Paul "Semtex" Daley's sucker punch on Josh "Kos" Koscheck at UFC 113 in Montreal sealed his release from the UFC. "He's done," Dana White said. "I don't care if he's the best 170-pounder in the world, he'll never fight in the UFC again."
This very talented British fighter allowed his emotions to get the better of him as he delivered a shot to Koscheck's chin after the conclusion of the round.
Six months later and fighting for Strikeforce, Paul Daley delivered a counter left hook to Scott Smith's chin that sent the welterweight veteran to the mat unconscious.
Speaking with Sherdog.com, Daley stated,“I thought [my left hook] would play a part in the fight. My corner was calling for the left hook-right straight, which I threw as the first combination and had him rocked. But I’ve seen in his previous fights that there was an opportunity to come over his right hand with a left hook when he threw it."
Delivering a devastating knockout strike to Scott Smith, Paul Daley's next opponent will most likely be Strikeforce's KJ Noons.
Fully understanding that Dana White is a man of his word and will most likely never allow "Semtex" the opportunity to compete within the UFC octagon again, I've created a hypothetical list of UFC welterweights that would be a tremendous match up for the Brit.
Based on the recent initiative to finish fights, this select group of UFC welterweights was chosen directly for their ability to earn a victory either through strikes or a submission.
I have not taken into consideration a fighter's overall record, current winning streak, past performances or any other factor other than that specific fighter's ability to finish the fight.
I welcome your comments.
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Not particularly strong on his feet, Dennis Hallman is a wrestling/jiu-jitsu specialist. With an overall MMA record of 50-13-2, "Superman" has 5 (T)KO victories and 38 submission wins.
Most recently earning a TKO victory over Karo Parisyan at UFC 123, Hallman has a 2-1 UFC record.
With 65 total fights to his credit, Dennis Hallman has the experience and fight game equipped for any challenge.
Suffering only 5 (T)KO losses out of 65 total fights, Dennis has the ability to minimize the damage taken while successfully completing a takedown and locking up a submission.
This fight is obviously a striker vs. wrestler match up with polar opposite fight games. However, as Daley looks to finish his fights on his feet, Hallman looks to finish fights on the mat. 38 submission victories is indicative of a fighter who is looking for a tap out and not a lay-and-pray style wrestler.
Fully realizing that Dennis Hallman will suffer a severe knockout loss if he attempts to stand and bang with Paul Daley, I chose "Superman" at #10 for his overall fight game experience and his incredible record of submission victories.
Truly a clash of styles for matchmaker Joe Silva and the UFC.
At 16-6 with 11 (T)KO's and 5 submission victories, not one of Markham's fights has gone the distance. All six of his losses are a result of a (T)KO proving to me that this Bettendorf, Iowa, fighter is in the cage to stand and bang.
An IFL World Grand Prix Finalist, Rory has a solid fight pedigree outside of the UFC.
With a 1-2 UFC record, Markham has lost the exact same way that he has won; by (T)KO.
There is no illusion as to what Rory Markham's game plan is in the octagon. He has come to fight and is willing to stand toe to toe with his opponent until he is either unconscious or his hand is raised in victory.
Not as polished of a boxer as Paul Daley, the fireworks from this match up would light up the night sky. Markham and Daley would stand in the center of the octagon and throw bombs at one another until the victor is the one who is left standing.
With the recent push from the UFC to finish fights, this match up guarantees a (T)KO victory.
At 6'2", 170 pounds of fighting muscle, Anthony "Rumble" Johnson has dynamite in his strikes. With a 5-3 UFC record and an 8-3 overall MMA record, "Rumble" has recorded six (T)KO victories within the octagon.
Gaining experience with every fight, Anthony has grown up in front of our eyes since his debut for the UFC at Fight Night 10 in June 2007.
Fighting out of San Jose for Cung Le's Universal Strength Headquarters, this wrestling/san shou specialist has developed a tremendous stand-up game to complement his strong ground attack.
