Shane Burgos vs Makwan Amirkhani
Amirkhani is coming back to the octagon after his impressive submission win against Chris Fishgold in June 2019, which was awarded with the performance of the night bonus. It was his 10th submission win in his professional career. Amirkhani has UFC record of 5-1 that has been built during his 4 years with the UFC and he is an owner of one of the fastest KO in the organization’s history with first-round 8 seconds win. Burgos has the same record in the UFC as Amirkhani and his last fight was in May 2019, where he edged a split-decision win against UFC veteran and fan favorite Cub Swanson. He is currently ranked as number 12 in the UFC Featherweight rankings.
Amirkhani’s strengths are relatively clear by looking at his professional MMA record. A submission specialist that is able to turn a fight into a long night of constant work on the ground for his opponent. As a southpaw, when he goes against a fighter with an orthodox stance, the single leg takedown is just there to take it. He was able to take down every of his opponents in the UFC and work them on the ground. He is very dangerous when he is on top. One of his go-to submissions is the anaconda choke. Amirkhani was able to submit 3 of his opponents by this technique. Overall he is able to submit anyone from any position. He lost only once by finish (submission) and his striking defense is pretty good. If there’s a weakness, it would be, that he is not much of an active striker, which could pose a problem, if he would fight someone, who can defend takedowns or can get up from the ground quickly.
Burgos is a guns blazing striker. He is not afraid to go toe-to-toe with his opponents. Burgos is a total opposite of Amirkhani. He is an active pressuring striker, he does not fight on the ground often, does not shoot for takedowns. For a featherweight fighter, he has ridiculously long reach, over 75 inches long and also is a bit tall for this division as well. He utilizes his jabs and low kicks very well. Most of the time he is the one, who takes the center of the octagon and dictates the pace of the fight. But he is also able to fight backwards. It is not too clear what he can do on the ground since in the UFC he has only one finish by submission and he almost never shoots for takedowns.
This fight might not go to the judges‘ decision. Amirkhani’s gameplan will be very simple, wait for the mistake of Burgos and land a takedown and work on the ground. Both fighters have not lost too many times in their careers. Both fighters are also total opposites of each other. One is a dominant grappler, that can submit anyone anytime. The other is a very active and precise striker, that can put the opponent under heavy fire of strikes.
If this fight goes to the ground, Amirkhani is the absolute favorite to win it by submission. His record speaks for itself and it is very unknown, what can Burgos do on the ground. Speaking of ending fights on the ground, it is very probable, that the fight will end by submission. Amirkhani has always landed at least 4 takedowns in his last 4 UFC fights and surely he can land some more against a pure striker.
The possibility of this fight ending by KO is also high. It will be due to gameplans and tactics both fighters will use in this fight. One will shoot for takedowns all night long, the other will try to strike from the outside and will focus on takedown defense. If this fight goes to the judges‘ decision, it is a bit more probable for Burgos to win the fight. Every round starts standing up and if Amirkhani cannot land takedowns, Burgos can strike and land jabs all night long, looking like he is more active fighter.