In a battle of UFC veteran against newcomer, Joe Lauzon faces Marcin Held in the co-headliner of  UFC Fight Night 103 on January 15th, 2017 at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Arizona.

The Bonus Man

Lauzon is the UFC’s all-time leader in Post Fight Bonuses with 15. Considering he’s fought 21 times under the UFC banner, it’s safe to say that Lauzon is an all-exciting fighter, win or lose. But the rigors of a long 10-year career with the UFC have taken its toll on the Bonus Man. Lauzon is just an even 3-3 in his last six bouts. In his most recent Octagon appearance, Lauzon lost via split decision to Jim Miller. With his career on the rocks, he hopes to get back to his winning ways against a promotional newcomer who’s also looking to make a mark in his new home.

Polish Prodigy

Known as the Polish Prodigy in media circuits, the 24-year old Marcin Held has fought mostly in his native Poland before making quite a name for himself in Bellator MMA. In Bellator, Held had an 11-3 record but came short in his first and only title shot at Bellator 145. Despite that, Held owns notable wins over Phillipe Nover, Rich Clementi, Derek Anderson and Ryan Freire. The victory over Freire earned Held the title of Bellator Lightweight Tournament season 10 winner. In his UFC debut last November, Held lost to Diego Sanchez by unanimous decision. He looks to pocket his first UFC win against the equally hungry Lauzon.

Experience Over Youth

The odds currently have Joe Lauzon as a -150 favorite over Held, who is at +120. Held hasn’t lost back to back bouts in his entire MMA career and is the younger man in this contest. He is an excellent grappler with 12 submission wins under his belt. He also has shown that he can go the distance with quality opponents.

Joe Lauzon, though, has the experience and the better all-around game. He can win the fight on the ground, as well as on his feet. Lauzon has won 65% of his bouts by submission. He also owns the most Submission of the Night awards in the UFC with six. But his last three victories have been by knockout. In addition, 25 of Lauzon’s 26 victories have been by stoppage, so he’s also a guy who can finish the fight at any moment.

Held is a good prospect for the UFC, but at this point of his career he isn’t experienced enough to outlast a fighter who’s gone toe to toe with some of the best in the business. We’re picking Joe Lauzon to win here by late submission or unanimous decision.

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