A welterweight showdown will act as the main event for the UFC’s Ultimate Fighter China finale. Dong-Hyun Kim will square off against John Hathaway on March 1 in Macau. Kim is fresh off a Knockout of the Night effort against Erick Silva at Fight Night 29 in Brazil, while Hathaway is looking forward to a return to action after being sidelined all of last year by injury issues.
“Stun Gun”, who is known more for his impressive wrestling and judo skills, knocked Silva cold with a single shot in the second round of their fight to record his third straight victory. He’s also registered wins over Paulo Thiago and Siyar Bahadurzada since losing to Demian Maia at UFC 148. Kim has compiled an impressive 9-2-1 slate during his UFC tenure and is currently ranked no. 12 in the 170-pound weight class by the organization.
A victory over Hathaway would definitely have him knocking on the door of entering the top-10. He possesses tremendous physical strength which he puts to good use with his grappling skills, and can pack a punch with seven of his 18 career wins having come via knockout.
As for Hathaway, his career showed plenty of promise but has been derailed by injuries. He has an impressive 17-1 career record with his lone defeat having come by decision against veteran Mike Pyle at UFC 120. Interestingly enough, Hathaway had been scheduled to meet Kim at that event, but the South Korean was forced to withdraw due to an injury.
Hathaway has recorded seven victories inside the Octagon, including triumphs over Diego Sanchez and Rick Story. Unfortunately, “The Hitman” didn’t fight at all in 2013. A scheduled fight against Erick Silva didn’t materialize because of an injury. He hasn’t fought since a 2012 decision win over John Maguire, and is obviously hoping that he can get his career back on track in 2014.
This fight has the makings to be a grinding affair between two physically imposing competitors. The two men have combined for 18 decision victories between them. Kim is hoping to continue the momentum of what was his most spectacular UFC victory to date, while Hathaway desperately needs the victory to get people talking about him again after being out of sight, out of mind in 2013.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports