After being forced to pull out of fights against Jim Miller at UFC 108 and Clay Guida for Versus 1 back in March, former Lightweight champ Sean Sherk will look to rebound off of his disappointing performance vs Frankie Edgar at UFC 98. Hoping to further derail the former champ will be Evan Dunham, who's star is rising quicker than our national deficit, and is coming off a very impressive decision victory at UFC 115 over his former training partner, Tyson Griffin.
Dunham absolutely dominated Griffin on the mat, and was able to maintain back control throughout most of the match. This looks like a pretty bad match up for Sherk, who will once again be fighting someone with much more reach. Along with being a southpaw, Dunham has a solid 3" reach advantage over Sherk. Sean's head movement is absolutely terrible, so I expect Dunham to utilize that reach with the jab. Add in Dunham's being a lefty to that equation and it could be a rough going for Sherk if he tries to keep it standing.
Sherk's best chance in this fight is his work rate. If he can keep busy on the ground with Dunham he can out-point him and steal a decision. Sherk has never been submitted, so he won't be too concerned with hanging in Dunham's half guard if that's the best he can manage. Passing on Dunham will be pretty tough, so we'll have to see who can neutralize his opponent better. I think Sherk tries to work Dunham into the cage, using movement while applying just enough pressure to avoid a stand-up.
Since Dunham just beat what many consider to be a younger, more evolved version of Sherk, I'm having a hard time imagining how he doesn't improve on his undefeated 11-0 record. Ring rust will be a huge factor for Sherk, and I just don't like his chances with a taller southpaw. We might be looking at the end for the oft injured Sean Sherk, who, at 36, seems to be winding down his very impressive career. After all, the man has never lost to anyone who wasn't a UFC champion.