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Josh Burkman vs. Karo Parisyan at UFC 71

By Robert Rousseau,
What do you get when a former TUF star gets in the ring against one of the best judo practitioners in MMA today?

On August 17, 2006 we got a taste of that when Diego Sanchez downed Karo Parisyan in one of the most exciting fights of the year via decision.

Well, at UFC 71 we're in for another such treat. This time Parisyan's opponent will be Josh Burkman, an excellent ground fighter in his own right.

Keep reading to find out the skinny on the bout.

Josh Burkman vs. Karo Parisyan at UFC 71

Josh Burkman holds an overall MMA record of 8-3 with two (T)KO's and three submission victories on his resume. In short, Burkman has excellent takedowns and takedown defense, good strength (though we're not talking Hughes or St. Pierre - like power), and average technical striking skills. Further, he's won four of his last five, all in the UFC.

That said, on April 4, 2006 Jon Fitch seemed to expose his ground skills as less than what had been determined earlier (he also seemed to wear him down). Of course, Burkman is very good on the ground. But is he elite? Was the Fitch fight simply an off day or a preview of things to come?

Karo Parisyan owns a professional mixed martial arts record of 16-4 with nine submission victories to his credit. Along with this, he possesses an outstanding motor, great cardio, top flight submission skills, and the best judo takedowns in all of the UFC. Further, his technical striking skills have improved dramatically to the point that they are now average for the division. That said, he doesn't have much power in his stand up game (has never knocked out an opponent). In fact, if there is one weakness in his overall game it can be found in power. Parisyan- on the rare occasion that he has lost- has tended to have trouble with powerful fighters like Georges St. Pierre, Sean Sherk, and Diego Sanchez.

That said, Burkman may have excellent takedowns; but Parisyan probably is better in that regard. Burkman also has nice submission skills.

But you've got to think that Parisyan's are again better. In the end, this one has good fight written all over it. Still, Parisyan would seem to have the better overall skills and the edge.

But don't count Burkman out. He's certainly good enough to surprise us all.

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