HALIFAX, Nova Scotia, March 15 -- If there was controversy,
consider it quashed.
On a snowstorming night in Halifax, Jason MacKay (Pictures) retained his Extreme Cage Combat
lightweight championship with a dominant drubbing of former foe
Shaun Krysa (Pictures), seemingly putting to rest a
The two first met in March 2007 to crown the ECC's first
lightweight champion. Krysa largely controlled the bout from the
top position before MacKay landed a crushing, but more importantly,
illegal up-kick that ended Krysa's night.
While a disqualification seemed in order, the kick was strangely
ruled accidental and prompted a technical decision. Despite losing
a point for the kick, MacKay improbably won a unanimous decision in
the truncated tussle.
Their second go-around Saturday told a far different tale.
Krysa took his opponent to the ground with a single-leg takedown in
the bout's early stages and moved to north-south position. However,
MacKay quickly nixed any notion that this would be a repeat of
their first bout, as he bridged and rolled backward from the bottom
to take Krysa's back with both hooks in a spectacular display of
technical grappling that drew raucous applause from the partisan
For the duration of the first round, MacKay remained on top,
sprawling out of Krysa's single-leg attempts and squashing scramble
opportunities. MacKay also pounded away from top position and
stifled any attempts at offense from a quickly tiring Krysa.
In the second round, Krysa again looked for an early takedown.
Desperation coupled with exhaustion saw his attempt to drag MacKay
to the mat with a waist lock fail miserably, with MacKay ending up
Just when it seemed as if MacKay were attempting to slow the pace
of the bout, the Pictou native launched a powerful salvo of punches
that rocked Krysa. Stacking the prone Krysa against the fence,
MacKay continued the offensive with a barrage of hammerfists. With
MacKay continuing to smash away, Krysa awkwardly attempted to tap
out against the fence -- an action that was either misunderstood or
initially ignored by referee Ken Wood. The end then came a second
later as Wood rescued Krysa at 2:13 of the second round.
If MacKay needed a breakout performance to put him on the national
stage in Canada, this may have been it. After largely toiling in
the shadow of the likes of locals Roger Hollett (Pictures) and TJ Grant (Pictures), his decisive dispatching of
Krysa moves his mark to 8-0.
If Matt MacGrath
(Pictures) was genuinely insulted by
(Pictures), he should rest easier
after pushing his undefeated record to 5-0 with a first round
Prior to the bout, MacGrath alleged that his adversary had slighted
him in the past, saying Axworthy had even told him he was lucky
they were not in the same weight class. However, with both fighters
now at 170 pounds, Axworthy had little to offer MacGrath, who
easily caught his low kicks and dumped him on the mat.
While MacGrath idly chipped away with strikes from side control,
Axworthy sought to scramble to his feet. Yet MacGrath was a step
ahead, preempting his counter and spinning for a beautiful far-side
armbar that forced Axworthy to tap out at 3:48 of the first
MacGrath will head west next to compete on the MFC's May 9 card in
Edmonton, Alberta, against Kaipo Miller. Headlining the card
will be fellow upstart Canadian welterweight Ryan Ford. Should both MacGrath and
Ford emerge victorious, there are designs on pairing the two
undefeated 170 pounders in a MFC welterweight title clash.
Touted Haligonian prospect Ryan
Jimmo (Pictures) wasn't given much of an
opportunity to show why he's dubbed "The Big Deal."
Jimmo was originally scheduled for 205-pound action against
Ray Penny, but Penny
withdrew from the bout after the untimely passing of his father.
Wanting to keep the popular local product on the card, ECC
promoters revised the bout to a heavyweight contest, slotting in
the hulking but severely overmatched Jeff Lundburg, a 260-plus-pound
former Strongman competitor.
Unfortunately, truck pulls and Atlas stones did little to prepare
Lundburg for MMA. After charging Jimmo into the fence, the enormous
force of which shook the entire cage, Jimmo got double underhooks
and essentially killed any offense Lundburg had hoped for.
When Lundburg inexplicably dropped to a knee against the fence,
Jimmo began to pound away until his turtling opponent was saved at
1:31 of the first round.
Like his teammate Matt
MacGrath (Pictures), Jimmo will also next see action
on the MFC's May 9 offering in Edmonton.
Railroaded by knee injuries for the last four years, Kyle Sandford (Pictures) put his once-promising career
back on track by easily submitting Chris Currie (Pictures) in 54 seconds.
When Sandford last fought, in February 2004, MMA was not even
regulated in Nova Scotia. Perhaps inspired by the opportunity to
fight in front of his hometown crowd for the first time, he was
effortlessly dominant Saturday.
After a quick takedown attempt had landed him on his back,
Sandford, who recently received his BJJ brown belt from Renzo Gracie (Pictures), got wrist control and snuck his
right leg up around Currie's neck. He finished the triangle in
textbook fashion, choking Currie unconscious.
Currie was a replacement for the late Rene Ayangma, the 20-year-old
Prince Edward Island native who passed away suddenly and shockingly
late last month.
Laurin (Pictures)'s unorthodox attack translated to
a TKO win over Peter
McGrath, a seasoned and experienced striker, landed early with hard
leg kicks, but Laurin charged at him with a leaping hook that
dropped him to the mat. Although McGrath got to his feet, Laurin
put him on the deck with another lunging hook and followed up with
strikes that halted the bout at 1:47 of the first frame.
Fighting on a day's notice, Michelle Vienneau made her
first fight a win. She took a quick submission over Jenna King, though it was hardly
After an uncomfortably inept punching exchange in which both women
landed flailing punches, King scored a takedown and ended in a weak
guillotine attempt. Despite poor positioning from the half guard,
Vienneau adjusted her squeeze and secured the tapout at 45 seconds
of the first round.
(Pictures) dominated Adam MacDonald on
the floor, taking him down and assuming the full mount repeatedly.
When an exhausted MacDonald looked to sweep him from the mount,
Arsenault worked for an armbar that netted him the victory at 2:13
of the first round.
Local hard-luck fighter Tim
Skidmore (Pictures) defeated Craig Skinner (Pictures) to notch his second career
victory. After being pounded with knees to the body from side
control and being hammered from the mount, Skidmore bucked Skinner
and wound up in his guard. With little time left in the round, a
sloppy leglock battle ensued. Skidmore surprisingly forced Skinner
to tap with a straight Achilles lock at 4:59 of the first
Jaret MacIntosh made a
successful MMA debut by steamrolling Rene Grenon (Pictures) in only 16 seconds. MacIntosh
connected with a hard head kick and followed up with a barrage of
punches, dropping Grenon against the fence and forcing him to
turtle up until he was rescued.
In the opening bout of the evening, Jason Rorison (Pictures) battered Ryan Kenny with knees to the body
from a front facelock before locking up a standing guillotine.
Although Kenny didn't tap, referee Hubert Earle halted the bout as
a result of the guillotine at 3:25 of the first round.