Welterweight clash at the top of Retribution lineup in Brandon

The Maximum Fighting Championship has added a hotly anticipated welterweight matchup to complete its co-main event for the upcoming MFC 26: Retribution card.

Ryan “The Real Deal” Ford, returning to the MFC after a year-and-a-half absence, will face the stiffest test of his career as he takes on American Top Team product Douglas “The Phenom” Lima. The Ford-Lima matchup shares main-event status and tops the card that will air live on HDNet Fights with the recently announced lightweight title fight between reigning belt-holder Antonio “Mandingo” McKee and Brazilian challenger Luciano Azevedo.

“For the remainder of 2010 and into 2011, the Maximum Fighting Championship’s top priority will be making its own stars,” noted MFC Owner/President Mark Pavelich.

“Ryan Ford and Douglas Lima have a great opportunity in the MFC to become internationally known hot commodities, and the same goes for guys like Luciano Azevedo, Tom Watson, and Ryan Jimmo. Even Antonio McKee, who has an incredible record and has not lost in seven years, can really step forward and make his name bigger than it has ever been before.”

Ford (12-2) is a former two-time challenger for the MFC welterweight title and is eagerly eyeing a return to the top of the organization’s 170-pound division. The Edmonton, Alberta, native is riding a four-fight winning streak coming into the matchup against Lima – the biggest of those victories being a first-round submission verdict over reality show competitor Tommy Speer back in March.

Ford began his mixed martial arts career under the MFC banner in 2007 and catapulted to the top of the ranks with his aggressive, crowd-pleasing style. A fan favorite, Ford worked his way into two title fights by taking out a list of tough opponents including C.J. Fernandes and Pete Spratt. Ford fell short in his two quests for the MFC belt, dropping a pair of hard-fought battles to rugged veteran Pat Healy.

Lima (14-4) has earned stoppage victories in 12 of his verdicts – four by knockout and eight by submission. The Goainia, Brazil, native, who has signed a three-fight contract with the MFC, trains under top-rated trainer Roan Carneiro at American Top Team’s Atlanta operation and is also an instructor at the camp.

A brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and a devastating Muay Thai practitioner, Lima is a decorated competitor, holding multiple titles in the North American Grappling Association, and for the past two years has been considered one of the top young prospects in mixed martial arts. Lima has had two long runs of success in his MMA career, with five- and six-fight winning streaks to his credit.

Tickets are on sale now at Ticketmaster charge-by-phone (204) 726-3555 and www.ticketmaster.ca.

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