
This will be Mahon’s third straight fight in his city, while Hrabec will make the trip from Edmonton.
Mahon, 33, said he always seems to draw the match ups the fans end up loving, and he sees this one being no different.
“I have a funny feeling this one might steal the whole show,” said Mahon in an interview.
“I think it’s going to be fight of the night. I’ve been training for this fight to go deep.”
Mahon has been no stranger to the cage recently, with this being his fifth fight in less than one year. On the contrary, Hrabec hasn’t seen cage action for nearly a year.
But although Hrabec enters this bout on a bit of a layoff, Mahon isn’t expecting he’ll have much cage rust given the quality of training partners he has at Little Sweat Shop.
“I’m kind of like Dominick Cruz with the cage rust idea where I think it just all plays on the guy himself. If he’s training hard all the time, he’s not going to have much of an issue with cage rust,” said Mahon
“I expect it to be a fight as if we both fought four times in a year.”
One physical advantage Mahon did say Hrabec has is his significant reach and height. Mahon stands at 5’9″ and owns a reach of 67″, while Hrabec stands 6’2″ and holds an enormous 77.5″ reach.
Although the numbers seem drastic on paper, Mahon said he has multiple training partners at Champions Gym with the same reach. He’s also often fought opponents taller than him throughout his career, due to his history fighting at welterweight, so he doesn’t see these physical qualities of Hrabec’s as an advantage.
“The size I actually do well against, so I’m really looking forward to it,” said Mahon.
“If things go the way they have in the past, it should be a good night.”
Hrabec Will Utilize Reach
Hrabec, 24, said he’s a “very long guy” for a lightweight, which allows him to keep his distance and pick his spots.
While Mahon said he’s accustomed to taller opponents with longer reach, Hrabec said he plans on fully utilizing every inch of his reach advantage.
Hey MMA fans be sure to like Nick Hrabec's fighter fan page. Great local fighter who also coaches out of the UFC… https://t.co/nmiafN7SJC
— Mac Michaud (@MavSportsMMA) October 28, 2016
“I’m going to be looking to keep my distance, and keep him on the end of my punches,” said Hrabec in an interview.
“Once I start teeing off on him, he’s probably going to end up shooting for that blast double, or look for a way out.”
Although his reach provides an advantage standing, Hrabec said he’s equally comfortable wherever the fight may end up going.
He said he hasn’t trained any specific area more than usual in preparation for Mahon, but has instead been focused on a well-rounded training camp.
“At the end of the day, I don’t care where the fight goes because I think I beat him anywhere,” said Hrabec.
“He’s a scrappy guy, but whether it’s on the ground or on the feet, I out-skill him by far, so I’m not worried.”
Much like Mahon, Hrabec also views this as a potential barn burner.
He said he and Mahon both possess a never-say-die attitude and strong striking skills, which usually results in the fans on their feet.
“He’s not going to sit back and be boring. I know he comes to fight, and I come to fight too” said Hrabec.
“I’m going to be bringing it Friday night.”