a blog by La Kifo
Today has been a slow day, but we have some stuff coming up pretty soon. Anyway, UFC is on tonight and it's free.
If you head over to FS1 later tonight, you can catch UFC Fight Night 89 featuring two impressive fighters Rory MacDonald
and Stephen Thompson
Rory MacDonald is an interesting story for a variety of reasons. Mainly, he is and was a MMA kid. He grew up training/fighting in his native land of British Columbia, Canada. Not only was he a MMA kid, but a hyped one too. Going into his last fight, a lot of talk surrounding MacDonald was of his technique and fighters IQ. When pundits spoke about him, they often used the word prodigy. How could he not be? Pro since 2005, his rise to the #1 contender in the welterweight division was well documented.
He strolled into UFC 189, a championship bout, with a look of determination that you will find on nearly every single fighter. Robbie Lawler was his opponent, a fighter who up to that point had shown dangerous finishing ability but little diversity. What a lot of people did not expect was for Lawler to evolve his game. I didn't, Lawler played a cautious game, counter striking and lining up combinations with impeccable timing. It was certainly the bloodiest fight I had ever seen, as the mat was drenched in pools of blood that seemingly refused to disappear even well after the fight was finished and the main event had started. It was also a great boxing match between the two, there was 0 time spent on the mat, they stood up the entire time.
Robbie Lawler in the final round delivered one of the cleanest punches I have ever seen the center of MacDonalds face and absolutely flattened his nose. MacDonalds nose had already been battered early in the fight, as even at that point in the final round his nose was spewing blood. As soon as that punch landed it was very easy to tell something was seriously wrong with MacDonald as he turtled up into a fetal position while Lawler advanced with a short fury of punches before the ref could get in between the two to end the fight.
I like Rory MacDonald a lot, I think he will eventually be the welterweight champion but the point I am getting at is he's beatable. As much as I would like to outright give this fight MacDonald, Thompson poses some very serious problems for him.
Thompson is a former kickboxer who holds serious knockout power. A lot like Robbie Lawler, Thompson is going to want to stand on his feet the entirety of the three rounds. Another similarity to Lawler is his striking ability mixed with his strong kicks and agility. Not in the sense that they have similar styles of fighting because they don't, the similarity between the two is how advanced their stand up game is, which MacDonald had trouble with. He has nearly the same build as MacDonald, at 6 feet with a 75 inch reach (MacDonald with 76.5 inch reach). What should stand out tonight for Thompson is his impressive footwork and ability to dodge punches in a flurry. Even more impressive is you can see him duck and weave then throw out quick powerful combinations.
The more I look at these guys, the more I think that MacDonald will struggle. MacDonald to win this fight will have to get Thompson to the ground, where MacDonald has the advantage. But, I think MacDonald will struggle to take down Thompson. Thompson was a kickboxer for awhile, and the transition from kickboxing to MMA displayed his inefficiencies on the ground. But Thompson isn't a rookie anymore, he is pretty much a veteran and has had time to work on his takedown defense, as well as his ground game. He will still be at an disadvantage when on the ground, he won't be an easy out if MacDonald does manage to get him there.
My heart is saying MacDonald, but I am going with Thompson tonight. Thompsons striking ability will overwhelm MacDonald and he will suffer the first back to back loses in his professional fighting career.
Follow Us Elsewhere