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Who Should Kron Gracie Fight First in the UFC?

Who Should Kron Gracie Fight First in the UFC?

Ideas on Potential Match Ups…

UFC is working to sign Kron Gracie. They would like to have him fight at UFC 233. Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) reported the following on twitter,

“Hearing the UFC is working on signing decorated grappler Kron Gracie, son of Rickson Gracie, with the intent to have him fight at UFC 233 on Jan. 26 in Anaheim. Gracie is 4-0 in MMA, including a win over Tatsuya Kawajiri in 2016.”

Who would be the best fight for Kron? There have been many names tossed in the ring. One potentially interesting matchup would be Zabit Magomedsharipov. Zabit is currently ranked 15th in the division. There are several components that make this fight interesting. First, he is a ranked fight but not a top 10 or 5 fighter.  In the Gracie spirit, Kron would most likely have little interest in a tune up fight or stepping stone. He would appreciate a genuine challenge and Zabit would provide that. Zabit has 17 fights with 16 wins. His sole loss was via submission. While he holds a Master of Sport in Sambo, he has 7 wins by submission and 6 wins via knockout. This makes him a well-rounded fighter. For the grappling aficionado, it would be interesting to see the contrast of grappling styles between Sambo and Jiu Jitsu.

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Jeremy Stephens would be another interesting matchup. While it is unlikely that the UFC match makers would pit Kron against a top 10 opponent, there are some reasons why this fight would be great to watch. First, Jeremy is a heavy handed striker. If Kron has been training with the Diaz brothers, it is certainly possible that their matador style has influenced him. If this is the case, it would be interesting to see who would be victorious, the matador or the bull.

Darren Elkins is a third possible option. He is a brown belt in Jiu Jitsu training out of Team Alpha Male. The fight makes sense for Darren because he is coming off a two fight losing streak. A win against a famous name would help him garner momentum. Most of Darren's wins are via TKO. It would be interesting to see Kron’s striking prowess in comparison to Darren’s striking. Ultimately, the bout would come down to who was more effective in their game; the striker or the grappler.

If Kron is signed he will be the first Gracie to fight in the UFC since Roger Gracie. Kron is the son of the legendary Rickson Gracie. He started training as a child under his father. At the age of 19, he received his black belt from his father. In addition to a Jiu Jitsu black belt, Kron also has a black belt in Judo.

He holds a professional grappling record of 28-11. 24 wins are via submissions. Notable grappling wins include Otávio Souza, Jonathan Torres, Garry Tonon, Andy Wang and Shinya Aoki. In 2013, he received first place at ADCC 77 KG Division. In addition to his grappling record, Kron holds a 4-0 professional fight record. He boasts wins over Tatsuya Kawajiri and Hideo Tokoro. All his wins were via submission.

Given Kron’s impressive grappling credentials and his MMA record, who do you think would be the best matchup to welcome him to the UFC?

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