Misreading Your Opponent

This excellent post on Marcus Aurelio's training regimen going into UFC 74's match with Clay "Gastank" Guida had this ominious quote from Aurelio:

All that he has is wrestling and gas. If my gas tank is full I'm not going to have a problem. I know I'm stronger and my striking has gotten a lot better. My confidence is very high right now. I'm working on my hips for Jiu Jitsu. It's all in the hips. If it goes to the ground and he throws a punch, I'm going to slip it and catch his arm. What else is he going to do? Hit my face? The way that I train, if Pit bull and Denis don't knock me out, then Clay Guida isn't going to hurt me. Strong Jiu Jitsu also builds confidence by knowing that you can turn a fight around and win in 10 seconds with a submission.

Aurelio was correct in his estimation that Guida didn't have the tools to beat him, but he sure wasn't prepared for the dreaded sprawl and stall that Guida unleashed to win the decision.

If your opponent can dictate where the fight takes place you have to prepared to win the fight on the feet, not just not get KO'd.

Now Aurelio joins Fabricio Werdum in the ranks of the super talented BJJ artist and all around great fighter who lost by decision in their UFC debut. And in a boring fight. We haven't heard word one about Werdum fighting in the UFC since his loss to Arlovski and I expect it'll be a while before Maximus returns. Bummer.

This is why I've been giving props to Roger Huerta for his scrap against Crane. Huerta had no fear and kept going back into the Lion's Den showing that he wanted to WIN the fight, not just grind out a decision.

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