Forget the Maverick 88. This is the best quality value priced shotgun currently on the firearms market. You've probably heard good things about the NEF/H&R Pardner Pump. Well this is basically the same shotgun with a couple of changes. The receiver is thicker and shaped slightly different, and the sights are upgraded to ghost rings. The ghost ring sights are excellent and allow fast target acquisition.
The Hawk 982 can accept stocks, tube extensions and other parts from the Remington 870, however the barrel is threaded differently. NEF Pardner pump barrels work however., and these shotguns have become pretty common. Consider the Hawk 982 to the NEF Parder as the Mossberg 590 is the Mossberg 500.
I personally think that this is the best home defense or tactical shotgun $200 can buy. It has a 3" chamber. Its also has an aluminum trigger guard, and it is actually parkerized rather than the bluing currently done on the 870 express line,. 870 mag tube extensions work but there is a person who makes extensions for the Hawk 982 to bring it to 7+1 and even with the barrel.
Another plus is the cushy recoil pad. No need for a limbsaver!
I bring my hawk 982 to 7+1 by feeding it Centurion Mini-Buckshot shells. Lower recoil, but still a great home defense round. Many shotguns have problems with the mini shells, but the Hawk 982 has been flawless in cycling and extracting these shorter shells. One of the reasons I bought the shotgun was because of its ability to use mini shells, and I was not disappointed.
I can definitely give this shotgun a thumbs up and say that it is a great value at $200.