At only 21 years of age and at 6-0 as a mixed martial artist, Smealinho “The Prince” Rama already finds himself hungry for more competition. In his defense, though, he definitively defeated everyone offered to him by Maximum Fighting Championship CEO Mark Pavelich. In fact, Rama not only defeated his first three MFC opponents, but he also finished all three of them in the first round.

“Mark had to find somebody,” Rama told The MMA Corner in an exclusive interview, “and I cleaned out his division, you know? I beat everybody he could’ve offered me, so he had to go out and find me a new guy, and a title fight was promised, so here we are, right?”

In the case of Rama’s next bout, which takes place Friday night at MFC 37 at the Shaw Conference Center in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and airs on AXS TV, that new guy goes by the name of Chris “Beast Boy” Barnett. Barnett, a 7-1 prospect, started his career in the XFC and makes his MFC debut when he faces Rama for the vacant heavyweight title.

In Barnett, Rama sees an athletic man with plenty to offer. However, Rama also sees something in the men Barnett previously knocked out that he will not emulate.

“The thing that I’ve seen with his knockouts is guys he’s knocked out, on the feet, for example, have been guys that have committed to him, gone towards him and gotten into a brawling match, right? I’m not there to brawl with him,” Rama explained. “I’m out there to be technical and do my thing like I always do.”

Rama (Jacob Bos/Sherdog)

Despite three career submission wins and three career wins by some form of knockout, one might question if Rama benefits from actually not standing with Barnett because he might likely abandon his technical approach. However, Rama aims to decide where the fight will go.

“I know I can beat him anywhere because I trained really hard and I have great coaches and a great training staff, so no worries on my end,” Rama admitted. “I’m coming into this fight with no excuses, 100 percent prepared, the best I ever was.”

Citing changes to his training regimen, Rama suggests that fans can expect him to appear like a completely different fighter once the fight begins. He says that he stands apart from every other athlete in the sport because his training does not end with honing his fighting techniques.

“I’m working everything,” Rama said. “And besides working all those kinds of disciplines of MMA, I’m doing my power lifting and I’m doing my explosive training, my sprints, my track and field, cardio…therefore, wherever it goes, I’m prepared.”

As for what lies ahead with a win, well, that’s still up in the air. Pavelich did not announce any other contenders to the title. Rama may find himself against another new face if he should win the title. For now, Rama will simply take it one fight at a time, starting with Barnett on Saturday.

“I’m just focused on Chris right now,” Rama admitted. “I’ve trained really hard, and that’s my main concern right now. I’m going to go out there, do my job and bring it back home, and whoever Mark offers me in the future, so be it. I’ll be even more prepared for that fight.”

Smealinho would like to thank his coaches, his training staff at Independent MMA, Gonzales BJJ, his sponsors and his managers.

Photo: Smealinho Rama (center) (Jacob Bos/Sherdog)

About The Author

Dale De Souza
Staff Writer

Dale De Souza is a 22-year-old kid straight out of Texas, who grew up around Professional Wrestling but embraced the beauty of Mixed Martial Arts and Combat Sports at a young age. Dale is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report MMA, a writer at The MMA Corner.