By Robert Rousseau
May 4, 2008: Kenny Florian will be taking on Roger Huerta at UFC 87 people. That's right, two of the UFC's most exciting and well- rounded lightweight fighters will be going at it in Minneapolis, Minnesota in August. Now we could give you a long- winded introduction here, but why bother? Bottom line is that if you're looking for a preview and prediction on the fight between Kenny Florian and Roger Huerta, we've got you covered. So let's get this party started.
Kenny Florian brings an overall MMA record of 9-3 with three (T)KO's and six submission victories into his bout with Roger Huerta. Do the math and you'll notice that Ken Flo, as he is sometimes called, wins by stoppage every single time he fights.
And that's impressive.
Kenny Florian always comes to fight in shape, is tough, and is also a very smart fighter, a technician if you will. Along with this, he possesses elite jiu jitsu / submission skills and has better than average takedowns, takedown defense, and ground control skills. For that matter, Florian has improved on his feet under Mark DellaGrotte's Muay Thai tutelage to the point that he looks as if he's fought on the professional Muay Thai circuit before.
In other words, Florian is as well- rounded as well- rounded gets.
Perhaps the only weakness he's shown in past fights was a tendency to become physically overwhelmed or overpowered ( see his fight with Sean Sherk ). But these days Florian is looking bigger and stronger.
Roger Huerta brings an overall MMA record of 20-1-1 with 10 (T)KO's and four submission victories into his match. Huerta has won six straight in the UFC, five of which came during the year 2007. The bottom line is that he's a cardio machine that demonstrates a ton of toughness each and every time he steps into the ring ( see the Clay Guida fight, one of the best in MMA history, for proof ).
Beyond that, like Kenny Florian, Roger Huerta is a very well- rounded fighter. He possesses above average striking, above average submissions and solid wrestling skills.
The weakness? Well, he was controlled from a wrestling perspective in his fight against Clay Guida. That is, until he dizzied his opponent in the final round of the fight and then followed things up with a submission.
Kenny Florian vs. Roger Huerta Prediction
There are a lot of pending MMA fights out there worth talking about, but none are any more interesting than this one. These are two of the most well- rounded and tough fighters in the UFC. Both are true warriors.
In other words, neither guy is going to give up.
Thus, this whole fight comes down to technical skills. On one hand, Huerta has a lot more MMA fights under his belt. On the other, Florian has a ton of submission grappling experience and went through TUF 1, a show that accelerates a fighter's growth in leaps and bounds.
In the end, both guys are equally tough and want this fight bad. Huerta may be better on his feet from a standard boxing perspective, but Florian would seem to have a more diverse skill set in terms of striking. Things are also close in terms of submissions, but Florian may be slightly better there as well. Finally, Florian's improvements from a strength and power perspective would seem to be enough to ensure that Huerta won't be able to dominate him from a ground control perspective for the entire fight.
That's not really El Matador's game anyway.
This is going to be close. Expect a war. But Kenny Florian should come out on top.
Kenny Florian wins via unanimous decision. Don't be shocked if he wins by late round submission, either.