The UFC Welterweight division is often touted as being one of the most competitive divisions within the organisation. And last night, Rory MacDonald and Jake Ellenberger faced off in a fight that was meant to have some serious title contending ramifications.
Going into the fight, Ellenberger was ranked as the number three welterweight in the UFC, with MacDonald ranked at number six.
The fight itself was rightfully billed as a potential title eliminator for a crack at the winner of the forthcoming Georges St. Pierre vs. Johnny Hendricks fight.
Unfortunately, the fight failed to live up to expectation as MacDonald was able to easily negate Ellenberger’s powerful wrestling and counter-punching style, and jab his way to a convincing - if unspectacular - unanimous decision on the judge’s scorecards.
The result has not had the effect that the UFC would have been hoping for. Ellenberger was made to look exceptionally ordinary by MacDonald, who in turn did little other than jab and move throughout what was a particularly cautious approach.
It will not have been lost on most fans that MacDonald fought to a carefully devised game-plan, which is not too dissimilar to that used by his training partner and reigning champion Georges St. Pierre.
Said style seems to be to nullify your opponent’s strengths, whilst keeping him away from you with a stiff jab. It’s a strategy that has proven hugely successful for St. Pierre and other modern day fighters, but doesn’t go down well with UFC president Dana White.
Both fighters were booed by the fans in attendance at the KeyArena in Seattle , and White has since come out and said that neither fighter has enhanced their reputation as a result of this fight.
Ellenberger must now attempt to work his way back into contention, whilst MacDonald seems unlikely to have earned a title shot despite his victory against a fighter who was ranked behind only Hendricks and Carlos Condit in the title picture prior to the fight.
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