We have recently been informed of a stellar upcoming matchup going down in the light-heavyweight division between ranked contenders Nikita Krylov (No. 9) and Paul Craig (No. 11).
This bout is to be held at the O2 Arena in London, England, on March 19, 2022.
This is such a great match up for so many reasons.
Both of these men are dangerous finishers that’re constantly in exciting affairs.
Nikita Krylov came to the UFC back in 2013 as a heavyweight with a record of 14-2, going 1-1 in the division before dropping down to 205 lbs.
A defeat to Ovince Saint Preux would follow, before winning his next five straight, all via finish.
In fact, at this point, with a 20-4 record, all 24 of his bouts ended within the distance, and that’d continue for some time.
Krylov was then submitted by Misha Cirkunov, before being released by the UFC. He would win his next four bouts, claiming the Fight Nights Global light-heavyweight championship, before coming back to the world’s leading promotion.
Since his return however, Krylov has gone just 2-3; being submitted by future, and now former champion Jan Blachowicz, and avenging his defeat to Ovince Saint Preux.
His last three bouts saw him victorious over Johnny Walker, whilst taking defeats to current champion Glover Teixeira, via a very close split decision mind you, and Magomed Ankalaev, who’s been giving literally everyone he fights an incredibly tough time as of late.
For instance, Ankalaev is 16-1, and his only defeat came in a fight he was absolutely dominating.
All three of Krylov’s most recent bouts went the distance, the only three times he’s ever gone to decision.
Paul Craig on the other hand came to the UFC with a record of 8-0 as the BAMMA light-heavyweight champion, the same promotion No. 3 ranked welterweight contender Leon Edwards won a belt in prior to joining.
A beautiful submission victory would follow, before he’d be stopped via strikes in back-to-back outings.
Craig then submitted Magomed Ankalaev with just one second left in the third and final round, a fight he lost over 14 minutes of, before being submitted by Jimmy Crute.
That was shocking, someone of Craig’s caliber being submitted. But that’s MMA for you.
Nevertheless, he’d rebound with another late third round submission victory, before being stopped with strikes once more, bringing his record from 9-0 to 11-4, going 2-4 in his previous six outings.
Since then however, Craig has gone 4-0-1, avenging his draw to former PRIDE & UFC champion Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua, and submitting Jamahal Hill in his most recent outing, who just KO’d Jimmy Crute, the only man to submit Craig.
Both of these men are quite sizeable, with Krylov standing 6’3” with a reach of 77.5”, while Craig stands 6’4” with a reach of 76”.
Krylov comes in with a record of 26-8, while Craig comes in with a record of 15-4-1.
As mentioned above, out of those 34 bouts, Krylov has only been the distance three times in his entire career, while all 20 of Craig’s bouts have ended within the distance.
How do you see this one going?
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I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That’s the first fight I saw, and the fight that got me hooked on the sport. Since then, the sport has grown so rapidly, and my goal is to enlighten everyone on what’s going on in the sport today.