Prospect in the Spotlight (June 18-19): Jordan Young

Introduction

Thursday, June 17th, American light heavyweight prospect Jordan Young will be in action for PFL, where he will be looking to clinch his spot in the PFL playoffs against veteran Tom Lawlor. He will be looking for another win, as Young looks to continue his path toward a $1 million dollar payday. He represents American Top Team, a top camp in MMA. Let’s take a closer look at this prospect as this week’s “Prospect Spotlight.”

Strengths

Submission Wrestling: Young is a strong wrestler from his ammy days on the mat, so it’s no shock that he’s at his best when he’s reverting back to his roots. Young has all the intangibles; athleticism, explosiveness, timing and persistence. The man sets up his attack and unleashes his offensive takedowns. Once he locks up on his opponent, he is very good at controlling them and aggressively searching for a finish. In fact, he is used to finishing fights quickly, as many of his finishes come in the first stanza. Nine of his 11 pro wins come via tapout, showing he’s just not a lay-and-pray wrestler; he’s a skilled finisher that puts guys away with a diverse arsenal. To date, Young has tapped guys using triangle choke, rear-naked choke, guillotine choke, D’Arce choke and armbar. This guy doesn’t wait for judge intervention.

Quality Experience: In addition to his outstanding ground abilities, Young has not taken the easy road here. In fact, his 11 opponents have a combined 88-63 record. That’s an insane amount of experience that Young has faced, and to this date, has lost just once (which we will talk about in a moment). Young is legit and he’s proved that by forging his craft through fire. His biggest victories come over the likes of Contender Series winner Jamal Pogues, Contender Series losers Tim Caron & Cameron Olson and formerly top prospect Chris Harris. Young will not shy away from competition, and that will be important against a wily veteran like Tom Lawlor.

Needs Improvement

Fighting Quality Counter-Wrestlers: We saw Young’s lone loss come to Julius Anglickas, a fighter with good offensive and defensive wrestling. When Young was unable to control and ground Anglickas, it became more of a striker’s battle, which is secondary to Young’s world. Unfortunately for this fighter, he was outpointed by Anglickas, who exposed Young’s extended on-the-feet skills once he wasn’t able to outwrestle the Lithuanian-American. Young is still young (excuse the unintentional pun), so there is plenty of time to continue to improve. However, if he runs into a guy who is to counter his wrestling effectively, he is still going to find hardship at this point.

Outlook

Top Promotion Midcarder: Young is clearly a quality hand in the cage, so his tenure in top promotions is going to be a long one. It just depends on where he wants to go. He started his big-show tenure with Bellator, where he developed quickly into one of their top prospects. A loss to Julius Anlickas later and he was shockingly gone from the promotion. Now, he’s competing for the $1 million payday and is three points in, courtesy of his opponents missing weight and not making it to the cage. He will need an impressive performance, and possibly a finish, to catch the crazy train to the playoffs. Either way, Young has a long career ahead of him at 26 years old. He will contend for the PFL Season Championship. Whatever happens, I see him making it to the UFC at some point to ply his craft there. He will score some wins there and take some big fights. Nevertheless, he has a long career as a fighter in the top promotions.

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