Combat Sports

APFC 2 Lightweight Showcase Breakdown: Hopper vs. Kindig

Image for APFC 2 Lightweight Showcase Breakdown: Hopper vs. Kindig

MMA at a ballpark isn’t something that usually happens, but this Friday night, the weekend of action inside the cage begins at a venue normally reserved for the old ballgame as Anthony Pettis Fighting Championship (formerly Showtime Fighting Championship) returns to action for APFC 2 and the APFC 2 main event.

Milwaukee’s Franklin Field, the home stadium for the American Association of Professional Baseball’s Milwaukee Milkmen, will play host to APFC 2 on Friday night.

Live coverage of APFC 2 begins Friday at 5:30 pm ET/ 2:30 pm PT on Facebook with amateur prelims, followed by the professional undercard at 7 pm ET/ 4 pm PT, also on Facebook.

Main card action will be streamed at 9 pm ET/ 6 pm PT on the UFC‘s subscription-based streamer, UFC Fight Pass.

As is the case with any outdoor event taking place during the summer, if any of our readers live in the Milwaukee area and have tickets to APFC 2 and the APFC 2 main event on Friday night, consult the local weather forecast over the next few days and monitor the promotion’s social media feeds for any news of a rain out on fight night.

Lightweight Showcase at APFC 2 Friday Night

Barring any postponed fights between now and Friday, APFC 2 currently features a 10-fight card, highlighted by a showdown at 155 lbs.

Johnny Hopper (5-1 MMA, APFC promotional debut), who’s won all of his professional fights inside the distance, meets undefeated Jacob Kindig (3-0 MMA, APFC promotional debut) in the showcased bout.

No championship belt is at stake here, so the APFC 2 bout will be an advertised maximum of three rounds at five minutes per round at the ballpark on Friday.

APFC 2 Lightweight Showcase Fighter Comparison

Going into the contest on Friday night, unbeaten Jacob Kindig stands as the taller man at 5-foot-11, compared to the 5-foot-10 frame of Johnny Hopper.

Unlike most of the MMA fight breakdowns seen on Overtime Heroics, no reach information was accessible online for this bout.

Johnny Hopper Looks to Waste No Time Against Jacob Kindig at APFC 2

Johnny Hopper, a veteran of the True Revelation MMA promotion, has gone 4-1 in his last five MMA appearances, scoring a first-round submission due to a rear-naked choke back on May 22 during True Revelation 46’s co-main event against Kurstan Davenport (2-10 MMA).

In fact, first-round finishes have become a recurring theme for Hopper and his camp, as dating back to his amateur MMA days, eight of his 11 previous fights have resulted in a finish before the end of the opening stanza, including all of his professional wins inside the cage.

The one and only time he didn’t end the fight inside the distance was in June of last year when he was bested by split decision after three rounds against Aaron Mitchell (11-3-1 MMA) during True Revelation 43’s main event, a contracted catchweight at 160 lbs.

Thus, it stands to reason that Hopper would want to end the APFC 2 bout early on Friday night, but will he? Tune in and find out.

Jacob Kindig Looks to Keep The Momentum Going on Friday

In the other corner, Jacob Kindig, a veteran of the Art of Scrap promotion, has gone 4-1 in his last five MMA appearances and is on a four-fight winning streak dating back to his amateur career. Last time out, he scored a first-round knockout in just a minute and 15 seconds against Ben DeLeon (0-3 MMA) during Art of Scrap 4’s main card in a welterweight contest on April 15.

Kindig only turned professional about a year ago, this after a planned pro debut against Chris Gard (1-1 amateur MMA) in Midwest Championship Fighting‘s MCF 18 in October of 2019 was scrubbed prior to fight night.

At that point, he returned to the amateur ranks for a contest against David Shoemaker (3-5 amateur MMA) in February of last year, winning by unanimous decision. Kindig and Shoemaker then fought one another in the professional MMA debut for both men in July of last year, with the former taking the rematch (second-round knockout: unanswered strikes).

While Jacob Kindig’s career development was slowed by more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s picked back up with four wins in a row, but he faces his toughest test in the cage thus far against Johnny Hopper in the APFC 2 contest on Friday night.

Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction

The APFC 2 lightweight scrap seems to be a toss-up, as both men have shown the ability to get the finish, but a slight stylistic edge has to be given to Jacob Kindig, a blue belt in both Brazilian jiu-jitsu and Bang Muay Thai kickboxing, compared to Johnny Hopper, a former wrestler at William Penn University in Iowa.

Watch For Hopper’s Slick Submissions

One aspect of Johnny Hopper’s fight game that shows itself on film is his ability to get the victory by submission, as he did against Davenport in his most recent fight. Although this fight was scheduled for three rounds, Hopper needed less than half of one to get the win.

While Davenport connected with strikes early on, Hopper established control of the fight by landing a takedown and going to side control.

This fight was over as a contest as soon as Johnny Hopper took Kurstan Davenport down, using his wrestling to work his way to the back mount, softening Davenport up with strikes and eventually locking in a deep rear-naked choke in under two minutes to get the win.

All Johnny Hopper will need to win is as little as one takedown. If he takes Jacob Kindig down even once, it could be the opening he needs to score the submission.

Jacob Kindig Can Be Brutal With Strikes

In the other corner, look for Jacob Kindig to strike against Johnny Hopper at will on Friday, as he did against Shoemaker in his pro debut.

During the second round of a scheduled three, the action was halted temporarily due to an eye poke, but upon the fight’s resumption, Kindig landed a vicious knee to Shoemaker’s head, continuing an onslaught of shots from the first round.

While Shoemaker attempted to return fire with a punch, it was clear that he was gassed by this point, and Kindig went in for the kill with a two-punch combination to knock him down, eventually scoring with ground and pound shots to bloody Shoemaker with elbows above his right eye, pouring on the strikes to score the knockout.

If Jacob Kindig is able to land a fierce combination against Johnny Hopper, the victory will be his on Friday.

Final Thoughts

Given the unique nature of the card, it’ll be worth tuning into APFC 2 on Friday.

This one looks like another home run.

Prediction: Johnny Hopper by First-Round TKO

main image credits:

Embed from Getty Images

Share this article

Drew Zuhosky has been writing about MMA since the spring of 2018. A graduate of Youngstown State University in Youngstown, OH, Drew enjoys a good game and an even better fight. When he's not writing, you can find him playing video games and listening to music.