Martin Kampmann began his MMA career as a dangerous striker, recording knockouts in five of his first six victories.
However, despite working with Ray Sefo at Xtreme Couture, Kampmann hasn't been able to display that same knockout power against elite competition. In 13 UFC fights, Kampmann has only stopped one opponent with strikes.
Thiago Alves, meanwhile, has finished several opponents inside the Octagon with his dynamic striking game. At one point, Alves went on a run of five straight knockout victories, including a flying knee that finished welterweight legend Matt Hughes.
While Alves may possess greater knockout power, Kampmann is equally skilled on his feet. Though he has a greater chance of having his chin tested by a big shot, Kampmann could very easily outstrike Alves if he avoids eating any knees from the Brazilian.
In 27 career fights, Alves has only been knockout out by an unexpected up-kick from Jon Fitch. Against Kampmann, Alves probably won't have to worry about being knocked out, but he will have to try to press the action and disallow the Danish fighter from being able to use a reach advantage.
Kampmann's three knockout losses have come against powerful strikers, but that is a category that Alves falls under. While he did withstand some big shots from Diego Sanchez, Kampmann will want to avoid leaving himself open as much as possible against Alves.
Against Jake Shields and Sanchez, Kampmann was able to completely shut down his opponents' takedown attempts. Even though he came out on the losing side of those fights, Kampmann proved that he has made major improvements in his wrestling.
Alves surprised many by defending the takedowns of Josh Koscheck in October 2008. However, Alves was unable to stay on his feet in his following two fights, against Georges St-Pierre and Jon Fitch.
While he may be able to prevent Kampmann from taking this fight to the ground on most occasions, Alves hasn't appeared to be the fighter he was when he beat Koscheck, possibly the result of a knee injury suffered prior to his fight with Fitch.
Considering his constant improvement in the wrestling department while training at Xtreme Couture, don't be surprised if Kampmann finds a way to take this fight to the ground at least once.