By Kelsey Mowatt; photo courtesy Pixelens Photography
For some time now, many throughout the Canadian MMA community have expected that rising fighter Jordan “Young Guns” Mein, would eventually join the growing list of Canadians that have signed with the UFC. Similar to other noteworthy prospects from the nation, like current Octagon competitor Rory MacDonald, Mein began fighting before he was 18. Over the last few years not only has Mein gone on to become one of Canada’s busiest fighters, he’s become one of the country’s best welterweights, evidenced by his recent, April 2nd, unanimous decision win over UFC vet Josh Burkman. (Pictured: Jordan Mein with his father Lee)
“I thought it was overall a good performance,” Mein (21-7) recently told FCF, when asked to assess his victory over Burkman at Knockout Entertainment’s “Reckoning” event. “I thought it was a good learning experience; even though I won I still took away a lot from that fight...Keeping my hands tighter, using more kicks, but I learned a lot from it.”
While the bout was extremely competitive, Mein likely earned the judge’s favour through outscoring Burkman on his feet and by remaining aggressive throughout. In addition, one of the elements that stood out was Mein’s ability to counter the wrestling skills of Burkman, aside from a highlight reel slam the UFC vet landed in the second frame.
“It was big factor in the fight,” said Mein while discussing his own wrestling skills. “He slammed me really good one time because I overcommitted on the guillotine, and didn’t work for the underhooks, but it was another good learning experience fighting a top wrestler like that.”
“I think my conditioning also really helped in that fight,” Mein added. “Not only in the fight itself but when I got hit and was rocked it allowed me to recover more quickly. Overall, I think he was tired later on, he had a lot of muscle, so I knew that might play a factor in the fight.”
Mein’s latest win not only was noticed widely in Canada because the bout was aired on The Score sports network, but because it marked the second time in 2011 that Mein has defeated a UFC vet. In January, at Wreck MMA’s “Strong and Proud” event, Mein stopped Joe “Diesel” Riggs in the second round. As a result of his recent successes, speculation has likely never been more rampant, as to whether or not the UFC has inquired about Mein’s availability.
“They haven’t contacted us,” said Mein, whose only losses in his last 15 fights came against former UFC competitor Jason High and Bellator vet Mike Ricci. “My Dad’s (Lee Mein) has talked a little bit to Joe Silva but nothing really in that area. I believe I’ll be fighting Marius Zaromskis next on June 10th in Mississauga, Ontario, for the Score once again. It should be awesome.”
While Mein’s overall MMA game has improved substantially over the last few years, the 21 year-old has long been credited for possessing solid striking skills. Of course, in Zaromskis (14-5), Mein will face a man who also has produced several highlight reel stoppages, and the Lethbridge fighter is looking forward to the challenge.
“My Dad told me he heard Marius has been training at AKA working on his wrestling,” Mein noted. “He’s going to be dangerous everywhere. He’s a really dangerous athlete and has really good striking, so it’s going to be a war like usual.”