*FPR derived from video scouting due to lack of Fight Metric data.
Back in January, Zuffa had a problem on its hands. They were set to run the last ever Strikeforce event before merging its roster of fighters into the UFC. However, there were two heavyweights contractually obligated to make one last appearance in Strikeforce: Daniel Cormier and Josh Barnett. Zuffa had a choice to make: stage a rematch between Cormier and Barnett, or find opponents for each of those fighters.
Zuffa chose to go out and find opponents to take them on. The end result was that Cormier and Barnett each fought vastly inferior opponents in Dion Staring and Nandor Guelmino respectively. And while Zuffa immediately parted ways with Staring after his loss to Cormier, for some reason, they seem to feel like they owe Guelmino a favor. After all, Guelmino was willing to step up and lose to Barnett when so many better heavyweights were unwilling to take the fight.
So Guelmino has been signed to a UFC contract. Now the UFC is faced with a new dilemma. Either have Guelmino fight a heavyweight on the current roster, and lose badly, or bring in an opponent that’s somewhere close to Guelmino’s level. The UFC has clearly chosen the latter option by bringing in Daniel Omielanczuk to face Guelmino.
Now, before I did tape study for this fight, I thought to myself that perhaps I had been too hard on Guelmino before. Maybe if I watched Guelmino again, I would find that he wasn’t as bad as I thought.
After watching the tape… I’ve come to the conclusion that not only was I not too hard on Guelmino, I wasn’t hard enough on him. This is a fighter who isn’t remotely close to being on the level of UFC heavyweights.
I could break down what’s wrong with Guelmino’s game… but really, the answer is just about every aspect of mixed martial arts. His striking consists almost entirely of very weak kicks. He has little takedown offense and his takedown defense is a terrible liability. He’s sloppy on the ground.
If I had to say nice things about Guelmino… his conditioning is decent and he has an OK guillotine choke. That’s about it.
Sadly, that might be enough for Guelmino to get past Daniel Omielanczuk. Like Guelmino, Omielanczuk’s striking features a lot of weak kicks with an occasional punch mixed in. Omielanczuk’s takedown defense is bad and he isn’t particularly good on the ground either. Don’t let his record of nine submission victories fool you – none of Omielanczuk’s submission wins have been against a half-decent opponent.
If I had to say nice things about Omielanczuk… well, he has an OK guillotine choke. Hey, that sounds like what I said about Guelmino!
After Soa Palelei’s victory over Nikita Krylov I declared them to be the two worst heavyweights in the UFC. What I didn’t know was just how wrong I was. Nandor Guelmino and Daniel Omielanczuk are the two worst heavyweights in the UFC… although I reserve the right to change my mind when it’s time to do tape study on Geronimo Dos Santos.
I have to question what the UFC is doing by bringing in these heavyweights. They clearly don’t have the skill set or athletic ability to be competitive against mid-tier UFC fighters, and they’re not fun or entertaining to watch either. I mean, I guess Palelei-Krylov had some “so bad it’s good” entertainment value to it, but that only goes so far. Still, what is the point of having fighters like this compete in the top organization in MMA?
As for a prediction… Omielanczuk has shown more ability to land takedowns than Guelmino, slightly better striking, and a slightly sharper submission game. I’ll pick Omielanczuk to win and expect that whoever wins will be embarrassed the moment they’re matched against even a somewhat decent opponent.
Pick: Daniel Omielanczuk by decision