With a record proving that Anthony Johnson steps foot inside the octagon to knock out his opponents, a match up with Paul Daley would be tremendously exciting.
A taller, potentially stronger and just as quick Johnson may have the striking ability to allude Daley's boxing skills and counter with a KO head kick or strike of his own.
Continually improving his overall fight game, "Rumble" vs. "Semtex" would be a fight worthy of Knockout of the Night honors.
Oh, if only!....
With a 22-5 MMA record and a 2-1 UFC mark with 14 career (T)KO's, Jake Ellenberger attacks his opponents in the octagon with ferocity and no remorse.
This Omaha, Nebraska native's fight plan is punch first, take down second.
A recent destruction of John Howard as well as a TKO victory over veteran Mike Pyle at UFC 108 has laid the foundation for this heavy handed Nebraskan to battle undefeated jiu-jitsu specialist Carlos Rocha at UFC 126.
Losing a split decision to former WEC welterweight champion and current UFC welterweight prospect Carlos Condit, Ellenberger's only defeat within the UFC octagon has been by the narrowest of margins.
Jake Ellenberger brings experience, powerful strikes and a propensity to stand and trade with his opponents into the octagon against an equally balanced Paul Daley.
Matching strike for strike, a match up between Ellenberger and "Semtex" would be explosive.
My No. 6 pick of BJ Penn may come as a surprise to some of you. With an overall MMA record of 16-7-1 with seven (T)KO victories and six submission wins, BJ's fight game may not be at the forefront to match up well with Paul Daley.
I would agree with some of the pundits, to a degree. The previous BJ Penn who was mired in back to back decision losses to current UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar would probably succumb to a knockout loss by "Semtex."
However, the newly evolved and re-focused "Prodigy" who showed the intensity and drive of his former self by knocking out Matt Hughes in 21 seconds at UFC 123 is a resurfaced animal.
BJ has always had a solid chin and tremendous, unorthodox, yet highly effective boxing skills. He has stood in the center of the octagon and exchanged with some of MMA's highest level strikers including Duane Ludwig, Georges St. Pierre and Jens Pulver.
Boxing prowess aside, BJ's ground game is legendary. A black belt in jiu-jitsu, Penn's ability to dominate position and work for submissions or apply devastating ground and pound has left opponents tapping for mercy.
On their feet, the clash of boxing styles would be prolific. BJ Penn with his many defensive holes, but ability to find a home for his power strikes vs. the crisp, technical striking of Paul Daley.
If the fight would go to the ground, "The Prodigy" would have a sizable advantage over the inexperienced "Semtex."
Whether standing or on the mat, this fight would be one for the ages and would not see a decision.
Suffering a first-round TKO loss to Paul Daley at UFC 103 in September of '09, Martin Kampmann will be looking to avenge this loss.
Quoted in a statement for MMAJunkie.com, Kampmann believes the fight ended prematurely.
"I think they stopped the fight too early because I've been knocked down before and won fights, Kampmann said. I was still on my feet. Obviously I was hurt. I was rocked, but I've been rocked in a lot of fights and come back and won.
"I've never been knocked out, but I've been knocked down a lot of times and still come back and won fights. So I think it was stopped prematurely, but I'm more disappointed in myself."
Establishing a 2-1 mark after the TKO loss to Daley, Kampmann is still improving as a stand up specialist as well as a solid ground tactician.
Obviously, a rematch with Paul Daley would not see the mat. Both fighters known for their power and eagerness to stand and trade, a second bout between Kampmann and Daley will no doubt end with the same result as their first.
With the opportunity to avenge a previous loss for Kampmann, a match up between these two heavy hitting welterweights could be stand-up clinic for the ages.
At 26-5 with all but one of his victories by (T)KO or submission, Carlos Condit has earned UFC wins over Dan Hardy, Rory McDonald, Jake Ellenberger, Brock Larson and Dan Alessio.
A former WEC welterweight champion and possessing a current record of 3-1 in the UFC, Condit's fight game is tremendously explosive and equally balanced. Fighting with a high level of tenacity, Carlos brings it each and every time he steps foot within the octagon.
