Sergey Kharitonov vs. LA Giant Silva
SERGEY KHARITONOV: Russian wrestler and sambo practitioner, Scandinavian NHB Championships veteran, Tournament of Real Men veteran, Yalta's Brilliant veteran, trains with Volk Han, Mikhail Illoukhine, Bazigit Atajev and the rest of the Russian Top Team, with a record of 6-1 in MMA, making his 2nd appearance (1-0) in the ring of the PFC
Abbreviated Fight History: Like most Russian fighters, Kharitonov has military training that provided him with the foundation to take it to the next level and compete in MMA. He has fought in three professional MMA events prior to his appearance in Pride Bushido. Two of these events were tournaments and he's done very well. His only loss was in 1998 at the Scandinavian NHB Championships where he was stopped with strikes. He competed two years later in the Yalta's Brilliant 2000 tournament in the Ukraine and won three bouts. His most recent competition, and the event that put him on the inaugural Pride Bushido card, was his complete destruction of his opponents in the Tournament of Real Men 8. Sergei's combined fight time for both bouts was under two minutes. Below is one of Kharitonov's more significant contests.
Kharitonov/Jason Nobunaga: Nobunaga came out kicking the legs hard. Kharitonov answered with a left straight punch to the head and a single leg takedown. From the mat they fight with Sergey in sidemount and Jason attempting a guillotine choke from the bottom. Sergey turns Jason to his side and delivers sharp punches to the face. Nobunaga gets to his knees and they stand to clinch. The fighters trade punches inside and Kharitonov executes another hard slamming takedown. With Sergey in Jason's full guard they trade punches to the face. Sergey moves from sidemount to mount and delivers strikes to Jason's face. Nobunaga is not defending well from the bottom and Kharitonov shows his hand by feigning an armbar and then sitting back to do more punishment. Moments later Nobunaga turns to his side and Kharitonov isolates the arm allowing him to secure the armbar for the win.
Strengths And Weaknesses: Sergey is good on the ground
and at bringing people to the ground. He had some good takedowns
against Nobunaga and seems fairly knowledgeable of submissions. A
weakness, other than facing superior competition, may be his
stand-up game. We didn't see much of it in his last bout so it is
difficult to assess at this time.
How He Can Beat Silva: Bring it to the mat quickly and keep it there. He doesn't want to exchange on the feet with this big guy. When Herring finally got Silva down and kept him there, he was able to submit him. Kharitonov has to do the same thing. Sergey looked hungry against Nobunaga and he should show up the same way here.
LA GIANT SILVA: Brazilian professional wrestler, former Brazilian National Basketball Team Member, former WWE wrestler, Zero One professional wrestler, veteran with a record of 0-1 in MMA, making his 2nd appearance (0-1) in the ring of the PFC
Abbreviated Fight History: Silva had been wrestling in Mexico for 5 months and when he came home to New Jersey, he got a call to come fight on the Pride New Years Eve show. 7'2 400lbs Below is one of Silva's more significant contests.
Silva/Heath Herring: This was part of the Pride edition of the Japan 2003 New Years Eve "Let's Bring Out The Freaks!" celebration. They should've at least given Heath a slingshot or something. Silva is simply gigantic. However, like the giants in most storybooks, he cannot move. Heath was forced to resort to racing in, kicking Silva in the legs, and racing out of reach. With Silva's pro wrestling background, he wasn't really familiar with hot to actually fight so his best offensive maneuver was to catch Herring on the top of the head with "strikes". A kick from Heath was caught early in round three and both fighters went to the mat. Herring avoided a "submission" from the giant (more like a big sloppy hug) and took Silva's back to apply a rear choke for the win.
Strengths And Weaknesses: His strengths are quite easy to
assess, he's huge. Silva stands 7'2 and weights just over 400lbs.
His reach far exceeds most any opponent he would come up against.
His main weakness is that he is not a trained fighter and doesn't
move very well. Against Herring he was swatting at him as opposed
to really throwing punches. His limited mobility also allows an
opponent to escape his grasp.
How He Can Beat Kharitonov: Cornering him and throwing him over the top rope and out into the stadium! Seriously though, he does need to cut off the ring. Herring was able to run circles around him and prolong the match. If Silva can't move better than he did last time, he will need to stop Kharitonov just so he can hit him. A basic but well executed slam or choke from a man this size could be enough to put most anyone out.
MY PICK: Kharitonov. If Sergey is smart and takes this to the mat immediately, there's a good chance Silva will never get back to his feet. I feel it will be Kharitonov by TKO from strikes in the 1st Rd.
DOWN THE ROAD:
Kharitonov/Ian Freeman: Ian hasn't lost since the pounding he took from Arlovski and I think these two would match up well.
Kharitonov/Valentijn Overeem: After losing 6 in a row (including the Pride 24 bout with Waterman), Overeem takes an 8-man tournament in Croatia. All three victories were by submission.
Silva/Gan McGee: It will be interesting to see how Gan reacts to being the smaller, lighter fighter for likely the first time in his life. Gan would win though. He's been in there with some tough fighters and pulled out a victory.
Silva/Daijiro Matsui: Hey don't expect me to come up with a lot of serious match-ups when the bouts involve unskilled (in a MMA sense) professional wrestlers. Plus when was the last time we got to see Matsui take a good beating? I miss him.