UFC Fight Night 30 takes place this Saturday in Manchester, England at the Phones 4u Arena and will be aired on Fox Sports 2. The card is headlined by Mark Munoz taking on Lyoto Machida who is making his middleweight debut moving down from light heavyweight and is a replacement for the injured Michael Bisping.
Parke (18-2 MMA, 2-0 UFC) is a product of Robert Drysdale and is most known for winning ‘The Smashes’ back in December of last year as a representative of Ireland. He was also successful in his UFC match up following the show against Kazuki Tokudome at UFC 162. Sporting 12 submission victories in 18 wins, it’s no mystery where Parke’s specialties lie. His submission game earned him a 16-2 record before joining the TUF house and assisted him in winning the show.
“Super Saiyan” Tuck (7-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) is the first Chamorro native from Guam to join the UFC roster. He was successful in his UFC debut against Zhang Tiequann in Macau at the UFC on Fuel TV6 card and despite his UFC debut being roughly a year ago he has significantly less cage experience than Parke. However, while Parke is 13 fights the elder, Tuck is an Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Cup champion which will provide him with more than enough experience on the mat to be able to roll with Parke and potentially have the advantage.
As with any grappler versus grappler match up, there are two potential things that could happen: we may be in store for a ground battle between two fighters with impressive ground acumen that could be full of transitions, submission attempts, and sweeps, or we could be in store for a stalemate on the ground that will result in a stand up fight. Should the latter take place, the advantage will likely lie with the larger Tuck who has earned knock out victories in half of his finishes though neither fighter has a clear cut advantage on the feet.
Prediction: Jon Tuck def. Norman Parke via submission (rear naked choke).
While our friends over at Cage Rank have weighed the statistics and predicted that Parke will win by third round submission, I have a gut feeling that Tuck is going to pull this one off. Parke’s submission record is without a doubt impressive, but the leveling of grappling his opponents were on were nowhere near that of an Abu Dhabi Jiu-Jitsu cup champion. Tuck is far more impressive on the ground than anyone Parke has faced. I feel as though Parke will go into this fight very confident in his grappling and he will end up paying for it as he goes in for a take down. I believe Tuck will land a hard shot rocking Parke and he will drag him to the ground and use his savvyness on the mat to score a rear naked choke (both of Parke’s losses have come by rear naked choke) victory some time in the second round.