In a featherweight fight scheduled for UFC 162 in Las Vegas, Cub Swanson will meet Dennis Siver at the center of the Octagon to determine who gets to leave with their fist held high in victory and who will bask in depressing defeat. Coming off a four-fight win streak, Swanson hopes to demonstrate his well-rounded fighting ability and showcase his experience gained in a background of both grappling and MMA competition. Entering this fight after winning his last two, Siver is “expecting fireworks,” as he is well aware that his opponent is versatile, “knows how to fight everywhere and makes his fights interesting every time.”
Swanson, at age 29, has achieved the rank of black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, which means that he has dedicated most of his adult life to the study of submission grappling. As the tenth-ranked featherweight in the world according to Sherdog, he has demonstrated his ability against well-known MMA vets such as Dustin Poirier and Ross Pearson. In his last 14 fights, Swanson has landed 46% of the 883 strikes attempted, and 55% of his 31 takedown attempts. For the most part, he likes to do the majority of his striking whilst standing, as 72% of his strikes are thrown from the upright position. He also has good defense, avoiding 63% of attacks made against him, and defending 45% of his opponents’ takedowns. He won at the Pan Ams BJJ competition, been awarded WEC Fight of the Night on three separate occasions, and UFC Knockout of the Night two times.
With a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and a seventh-place ranking in Sherdog’s featherweight rankings, Siver’s skills are nothing to scoff at. He has beaten both Matt Wiman and George Sotiropoulos, was the German Kickboxing champion in 1997 under the World Association of Kickboxing Organization (WAKO), and the South German Freefight Champion in ’03 and ’04. He has fought all around the world, from his home country of Germany to Sweden, England, Slovenia, and the United States. In his last 16 fights, he has landed 599 out of 1874 strikes, and although that leaves him with a low 32% success rate, it is because he is an extremely aggressive striker who is constantly on the offensive. With 82% of his strikes thrown from standing, it is clear that this fight will likely stay up and end in a knockout. Siver avoids 69% of offensive strikes and defends a massive 71% of his opponents’ takedowns. He has also won UFC Knockout of the Night two times, Submission of the Night once, and Fight of the Night on two occasions.
This fight will most likely stay standing up for a while, and if Siver can stay off the ground and away from Swanson’s submissions, then he has a great shot at taking home the victory. Swanson is probably very aware of this, and will try to put Siver on the ground and out of his game plan as soon as he can. There is a huge difference between a purple and a black belt in BJJ, and Siver will have to showcase his incredible takedown defense if he wants to win this fight. As long as this fight stays off the ground, the odds are stacked in Siver’s favor.