Is Brendan Schaub a Pretender or a Contender?

By Kevin Davidson
Brendan Schaub
Paul Abell-USA TODAY Sports

In the last three years, the UFC Heavyweight division has become a shadow of its former self … in the good way. Does that make sense? Oh well, we’re rolling with it. If there ever was a problem with the UFC in the last five years, it had to be their Heavyweight division. It packed plenty of starts throughout the years, but before the Cain Velasquez’sJunior Dos Santo’s and the Stipe Miocic’s, it was Tim Sylvia and Andrei Arlovski fighting a trilogy. My point is it lacked depth. Sure, the top-five fighters would make great fights against each other but it was always a little confusing to see who was outside the top-five because it was all a miss-mash of people trying to put together a winning streak.

These days, the Heavyweight division is anything but that. With the recent acquisition of the Strikeforce Heavyweights, the division has now become a war zone. That is great news for the fans, but a little scary for the fighters. Gone are the days where you could win one and lose two and still have a roster spot. These days you need to make a statement, and Brendan Schaub needs to do just that. Schaub made a name for himself on the Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights. He was able to make it to the finale but lost via knockout to Roy Nelson. Schaub then went on a four-fight win streak and was able to finish three of those.

These days, Schaub finds himself in a bit of a tough spot. His chin has shown to not hold up with the rest of the Heavyweight division (can you blame him though? I mean … he basically has the Iron Giant punching him). He was able to right the ship by beating Lavar Johnson via decision. Johnson was cut after that fight. Schaub needs to really turn a corner in his game. He is an amazing athlete that could really combine quick combos with a fast takedown; he has just not been able to put it together in the Octagon. He still has all of the potential to be a great fighter but this fight, at UFC 165, is going to tell a great deal about where Schaub is at in his career.

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