“Primetime” Uriah Hall devastated the land on The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen, so much so that many anticipate another highlight-reel moment when this week’s go-home episode features his semifinal bout with Team Jones standout Dylan Andrews. For those of you keeping track at home, the MMA world can already brag about seeing his explosiveness, athleticism, composure, striking and knockout power. Even when appearing to retreat or defend, Hall puts his bread and butter to work in a manner effective enough to leave space for hyperbole.

That said, the mystique behind Hall and what we already know about his game doesn’t leave us with many answers about the other aspects of his skill set. In order to elevate to the level of a title contender and the next heir apparent to the UFC middleweight throne, he must answer a number of questions of what he can do when an elite middleweight attempts to take his striking game away.

What exactly does it mean for someone to take Hall’s striking away from him? It can mean outwrestling Hall, out-grappling him, or beating the touted prospect at his own game while standing. Traditionally, beating Hall means taking him down and exposing the little he presents from the bottom, though his defense stands second to few on the feet.

Sooner or later, someone will aim to expose that weakness, so developing and refining his ground game from the bottom will prove extremely beneficial for when he encounters a top-level grappler. Then again, takedown defense may play a more significant hand because of the wrestlers that do exist at 185 pounds. No guarantees exist as to whether or not these will help his chances of winning the middleweight crown, but it will help him out in proving that he can compete and threaten the top of the division.

Given his knockout finishes, and assuming he not only beats Andrews but also wins TUF 17, many would think his potential puts him in line for a crack at the top 10, but he won’t get that opportunity just yet. Instead, he will work his way up the ladder, just like every other TUF winner did. But expect him to earn a bout with someone either close to the top 10 or in the lower half.

With what the public already knows about his skill set, Hall can bring a deadly game to the cage. If he refines those skills and proves himself as a multi-faceted executioner, however, he can redefine the game in more than just the striking department and cement himself as arguably the future of the UFC middleweight division.

Photo: Uriah Hall (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

About The Author

Dale De Souza
Staff Writer

Dale De Souza is a 22-year-old kid straight out of Texas, who grew up around Professional Wrestling but embraced the beauty of Mixed Martial Arts and Combat Sports at a young age. Dale is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report MMA, a writer at The MMA Corner.