Recently moving to Albuquerque, N.M., to train with the world famous team at Greg Jackson Mixed Martial Arts, the "Natural Born Killer's" intent in the cage is to finish each opponent and leave the decision out of the judges' hands.
Considering the recent backlash against Jackson and his team by UFC President Dana White regarding White's perception of Jackson's team's unwillingness to finish fights, Carlos has additional motivation to stand and trade or work relentlessly for a submission within the time allotted.
Two different fighting styles with polar opposite personalities, I am eager to watch a match up between Carlos Condit and Paul Daley.
The name Matt "The Immortal" Brown does not come to mind as one of the UFC's top welterweights. With a 11-10 MMA record and a 4-4 mark within the UFC, his fight resume is equally unimpressive.
What is impressive about "The Immortal" one is that Matt has never been knocked out within the octagon, signifying a strong chin. Known for his willingness to trade strike for strike, Brown's fight plan within the cage is always to knock out his opponent.
Even though Brown trains with jiu-jitsu black belt Jorge Gurgel and is quite advanced in the grappling game, his desire to exchange punches is what keeps him an active member of the UFC roster. Dana White loves Brown's intensity and "lay it all out on the line" attitude.
There is little debate that Paul Daley is a better striker than Matt Brown. However, heart and determination are powerful assets within the octagon. And "The Immortal One's" heart is never questioned.
There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Matt Brown would attempt to match punch for punch with Paul Daley until someone is knocked out.
And with 21 professional fights to his credit without a single T(KO) loss, that someone could be the Brit.
This Brazilian-born American Top Team fighter was at the precipice of the UFC welterweight division. Losing a one sided affair to current UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre, Alves is looking to climb back up the UFC welterweight ladder.
Known for his devastating Muay Thai and excellent boxing skills, Thiago's stand up game rivals most in the octagon.
With TKO victories over UFC hall of fame fighter Matt Hughes as well as Karo Parisyan and Kuniyoshi Hironaka all by way of knees and punches, "The Pitbull's" tenacity lives up to his nickname within the cage.
Earning Knockout of The Night honors with the destruction of Hughes, Alves continues to stand strong and trade strikes with the best welterweights within the UFC.
Recent losses to John Fitch and Georges St. Pierre will not deter this hard-hitting Brazilian. He steps foot inside the octagon to bang with a fierce combination of punches, knees and kicks.
Due to his recent losses, Thiago Alves has dropped in the UFC welterweight depth chart. However, a much anticipated stand-up striking affair between Alves and the always hard-hitting Daley could catapult Thiago back into title contention talk.
That is if "Semtex" doesn't deliver a bomb of a left hook to "The Pitbull" first.
As Ric Flair has always said,"To be the man, you have to beat the man." And the best welterweight in the world currently is Quebec, Canada's own, Georges "Rush" St. Pierre.
Ranked as the No. 2 Pound for Pound fighter in the world by Sherdog.com behind Anderson Silva, GSP has dominated the UFC welterweight division since winning the title a second time at UFC 83 in 2008 over Matt Serra.
The consummate professional, even the best in the world continues to improve his fight game. Training with legendary boxing instructor Freddie Roach for his much anticipated match up with No.1 contender and trash-talking junkie, Josh Koscheck, St. Pierre's stand-up game is consistently evolving and reaching new heights.
With the ability to gracefully move in and out of harms way and deliver jaw rattling punches and kicks, Georges striking prowess is what fight instruction DVD's are made of.
Additionally, "Rush" has evolved into a dynamic wrestler and explosive ground and pound tactician. Delivering head splitting elbows from the guard has become a trademark of GSP earning him decisive victories within the octagon.
Would Paul Daley's limited overall fight game match up with the balance and tremendous abilities of Georges St. Pierre? I think not.
But, would Daley's desire to be the best in the world and satiate his tremendous ego drive him to destroy the current champion and put on a show for the world to see? That answer is a resounding, YES!