2012 World MMA Light Heavyweight Scouting Report: #4 - Misha Cirkunov

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Name: 22px-flag_of_latvia Misha Cirkunov
Nickname: --
Age: 24
Height: 6'3"
Location:
Canada

Is Latvia the next region to explode with quality mixed martial arts talent? Probably not, but for thirteen years - it was home to one of MMA's most talked about light heavyweight prospects in Misha Cirkunov (5-1). The 24-year-old emigrated from Latvia to Canada when he was thirteen years old, immediately making an impact in the Canadian wrestling and Judo scenes. By age 16, Cirkunov was the #1-ranked Judo player in the country and dominating the competition on the high school wrestling circuit.

Inevitably, Cirkunov got involved in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under trainer Sam Zakula at Xtreme Couture Toronto. Four years after he dominated the amateur wrestling and Judo circuits, Cirkunov was taking gold at the 2007 ADCC North American Jiu-Jitsu Trials.

If being a quick study wasn't enough, Cirkunov is a prime physical specimen, wielding an enormous 6'3" frame of pure muscle. With his hulking frame and vast background in various grappling arts, Cirkunov is a dominating presence inside the cage, tossing opponents around with ease and threatening from top control.

Cirkunov could become a dangerous power grappler with more experience and technical refinement. He possesses a powerful ground and pound attack, but he lacks the striking skills for anyone to consider him well-rounded. Cirkunov has, however, stated that improving those skills is a priority for him moving forward.

A loss to Cesar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu fighter Roy Boughton in June of 2010 took a little wind out of his sails early in his career, but it's forgivable considering his novice status in the sport at the time. Since then, he's rattled off four straight wins, capping off his 2011 campaign with a victory over Ali Mokdad at The Score Fighting Series 3 in December. He also dominated at Grappler's Quest at the UFC Fan Expo during UFC 129 in Toronto. With any luck, the UFC was paying attention, and they've got their eye on Cirkunov.

Footage of Misha Cirkunov in action after the jump...

Flyweight Bantamweight Featherweight Lightweight
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#1 - Rony Mariano
#2 - Aljamain Sterling
#3 - Chris Holdsworth
#4 - Josh Hill
#5 - Fabiano Fernandes
#6 - Claudio Ledesma
#7 - Sirwan Kakai
#8 - Kyoji Horiguchi
#9 - Leandro Hygo
#10 - Pedro Munhoz
#1 - Hacran Dias
#2 - Joey Gambino
#3 - Brandon Bender
#4 - Lance Palmer
#5 - Jim Alers
#6 - Anthony Gutierrez
#7 - Max Holloway
#8 - John Teixeira
#9 - Cody Bollinger
#10 - Bubba Jenkins
#1 - Fabricio Guerreiro
#2 - Alessandro Ferreira
#3 - Adriano Martins
#4 - Justin Salas
#5 - Neilson Gomes
#6 - Eduard Folayang
#7 - Zorobabel Moreira
#8 - Anton Kuivanen
#9 - Jordan Rinaldi
#10 - J.P. Vainikainen
Welterweight Middleweight Light Heavyweight Heavyweight
#1 - Andrey Koreshkov
#2 - Dhiego Lima
#3 - Brandon Thatch
#4 - Nordine Taleb
#5 - Hernani Perpetuo
#6 - Brock Jardine
#7 - Alan Jouban
#8 - Mohsen Bahari
#9 - Andre Santos
#10 - Stephen Thompson
#1 - Antonio Braga Neto
#2 - Marcelo Guimaraes
#3 - Claudio Silva
#4 - Bojan Velickovic
#5 - Ildemar Alcantara
#6 - Michal Materla
#7 - Elvis Mutapcic
#8 - Tor Troeng
#9 - Jack Hermansson
#10 - Tim Ruberg
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#2 -
#3 -
#4 - Misha Cirkunov
#5 - Kyle Cerminara
#6 - Robert Drysdale
#7 - Artur Alibulatov
#8 - Thiago Perpetuo
#9 - Steve Bosse
#10 - Juha Saarinen
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Misha Cirkunov vs. Ali Mokdad

Misha Cirkunov vs. Jeff Doyle

Loads of grappling footage is available on Youtube as well.

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