One of the under card fights of UFC 129 is a lightweight tilt between John Makdessi and Kyle Watson. Watson should be somewhat familiar to UFC fans. He was a cast member of season 12 of Spike TV's 'The Ultimate Fighter' and is the BJJ coach at H.I.T. Squad, Matt Hughes' team in Granite City, Illinois. He's a brown belt in BJJ and a black belt in Jeet Kune Do.
Makdessi, by contrast, is a striker training out of Tri-Star Gym in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Makdessi has an extensive kickboxing background with deep experience in Shotokan Karate and Tae Kwon Do. He's undefeated in MMA and made his UFC debut against Pat Audinwood at UFC 124. Makdessi positively dominated that fight, controlling distance and using a wide arsenal of unconventional kicking attacks - as well as sensational takedown defense - to rout Audinwood for all three rounds on all the judges' score cards.
I explain how each fighter needs to compete in order to win, but it isn't much of a mystery. It's classic striker vs. grappler. The big ifs are whether or not Makdessi can keep the fight standing, how good Makdessi's ground game is and if Watson coming in late notice will affect the final outcome. Also worth noting: will Makdessi lower the volume of kicks in order to avoid being taken down?
It's not a mystery on what each guy needs to do. I view this more as a test for Makdessi than any sort of real start for Watson. I'm curious to see the takedown defense of Makdessi tested. I also want to see the TKD specialist's hands. Either way, it should be a fantastic affair.