Maverick MMA officials held Maverick 21 from the historic Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania on Saturday night.
The November 19 fight card featured a handful of the top mixed martial arts prospects in the region putting their talents on display for the sold-out crowd and those watching the pay-per-view on SpectationSports.com.
In the night’s main event, “The Great” Dennis Buzukja (8-2) looked to make it five in a row as he battles Boimah Karmo (9-5) in a featherweight clash that could inject either contender into the UFC circuit. The promotion’s featherweight title was on the line and despite Karmo proudly owning the belt, the crowd in attendance let him know that they were there for their guy, Buzukja.
Buzukja, fighting out of Longo and Weidman MMA, fought twice on Dana White’s Contender Series, arguably the biggest opportunity a fighter can get before earning a UFC contract. He lost a unanimous decision on the show in 2020 but then battled back to rack up four straight wins including a second bout in front of the UFC boss. Unfortunately, Buzukja did not earn a contract with his Contender Series win, but a win here for Maverick MMA could easily put the New York native back on the UFC’s radar.
Karmo, had not lost a fight since CES 52 in 2018 when he dropped a bout to now current UFC fighter, Pat Sabatini.
The three-round affair between Buzukja and Karmo had fans on their feet from bell to bell. While Buzukja was dominant in the contest, the fight would go to the judges for a decision, who ultimately ruled the bout in favor of the challenger. Following his win, Buzukja got on the mic and convincingly said, “Dana White, Sean Shelby, give me my f**king contract.”
— Harry Mac (@bbharrymac) November 20, 2022
In the evening’s co-main event slot Christian “Strictly Business” Carr extracted revenge as he was able to nullify the only loss on his record with a second-round submission win over Shawn Stefanelli. The two men fought previously in 2019 with Steanelli picking up a split decision victory. Tonight, after fighting most of the first-round off of his back, Carr electrified the crowd with a one-armed rear-naked choke finish of his opponent. With the victory Carr moves to 2-0 as a professional.
Aaron Kennedy Has Arrived
In the feature fight of the night picked up his first pro win, and first victory since 2017 when he handily defeated Steve Calero on the judges’ scorecards. Kennedy has seen his last 12 fights go the distance, and unfortunately for him, he was on the losing end of his first two pro bout decisions. On November 19 however, Kennedy showed that he will be a force to be reckoned with inside the Maverick MMA heptagon as he battered and bloodied Calero en route to a win.
Maverick MMA Royalty
Marissa Heckman is arguably one of Maverick MMA’s brightest stars. Having previously earned the promotion’s ‘Fight of the Year’ honors, she later added to her stardom by marrying into Maverick MMA royalty, after tying the knot with David Heckman, brother of now retired MMA fighter Scott “The Animal” Heckman earlier this year. Marissa, in arguably her toughest match yet, won two rounds on the scorecards in her three-round fight against promotional newcomer Sandra Chheng. With the victory Heckman is 1-0 a pro.
In the first pro bout of the night, New York’s Mike Ahearn picked up his third victory with a unanimous decision win over “The Sauce” Travis Foster. This contest was a back-and-forth test of true grit and determination but unfortunately for Foster he was just a step behind Ahearn from the get-go. The 28-year-old Foster drops to 6-13.
Complete Maverick 21 results below:
145-lbs – Dennis Buzukja defeated Boimah Karmo via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) – featherweight championship bout
145-lbs – Christian Carr defeated Shawn Stefanneli via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 0:31
135-lbs – Aaron Kennedy defeated Steven Calero via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
115-lbs – Marissa Heckman defeated Sandra Chheng via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
170-lbs – Mike Ahearn defeated Travis Foster via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Advanced Amateur Bouts:
135-lbs – Jesse Burke defeated Brett Floyd via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27) – Advanced amateur 135-lb championship bout
145-lbs – Tom Hinz defeated Olivier Poisson via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) – Advanced amateur 142-pound amateur championship bout
155-lbs – Josh Ugalde defeated Taylor McMahan– 155-pound amateur championship bout
115-lbs – Jani Rosario defeated Kelsey Hildal (114.4) – 115-pound amateur championship bout
155-lbs – Therese Saenz defeated Gabrielle Giordano via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 1:15
Heavyweight – Ryan Appleby defeated Daniel Albright via TKO – Round 1, 2:51
150-lbs – Chris Muce defeated Jonathan Patane via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
125-lbs – Nick Gebhard defeated Christian Hernandez-Ramos via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
MyMMANews.com – We cover everything from MMA, BJJ, Bare Knuckle, Wrestling, Boxing, Kickboxing, and Judo