MFC 39 took place at the Northlands Expo Center in Edmonton, Alberta, and in the main event, Anthony Hamilton successfully defended his MFC Heavyweight Championship by beating Darrill Schoonover with a convincing unanimous decision.
Hamilton used his vastly superior wrestling to grind out a decision and while the fight wasn’t the most exciting, Hamilton won the first three rounds as well as the last round without a question.
The lone round in question would be the fourth, in which Schoonover took advantage of a tired Hamilton and landed some nice combinations on the feet.
There was a few glimpses on poor sportsmanship from Schoonover in the fight. With Hamilton on top of him, Schoonover punched Hamilton after the third period has clearly concluded.
Hamilton’s (12-2) win streak has been extended to six with the victory, while Schoonover’s (13-6) run of three straight wins was stifled with the loss.
Gallicchio upsets Southern in the co-main event
.2 pounds is the difference between Tom Gallicchio being MFC Lightweight Champion right now. Gallicchio missed weight for what was supposed to be a lightweight championship fight, but he didn’t miss a thing in his fight against Kurt Southern as he won the fight with a rear-naked choke submission in the second round.
The story of the fight was relatively simple. Southern would start the round with a beautiful striking display that featured a precise jab and well-timed combinations, then the tide would turn as Gallicchio would introduce his wrestling and take down Southern.
Southern got out of the first round relatively unscathed, but in the second frame, Gallicchio locked on a tight body triangle and then completed the full choke to get the win.
Following the fight, it was announced that Gallicchio (18-8) will fight Southern (13-5) in a re-match for the promotion’s lightweight title on May 19th.
Smith edges out South on judges’ scorecards
In a back-and-forth contest, TUF 17 contestant Gilbert Smith utilized his wrestling to eek out a close unanimous decision win over Jason South.
Both the first and third rounds could have gone to either fighter. Smith spent more of the time in dominant positions, but South was active off of his back with elbows as well as with submissions. In the last minute of the fight, a bloodied South locked on an anaconda choke that had me convinced would elicit a tap for Smith.
The only round that wasn’t up for debate would be the second. Smith controlled the majority of the period with wrestling, ground and pound, and submissions tries.
Smith’s (8-2) record since his lone UFC loss to Bubba McDaniel improves to 3-0 with the victory, and South (10-2) opens the new year just like he ended it, with a loss.
Edwards impresses with submission victory
With ten seconds remaining in the first round, Marcus Edwards finished Sean Powers with a rear-naked choke in a catchweight bout that was contested at 164 pounds.
From the get-go, Edwards slammed his foot on the proverbial accelerator. Edwards dominated the entire fight with an aggressive style in every aspect of the game. The finish sequence began when Edwards stunned Powers with two powerful lefts. The successful combination by Edwards led to a lazy takedown attempt by a dazed Powers. Edwards capitlized by defending the takedown, transitioning to the back of his opponent, and procuring the submission.
After dropping a close split decision to Efrain Escudero last June, Edwards (6-2) has now rebounded with two straight victories. Heading into this bout, Powers (8-4) had only been submitted one time in his career.
O’Connell finishes Wedderburn with a choke
In a light heavyweight bout, Sean O’Connell made short work of Markhaile Wedderburn as a rear-naked choke from O’Connell elicited a tap from his opponent within the first two minutes of the bout.
The fight started off with a heavy exchange of hooks from both men, only for Wedderburn to end up on his back following a failed takedown attempt. Wedderburn proceeded to explode back up on top of O’Connell, but O’Connell pulled off a nice kimura sweep. From that point, it was all gravy for O’Connell who secured the fight-concluding rear-naked choke.
O’Connell’s (15-4) stock in the light heavyweight division continues to rise as the victory extends his winning streak to six. For the ninth time in his career, Wedderburn (11-10) lost a fight by submission.
McInnes submits Ring in the second
After landing a knee flush on the chin of Dan Ring, Andrew McInnes immediately locked up a rear clinch on Ring, jumped on his back, and latched on a rear-naked choke, causing the fight to end in the second round.
The first period served as a feeling out process between the two lightweights. Ring found much success with an economical and efficient stand-up attack that revolved around his leg kicks, while McInnes had his moments with positional control that he obtained within the clinch and with a takedown.
For the first time in his five fight career, Andrew McInnes (4-1) has been to entered the second round. It was the fourth submission victory of his career. After remaining unbeaten for the first six fights of his career, Dan Ring (5-3-1) has now lost three straight.
MFC 39 Results: (AXS TV)
Anthony Hamilton def. Darrill Schoonover via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 50-45)
Tom Gallicchio def. Kurt Southern via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 4:31
Gilbert Smith def. Jason South via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Marcus Edwards def. Sean Powers via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 4:50
Sean O’Connell def. Markhaile Wedderburn via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 1:48
Andrew McInnes def. Dan Ring via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 2:01