Rousimar Palhares Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Rousimar Palhares vs. Tomasz Drwal
The Breakdown: One of the more interesting bouts of the evening finds a couple of human tanks pitted against each other, as Brazilian jiu-jitsu stalwart Rousimar Palhares takes on Polish gorilla Tomasz Drwal. This is one of those fights that depends largely on who shows up with proper conditioning and something resembling a game plan.
For all of Palhares’ talent, he often approaches fights like a dead sprint, wasting all of his energy chasing submissions in the first minute only to end up huffing and puffing like he just bench pressed the universe. Drwal is no Lance Armstrong either, but he is the better wrestler and a capable striker, a combination that Dan Henderson used to completely stifle Palhares in their bout at UFC 88.
While the threat of a submission will loom large for Drwal, he doesn’t have to hit the mat with Palhares if he doesn’t want to. Odds are he won’t. From the little Palhares has shown on the feet, it’s a safe bet that he’ll be facing down the barrel of Drwal’s fists with little to offer in return.
The Bottom Line: Barring a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it submission in the first few minutes, Drwal is going to best Palhares with superior striking and wrestling. The strength advantage Palhares is accustomed to having won’t exist in this fight, and it will likely end with him on the business end of a ground-and-pound TKO.