Miocic vs Moldanado, A Classic David vs Goliath Match. Or is it?
The Classic David vs. Goliath Match or is it? So goes the adage that when life throws you a lemon, you make lemonade out if it. This seems as what the Ultimate Fighting Championship is trying to do after by publicizing the Miocic vs. Maldonado Match.
Let’s blink for a minute and imagine you don’t already know this, but Saturday 31st May has been set as the date all hell breaks loose at The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3 finale when home favorite Light heavy weight Fabio Maldonado takes on the behemoth Heavy weight Stipe Miocic. Everything is now set.
The fight which had been planned for months almost came to a standstill when Junior Dos Santos bowed out of the bout owing to a hand fracture during his training session. The Croatian descent Miocic who was really looking forward to the fight that could have pitted him as a potential contender for the heavyweight championship was bummed by his opponent’s misfortune. The UFC was for a while in a dilemma as replacing Dos Santos was no easy task. No other heavy weight fighter seemed to fit the profile until Maldonado surprisingly volunteered himself for a shot at the big boys table. He was an obvious or rather the only pick to promote the Brazilian match and attract his home crowd.
The 6′ 1″ 34 year old Maldonado weighs 205lb and hails from a history of professional boxing clocking in a record of 17 wins and 3 losses. His 32 year old opponent weighs 240lb at 6′ 4″ with his impressive mixed martial arts skill is a former golden gloves champion.
Miocic has had an impressive run in the UFC since 2011 with a total of 11 wins (7KO, 1 submission and 3 by decision) and 1 loss while Maldonado since making his debut in the UFC in 2008 has won 21 matches and lost 6. Both have had victory in their last matches with Maldonado having a 3 winning streak record most recently winning against Gian Villante and Miocic having previous defeated Gabriel Gonzaga and Roy Nelson.
Both are well skilled in the Muay Thai and boxing techniques but Maldonado has an impressive 61% striking success and 50% grappling success rate while his opponent is rated with a 47% striking success rate and 43% grappling success rate. However Miocic has impressive defensive rates at 64% (striking defense) and 78% (takedown defense) against Maldonado’s success rating of 55% (Striking defense) and 67% (takedown defense). This means that Maldonado who claims that his boxing and jiu-jitsu technique is better than his opponent’s will charge without fear at Miocic and will deliver the bloody violent battle that he promised.
However Miocic who is also a paramedic and firefighter still has the energetic charge from when he lost his first match in the UFC against Stefan Struve through a Knockout Stoppage (punches) in late September 2012.This famed match earned the duo fight of the night honors. He later on bounced back with impressive wins over Gonzaga and Nelson through unanimous decisions.
Miocic has recently dispelled claims that this is a loss-loss battle for him citing that he respects his worthy opponent and is going to try and use his weight advantage.
The Miocic vs. Maldonado match set at the Ginasio do Ibirapuera gymnasium in Sao Paulo promises more for the Brazilian. Experts argue that this is a meaningless battle for the Cleveland state university graduate and communications/marketing degree holder Miocic. The match is seen just as a way to keep himself busy and in the limelight as he tries to cement his name as an elite heavyweight contender. The stakes are set higher for him as nothing short of a knockout is expected from him. However if the clearly strength disadvantaged Maldonado pulls a David and Goliath stunt on Miocic he would experience a career hindrance that would be hard for him hard to crawl out off.
Maldonado on the hand has absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain. If he loses, oh well it was expected and he would have put up a good fight, but if he wins he would have made incredible history and success for himself. This could actually elevate his career to newer heights and popularize him around the world.
With nothing to gain the Miocic vs. Maldonado battle is the kind our mothers taught us to avoid, but for the fans all they could do is hold their breath for the D-day.