The first fight of the evening at UFC 162 in Las Vegas sees Mike Pierce (16-5 MMA, 8-3 UFC) and David Mitchell (12-2 MMA, 1-2 UFC) square off in the welterweight division. This is a significant leap in competition for Mitchell, who is only a few months removed from getting his first UFC win on his third attempt. For Pierce, he's on the preliminary card for his 4th consecutive fight.
Pierce has the decided advantage on the feet, but Mitchell has never been finished in his MMA career. Likewise, Mitchell is a submission specialist but Pierce has yet to be stopped in his 5 losses. The UFC 162 preliminary card begins on Facebook at 7 PM ET/4 PM PT, and then continues on FX at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT.
How do these two stack up?
Pierce: 32 years old | 5'8" | 71" reach
Mitchell: 33 years old | 6'0" | 76" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
Pierce debuted in the UFC in 2009 against former WEC standout Brock Larson, and the Oregonian pulled off what was then considered a surprise victory. He lost on short notice to Jon Fitch at UFC 107 to close out the year, but you could argue that that's the last time he's had a clear cut loss. He's 7-2 in his last 9 with split decision losses to Johny Hendricks and Josh Koscheck. Understandably, his time on the preliminary card has come primarily due to his perceived lack of entertainment value, but he stands as one of the better fighters at 170 lbs and deserves better than to be opening the Facebook prelims.
Mitchell compiled an 11-0 record (with 9 submissions) on the regional scene, including wins over War Machine, Bobby Green, and Tim McKenzie. His UFC debut against T.J. Waldburger in 2010 ended in a loss, but he is in the UFC record books for most combined submission attempts in a fight (22). His next fight vs. Paulo Thiago wasn't as back-and-forth and unfortunately for him he had another decision loss on his record. This past January he finally earned a UFC win by sending Simeon Thoresen out of the promotion via unanimous decision. This is the 2nd time in a row that Mitchell is opening up a UFC preliminary card.
Why should you care?
Pierce not only needs to win but he probably needs a "statement" finish to get off the preliminary card and back in against top 10-15 opposition.