The UFC on FOX 6 main card will get underway with a featherweight bout between Erik Koch and Ricardo Lamas. The winner of this fight could earn the next title shot and face the winner of the Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgar match that will take place at UFC 156. Let’s see how this one breaks down.
Erik Koch (13-1) comes into this fight off an extremely long layoff. He last fought in September 2011 and won a unanimous decision over Jonathan Brookins. Koch has won three fights via TKO/KO and seven fights via submission. His lone loss came against former number one contender Chad Mendes in the now defunct WEC promotion.
Ricardo Lamas (12-2) is coming off a big win over former number two featherweight in the world Hatsu Hioki. Lamas won the fight via unanimous decision which was this third consecutive win. He has won three fights via TKO/KO and three fights via submission. Both of his losses came in the WEC promotion against current UFC veterans Yuri Alcantara and Danny Castillo.
This should be a solid fight, I think Koch is the slight betting favorite last time I checked. That surprises me since he hasn’t fought in a year and a half. Also, Lamas has fought and defeated better competition in his last couple of outings. Both fighters are well rounded with Lamas being more dependent on his wrestling, but he’s also well versed in submissions once he gets his opponents to the mat. Koch has shown the ability to finish guys with strikes lately, but is well versed on the ground as most of his wins have been via submission.
I have to think Lamas will look to close the distance in this fight and use his wrestling base to wear on Koch. He probably realizes that constant pressure coupled with the long layoff for Koch will work to his advantage as the fight goes on. He’ll have to work to improve position if he can get Koch to the ground since his guard is fairly active. The x-factor is the takedown defense of Koch in this fight as he has defended 82% of the takedowns attempted against him.
I like Lamas in this fight via unanimous decision. I think he has improved quite a bit over the last year or so, and I think that plus Koch coming off the long layoff will be too much to overcome.
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