On June 15, Sam “Hands of Stone” Stout will meet “The James Krause” in the center of the Octagon in an exciting battle for UFC 161: “Evans vs. Henderson”. Stout, who boasts more UFC experience than Krause, has won “fight of the night” on five separate occasions for his show-stopping striking ability, as well as “knockout of the night” one time. Krause, who has a five-inch height advantage, hopes to defeat Stout and end a two-fight losing streak. Stout has beaten great fighters such as Spencer Fisher and Joe Lauzon, and has put up incredible fights against well-known fighters Yves Edwards and Thiago Tavares. Krause on the other hand has fought no one of serious note, except on his audition for The Ultimate Fighter, which he lost in an upset to Justin Lawrence.
Stout’s nickname is no joke, as he is an excellent striker who has landed 838 out of 2894 strikes thrown in his last 16 fights. That gives him a 29% success ratio, but with that many strikes thrown, a low percentage like that still means he’s getting pretty beat up. Out of those 838 attempted attacks, 712 were thrown from a standing position, which tells us that Stout likes to keep the fight on his feet.
With almost half of Stout’s wins coming from a knockout, Krause better have a jaw made of steel to go up against Hands of Stone. In his last three UFC fights, Krause has landed 29 out of 79 attempted strikes, giving him a success ratio of 39%. To put this comparison in perspective, some simple math shows us that if Stout were to have fought three fights, he would have thrown around 570 strikes, of which a little more than 160 would have landed. No matter the viewpoint, Stout definitely has the advantage on his feet.
Obviously, MMA is all about mixing it up, and this isn’t just a battle of stand-up strikes. Krause is known for being well-versed in all aspects of the game, and with 12 of his 19 wins coming from submission, it’s plain to see that he has a serious ground game. On top of that, five of Krause’s victories have come from knockout, which means that 17 of his 19 wins have come without any input from the referee or judges. It’s a fact: Krause knows how to end a fight. His takedowns are probably the weakest aspect of his game, as he only has a 29% success rate with them, and with Stout defending 77% of takedowns attempted against him, Krause’s odds don’t look so good on that front.
I’m going to have to give this fight to Stout via knockout. With experience against great fighters, from competing on The Ultimate Fighter 3, and as the lightweight champion in TKO MMA, Hands of Stone will probably dictate where this fight goes. His best bet is to keep it standing up, and with superior takedown defense, it doesn’t look Krause is going to be able to put him down. Stout also avoided 58% of strikes against him, so the stand-up aspect of this fight is pretty one sided. If Krause wants to have any hope of winning this fight, he may want to let Stout take him to the ground in the style of “Minatauro” Nogueira, and work his submission game while defending from Stout’s rock-hard fists.