by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
By Damon Martin, MMAWeekly
For the second Ultimate Fight Night show in a row, Drew “The Master” Fickett will take on another alum from the “Ultimate Fighter” reality show when he faces off against Josh Burkman on January 16th.
In his second appearance on the Spike TV live broadcast (his first was an untelevised win over Josh Neer during the first Ultimate Fight Night), Fickett was matched up against former NCAA wrestling champion and season 1 participant Josh Koscheck. While Koscheck managed to take Fickett down throughout the fight and control the pace, at no point did he ever really put his opponent in any serious danger. Eventually in the third and final round when the action started to stall more, the referee started to stand the two up hoping to push the action a bit.
In the closing minutes of the fight when the pair was stood up for the final time, Fickett got his chance to seize the victory when Koscheck appeared tired as he approached breathing heavily and his hands down, not protecting his head or face. It was that moment that Fickett landed a very heavy knee strike flooring Koscheck and in a matter of seconds Fickett had his back, sinking in a rear naked choke that eventually knocked his opponent out. With the win, Fickett propelled himself back into the spotlight of the UFC and a very stacked welterweight division.
For his upcoming fight, Drew Fickett is focused on training and has some very good people working with him in preparation.
“I’ve been training at 10th Planet with Eddie Bravo and Jason Chambers, trying to get some sparring in with Bang (Ludwig) over here,” said Fickett, whose training partner, Duane “Bang” Ludwig will be fighting on the same card.
Many fans of the “Ultimate Fighter” reality show got a chance to see Josh Burkman in the first fight of the season when he took on the often outspoken, Melvin Guillard in a welterweight elimination bout. While Guillard did have some very nifty reversals during the fight, Burkman controlled the bout throughout, taking his opponent down multiple times and landing some very good shots.
Unfortunately during the fight, Burkman blocked a big shot from Guillard and in the process broke his arm, forcing him from the competition. He did make his comeback to the UFC at the last Ultimate Fight Night show defeating another of his former housemates when he slammed Sammy Morgan in the first round, knocking him out and getting a very solid win added to his record.
While Burkman has shown himself to be a very well rounded fighter, his opponent, Drew Fickett doesn’t believe that he poses much of a threat in this match-up.
“He’s a wrestler, he’s a pretty tough guy, probably good conditioned,” said Fickett “I don’t think he brings too much danger, just more of a tough guy, doesn’t have much finishing power.”
What does Fickett feel he does better than his opponent
“Wrestling, boxing, kickboxing and jiu-jitsu,” Fickett stated, sounding unimpressed with the possible danger that Burkman brings to the table.
This is a very important fight for both men as the 170lb weight class in the UFC is phenomenally stacked right now and a win will catapult one fighter closer to a major fight, while the loser may get sent back to the drawing board. Fickett has a great deal of experience and seems to have transitioned into the UFC very well after a rocky start in his first fight when he lost to Nick Diaz at UFC 51.
Josh Burkman has a ton of potential and this will be a very big measuring stick as to where he’s at in his fighting career. A win will probably keep him in the UFC, a loss would be extremely devastating, so he is sure to be prepared to pull out all the stops in this fight.
If Fickett is able to get the victory, it will be his second over a fighter from the “Ultimate Fighter” show, and after signing a three fight deal with his win over Josh Koscheck, he could be a mainstay in the UFC’s welterweight division, but Fickett is enjoying his current stock of opponents. When asked who he would like to fight after this, Fickett simply responded…
“I don’t know, hopefully against another TV guy.”
Fickett will first have to get by a very game Josh Burkman when they square off at Ultimate Fight Night live on Spike TV on January 16th.