The UFC on FUEL TV 4 event will feature a bantamweight fight between TUF finalist TJ Dillashaw and Vaughn Lee. Dillashaw is coming off his most dominant performance in the octagon and Lee is coming off a huge win against Japanese star Kid Yamamoto. The winner moves one more step up the bantamweight ladder. The fight will take place on Wednesday night airing on FUEL TV. Let’s see how this one breaks down.
Vaughn Lee (12-7-1) comes into this bout off the big upset win over Yamamoto at UFC 144 in February. It was a nice rebound win over losing to Chris Caraiso in his UFC debut at UFC 138. Lee has won seven fights via submission and four via TKO/KO. He has been submitted in four of his seven losses and finished via TKO/KO two more times. It’s safe to say that he does not like letting fights goto the judges.
TJ Dillashaw (5-1) comes into this bout off a dominant unanimous decision win over Walel Watson. It was a nice rebound win for him as well since he was also coming off a loss. He was knocked out by Jon Dodson in the TUF finals for his first defeat as a professional. Dillashaw has two submissions wins to this credit and one stoppage via TKO/KO. The wrestling based fighter mixes up his striking pretty well which sets up his wrestling takedowns where he exudes good top control.
This fight will basically come down to the wrestling ability of Dillashaw against the submission game of Lee. Dillashaw does a very good job of transitioning from striking to wrestling as most fighters from Team Alpha Male are trained to do. Dillashaw showed good top control and a solid ground and pound skills in his win against Watson last time out. He’s more of a damage via accumulation guy than sheer brutal ground and pound like Fedor in his prime. He’ll need to be aware of Lee’s submission game from his back as that’s the position he caught Kid Yamamoto in the armbar. The armbar and the rear naked choke seem to be his preferred method of submission.
Lee also has accurate striking and does have some wrestling ability of his own, but he’s only successful 40% of the time with his takedowns while only defending 40% of the takedowns against him. Dillashaw is versed in submissions and excels in the scramble positions which will be an area to keep an eye on in this fight.
Ultimately, I think Dillashaw’s wrestling and transition game will be too much for Lee. Dillashaw should take this via decision or catch Lee in a submission at some transition point in the fight for the win.