Alex Morono and Tim Means fight Saturday in UFC on ABC 4 at the Spectrum Center. Morono enters this fight with a 22-8 record and has won 41 percent of his fights by decision. Means enters this fight with a 32-14-1 record and has won 59 percent of his fights by knockout.
Morono has won 7 of his last 10 fights and is coming off a December loss to Santiago Ponzinibbio. Morono is averaging 5.22 significant strikes per minute, with an accuracy percentage of 42 percent. Morono is averaging 0.30 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 20 percent. Morono is coming off a UFC 282 knockout loss where he landed 38 total strikes and ate 66 total strikes. The fight snapped a 4-fight winning streak and was the fourth time Morono has been knocked out. Morono hopes to avoid back to back losses for the first time in his career. Morono is a balanced fighter with a submission game and knockout power, and he’s a black belt in BJJ and Taekwondo. At 32 years old, Morono’s cardio allows him to be effective in each round. Morono has never been submitted in his career. This will be Morono’s first career fight in North Carolina.
Means has split his last 10 fights and is coming off an October loss to Max Griffin. Means is averaging 4.91 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 48 percent. Means is averaging 1.13 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 41 percent. Means is coming off a decision loss at UFC Fight Night 213 where he landed 143 total strikes and ate 56 total strikes. A bit of a controversial loss, but Means now hopes to avoid 3 straight losses for the first time in his career. Means is an athletic fighter who comes from a boxing background and does his best work standing up, where he has a high work rate and solid defense. Means doesn’t take a lot of punishment on the feet and has only been knocked out twice in 14 career losses. Means has above-average takedown defense and has 5 career submission victories. Means has 19 career knockouts and has finished 24 of his 32 wins overall. This will be Means’ first career fight in North Carolina.
Morono is going to be the obvious favorite as he’s the younger fighter, in better form and has the athletic edge at this stage. However, Means isn’t a pushover, even as he’s approaching 40 years old. Means still has power that needs to be respected, he can take shots, and you could argue he’ll have the grappling edge here as well. Also, Means is the bigger fighter, with a 3-inch reach advantage. There are a lot of things to like with Means entering this contest.
Give me Means for the upset.