I like Jon Fitch. He's my favorite guy at 170, followed closely by GSP. But looking at him realistically, he doesn't have what it takes to beat a top wrestler in his division. That sounds weird, even to me...and I'm the one writing it. Fitch is a wrestler, thats what he does. But diving deeper into his wrestling background has shown me that he can't beat the likes of GSP, Hughes, and Koscheck.
Fitch, as some may know, was a wrestler at Purdue University. All we ever hear was that he was the team captain senior year, that he developed his skill under Tom Erikson. All true...but his record tells a more interesting story about Fitch's skill level.
Fitch lettered his freshman year, but did not participate in Big Ten competitions.
His sophomore year:
In the year 2000, Jon Fitch was 1-15 with 9 of his losses being by 8 points or more (for those of you who don't know, 8 -14 poinit margins are a major decision, 15 point margins are considered a technical fall.
In his junior year:
In the year 2001, Fitch was better. He went 9-6. He did not qualify for the NCAA tournament and in fact did not even wrestle in the Big 10 tournament.
In his senior year:
In the year 2002, Fitch was his best. He was 18-12. He did not qualify for NCAA's again.
Overall, Fitch's record in college was under .500
Fitch never made the NCAA Tourney. While Fitch has applied his wrestling skill to MMA fairly well, so have others.
Fitch got outwrestled for much of the first round in his fight with Roan Carneiro, a BJJ guy. I just can't see him beating the top guys without developing better striking.
has made a career off putting people on their butt's and keeping them there. Coupled with his underrated BJJ, Matt Hughes would be able to take Fitch, IMO.
has shown he can outwrestle the fighters that were previously believed to have the best wrestling in the division: Hughes and Koscheck. St. Pierre can outstrike Jon and their jui jitsu matches up fairly evenly.
has the most explosive takedowns in MMA. You can feel free to argue, but his speed is what gets you down. He has shown vulnerability in terms of his top control and his TD defense. This match up would be close for Fitch.
IMO, I think Fitch has been a rising star in the WW Division that will eventually hit the wall. He probably won't fight Kos since they train together, but I don't see him winning vs. Hughes or GSP. Both men are better wrestlers than Fitch, which is never good considering wrestling is Fitch's strongest asset.