UFC on FOX 9: Stout Sees “Big Openings” in McKenzie’s Game, But Knows TUF Vet is “No Joke”
By Kelsey Mowatt
When you consider that Sam Stout is closing out his eighth year in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, and that the lightweight has earned seven fight night bonuses during his run, few would argue that the fighter has had an incredibly successful career. Especially since Stout will not even turn 30 until next April.
While the Canadian has endured in the world’s biggest biggest MMA promotion, and has participated in plenty of classic fights, Stout isn’t happy with the winning percentage he’s recorded in the Octagon.
“You know, I want to get off this 500 record stuff,” Stout recently relayed on Full Contact Fighter Radio, while discussing his aspirations for 2014. “I want to get past this, win one, lose one, kind of thing that I’ve been doing throughout my whole career really, and start backing up wins. Get a better record here.”
Since making his Octagon debut back in 2006, when he scored a split decision victory over Spencer Fisher at UFC 58, Stout has yet to win more than two fights in a row with the promotion.
“Where I’m at, at 8 and 8 in the UFC, it’s hard for me to say I want a title shot in 2014,” added Stout. “But I’d like to go out and get three wins in 2014; that’s what I’d like to do.”
While Stout clearly hopes to compete often next year, the London, Ontario resident is already mapping out the exit strategy for his fighting career. When Stout takes on Cody McKenzie at UFC on FOX 9 this Saturday, it will be his 30th pro bout.
“No way,” Stout (19-9-1) said emphatically, when asked if he sees himself fighting another ten years. “A goal I’ve always set for myself is to fight until 2016…if I can make it to spring of 2016, that would be ten years in the UFC and I’d be happy walking away from the sport at that point.”
“There’s not a lot of people who’ve said they fought in the UFC for a decade, so, I think that would be a good accomplishment.”
Up next, however, is the aforementioned McKenzie (14-3), who has gone 3-3 in the UFC after competing on the 12th season of “The Ultimate Fighter”. The 25 year-old is of course famous for his feared guillotine choke, which has produced wins in 11 of his 17 pro fights to date.
“I think it’s a very interesting match-up, me and him,” said Stout, when asked to assess the striking game of McKenzie. “I’m obviously going to try to keep the fight standing…he does have that reach, he is a lefty, which makes it a little trickier to train for, but he leaves some big openings with his striking.”
“He’s really off balance a lot when he’s punching and kicking,” added Stout. “I think there’s some things I can expose, definitely, when it comes to his striking game, but he’s really no joke. I think he gets a bit of a bad rep because his style is not really pretty to watch…he gives guys a lot of trouble.”
And as far as the lightweight’s well documented “McKenzietine”?
“It’s a strange guillotine, it’s almost, you know the grip that he has, so I’m trying to prepare for it as much as possible,” furthered Stout, who lost to James Krause in June via a guillotine choke. “It’s my main worry; it’s the main threat from him, but his ground game is actually really good.”
UFC on FOX 9 will be hosted by the Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California and will feature flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson taking on Joseph Benavidez.