There are only two welterweight matchups at UFC 162 in Las Vegas, and both are opening the preliminary card. Seth Baczynski (18-9-1 MMA, 4-2 UFC) fights newcomer Brian Melancon (6-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) in the 2nd of 2 fights streaming live on the UFC's Facebook page.
While UFC matchmaking generally pairs winners against winners and losers against losers, this fight is an exception with Baczynski coming off a loss and Melancon winning his most recent contest. All of the preliminary card action kicks off at 7 PM ET/4 PM PT on Facebook, with the remaining four prelim fights airing on FX at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT.
How do these two stack up?
Baczynski: 31 years old | 6'3" | 75" reach
Melancon: 31 years old | 5'8" | 70" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
"The Polish Pistola" saw his middleweight run on TUF 11 end via DQ, when he soccer kicked Brad Tavares in the head. The two men fought again in the season finale with Tavares prevailing by unanimous decision. Baczynski was subsequently released from the UFC, but after two quick wins he was soon back with the promotion. From there, Baczynski rattled off 4 wins in a row, including a submission win over Matt Brown. His streak ended against Mike Pierce at UFC on FX 6 in Australia, but his overall run of form has assured him of job security for the time being.
Melancon has not fought since 2011, as injuries and a marriage kept him out of action in 2012. Strikeforce closed it doors in 2013, leaving the Texan seemingly without a home. Fortunately for him, he won his last fight against Felipe Portela and he was given a UFC shot tonight vs. Baczynski. He has the wrestling advantage over Baczynski but is giving up 7 inches in height and obviously runs the risk of serious ring rust.
Why should you care?
Baczynski has great finishing skills and Melancon will probably need to make a dynamite first impression to warrant his Strikeforce-to-UFC transition.