UFC 137 Results: Will Hatsu Hioki Be a Threat at Featherweight?

Sal DeRose@@TheSalDeRoseCorrespondent IOctober 30, 2011

Japanese featherweight Hatsu Hioki in his first UFC fight came out and stole a split-decision victory from George Roop at UFC 137.

The win, though, was very uninspiring for a fighter who had such high hopes entering the UFC as one of the top three featherweights in the world—and a legitimate threat to current UFC champion Jose Aldo.

His ground game looked awesome as he was able to get Roop down and hold him there. But from that point on he was unable to do anything significant. He barely attempted submissions and barely did any damage to Roop.

Hioki did have great transitions, but against Aldo he will have to stand and take some punches before he goes to the ground.

Hioki's striking was lacking and wasn't all that great. He took some nice shots from Roop, and at one point was being egged on by Roop to attack but kept circling away from Roop, who was just throwing hands wildly.

Chad Mendes might eventually fight Hioki and against Mendes, Hioki won't be able to do the same thing he did to Roop.

Even against other top featherweights, Hioki might have a really tough time. Roop isn't a top-25 featherweight and barely got away with the split decision.

If he can better his striking, then yes, Hioki is a legit threat—but after seeing his performance tonight, maybe he is a little too overrated.

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