As I mentioned in my last post, spring is coming and with it the apparent increase of mixed martial arts events in the area. I briefly mentioned in that post the latest installment of Shogun Fights that is taking place in Baltimore in April with its usual slew of fighters from local gyms.
Word is starting to get around, with Ocean City among the localities beginning to promote the event. While the fight card for the next Shogun Fights appears to be still shrouded in secrecy, based on my past experiences at the event, I have no doubt that a very entertaining and competitive card is taking shape.
In addition to local events, local fighters continue to make a name for themselves on the national MMA stage. It was recently announced that Mike "The Hulk" Easton, a fighter from Team Lloyd Irvin in Camp Springs, will get another chance to compete on the local stage when he takes on Yves Jabouin at the UFC's next live event in the D.C. area May 15 in Fairfax, Va.
I have seen both of Easton's fights in the UFC, both live and in person, and he is a talented fighter with an apparent mean streak who's not afraid to really mix it up with his opponent. He won his first UFC bout with a stoppage and won a unanimous decision in his second fight, which was more a product of his opponent being extremely game and willing to stand in there and bang. If Easton gets past Jabouin in May we may see him step up and begin fighting the higher echelon of fighters in the UFC's bantamweight division.
Spring is generally seen as a time for rebirth or emerging, and MMA in Maryland is no exception. There are some exciting things coming down the pike.