Cub Swanson is a tough fighter to get a hold of. It looked like he was on the down slope of his career following Jose Aldo’s highlight reel double knee knockout. He would beat fighters he should and then get train-wrecked by guys in the elite level category. But then he managed to put together a three fight win streak of nothing but brutal stoppages starting with George Roop. He then chased Ross Pearson from featherweight with an utter dismantling of the British TUF winner. After thrashed burgeoning prospect Charles Oliveira he gets former title eliminator participant Dustin Poirier, stepping in for Dennis Siver.
Fight Breakdown – Swanson is well rounded but his strength lies in his knockout power. I was there cage side for his knockout of Roop, which was a beautiful combination, and the sheer power from him was something. Swanson has dynamite in his hands and that’s how he’ll win the fight; unloading some bombs on Poirier. Look for him to keep it standing. He’s competent on the ground but he’s lost to guys with better ground games. He’s good enough to survive against Poirier on the ground but he won’t win that way. He needs to keep his distance, land combinations and stay away from the cage and the clinch. Sprawl and brawl is the name of the game here.
Poirier has got decent power but his strength is on the mat. All his big wins come via submission and that’s where he needs to be to get the win. Look for him to go for takedowns and work the clinch; he needs to neutralize Swanson’s power and then drag him down to the mat.
Why it matters – Both guys want back in the title mix. Swanson wants another shot at Jose Aldo, to prove the first time it was a fluke. Poirier was a fight away and lost to Chang Jung Sung in a title eliminator. A win here and they’re a fight away from a shot at the king.
Prediction – Swanson