Urijah Faber vs. Ricky Simon
|Date & Time||Saturday July 13, 2019, 9:00 PM (EDT)|
Golden 1 Center
The Line: Simon -293 / Faber +257 -- Over/Under:
Urijah Faber and Ricky Simon fight Saturday during UFC Fight Night 155 at the Golden 1 Center.
Urijah Faber enters this fight with a 34-10 record and has won 50 percent of his fights by submission. Faber has split his last eight fights and is coming off a December (2016) win over Brad Pickett. Faber is averaging 2.66 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 41 percent. Faber is averaging 1.59 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 31 percent. Faber will fight for the first time in two and a half years after retiring, so it’s going to be interesting to see how much rust there is and if he’s the same fighter now that he’s 40 years old. Faber is an aggressive standup striker with a background in wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Faber throws strong overhands and has an effective ground and pound, but he’s at his best on the canvas where he can gain position, wear down his opponent and has produced 19 career submission victories. Each of Faber’s last five fights have gone the distance, but this is somebody who has established himself as an elite submission artist and has finished half of his submission victories via the rear-naked choke. This will be Faber’s 23rd career fight in California, his birthplace.
Ricky Simon enters this fight with a 15-1 record and has won 53 percent of his fights by decision. Simon has won each of his last eight fights and is coming off a February win over Rani Yahya. Simon is averaging 2.51 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 39 percent. Simon is averaging 4.33 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 41 percent. Simon is now 3-0 under the UFC banner after beating one of the more notable names on his resume in an unanimous decision. Simon still hasn’t lost since his 2016 bout against Anderson dos Santos, which was for the Titan FC Bantamweight Championship. Simon is a physical takedown artist who loves the spear approach, as he lands on top of his opponent and usually unleashes a viscous ground and pound. Simon has some explosive athleticism to him and can more than hold his own standing up where he has a versatile striking attack. Simon is also one of the more well conditioned fighters in the division and it’s not a coincidence that eight of his last 11 victories have gone the distance. This will be Simon’s fourth career fight in California.
I’d probably make a strong case for Faber and the big plus money in this fight if it weren’t for the two and a half years out of the octagon. I don’t like putting my money on the unknown, and nobody has any idea what Faber is going to look like not fighting since December of 2016. Simon is consistently active and has been impressive in his last few fights, as he builds on this winning streak and hopes to keep chipping away in the rankings. Simon isn’t as polished in his BJJ as his opponent here, but he has a big gas tank and is simply a ball of energy that’s tough to stop once he gets going. I just need to see what Faber looks like before I can back him with any confidence.
So, give me Simon to win this fight.