As the aftermath of UFC 167 is still getting sorted out, it would appear that there is one fighter who has slipped through the cracks. That fighter is Rick Story.
At UFC 167 Story against Brian Ebersole, Story put on the performance of his career. Story was, at one time, one of the organization’s premier up-and-coming fighters. He turned in a great performance against Thiago Alves and it looked like the sky was the limit. He then lost to Charlie Brenneman, and then to Martin Kampmann; with those losses, he kind of fell off the radar. He has alternated wins and losses, but really bounced back against Ebersole.
For the fight at UFC 167, Story went and trained at Tri-Star gym, which is home to Georges St. Pierre. It is, by far, one of the best mixed martial arts camps in the world. While at Tri-Star, the coaches focused on Story controlling his striking. Story always had power; he loves to crank his waist and let that right hand go, but it was usually just thrown for power and he had no real control of it. If it connected, it was going to be a bad night for the other guy, but he rarely did. Tri-Star was able to show him how to control that punch, and also establish a fantastic jab and incorporate leg kicks into his arsenal.
The win against Ebersole has put Story back on my radar. It has been said that Story has always had the athletic ability to be a great fighter, but was never really taught the skills on how to be a complete mixed marital artist. The real question is, who is next for Story? I doubt that they will give him a top-10opponent, but this victory, and the way that he performed, no doubt put his name back in the minds of the fans. I would say that one or two more wins, in that fashion, and Story will be in the top-10of the UFC again.