Prospect in the Spotlight (Apr 24-25): Salimgerey Rasulov

Introduction

Saturday, April 18th, Russian heavyweight prospect Salimgerey Rasulov will be in action for Absolute Championship Akhmat, where he will be fighting opposite Daniel Omielanczuk. He will be looking to continue his current winning streak, as Rasulov looks to get closer to an eventual UFC contract. He represents Fight Club No. 1, an unknown camp in MMA. Let’s take a closer look at this prospect as this week’s “Prospect Spotlight.”

Strengths

Striking: Rasulov loves himself a dogfight, even if it sometimes is to his detriment. Rasulov throws hands and feet with disregard for his opponent’s health. He has a great amount of power in his fists, which is why he has scored 13 knockout victories in his career. Many of those come in the first round, as Rasulov is a head hunter. If he doesn’t knock you clean out, he has no problem using those heavy hands on the ground to throw big GNP. Simply put, if you value your consciousness, stay away from this guy’s massive strikes.

Strength of Schedule: If you look at the resume of Rasulov, I think it’s safe to say that he hasn’t taken many easy fights, especially recently. Among the scalps he’s taken as trophies are guys such as current UFC heavyweight Tanner Boser, current ACA Champion Mukhamed Vakhaev, Russian vet Evgeny Erokhin and Polish vet Michal Andryszak. Even his losses are generally against tough talent. Iron sharpens iron, and that was definitely the case with Rasulov in his career.

Needs Improvement

Cardio/Brawl-Prone: Rasulov is fun to watch because he loves getting into slugfests. However, his willingness to through caution to the wind and merely throw hands can come back to bite him in the butt. He doesn’t check leg kicks especially vigilantly and can take body damage in the clinch. He can be slow and prodding on the feet as well, making him a sitting duck against fellow aggressive strikers. Not only that, but when he expels energy in these dog fights, his cardio does not hold up a good amount of the time. Watch his bout with Peter Graham. The way he wore out in that back-and-forth bout really exposed him as the fight moved on. He’s dangerous at the start and far less dangerous down the stretch.

Outlook

UFC Midcarder: Rasulov has certainly taken on a lion’s share of tough fighters and proven he can hang. At 33, the time is now for him to make the jump to the UFC, as he may be at his prime. MMA can be a young man’s game many times, and the mileage adds up. Rasulov is certainly good enough to compete in one of the shallowest divisions in the UFC. There are more than a few winnable fights. With a UFC vet on his plate that had solid success with the company in Omielanczuk, a win could very well be his golden ticket. This is a test he needs to pass. If he does, he has proven he is worthy to ink that contract.

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