A battle of UFC rookie welterweights -- Dan Stittgen (7-1) vs. Stephen Thompson (5-0) -- opens up UFC 143, but one of the combatants is undefeated in over 60 fights and trained by one of the best in the business.
How do these two stack up?
Stittgen: 31 | 6'1"
Thompson: 28 | 6'0" | 75" reach
How did these two get here?
Stittgen is a third-year pro, competing mainly in the central U.S. He's finished six fights, five by various submissions. Until a recent decision victory, Stittgen had never gone outside the first round.
While the undefeated Thompson is relatively new to MMA, he comes into the UFC with a tremendous kickboxing background (37-0 amateur, 20-0 pro, 46 total KOs) and a slew of championships to his credit. He made his pro MMA debut in early 2010 and has fared well in the southern U.S. circuit with decision wins in his last two.
What else should you know?
Thompson (ranked #10 in our recent World MMA Scouting Report) has done some training with Firas Zahabi and is a black belt in several martial arts with a blue belt in Brazilian jiujitsu. He's clearly the more experienced fighter of the two, but Stittgen is no easy draw for Thompson. MMA Fighting's Mike Chiappetta did a feature on Thompson, which is worth checking out.
Why should you care?
With two guys looking to make an impact and a history of finishing opponents on both sides, this could be a very fun fight if both Thompson and Stittgen decide to really go for it. Alas, the curse of the boring UFC debut may arise as well.
How can you watch?
Facebook at approximately 7 PM EST
You can catch morepreview content from Bloody Elbow after the jump.
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- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit Staff Predictions - Tim Burke
- Frank Mir Thinks UFC 143's Fabricio Werdum Is Heavyweight's Best Grappler - Matthew Roth
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- UFC 143: Dana White 'No One Knew GSP At One Time Either' - Matthew Roth
- UFC 143: Details Of The New PPV Opening Montage, RIP Gladiator Man - Matthew Roth
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- UFC 143: Picking Knockout, Submission And Fight Of The Night Bonuses - Brent Brookhouse
- UFC 143 Judo Chop: The Striking And Grappling Technique Of Nick Diaz - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Pre-Fight Press Conference Coverage And Video - Tim Burke
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- UFC 143: A Look At The Ground Games of Fabricio Werdum and Roy Nelson - Ben Thapa
- UFC 143: Nick Diaz Details The Story Behind His Elite Level Conditioning - Anton Tabuena
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit Betting Lines - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Video: Nick Diaz Talks Carlos Condit, Georges St. Pierre - Kid Nate
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit - FX Channel Preliminary Card Dissection - Dallas Winston
- UFC 143: Nick Diaz Vs. Carlos Condit Defines 'Gameness' - Kid Nate
- UFC 143: Undefeated Stephen Thompson Hopes To Make Case For Karate In MMA - Kid Nate
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit - Facebook Preliminary Card Dissection - Dallas Winston
- UFC 143: The Contradictory Marketing Of Nick Diaz And How The Reem May Not Be As Awesome As You Think - Ben Thapa