UFC 135 Fight Card Primer: Takeya Mizugaki vs. Cole Escovedo

via video.ufc.tv

The UFC premiered their newest version of The Ultimate Fighter this week, and it features fighters in the featherweight and bantamweight divisions. There is but one fight representing those two weight classes on the UFC 135 card, and you're looking at it. These two guys will be out to prove that TUF 14's awesome debut was no fluke and the little guys can bring it. Former WEC bantamweight title challenger Takeya Mizugaki (14-6-2, 1-1 UFC) will face off with Cole Escovedo (17-7, 0-1 UFC). 

Mizugaki is currently ranked at number 9 at bantamweight on the USA Today/BE Consensus Rankings, while Escovedo is unranked. Both are coming off losses in their last bout. This bantamweight UFC 135 fight will take place on the preliminary card, which will streamed live on Facebook. The Facebook stream begins at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT.

How do these two stack up?

Mizugaki: 27 years old | 5'7" | 69.5" reach
Escovedo: 30 years old | 5'7" | 69" reach

What have these two done recently?

Mizugaki: L - Brian Bowles (UD) | W - Reuben Duran (SD)) | L - Urijah Faber (SUB)
Escovedo: L - Renan Barao (UD) | W - Steven Silver (SUB) | W- Michihiro Omigawa (SUB)

How did these two get here?

Takeya Mizugaki had an up-and-down career in the WEC. He arrived in grand fashion, getting a bantamweight title shot against Torres in his first WEC fight. He dropped a five-round decision in an excellent fight. He alternated wins and losses over his next seven fights, dropping the last one to former WEC champion Brian Bowles by unanimous decision. That dropped his UFC record to 1-1.

Cole "Apache Kid" Escovedo became the first WEC featherweight champion way back in 2002, and eventually lost it to Urijah Faber in 2006 (After defending it once in fours years). He fought once in the IFL after he dropped the title, where he got knocked out by legend Jens Pulver. After another loss and 2 1/2 years out of the fight game, he returned in 2009 at bantamweight and won the Palace Fighting Championships bantamweight title, handing highly-touted prospect Michael McDonald his only defeat to date. He has gone 6-2 at BW so far, his only loss coming in a return match with McDonald and his last bout, a decision loss to Renan Barao.

Why should you care?

Mizugaki can hang on the feet but he's a wrestler at heart. His instincts might lead him into danger though, because Escovedo is an excellent guard player. Bantamweights bring it. That's all you need to know.

You can catch more UFC 135 preview content from Bloody Elbow after the jump.

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