At Ulitmate Fight Night 21 on Wednesday, March 31st, two rising stars of the UFC will collide in Stefan "The Skyscraper" Struve and Roy "Big Country" Nelson. My friend and colleague, Robert Gardner, has a different take on how this fight will go down , but I will prove him wrong once again.
Stefan Struve has many skills and strengths at his disposal. Against Roy Nelson, most of them will come into play, which will be a big advantage. Stefan Struve's biggest weapons are easily his submissions, which he has used to ensure victory an outstanding 14 times in only 22 professional fights. Another note here is that Struve has only gone the distance once, and that was against Paul Buentello at UFC 107.
His striking is also above average. Struve boasts a short but impressive kickboxing resume. 4-0, with three wins by KO. Struve is well rounded enough to pose a big threat to Roy Nelson, which is probably why they are fighting. Go figure.
One thing Struve should seek immediately is the canvas. No, not by getting KO'd, although there is that possibility. I'm saying he should take Nelson down, if at all possible. Struve has a ground game that rivals Demian Maia and Ronaldo Souza—and that is some good company. If Struve has top position, he can attempt to wear Roy Nelson out and then submit him.
Should Struve find himself on his back, which could very well happen given Nelson's grappling background, then he should try to keep Nelson from getting side control. From the guard, Struve can use his long legs and perhaps lock in a triangle choke. From side control, Roy Nelson can gain the crucifix position, and then his chances of ending the fight are very much increased.
If the fight drags on past the first round, that will also be to Struve's advantage. Put the two side-by-side. It doesn't take a genius to figure out which one is in better shape.
Struve will be looking to rebound from his poor performance against Paul Buentello, and he will take his frustration out on Roy Nelson. Stefan Struve by submission, round two.