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UFC Fight Night: Holohan vs. Smolka - Idiot's Guide Preview to Neil Seery vs Jon Delos Reyes

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David Castillo breaks down the three things you should know about two flyweights from the undercard who got switched to the spotlight for UFN 76 in Ireland.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Fight Pass undercarders turned spotlighters travel up the flyweight hierarchy this October 24, 2015 at the 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland.

The Match Up

Flyweight Neil Seery 15-11 vs. Jon Delos Reyes 8-4

The Odds

Flyweight Neil Seery -155 vs. Jon Delos Reyes +135

Three Things You Should Know

1. Seery is approaching retirement age, but his hands have done everything except wither with time.

At 2-2 in the octagon, Seery is an interesting presence in the octagon given his age. His only losses are to Brad Pickett and Louis Smolka. He hasn't slowed, nor does he look disinterested. He's one of the tougher fights a prospect could draw. He's the Purell version of John Lineker.

2. Reyes is a project in prospect clothing. But his first two UFC fights were way too tough to gauge his real value.

Reyes got paired up with Kyoji Horiguchi and Dustin Kimura out the debut gate, and predictably went 0-2. He's a much better fighter than his record indicates. Unfortunately we didn't learn much in his win over Roldan Sangcha-an, as Roldan is a complete unknown. The odds are where they should be; not too close to call, but certainly too close to be certain about predicting.

3. The odds only reflect on the polarizing difference between the two fighter's styles more than the gap in talent.

Reyes is a bit like a grappling version of Uriah Hall (before he beat an elite fighter); the talent is there for splashy sequences, but the essential ingredients are missing. Reyes has the athleticism to bull forward with pressure, and close the gap at range. His striking is what you might call "nominal", but he has solid power in his hands when committed to boxing his way inside. Particularly with his left hook.

His striking is kind of a moot point. Seery is just that much better on the feet. Seery has a very machine like way of stringing his punches together, which is not to say he's predictable on the feet. His striking rhymes like an encyclopedia when he gets going, putting together combinations like classical music more than an MTV jam. He's also really tough, having never been knocked out.

Seery has traditionally lost via submission, but only early on in his career, when youth is punished by the inexperience of grappling. It's a tough fight to predict because I think both men can win in intervals; Reyes with the odd takedown, and Seery with the odd exchange on the feet. At the same time, I can see Reyes getting completely blanked. He doesn't own a varied arsenal on the feet, and Seery wouldn't fear his power even if he did have good striking (he's just that durable). I don't think it's an easy fight for either man. They have the kind of styles that will look like they're interrupting one another instead of combating each other. But within that struggle, Seery should be able to keep himself upright long enough to maintain control. It doesn't hurt that he's fighting in Ireland. Just saying.


Seery by Split Decision