I posted this over at my blog but wanted to share with you guys, and hear your thoughts...
Here is the post...
If you haven't heard, Kos is out of his UFC 109 fight with Paulo Thiago due to an undisclosed injury. His fearless buddy Mike Swick is stepping up to take his place. While tons of analysts are saying how great a move this is, I don't see it that way. This fight is a very dangerous one for Swick, and another loss could take him from the land of contender to cellar of pretender.
Think back to the Dan Hardy vs. Mike Swick fight. It was set to determine who would take on the superman of the division in GSP. In other words, Mike Swick was two wins away from being crowned champion and enshrined in history as another TUF 1 vet who made the journey to become champion.
Instead he fought an inspired Dan Hardy and lost a very one sided unanimous decision. I am sure he is still feeling the hangover of a loss, but is Thiago the right rebound fight?
Since stepping into the UFC, Paulo Thiago has only lost one fight and that was to long time top contender Jon Fitch. He also own wins over injuree Josh Koscheck and Jacob Volkmann. Prior to his UFC contract he won an impressive ten fights in a row, even more impressive is the fact that he finished every single one of them!
Swick has been fighting much better competition over the past few years, but Thiago is dangerous. Although Swick has never been defeated by submission (in his career), Paulo's submission game is nasty!
I am not saying the old everyone can beat everyone bit, but what I am saying is that this is an unnecessary risk for Swick. Odds are, he jumped at the chance to step in for Kos. Why not wait for Joe Silva to call and offer your next fight?
I get that AKA feels that they should protect each other, and that they are a tight knit group, they should be, but in my opinion the decision to take this fight is a bad one for Swick. It is almost a lose-lose situation. If he wins, he beat a fighter that would then be 2-2 in the UFC, not a big deal for someone who was a fight away from a shot at the title. If he suffers a loss, it hurts...BAD! It slides him farther away from a title shot, and possible puts him in a position where he may never climb back to the top of the heap.
This is not a fight breakdown or pick, I am just saying that this is a very dangerous fight, and one that holds more weight for Swick than many...