We brought you news earlier today of the UFC's signing of standout Icelandic grappler, Gunnar Nelson, and it didn't take long for his first match-up in the Octagon to be booked. Sherdog confirmed with German welterweight, Pascal Krauss, that he's been assigned the task of welcoming Nelson to the UFC on the September 29th UFC on FUEL TV 5 card in Nottingham, England:
"I am well aware that Nelson isn’t just one of the top prospects, but also one of the top up-and-coming black belts competing in MMA," Krauss told Sherdog.com. "I have trained with many outstanding grapplers myself, like Dean Lister and Ben Askren, though, and fighting in the UFC is not a jiu-jitsu competition, so I’m really looking forward to welcoming Gunnar to the Octagon!"
Krauss is primarily known as a ground fighter, but he struggled with the wrestling and striking of John Hathaway in a loss last May (the first defeat of Krauss's career), and he's certainly never faced someone with Nelson's level of BJJ skills before. Another concern for Krauss is that Nelson has some skills on the feet as well, and his karate background has led to a handful of KO and TKO wins in addition to the dangerous submission threat he poses on the ground.
Gunnar Nelson (9-0-1)
W Alexander Butenko (submission - armbar) - Cage Contender XII
W Eugene Fadiora (submission - neck crank) - BAMMA 4
W Danny Mitchell (submission - rear naked choke) - Cage Contender VI
Pascal "Panzer" Krauss (10-1)
L John Hathaway (unam. decision) - UFC on Fox 3
W Mark Scanlon (unam. decision) - UFC 122
W John Quinn (submission - rear naked choke) - CWFC 37