UFC on FUEL TV 2: Gustafsson vs Silva PREVIEW
By: MMA Writer Mike Alexander
The MMA drought is finally over. The UFC makes it’s first trip to Sweden on Saturday where Stockholm’s own, Alexander Gustaffson (13-1), takes on Muay Thai wrecking machine, Thiago Silva (14-2, 1NC). For Gustaffson, this is a huge step up in competition and a chance to prove the hype around him is justified. For Silva, this fight is his last chance to redeem himself in front of the fans after being a suspended for a year.
There hasn’t been a LHW with so much hype around him since Jon Jones entered the MMA scene. But for Alexander Gustaffson, the hype surrounding his name is enough to cause MMA die-hards to proclaim him as the heir apparent to the LHW strap. However that isn’t what’s on Gustaffson’s mind. All he wants to do in Stockholm is put a beating on Thiago Silva for his family and friends. After his only loss to Phil Davis, Gustaffson moved his camp to San Diego to train with Davis. This move has transformed Gustaffson into a truly well rounded fighter, winning his next four fights by two rear-naked chokes and two TKO’s. However, he faces his toughest test to date against Silva, who will surely look to test Gustaffson’s chin.
Thiago Silva has been in the exact same spot that Gustaffson is standing in now. Silva was once thought of as a champ in the making, but after sequential losses to fellow prospect, Lyoto Machida, and former champ, Rashad Evans, Silva seemed to have leveled off. His last fight saw him destroy Brandon Vera, however the decision was overturned when Silva tested positive for steroids. He claims that he had to use steroids so he could be healed in time for his fight. Regardless, he served his year long suspension and he looks to prove that he is still a top fighter in the LHW division.
Thiago Silva is a bad man, who possess some of the most violent striking in MMA today. However, his striking is best suited in tight or in the clinch. Gustaffson on the other hand, has dynamite in gloves and loves to pick off fighters at a distance. Unless Silva gets this fight on the cage or in the clinch, expect Gustaffson to KO Silva in the second round.
Also on the FUEL card, Brian Stann looks to rebound off his lost to Chael Sonnen as he takes on Alessio Sakara. Siyar Bahadurzada, the first Afghan MMA fighter in UFC history, makes his debut against Paulo Thiago. Plus, Dennis Siver makes his Featherweight debut against Diego Nunes. Prelims start on Facebook on Saturday 14th at 12:30 ET with the Main card airing on FUEL TV at 3:00 PM ET.
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