UFC Fight Night 52: Hunt vs. Nelson analysis

Mark Hunt And Roy Nelson

On Saturday, September 20, 2014, at 3 a.m. E.T. in Saitama, Japan, Mark “The Super Somoan” Hunt takes on Roy “Big Country” Nelson in a 5-round heavyweight mixed martial arts contest. This is a big fight between two big guys, and it should be a good one. Although Mark Hunt is the favorite, UFC Fight Night 52 looks to offer a very good and close fight. This should be an action-filed bout between two of the toughest MMA fighters in the UFC.

In the UFC, Hunt (9-8-1) had a rash of losses before he was able to notch some victories. He can get into a losing streak funk. His last fight against Antonio Silva ended in a draw, and before that he suffered a knockout loss to Junior dos Santos.

He has not fought since UFC 33. Hunt will try to batter and bruise his way to victory, while staying out of the grasp of the savvy veteran Nelson. He will take a beating and ably battle his way back, which means this fight could go the full five rounds.

Nelson (21-9-0), who had lost two in a row before his most recent fight, last mixed it up in UFC 39, where he scored an amazing walk-off knockout over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Big Country may not look like an athlete, but the fact is he’s strong, tough, resilient, skilled, and crafty. But he’ll have to mix it up to win this one. Hunt will be readily absorb that great punch that Nelson throws, and The Super Samoan should rebound against and attack with a solid counterattack.

You can say it’s about who wants it more, or it may be about who appears to want it less. These two guys both have “I don’t care attitudes” that they use to their advantage. There’s no fear about losing, at least on the surface, and Hunt and Nelson are both extra large packages who can give and take it. Nelson has a devastating right hand, but Hunt has a chin that can stand up to severe punishment. The Super Somoan, who has had his share of ups and downs, can win this one, as he can match Nelson punch for punch and take a beating. When it comes to grappling, you’ve got to love Nelson, who certainly has the skills and technique to score a victory with a takedown. Hunt can easily find himself down and out if he grapples with Nelson.

When it comes to a KO or TKO, both fighters have seen 67% of their fights end in that manner. Hunt has not won a fight by a submission, while Nelson has been victorious in 19% of his bouts via the sub. On the other side, that is decision, the big edge goes to Hunt 33% to 14%. If this goes the full five rounds, then The Super Somoan has the edge.

Whoever wins this one will see their UFC stock rise, while the loser will need to recover quickly and fight again to validate their stature as a worthy fight card candidate. Both are fan favorites.