Taking a Chance

ufc-espn+8There is plenty going on for fighters as they prepare for a fight as the preparation to get ready can take three months or longer.

It is a lot of training and putting in work as much as it is studying an opponent to figure out tendencies that can be exploited.

So when a fighter drops out at the last minute things get difficult for a fighter who has put in three months of work only to see their fight gone.

It leaves an important decision for that fighter as well with the UFC ready to offer another fight but that will very likely cause a strange situation.

A fighter can go from studying a stand-up master and figuring out their tendencies while working on the parts of the game that need to be strong to a fighting a wrestler in an instant.

All of the studying and the work is out of the window and now a fighter has to go into the fight almost blind.

They can accept that fight and make sure they get the most out of the last three months or waste that training and wait for another fight.

Most fighters will take the fight but it is always a dangerous thing as more often than not they won’t get a fighter at the same level.

This means they have a lot to lose and almost nothing to gain as they are often assumed to beat that fighter who also has a lot less time to get into fighting shape.

If they win that was what they were supposed to do and it doesn’t give them a lot of momentum going forward.

If they lose it is a major upset and the fighter that came in on short notice gets a massive bump in their profile.

It is a risky fight to take and although most of the time they do come through and take the win there is always that chance.

It is what Ronaldo Souza had to deal with heading into UFC Fight Night Fort Lauderdale as he was et to take on a major opponent only to see him fall out.

Souza was going to take on Yoel Romero in a rematch four year in the making that was meant to provide some clarity on the future of contenders in the division.

Romero was heading into the fight as the #2 fighter in the division while Souza was the #4 pitting two of the best middleweights against each other.

It was going to go a long way to determining who would follow Israel Adesanya as the next contender.

Then Romero fell ill and the fight was called off forcing Souza to make that difficult decision.

He was set to take on a world-class wrestler and likely prepared to deal with the takedowns and wrestling of the former Olympian.

That big fight with plenty of potential of putting him into the title conversation went away quickly.

Instead, he was going to get an opponent that he had not prepared for and one on a high after his latest win.mma-sidebar.fw

Jack Hermansson had just finished David Branch a month before and the BJJ practitioner was going to provide Souza with something else to think about.

Souza likely didn’t go into his new fight too worried as he was the BJJ king in this fight with a reputation of being one of the best.

Hermansson brought a different style though as the Swede was a BJJ guy that prefers violence over submissions.

With plenty of confidence in his ground game, there was little doubt that Hermansson was going to try to take this fight to the ground and get on top.

He was looking to launch the surprise in a short notice fight while Souza was just trying to prevent the upset.

Hermansson proved that what he had been saying in the short lead-up to the fight was true, he was better on top.

Although Souza is a great BJJ practitioner he wasn’t able to deal with Hermansson when he got on top.

The problem for Hermansson was the fact that he rarely was able to get the fight to the ground.

Both fighters were ground fighters but with the fight remaining standing it became a volume versus power fight.

Hermansson continued to unload massive amounts of shots while Souza looked to land that one big one, and did so a few times.

In the end, it was the rate that Hermansson threw which earned him the win and the upset on the night.

Souza took that short notice fight and got the worse of the results while Hermansson got a massive win.

With two wins in two months including one against a top five fighter, he is coming for that title in 2019.

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