UFC Fight Night 33: Dylan Andrews vs. Clint Hester Dissection

Preview and analysis of the UFC Fight Night 33 middleweight scrap that pits TUF alum Dylan Andrews vs. Clint Hester.

WHO: Dylan Andrews vs. Clint Hester
UFC Fight Night 33
Brisbane Entertainment Center in Brisbane, Australia
WHEN: Friday, December 6

Dylan Andrews vs. Clint Hester -- Middleweight bout

The Ultimate Fighter 17 offspring Dylan Andrews (17-4) and Clint Hester (8-3) epitomize the TUF class whom were somewhat undistinguished on the show but inevitably might have the horsepower to stick around in the UFC.

New-Zealand-born Andrews goes by "The Villain" but only vaguely embodies the label. He was humble and respectful on the reality show, which contrasts sharply with his doggedly determined and ultra-feisty fight style. The 34-year-old is most comfortable when working his hands (12 of 17 wins by TKO), but also showed flashes of gritty takedown defense and grappling. Andrews' heart, will and spirit might be his most formidable traits, while his submission defense -- as evinced by dropping three of his four losses by tapout -- is an exploitable area.

Hester, who's a bit younger at age 27, boasts an even clip (3-3) as a professional boxer in the Cruiserweight class, and six of his eight wins in MMA are via TKO (with one submission and decision apiece). He's an explosive striker who's augmented his boxing background with a highly functional and particularly vicious Muay Thai acumen, which was on full display in Hester's lone post-TUF bout, a visceral 3rd-round TKO of Bristol Marunde by diagonal elbow.

Both fighters are robust finishers (two decisions for Andrews, one for Hester) and have been susceptible to submissions, which account for all but one of their individual defeats. The meat and potatoes seems to be Andrews' tenacity and multifaceted offense versus Hester's considerable brawn, explosiveness and lights-out striking.

Andrews is far from an especially imposing wrestler or a dominant submissionist but does have the edge in those areas, and the gap between their striking is much closer than in the grappling/wrestling department. While he can't match Hester's one-shot power, Andrews has a solid grasp of striking fundamentals, good instincts and a stable beard. Additionally, Andrews dispatched Jimmy Quinlan and a wide-shouldered powerhouse -- much like Hester -- in Papy Abedi by TKO in his pair of Octagon turns, which further diminishes any perceived advantages Hester might have on the feet.

There's no question that Hester has the stand-up thunder to pull the curtains early, however I like Andrews here for nothing more than being the more well-rounded fighter who's proven he can take punishment and endure adversity.


My Prediction: Dylan Andrews by submission or positional TKO.

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