UFC up and comer Rick Story feels pretty confident he’ll be able to walk away with a win when he faces Nate Marquardt at UFC Live 4, scheduled for June 26. Anthony Johnson was originally scheduled to fight Marquardt at UFC Live 4, but pulled out of the MMA fight due to an injury.
Rick Story ended up taking the fight on short notice, and a win against a top fighter like Marquardt will significantly improve his ranking as an MMA fighter. Story feels his wrestling ability will be his key to victory against Marquardt.
“If you watch his fight with Chael Sonnen, it’s pretty evident,” Story said during an interview on the Savage Dog Show. “He doesn’t have exceptional takedown defense, but he’s exceptional off his back. [It’s going to take] ground-and-pound and a high pace and you name it. In that Chael Sonnen fight, Chael went in that fight with a great game plan that worked for him. It showed a weakness in Marquardt’s game.”
Sonnen did surprise many MMA fans when he faced Marquardt at UFC 109, dominating his opponent and taking the unanimous decision. Given all that has been revealed about Sonnen since his UFC 117 encounter with current UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva; I have a hard time giving Sonnen too much credit for the win, but the grinding-out strategy does seem to be effective against Marquardt.
Story hopes a win against Marquardt will put him closer to a shot at the UFC welterweight championship.
“I think that it depends on how the fight ends up,” Story said. “If it’s another decision, it’s not as much a priority. But if I end up finishing Nate, I think that puts me closer to that title shot. I don’t know if it would be more deserving than either B.J. Penn or Jon Fitch, but I’m sure a lot of people would like to see me challenge St. Pierre or Diaz.”
Story definitely deserves a title shot if he gets a win over Marquardt at UFC Live 4, but Nate won’t be eager to lose in his welterweight debut.