Following a busy 2012 that saw him fight five times, things have slowed down this year for MFC heavyweight Smealinho “The Prince” Rama. But as is the case with many things, sometimes it’s quality over quantity.
Upon winning his first bout of the year in February against Mike Hackert, Rama earned a shot at the vacant MFC heavyweight title at Friday night’s MFC 38 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
For Rama, the win over Hackert sets himself up well for his title shot.
“I was up to par with my performance,” he said. “I capitalized on what I’ve been working on.
“I think we spent a little too much time in the clinch, but we never planned for that to happen; our plan was to strike with him, take him down and use some boxing. Based on my training, my performance went well, so I’m happy with that fight.”
Even though this is only his second year fighting, Rama feels he’s making the necessary steps in between fights to be on track with where he is in his career.
“I just continue to improve physically, in my appearance and performance,” he said. “I’ve been working a lot of cardio, doing sprints and stuff like that. My cardio has gotten better, as has my strength, and I’m just looking all around better.
“I’m always improving on my fighting skills. That’s the main thing; I’m evolving as an athlete. I’m getting better in all aspects of MMA and everything just seems to be going my way.”
Rama (6-0) will take on current CageSport heavyweight champion Anthony Hamilton (10-2) for the MFC title in what could be one of the premier heavyweight bouts of the year.
“Usually I just go out there and do what I want to do,” said Rama. “We have certain game plans for the fight; things I should be doing and things I should be staying away from.
“I just want to go out there and use my skills to their best, do what I do, use what I can and win the fight. I just have to be me and what I’ve trained on.”
Rama told MMAWeekly.com that he’s ready for whatever happens in the fight – whether it’s him or Hamilton who decides to dictate the pace of the match-up – and come out the victor in the end.
“Sometimes I like to dictate the pace and sometimes I like to take what’s given to me,” he said. “Some guys might rush in and I might be able to take them down; sometimes guys might drop back and I’m able to hit them.
“Whichever one’s given to me, I’ll take. Whether I can go out and control, fine, I’ll do that. If the guy is sitting there, attacking all the time, I’ll find weakness and openings and counter him. I feel like I work on all aspects of the game, and I feel like I can do well on both ends.”