UFC Fight Night 158 card: Justin Gaethje vs Donald Cerrone full fight preview
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight knockout artists Justin Gaethje and Donald Cerrone will clash TONIGHT (Sept. 14, 2019) at UFC Fight Night 158 from inside Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
It’s been an excellent 13 months for Gaethje, who rebounded from the first losses of his professional career with a sharper focus. “The Highlight” still brings the violence, but he’s smart and more dangerous than ever. Meanwhile, Cerrone enters this bout looking to rebound from his latest attempt at winning a Lightweight title eliminator. It is important to remember that prior to that loss, “Cowboy” was riding high on his own career renaissance that saw him put on some career-best performances.
Let’s take a closer look at the keys to victory for each man:
Key Wins: Edson Barboza (UFC on ESPN 2), Michael Johnson (TUF 25 Finale), James Vick (UFC Fight Night 135), Luis Palomino (WSOF 19, 23), Melvin Guillard (WSOF 15)
Key Losses: Dustin Poirier (UFC on FOX 29), Eddie Alvarez (UFC 218)
Keys to Victory: Gaethje is an absolute bruiser. He really gives opponents no option but to exchange with him, as he’s more than willing to throw himself into the fire in order to force the action. However, in his last two fights, Gaethje has better been able to force the fight without overexposing himself in the process.
I speak above about the adjustments to his game, but it’s also very much worth mentioning that Gaethje’s usual approach happened to line up well with his opponent’s historic weaknesses. Both Vick and Barboza struggle with pressure, which is precisely where Gaethje excels — a good recipe for first-round knockout wins.
Guess what Donald Cerrone struggles with?
This is a stylistic layup for Justin Gaethje, but that does not at all mean Cerrone cannot still kick his head off. To avoid such a fate, Gaethje has to remain consistent in his pressure. Cerrone does well at scoring a hard body strike and then pulling the fight back into his control as his foe takes a few moments to recover.
Gaethje has to keep his foot on the gas.