Why Luke Rockhold Would Beat UFC Champ Chris Weidman

May 26, 2015

No. 1-ranked middleweight contender Luke Rockhold believes that he possesses the right mix of skills to dethrone 185-pound champion Chris Weidman.

Rockhold (14-2) has lost only once in the last seven years. He’s the former Strikefroce middleweight titleholder. Like Weidman, he’s also big for the division with a controlling ground game.

The 30-year-old Californian respects the champion, but believes that he holds advantages in a couple of key aspects.

“Chris is a boss. He’s a true champ. He’s well rounded everywhere. He’s got that kind of lumberjack style. He’s not too flashy, not too fancy, but he gets the job done every time. He’s so tough. Has the will to win,” said Rockhold of Weidman during the UFC 187 Post Show.

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With Weidman’s impressive amateur wrestling resume, many believe the New Yorker would have an edge in the grappling department in a fight with Rockhold, but the former Strikeforce champ doesn’t agree with them.

“I’m a good wrestler. People haven’t seen my wrestling much. He’s not going to be able to take me down, and if he takes me down it’s going to be worse off for him on the ground. He’s a great grappler. I believe I’m a little better there,” Rockhold said.

Luke-Rockhold-UFConFox15-presser-750Rockhold trains out of the American Kickboxing Academy alongside heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and newly crowned light heavyweight titleholder and former Olympic wrestler Daniel Cormier.

“I train with the best wrestlers. I’m good at wrestling. I grew up wrestling. It’s going to be a non-issue. The wrestling is going to be completely negated. I’m going to take advantage there. It’s going to be a stand-up fight. Mark my words,” added the top-ranked contender.

Rockhold is certain that a fight against Weidman would turn out to be a striking battle, and he is confident that he’s the better striker between the two.

“I think this becomes more of a stand-up fight. He’s good, but I’ve just got more finesse, I’ve got more footwork and I’ve got more weapons on the feet. I really see Chris bringing the best fight out of me. I think it’s going to be a war on the feet, and I think I can get him in the later rounds,” he said.

AKA boasts two UFC champions among their stable of fighters, and Rockhold is determined to become the third.

“I train with the best team. We’ve got two titles. I’m looking to bring that third back.”

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