UFC 173 is this Saturday night, the main event is of course a fight that some would say is a one sided fight. Looking at Renan Barao compared to TJ Dillashaw, Barao would be a big favorite, that would be the case looking at face value. Barao is a beast that has stopped every challenger that he has faced dead in their tracks. Dillashaw is only ranked #4th in the Bantamweight division. Now you could say that Dillashaw should be given the fair treatment of a dangerous challenger, but is he in the discussion as number one contender? Well, no. Dillashaw is impressive, but not anywhere near the same level as Barao is. If you compare their records, finishes and overall experience, Barao would have a huge landslide advantage over Dillashaw.
Enough of the possibilities, let’s compare these two fighters to see who has the advantage in all of the breakdowns.
Renan Barao 32-1 MMA record, he has 8 knockouts, 14 submissions and 10 decision victories in his MMA career coming into this fight. Barao is arguably the greatest fighter in MMA right now as he has won 32 straight fights. He made his UFC debut against Cole Escovedo which he won via unanimous decision at UFC 130 – Rampage vs. Hamill on May / 28 / 2011. He beat Brad Pickett via rear naked choke at UFC 138 – Leben vs. Munoz on Nov / 05 / 2011, Scott Jorgensen via unanimous decision at UFC 143 – Diaz vs. Condit on Feb / 04 / 2012. Then finished off 2012 with a win over Urijah Faber via unanimous decision at UFC 149 – Faber vs. Barao on Jul / 21 / 2012. He entered 2013 with a win over Michael McDonald via Arm-Triangle Choke at UFC on Fuel TV 7 – Barao vs. McDonald on Feb / 16 / 2013 and ended 2013 against Eddie Wineland which Barao won. He beat Urijah Faber for a second time via 1st Rd TKO at UFC 169 – Barao vs. Faber 2 on Feb / 01 / 2014.
TJ Dillashaw (9-2) has three knockouts, three submissions and three decision victories in his MMA career while only being knocked out once. He made his UFC debut against John Dodson, which he lost via via TKO at The Ultimate Fighter 14 Finale on Dec / 03 / 2011. He then won four straight fights against Walel Watson via unanimous decision at UFC on Fuel TV 1 – Sanchez vs. Ellenberger on Feb / 15 / 2012, Vaughan Lee via neck crank submission at UFC on Fuel TV 4 – Munoz vs. Weidman on Jul / 11 / 2012. He then beat Issei Tamura via KO at UFC 158 – St. Pierre vs. Diaz on Mar / 16 / 2013 and then Hugo Viana via TKO at UFC on Fox 7 – Henderson vs. Melendez on Apr / 20 / 2013. He lost to Raphael Assuncao via split decision at UFC Fight Night – Maia vs. Shields on Oct / 09 / 2013 to snap his four fight winning streak. In his last fight he beat Mike Easton via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night – Rockhold vs. Philippou on Jan / 15 / 2014.
Knockouts: Dillashaw has the advantage over Barao as 30% of his fights have ended by KO, Barao only has 24%.
Submissions: Barao take the cake with 41% submission victories while Dillashaw only has 30%.
Decisions: Dillashaw has 40% decision victories in his MMA career compared to Barao who is slightly less with 35%.
Striking: Dillashaw has 4.84 strikes landed per minute compared to Barao who has 3.7. Dillashaw also has more striking accuracy with 49% compared to Barao who has 36%. Barao has a 67% striking defense and avoidance compared to Dillashaw who has 63%.
Grappling: Dillashaw has 3.04 takedown average compared to Barao who has 1.59. Barao has a better takedown accuracy with 55% compared to Dillashaw who has 48%. Dillashaw on the other hand has a 100% defense takedown defense compared to Barao who has 95% defense. Finally Dillashaw has a 2.28 submission average compared to Barao who has a 0.87.
Final Verdict: Looking at just the numbers, Dillashaw makes his strikes more effective and on paper looks to have the advantage on his feet. Barao does a swell job of avoiding strikes and has a better chin when strikes connect.
When it comes to grappling, both fighters are very good, when it comes to not being taken down Dillashaw would have the advantage on the ground as he is the better takedown fighter with 3 per fight. However, when Barao wants to take someone down, he has a better percentage. Now if Barao wants to take the fight to the ground good luck with that due to Dillashaw having a 100% takedown defense.
On paper Dillashaw has the advantage, I just can’t see Barao losing this fight, but let’s see how it goes down on Saturday night.
All stats are from UFC.com. What do you think? Let me know in the comment area below.
UFC 173 goes down this Saturday night on pay-per-view. MMA Frenzy will have the latest news leading up to, during and after the event, as well as having the latest and greatest live play-by-play coverage of the event. From the first fight of the prelim side of the card on Fight Pass, Fox Sports 1 and then the PPV later that night. Keep it locked on MMA Frenzy.