Saturday (28th May) saw another top card from Scotland’s premier Mixed Martial Arts promotion On Top.
It’s easy to tell why On Top is leading the way in Scotland, top quality production value, military organisation and a collection of some of the best unsigned Scottish MMA talent all together under one roof.
On Top Frontline was a breakout show for two of Scotland’s top amateurs as they made their professional debuts. Both Aiden Stephen and Stevie McIntosh have been tearing it up domestically for a few years now, McIntosh had amassed a 9-2 amateur record before this fight whilst Stephen realistically had the experience and tools to turn pro a couple of fights back.
Both of them looked to make their mark and get their pro careers off to a good start and kick start the next batch of exciting pros coming through in Scotland.
Stevie McIntosh (Higher Level) made short work of a last minute replacement in Wes O’Neil (Workout Warehouse) by stopping him with a barrage of elbows in only 25 seconds barely giving his pro fighter brother Craig enough time to get his words out in the commentary box. McIntosh looks like a real exciting prospect.
Aiden Stephen (Jiu Jitsu Misfits) turned in a solid performance to get the submission finish in round one over his Northern Irish opponent Michael Putlak (Heat MMA).
Stephen looked every bit the exciting fighter as he was at amateur in a back and forth exchange on the mat. The future looks bright for the man from up north, perhaps even at Featherweight given his problems hitting weight for this contest.
The night started with 8 amateur fights featuring some of the rising stars of Scottish MMA.
If On Top Frontline was a breakout for McIntosh and Stephen it was surely confirmation for Higher Levels Calum Murrie (11-3) that he has what it takes to make a run at pro. Murrie finished tough Dublin fighter Alex Duboiu after being in deep water himself when Duboiu had his back. Murrie used his Eddie Bravo Brown belt skills to manage the situation and deliver some beautiful Jui Jitsu himself to earn himself a TKO victory.
Higher Level MMA earned a clean sweep on the night winning all of their five scheduled bouts. Rising prospects Kieran Conlin, Alexander Campbell and Lee Johnstone all stopped their opponents inside the distance. Exciting times for the Whitburn gym as the amateur fighters look to follow in the footsteps of their stable mate Steven Ray and reach the top echelons of the sport.
If Murrie’s fight was the most exciting fight of the night then Tomasz Peczko vs Douglas Nevins was a close second kick starting the show after an interesting show opener. A back and forth fight of which Nevins took the nod in front of a delighted travelling support from the Scottish Highlands.
Roddy Campbell and Chris Gregg also scored decision victories on the night whilst Nik Binning and Hugh Gleeson fought to a draw in the night’s other fight.
Overall another great night at On Top and looking forward to the next show.