Friday, 15 February 2013

Nedkov vs Watson

Nedkov vs Watson
The 12-0 Bulgarian bulldozer Stanislav Nedkov takes on British striker Tom Watson who's record stands at 15-5.Nedkov is coming off a submission loss to Thaigo Silva which was later overturned due to Silva's marajuana use, Watson is also coming off a loss to American Brad Tavares.

Looking at the two striking styles it becomes immediately apparent that Watson is the more well rounded and refined striker whilst Nedkov is much more of a power striker. Watson is an experienced striker who mixes up his strikes with a barrage of punches, kicks, knees and elbows. Watson does not posses the same power that Nedkov does and the majority of his stoppages come from his opponents being overwhelmed with a barrage of strikes. Watson uses circular movement and is good at adjusting his strikes depending on his opponents range. Watson does not utilize too much head movement and has shown a willingness to stand in the pocket with other fighters and trade shots. Watson has a good chin and can eat some big punches as evidenced in his last fight against Tavares, he has never been knocked out in his MMA career.

Nedkov's striking is much more linear then Watson's he throws all of his shots with explosive power and an intent to KO his opponent. Nedkov has power in both his hands and likes to get close to his opponents where he can unleash his barrage of hooks and utilize his power. Nedkov relies more on his power then a technical efficiency which has proven to be successful in his previous fights. His defence is usually to go on the offensive if he gets hit, he also has shown a solid chin throughout his career.
I believe that Watson has an edge the striking area of this fight as he is the more accurate and well rounded of the two.

In comparing the two's grappling skill set I believe that Nedkov has the advantage here. Nedkov has a stocky frame that is suited towards wrestling, alongside his competitive background in wrestling which make Nedkov the stronger grappler. Watson mainly uses his wrestling to get back to his feet and has struggled against good grapplers such as Jesse Taylor who he dropped a decision to. Watson is a decent grappler but I give a big edge here to Nedkov who I believe will have a strength advantage in the clinch and should be able to secure takedowns throughout the fight. I think that Nedkov's top game will be strong enough to contain Watson's scrambling attempts and he will be able to land some damaging shots.

Watson is fighting at home and is used to competing in London, as he has fought there in the past for several UK promotions. He will have the home crowd rallying behind him which could earn his favour with the judges if the fight goes to a decision. Watson is also comfortable at middleweight whilst Nedkov is making his move down from Light Heavyweight for the first time which may have an adverse effect on Nedkov's cardio. Nedkov last fight had him returning from a lengthy injury, having fought more recently Nedkov may have had time to shake off any octagon rust and be more comfortable in the octagon this time.

When I look at who can impose their gameplan more effectively in this fight I believe that it is Stanislaz Nedkov. I think that he will be able to land the takedown and that Watson will have to pick his shots carefully to avoid Nedkov's power strikes and also to avoid his takedown attempts/ clinch work. Watson does have a few more extrinsic factors that will aid him however I would put his winning percentage around 40-45% percent with Nedkov at around 55-60%.
In this fight I would advise a bet on Stanislav Nedkov at +110 upwards. 

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