What a crazy year these two have had. One one hand, Overeem had a lackluster fight with Werdum, suffered a broken rib, was released from Strikeforce, signed with the UFC, left Golden Glory, and then had a lot of issues with the NSAC. Lesnar on the other hand, was the coach for the TUF, had to back down from fighting Junior Dos Santos after another bout with diverticulitis, had part of his colon surgically removed, and then was charged for poaching in Alberta. Now they finally meet on the final UFC event of the year, the first Friday night UFC PPV since UFC 55 on October 7th, 2005.
Both guys have such a clear path to victory, that this is pretty simple to discuss. Overeem has never fought a guy like Brock that will rush and power double him off his feet. It’s hard to say how good Overeem’s takedown defense really is at this point, so it is exciting to know that we will all find out the answer on Friday night. Also, if Overeem blocks and clinches with Lesnar, he could hit some nasty knees from the clinch. Another thing, Overeem does have one of the nastiest and most underrated guillotine chokes in MMA today. But if Overeem does keep the fight standing, he’s going to tear apart Lesnar badly, worst than what Velasquez did on UFC 121.
What Lesnar should do sounds simple enough, take Overeem down and beat him up. Lesnar is too smart to want to keep this fight standing, that always will be his weakness so he’ll have to do whatever it takes to put Overeem on his back. Lesnar did this to Velasquez for a brief second, I imagine that if he can do that to Velasquez, he can do it to Overeem too. On the ground, the best thing Lesnar can do is work over Overeem from the half-guard position and use a stockade to land shots on Overeem’s face in a similar fashion to his UFC 100 performance. I don’t think Lesnar will go for a submission in this fight, I think he might be more comfortable putting a pounding on Overeem to put an exclamation mark on his return to the Octagon.
Both fighters have very clear and specific ways to win and lose. I would slightly favor Lesnar via ground and pound, but this fight should be crazy!