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UFC 134 Fight Card Breakdown: Brendan Schaub Vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

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A fight like the one coming up on Saturday at UFC 134: Rio between Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira -- truly one of the legends of the sport -- and Brendan Schaub, a moderately talented up and comer kind of puts the lie to technical analysis.

The truth is that Schaub's skill set is extremely limited. He's a former college football player who relies on raw power and athleticism to overwhelm his opponents. Not that he's not working hard or training with a good camp, but the reality is that he's reliant on his powerful right hand, considerable recuperative abilities and quickness.

Unfortunately against the aging and injured Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira that should be more than enough. Nogueira has spent years developing a fairly sophisticated boxing game to compliment his deadly Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu attack. Sadly he's slowed so much in recent years that it doesn't make much difference. He's also seen what was once the games most enduring granite chin crumble into dust. 


Brendan Schaub Wants a Title Shot With a Win Over Nogueira at UFC 134

Nogueira doubtless retains a massive advantage on the ground, given his dangerous BJJ skills, but the problem is he doesn't have the speed or wrestling skills to put Schaub on the ground. If Schaub is foolish enough to take Nog down or let him pull guard, he could be in deep trouble, but it's too easy to just stand up and walk away from all but the most determined of Nog's half-guard sweeps. If Schaub falls into the old lion's traps it would be an uncharacteristic lapse for a kid with a fairly impressive fight IQ.

Unless Nog is enjoying an improbable return to his youthful form, expect to see the young lion feast on the old in this one. 

Aspect Nogueira Points Schaub Advantage
Range Fighting



Boxing Technical But Slow Some Power Schaub
Kickboxing Slow Improving Schaub
Wrestling Limited 2 Improving Schaub
Clinch Fighting        
Dirty Boxing Effective 1 Good Nogueira
Thai Clinch Ok 1 Improving Schaub
Throws/Trips Decent 1 Ok Schaub
Ground Fighting



Positional Control Very Good 1 Limited Nogueira
Scrambling Good 1 Ok Nogueira
Escapes Slick 1 Hapless Nogueira
Submissions Excellent 1 Ok Nogueira
Intangibles Damaged 1 Up And Coming Schaub
Overall Aged 5/8 On The Move Schaub