Yes, the time is close, for Dominick Cruz to defend his Bantamweight title against Urijah Faber on July 2 at UFC 132.
In all honesty, this Bantamweight bout isn’t going to get the whole MMA world overexcited initially.
Recently the UFC has come under heavy criticism for their lackluster main events which have failed to impress of late. The Georges St-Pierre vs. Jake Shields fight was overshadowed by some much better battles that night (Mark Hominick and Jose Aldo spring to mind). UFC 132’s main event however should prove to be a more exciting clash between Cruz and Faber.
Let’s take a look at how the fight might unfurl round by round.
Both men are capable strikers, but I think Urijah and Dominick will take their time in the opening minutes of the fight, feeling each other out and getting familiar with their opponent.
I think we will see a few flurries of Dominick’s trademark combinations coming forward, but nothing too committed or too reckless. Faber will be looking for the takedown early in the fight, as he is the far more accomplished submission artist—holding 13 submission victories to his name, compared to Cruz’s single win via tap-out.
Faber attempts takedowns in round 1, but Cruz does well to snuff them.
The Story of The Round: Cruz utilizes fast combinations whilst Faber looks for the takedown—an expected start to the fight.
By now, both fighters are comfortable with each other’s style and approach to start to loosen up a bit. Dominick’s stand-up game starts to improve as he lands some good shots on Faber. Cruz has to be careful when moving forward, as Faber is always on the lookout for a takedown. And there it is!
Faber gets a single leg takedown and Cruz is now in dangerous territory.
He is on his back and Faber is no slouch from inside the guard. If Cruz can somehow get himself into top position his ground and pound would be a welcome asset to his arsenal. As it is though, the round grinds down to a close as both fighters finish on the mat—Faber unable to slap on any significant submission attempts and Cruz is happy to see the second round come to an end.
The Story of The Round: Faber takes Cruz down and scores big. Cruz is fairly defensive for the best part of the five minutes.
Dominick is a lot more wary of the takedown now and doesn’t leave any legs trailing. He looks a lot more alert on his feet—as a few swift jabs followed by a head kick just scuff Faber’s defending arm.
The two fighters exchange punches—which leads to an entangled clinch upon the cage wall. Cruz utilizes the support of the caging in order to prevent a takedown. In trying too hard for the slam to the mat, Faber has found himself locked into a guillotine.
The fighters fall to the ground, but as they do, Cruz’s guillotine is broken and he finds himself on his back. This time Faber is able to reach side control. Cruz does a good job of preventing the mount, as Faber is unable to do much damage from the advantageous position he finds himself in. The horn rings and that’s the end of round 3.
The Story of The Round: Both fighters displayed some effective stand-up, Cruz scoring slightly better. Faber once again showed his strengths when the fight went to the mat.
The championship rounds. The last two rounds when good fighters are separated from great fighters.
Straight away, Faber looks desperate for that early takedown—shooting in but not getting close. He thinks an early takedown in the round would spell great danger for Cruz and I have no reason to think any different. However, Dominick isn't the Champion for nothing, and he quickly tries to neutralize this by using his strong stand-up game.
Mid-way through the round Faber is able to get the take down, but it doesn’t turn out quite how he would have liked!
Cruz finds himself in top position thanks to a sleek sweep, and now proceeds to rain down a barrage of devastating elbows and punches. The referee is close by and Faber looks in trouble. The referee takes a closer look and IT’S ALL OVER!
Dominick Cruz defeats Urijah Faber through a devastating ground and pound!
Cruz is jubilant as he circles the ring in celebration, whilst Faber is conscious but hurting from the defeat.
How do you see this one going?
Disagree with my mystic powers?
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And of course, as always, thank you for reading!