UFC On FUEL TV 9 (Gegard Mousasi vs. Ilir Latifi)- Akira Corassani vs. Robbie Peralta Preview, Breakdown, Prediction

Akira Corassani (10-3 1 NC, 1-0 UFC) vs. Robbie Peralta (15-3 1 NC, 2-0 1 NC UFC)

Akira Corassani and Robbie Peralta meet in the night’s opening bout on the main card in a fight that was pushed back from UFC 156 due to an illness to Corassani. This will be just Corassani’s second appearance in the octagon since competing on The Ultimate Fighter season 14 in late 2011. He comes off a win over Andy Ogle in September. He is 4-1 in his last five fights. Peralta also last fought in September, making quick work of Jason Young. He is unbeaten in his last ten fights.

Fight Breakdown- Peralta’s nickname, ‘Problems’, has been fitting during his stint in the UFC as he has given his opponents plenty of problems to deal with. Peralta has strong striking skills and power in his hands. Corassani does not have the knockout power that Peralta does, and though he has solid combinations, he tends to fade late into fights. Corassani struggled in the final frame against Ogle and was lucky to walk away with a decision win. He did win some striking exchanges, but he will likely have trouble winning the same kind of exchanges with Peralta.

Corassani can be planted on the mat and controlled on the ground, but Peralta prefers to keep fights on the feet. Perlata has only went for one takedown over his last four fights, so a ground battle may not be in order here. Peralta likes to be the aggressor on the feet and will mix his strikes well. He has 12 knockout wins while Corassani has just one knockout win under his belt. Peralta will need to avoid being too aggressive as Corassani attacks to the body well. This fight will likely remain on the feet and power shots will count the most. Peralta has the tools to take the fight, and he could be headed to his 13th knockout win.

Why It Matters- Injuries have slowed Corassani to just one fight over the last two-plus years, so he would love to get some time inside the octagon to improve his skills. He was one of the most hated fighters coming off his season of TUF, but he showed decent skills and solid improvement in his win over Ogle. Just stepping into the octagon and collecting a paycheck is why this fight matters for Corassani.

Peralta is flying just under the radar in the UFC’s featherweight division. He is unbeaten in the UFC, and he really could make a case for being undefeated, and he would love to break into the next group of competition in the tough 145-pound division. Peralta can break into just outside the top ten with another win, and could be looking at bigger fights down the line, plus he would love to keep his unbeaten streak alive.

Prediction- Peralta

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