UFC 158 fight card primer: Daron Cruickshank vs. John Makdessi

Esther Lin, MMAFighting

Bloody Elbow previews all 12 fights from Montreal tonight for UFC 158, including a lightweight preliminary card bout between Daron Cruickshank and John Makdessi.

UFC 158 is centered around the top 3 welterweight fights on the main card, but the prelims are definitely worth a view. The first preliminary card bout on FX should be a good one, as Daron Cruickshank (12-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC) meets John Makdessi (10-2 MMA, 3-2 UFC) in a lightweight affair.

Both men are coming off impressive victories in their last respective fights, and have shown great athleticism and striking inside the cage. You can catch this fight at the top of the FX broadcast, which airs live tonight at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT.

How do these two stack up?

Cruickshank: 27 years old | 5'8" | 72" reach
Makdessi: 27 years old | 5'8" | 68" reach

What have these two done recently?

Cruickshank: W - Henry Martinez (KO) | W - Chris Tickle (UD) | W - Jesse Gross (TKO)
Makdessi: W - Sam Stout (UD) | L - Anthony Njokuani (UD) | L - Dennis Hallman (SUB)

How did these two get here?

Cruickshank competed on TUF 15, losing to James Vick by KO in the preliminary round. He did make his official UFC debut on the season finale, sending Chris Tickle out of the UFC with a decision win. The Michigan native ended 2012 with a sensational head kick KO of Henry Martinez at UFC on Fox 5 in Seattle. Not counting TUF "exhibition" fights, Cruickshank has won his last 6, including over TUF 16 runner-up Mike Ricci.

Makdessi immediately made his way onto the UFC highlight reel in April 2011 at UFC 129, when he knocked out Kyle Watson with a tremendous spinning backfist. That brought the Canadian's record to 2-0 in the UFC, but fortunes changed when he fought Dennis Hallman at UFC 140. Makdessi was overpowered by Hallman's strength and wrestling, and was submitted in the opening round of their catchweight contest (Hallman missed weight). It was Makdessi's turn to miss weight at UFC 145 against Anthony Njokuani, and to make matters worse he lost a rather uneventful decision. With his back against the wall, Makdessi impressively dispatched Sam Stout at UFC 154, and is once again matched up favorably with another striker.

Why should you care?

Because it's a fun fight on paper. Does it run the risk of being more strategic and less of an offensive onslaught? Maybe, but just hope this falls under the category of pure entertainment.

SBN coverage of UFC 158: St-Pierre vs. Diaz


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