Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
This one's a little closer than people might think.
Erick Silva fights with a lot of energy, and that's most noticeable in the striking phase. However, his striking, while dangerous, may be a bit overblown. Silva has three T/KO victories in the 14 wins on his docket (or 21 percent). I'd still say, though, that he has a power advantage over Jay Hieron, who has nevertheless used his technique and guile to snag six T/KO wins in 23 total victories (or 26 percent).
This is the same Jay Hieron who kept Jake Ellenberger at bay and even won a round (in my opinion) from the knockout artist. He is smart and will probably punish Silva if he tries to rush forward, which he may very well do. According to FightMetric, Silva lands 1.98 significant strikes per minute, but absorbs 4.3. He literally takes two to give one.
Silva is a little more diverse in his attack than Ellenberger, although punches are his bread and butter. It's entirely possible that one fist or knee from Silva could put Hieron on roller skates. Both of these men have respectable chins, so I don't foresee a knockout. However, I think Silva has the dynamism to batter Hieron.
Slight advantage: Silva