Image via UFC.com
In one corner, you have a scrappy guy that was known for giving everyone he's faced fits in the cage (until his last fight at least). In the other corner, you have a former top prospect who's trying to turn his career around after two bad losses in a row. Jason Brilz (18-4-1, 3-3 UFC) meets TUF 9 winner Ryan Bader (12-2, 5-2 UFC) in a light heavyweight bout at .
Bader is currently ranked at number 17 at light heavyweight on the USA Today/BE Consensus Rankings, while Brilz is unranked. Bader was a top-ten guy before his two losses, and the one to Ortiz particularly hurt his standing. Brilz would likely make the list with a W here. This fight will be on the televised portion of the preliminary card, and will be shown live on Spike TV. The Spike broadcast begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.
How do these two stack up?
Brilz: 36 years old | 5'11" | 71.5" reach
Bader: 28 years old | 6'2" | 74" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
Jason Brilz's first fight came all the way back in March of 2000. Eight years later, he made his UFC debut with a TKO victory over Brad Morris at UFC Fight Night 15. He went 2-2 over his next four bouts (including losing a controversial decision to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira) before getting knocked out in 20 seconds by The Janitor in his last bout. The full-time firefighter will look to reignite his faltering UFC tenure with a win over Bader.
Ryan Bader is a two-time All-American wrestler who started off his UFC career on The Ultimate Fighter 8, and cruised to a six-figure contract. He had won five fights in a row in the UFC over the likes of Keith Jardine and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira before meeting Jon Jones at UFC 126, where he was choked out in the second round. Next up was Tito Ortiz and despite entering the fight as a huge favorite, Bader was knocked out in under two minutes. He is looking to rebound from those losses and stay in contention in an increasingly deep light heavyweight division.
Why should you care?
Despite the ugly loss to Ortiz, Bader is still a top guy in the division. If he can handily take care of Brilz, that will prove it. If he has trouble with him, as a lot of others have, he's going to be facing even more questions after the bout. Watch it! Be the one to ask questions!
More UFC 139 preview coverage from Bloody Elbow after the jump.