On April 1, four years ago, Carlos Condit stepped into the cage against the Dutchman Martin Kampmann. The fight had a lot of hype leading to it, with both of these young fighters being terrific kickboxers who throw caution to the wind.
Kampmann managed to control Condit on the ground and survived every attack thrown at him, coming out with a unanimous decision victory. The two have now been matched up four years later in a rematch that is headlining a UFC on Fox Sports event.
These two fighters are at a time in their careers where they need to win big fights in order to ever look at the UFC title up close again. While Kampmann has never challenged for a title, he has beaten Condit and knocked out Jake Ellenberger, two title contenders. Condit, on the other hand, had his battle for the championship before, dropping a unanimous decision to welterweight king, Georges St. Pierre.
Both fighters are coming off losses to Johny ‘Big Rig’ Hendricks, who managed to keep Condit under control while brutally knocking out Kampmann with a huge left hand. Johny is now set up to fight St. Pierre in a fight where many are giving him a good chance of knocking the Canadian champion with his powerful hooks.
Condit has shown his ‘weakness’ to wrestlers, and has a pretty poor 36 percent takedown defense rate. I say ‘weakness’, but Condit’s guard is incredibly dangerous, and he is always looking to wrap someones limbs up from the bottom. Many people claim that Condit bested Hendricks in their fight and that the judges got it wrong, so his position is not as dire as many think.
A win over Kampmann would keep Condit in the top-five rankings, setting up a possible Nick Diaz or Rory MacDonald rematch down the line.
Kampmann’s situation is a little worse than Condit’s. Every time Kampmann has lost in the UFC, he was battered and knocked out, making it hard to see him as a true title challenger. Many of his wins have also come with controversy in which he comes back from situations where the referee could have stopped the fight.
If Kampmann were to lose to Condit, people would be ranking him at the latter end of the top-10 rankings, making it very hard to get back to the title picture.
This being said, I see Condit beating Kampmann everywhere the fight goes, as he seems to have improved exponentially since their first match. After the loss, Kampmann will be given fun fights, or a rematch with Jake Shields, and probably won’t be in the title picture again. With a win for Condit, he could definitely get a rematch for the title with either Hendricks or GSP.
Marcus Pordoy is an MMA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @MMAnalysisRoom, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.