Unified MMA was back in Calgary earlier this month with an absolutely stacked Unified MMA 47 card that included several big finishes and a couple of big upsets. The card had some great fights and explosive finishes.
Keep in mind, in most cases, the matchups listed here are hypothetical and have not been announced or rumoured to be taking place unless otherwise noted.
Let us know your thoughts on who should be next for the big winners and the rest of the card, and who you think would win our hypothetical matchups.
Maged Hammo (12-6-1) vs. Jesse Stirn (13-6)
Hammo pulled off what many would consider an upset at Unified MMA 47 against the returning, unbeaten Justin Basra. Almost immediately, Hammo got ahold of Basra’s neck and never let him get it back. Hammo transitioned between chokes and forced the tap halfway through the first round, defending his Unified MMA featherweight title in the process. With three Unified MMA events this month, there’s been a ton of potential to establish future matchups. Stirn put on an impressive performance against Vladimir Kazbekov at Unified MMA 48 in Toronto and may have cemented himself as the perfect next challenger for the featherweight strap.
Tom O’Connor (11-2) vs. Tim Smith (17-12)
O’Connor picked up an impressive win at Unified MMA 47 against a solid competitor in Devon Brock. The win marked O’Connor’s fourth straight third round stoppage and pushed his pro record to 11-2, with only one loss since his pro debut. The Unified MMA lightweight title is currently held by Shane Campbell, however, with the majority of his recent fights coming at 165 pounds, perhaps it’s time for him to vacate the lightweight strap. Smith has turned the clock back in his last couple fights and now he wants his belt back. Smith has fought back from addiction and turned his life and his fight career back around and deserves the opportunity to become a champ again.
Fay Bursell (6-2) vs. Mac Laursen (3-1)
Bursell was able to come in and stymie the wrestling-heavy attack of hometown favorite Ali Charkie en route to the unanimous decision victory. If Unified brings Bursell back, perhaps a matchup between he and Laursen would provide a more fan-friendly encounter. Laursen has won three straight since losing his pro debut and could use a bigger test to see where he stands in the super welterweight division.
John Nguyen (5-3) vs. Lenny Wheeler (10-6)
Nguyen bounced back from a submission loss to Tom O’Connor with a very impressive win over undefeated Brazilian Diego Santos. Nguyen ripped a vicious body shot and followed up with a right to seal the deal in the second round. Nguyen has had an up and down start to his pro career but has won three of his last four over some solid competition. Wheeler recently returned from a five-year layoff and picked up a quick win. Wheeler started his career in Alberta back in 2008 and would combine with Nguyen for an entertaining bout as both men are prolific finishers.
Ramil Kamilov (4-0) vs. Matt Speciale (4-1)
Kamilov and Sean Michael may have been the most anticipated bout on this stacked card and Kamilov delivered an absolutely explosive finish. Kamilov rocked Michael with a head kick and followed up with a barrage of punches that left Michael a bloody mess. After a respectable 6-4 amateur career, Kamilov has been a wrecking ball since going pro, compiling four straight finishes. Speciale had a close fight with Mohamed Ado at Unified MMA 48 but was finished in the third round. Despite this, Speciale’s stock hasn’t dropped and a fight against Kamilov would likely produce fireworks, as well as put the winner in a great position in the lightweight division.
Usman Khattak (1-0) vs. Diego Santos (4-1)
Khattak made his pro debut after a successful amateur run that saw him compile a 6-2 record against some very tough competition. Khattak wasted no time in getting his hands going and pounding out Steven Thomas for the impressive win. Given his extensive amateur record, it wouldn’t be a stretch to pair Khattak up with Diego Santos, who fell for the first time to John Nguyen. Santos would welcome the opportunity to rebound from his first defeat and it would give Khattak a chance to expedite his rise up the featherweight ladder.