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November 18, 2015


[Combat Zone Press Release]

SALEM, NH (November 17, 2016)—Mike “The Animal” Scapicchio, the undefeated amateur Bantamweight belt holder, faces challenger and newly-minted amateur Featherweight champion Danny “El Principe” Abad Friday night in Combat Zone MMA 56 "Undisputed", and Abad has a prediction of the outcome.

Said Abad (4-3), who trains at Jackson-Wink in Albuquerque, New Mexico with Holly Holm, who just pulled off the biggest upset in UFC history by knocking out superstar Ronda Rousey in Australia, “It’s not going to be an easy fight, but it’s going to be a quick one."
“He’s got that right,” said Haverhill, MA's Scapicchio (4-0), a 10-year journeyman electrician and member of IBEW 103 in Boston, who will graduate with a B.S. in applied sciences from Wentworth Institute of Technology in the spring.

But the No. 3 ranked flyweight in the Northeast thinks that Abad is dead wrong about who will emerge from the cage with his belt.
“There’s no magic spell just because you train with UFC fighters,” said Scapicchio, who has trained with celebrated UFC fighter John “Doomsday” Howard at Spero’s MMA in Plaistow, NH. “You’ve got to earn that victory in the cage yourself.”

The fight started well before the mixed martial artists will meet face-to-face in the cage at Rockingham Park, with Facebook being the battle ground. The war of words has been waged on other social media platforms.
In an interview posted on youtube, Abad said, “I excel everywhere. He can excel most at running, he can excel at tapping (out), and he can excel at choking. He’s not excelling at anything else. He’s not beating me. I’ll take it where I want it. This will be a finish.”
Dave Spero, Scapicchio’s coach, isn’t buying any of it.

“Judging from the fact Mike is 4-0, and from the amount of phenomenal work he’s put in this training camp, I really don’t see it going the distance,” he said. “The other fighters Danny has fought haven’t been able to put pressure on him. Nobody that Danny has fought has been able to put on the pressure that Mike brings. Mike is too much for Danny to handle. Mike will keep pressure on you until he decides to let his foot off the gas. Nobody is going to put pressure on him. This is Mike’s fight to take.”

Scapicchio, who is the drummer for the local cover band “Sizzle”, is a well-rounded fighter. The blue belt in Jiu-Jitsu wrestled at Dom Savio Prep in East Boston and has been refining his boxing skills with that city’s former pro pugilist Dom DiMarzo. He’s also been training six days per week on his cardiovascular and muscle endurance.

The mental aspect of his game is just as important because a split-second lapse can result in defeat.
“Focus is the number one thing. You have to keep your focus all the time. This is more of a patience game that anything else. You've got to know when to explode and when to hold back. Adrenaline can take away from your cardio in the cage if you’re over excited, so you have to know when to take the fight to him,” he said. “That’s one thing we have in common. We both take advantage of mistakes in the cage, and once he makes his, he’s going to be in serious trouble.”
This will be Abad’s last fight as an amateur before turning pro, and he doesn’t lack for confidence.
“I’m not looking past him, I’m looking through him, I’m looking over him,” Abad said of his opponent. “I can play the mercy rule and he can hand over his belt. We don’t have to fight. You will see on November 20 who the reigning champion is.”

Scapicchio shot back with, “I’m very much looking forward to the fight. There is no way he’s going back to New Mexico with my belt.”
The title bout is one of two championship tilts on the 13-bout stacked card of pro and amateur MMA and Muay Thai action. Manchester, NH's undefeated Shawn Melanson (2-0) will climb into the cage with the seasoned Vince Ciotoli (5-3) from Endicott, NY with the MMA lightweight amateur title up for the taking.

In pro MMA action, Manchester, NH's Tom Caron (2-0) looks to extend his unbeaten streak against hard-knocking veteran Ralph Johnson (9-16) in a match at 185 pounds, and the always tough Jeff Anderson, a former Combat Zone headliner, will try to improve his 10-10 record against Lewis Corapi (6-2) in a battle at 155 pounds.
The under card features many of the up-and-coming fighters from the Merrimack Valley and across the Northeast.
Doors for Combat Zone 56 open at 5:30 PM on Friday and the first fight is at 7:00 PM. Tickets range from $40 for General Admission to $120 ringside seating and may be purchased at or by calling co-promoters Calvin Kattar and Jamison Kattar at 978-361-6772. Parking at the track is free.

The weigh-in will be on Thursday, Nov. 19 in the Sports Club at the racetrack at 6:00 PM. and it is free and open to the public.

The card, which is subject to change is:
Combat Zone 56“Undisputed” Fight Card
*** Amateur Muay Thai ***
140lbs   John Bourget 1-0 (Taunton, MA) vs James Kerivan 2-1 (Boston)
175lbs Mike Ellis 0-0 vs Scott Camuso Sullivan 0-0
125lbs Marvin Castro 0-0 (Boston) vs Kevin Flanagan 0-1 (Manchester, NH)
155lbs   Zach Calmus 0-1 (Cambridge, MA) vs Christian Pereira 0-0 (Boston)
*** Amateur MMA ***
145lbs   Alex Sinprasith 5-12  vs Dan Ward 0-4 (Plaistow, NH)
135lbs Leo Gomez 0-0 vs Brendan Marotte 0-0 (Plaistow, NH)
170lbs Gerald Meuse 3-0 (Cambridge, MA) vs John McAndrews 3-1 (Nashua, NH)
155lbs CJ Kevlin 1-2 (Gilford, NH) vs Brian Cosco 2-3 (Revere, MA)
155lbs   Dylan Lockard 3-0 (Derry, NH) vs Chris Mehu 3-1 (Nashua. NH)
*** Professional MMA ***
185lbs   Ralph Johnson 9-16 (Worcester, MA) vs Tim Caron 2-0 (Manchester, NH)
155lbs Lewis Corapi 6-2 (Somerville, MA) vs Jeff Anderson 10-10 (Lincoln, RI)
*** MMA Lightweight Amateur Title Fight ***
155lbs  Vince Ciotoli 5-3 (Endicott, NY) vs Shawn Melanson 2-0 (Manchester, NH)
*** MMA Bantamweight Amateur Title Fight ***
135lbs Danny Abad 4-2 (Albuquerque, NM)  vs Michael Scapicchio 4-0 (Plaistow, NH)