Stipe Miocic has been a great heavyweight prospect for some time now, but today, he took the step from viable prospect to heavyweight contender. Going up against Gabriel Gonzaga, Stipe was the superior athlete. Stipe got hit a lot in the first, but he made the adjustments in the second.
He started to find his rhythm and timing, peppering Gonzaga with some straight jabs. It was clear Stipe had Gonzaga’s number after the first. Gonzaga seemed to gas out after the first, allowing Miocic to pepper him up in the second and third round. No matter how hard Gonzaga tried to get the fight to the ground, he was unsuccessful, which is a credit to Stipe’s takedown defense. He knew Gonzaga was an amazing fighter on the ground, so he was extra careful when landed strikes from the top.
Stipe ended up winning a unanimous decision, and it was a sterling display of striking. Miocic is now on a two-fight winning streak. He’s only lost once in his UFC career, which was to Stefan Struve. Since that loss, Stipe has proven to be a more technical fighter, and if he can continue to make adjustments in his training, he’s going to be a tough outing for anyone to deal with in the heavyweight division. Stipe is a great striker, and he always uses his athleticism to get the better of his opponents. This was the case tonight, and the win proved Stipe is an elite heavyweight, capable of fighting for the title very soon.