UFC on FX 6 fight card primer: Fuel TV prelim card

Chad Mendes weighs in at UFC 148 - Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Bloody Elbow presents their UFC on FX 6 fight card primer, previewing all the action at UFC on FX 6: Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson. Here, we look at the Fuel TV prelim card, including Chad Mendes, Joey Beltran, and more.

Friday night is the UFC on FX 6, with the Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes finals, plus a George Sotiropoulos vs. Ross Pearson main event. Before that, the UFC presents six preliminary fights live on Fuel TV. In this fight card primer, we take a look at the Fuel prelim card. Be sure to check back later for the main card and Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson. The UFC on FX 6 prelims airs live on Fuel TV this Friday night, December 14, starting at 6:00 p.m. ET / 3:00 p.m. PT. The main card follows on FX, starting at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.

Chad Mendes (12-1 MMA; 3-1 UFC) vs. Yaotzin Meza (18-7 MMA; UFC Debut) - Featherweight

This is the featured fight of the prelim card, and due to a last minute replacement, it's an odd choice for that status. Team Alpha Male fighter Chad Mendes was an undefeated 11-0 when he challenged Jose Aldo for the UFC Featherweight title earlier this year. Since that loss, he's come back with an impressive KO of Cody McKenzie - just the second stoppage win of his WEC/UFC tenure. This is his first fight since some legal troubles over the summer. Meza steps in for Hacran Dias here. The American fighter is not well known, though he does have six years as a pro to his name. He's fought in decent promotions like TKO and Rage in the Cage, but he's coming in off a loss to the 2-1 (at the time) 1 year pro Andres Quintana.

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Igor Pokrajac (25-9 MMA; 4-4 UFC) vs. Joey Beltran (14-8 MMA; 3-5 UFC) - Light Heavyweight

Igor Pokrajac has been in the UFC since 2009. He put together a nice 3 fight win streak recently, but that was ended by Vinny Magalhaes at UFC 152. He is a replacement for Anthony Perosh in this fight. Beltran has been a fixture of wild Heavyweight UFC slugfests for the past three years. He's got incredible heart, but takes a beating much more than he gives one. He made the drop down to Light Heavyweight in a successful non-UFC bout earlier this year, then returned at LHW and was absolutely bludgeoned by James Te-Huna in a trademark Mexecutioner performance.

Mike Pierce (15-5 MMA; 6-3 UFC) vs. Seth Baczynski (18-8 MMA; 4-1 UFC) - Welterweight

Mike Pierce is a grinding wrestler who has had real success in the UFC. His only loses come against top contenders in Jon Fitch, Johny Hendricks, and Josh Koscheck (in a fight many felt Pierce won). His style is not super fan friendly, but he's on a two fight win streak, trying to once again become a title contender. Baczynski was on TUF season 11 and lost his UFC debut, but after a pair of wins on the regional scene, he was brought back. He's now on a 6 fight win streak, with 4 of those inside the Octagon. That streak includes the best win of his career - a submission victory over Matt Brown. He's replacing an injured Kyle Noke here.

Ben Alloway (12-3 MMA; UFC Debut) vs. Manuel Rodriguez (9-3 MMA; UFC Debut) - Welterweight

This is one of the non-final fights from TUF included on the card. Both men came from Team Australia. Alloway was a semi-finalist, losing to Brad Scott, while Rodriguez won his quarter-final fight, but then had to drop out of the show due to an injury. Here, he gets a chance to show what he couldn't on the show.

Brendan Loughnane (5-0 MMA; UFC Debut) vs. Mike Wilkinson (7-0 MMA; UFC Debut) - Lightweight

The other TUF prelim fight features two Team UK fighters. Like Alloway vs. Rodriguez, this includes one semi-finalist (Loughnane, who lost a semi-final decision to Norman Parke), and one injured fighter in Wilkinson. Both are undefeated, but have minimal pro experience. Look for Wilkinson to use the same submission skills he showed on the show.

Nick Penner (11-2 MMA; 0-1 UFC) vs. Cody Donovan (7-2 MMA; UFC Debut) - Light Heavyweight

Penner is a Canadian who put together a nice 11-1 record on the Canadian scene before making his UFC debut earlier this year. That fight was a losing effort against Anthony Perosh in March. He's been on the shelf since then with an injury. For what it's worth, he also holds an MMA win over Butterbean. The debuting Donovan comes from the Grudge Training Center, which is a good camp. He has decent experience, including a Bellator win last year, and is coming in on a three fight win streak. He has not been a particularly active fighter, with only 1 or 2 fights a year since his debut in 2008.

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