Rousimar Palhares steps in to the Octagon for the third time in 2012 when he squares off against Hector Lombard at UFC on FX 6. The two powerful middleweights will try to pick up an important win in the division.
He enters as a moderate underdog against the ferocious middleweight. If Palhares can pick up the win against Lombard, it will go a long way to erasing the humiliation he received in his last outing versus Alan Belcher.
And he will.
Palhares is 6-2 in his last eight fights. The two losses are first-round TKOs to top-of-the-line competition. That has to be an area of concern against the heavy-handed Lombard. Getting the fight to the ground will be a point of emphasis for Palhares.
Lombard is also coming off a loss. He had a lackluster performance in his UFC debut against Tim Boetsch. The loss snapped a 25-fight unbeaten streak and all the hype he had entering the UFC.
Leglocks are scary. Palhares leglocks are downright terrifying.
Getting the fight to the mat will not be easy. Lombard has world-class Judo that will give him the grappling advantage. However, Palhares' brute strength is an asset anytime he is able to be close enough to grab an appendage.
This fight could end up being up similar to Lombard's debut. A slow, methodical fight that may not live up to the billing. Expect each fighter to be tentative early on. Lombard will be weary of Palhares' takedown attempts, and Palhares will want to avoid a deadly strike from Lombard.
The fight will pick up after a couple of minutes. Each fighter will want to erase the last loss of their record and want to do so in impressive fashion. That will open the fight up and leave one fighter making a mistake that will cost them the fight.
Lombard's overaggressive nature will be the cause for him losing this fight.
The power of Lombard will make Palhares cautious, but Palhares will close the distance and get inside at some point. Once Palhares is able to get a hold on Lombard, he will find a way to get him to the ground. Submitting him will not be easy, but it only takes one chance, and he will do it in the first round.
Watch for another leglock finish by Palhares.
Palhares will submit the fiery Lombard and try to make another run up the middleweight ladder.