UFC will be in Liverpool, England this holiday weekend featuring a main event with two top welterweights going at it. Darren Till will be the hometown hero with the local crowd solidly behind him, but Stephen “Wonder Boy” Thompson is coming into this fight as the betting favorite. Seemingly there’s not as much of a gap between them, and it’s a close fight when you break it down.
The most important thing that Thompson brings to this equation is his karate skills and his ability to control striking distance. Considering Thompson’s unorthodox stance and fluid countering ability, his opponents usually find it hard to land anything meaningful.
Thompson also has a crafty sidekick that everybody knows is coming but can do little about it.
Thompson has experience going into championship rounds on multiple occasions. It would be in Thompson’s best interest to drag this fight into deep waters to test the cardio of Till.
Till has many things going for him in this fight. Till is coming off of an impressive TKO victory over Donald Cerrone in the first round. Till is undefeated and ten years younger than Thompson.
Those factors bring with them a lot of confidence. In fact Till’s swagger has been noticed enough to even be compared to another confident fighter … Conor McGregor.
Speaking of mindsets, Thompson should be a little nervous if he’s not a hundred percent healthy going into the cage. At the beginning of this year Thompson claimed he could barely close his hand! In March he was waiting to see how the pain was going before he started training again. Two short months later he’s ready for a five round fight? Maybe Thompson really is a “wonder boy” – we’ll see.
Enough breaking it down, who wins this damn fight?
Thompson loves to fight at a distance and wait for an opportunity to counter strike. Ironically, Till has a very similar offensive method. Two southpaws waiting for each other to punch, do you know what that means? Boring ass fight!
These two are going to be dancing around each for all five rounds. Mark my words. Occasionally there will be spurts of offense and maybe Till will attempt a takedown as the crowd begins to “boo” by round three.
This fight will go to the judges and this is where Thompson needs to be careful. If there’s a split decision Thompson needs to remember they are fighting in England and the crowd will be cheering for anything Till does. That could sway the judge’s opinions, in theory. While that kind of judging bias has been more of a boxing thing lately, it still can happen here. Putting aside any scoring shenanigans Thompson’s hand will be held up after five rounds of tentative action.
Meanwhile, I’ll be screaming at my television after wasting an hour of my life with another lackluster UFC Fight Night main event. *Watch Maia vs. Usman to see what I’m talking about (I’m joking, don’t watch that fight if you value your time).
Keep in mind this isn’t what I want to happen. In fact, I originally stated on the recent episode of “MMA TALK FOR PRO WRESTLING FANS” that I thought Till was going to win. But the more I analyzed it the more it became apparent that all Darren Till has done recently is beat up an aging Donald Cerrone. No offense to Cerrone but in the welterweight division he’s not on Thompson’s level.
Hopefully I’m wrong and the hype train for the young Liverpool prospect continues…
Thanks for reading and To Be Continued