One of the major talking points coming out of February’s UFC 110 card was the impressive performance of George Sotiropoulos. who had been given an opportunity to fight on the main card of a major UFC event after an impressive four fight unbeaten run in the prelims.
He seized it with both hands, dominating Joe Stevenson for three rounds to claim the victory, and put himself on the lightweight map.
Now UK fighter Terry Etim has the opportunity to follow in his footsteps as his upcoming fight with Rafael Dos Anjos was today confirmed as being on the main card of UFC 112 in April.
Etim, who also fights in the 155lb division, has been showing good form in the preliminary bouts of UFC events, and, like Sotiropoulos, has earned his place on the main card after going four fights undefeated.
Both men are also talented ground fighters. In his 14 fight career to date Etim holds 11 wins by submission, and he has already earned three ‘Submission Of The Night Awards’ in his seven UFC fights.
Despite his penchant for finishing his fights on the floor, Etim can also handle himself on the feet, and was even compared to Anderson Silva by Joe Rogan back at UFC 95 for the way he was putting his combinations together that night.
One way in which Etim and Sotiropoulos do differ however is in terms of their age. The Aussie is 32 years old, while Etim turned 24 last month, making him one of the younger competitors in the UFC at this time.
Really when you look at Etim’s record, and overall progession as a fighter since joining the UFC in April of 2007, the biggest surprise is that he hasn’t got an opportunity to fight on the main card until now.
Part of the reason for that may be that, unlike some of the higher profile UK fighters like Michael Bisping, Dan Hardy and Paul Daley, Etim has stayed relatively quiet, and prefers to let his fights do the talking for him.
On April 10th in Abu Dhabi he’ll have the perfect opportunity to do just that, and like George Sotiropoulos, if he impresses, he could suddenly find himself catapulted right into the mix in the ultra-competitive lightweight division.