On Saturday, June 13, the UFC heads to Mexico City, Mexico, to host UFC 188 at the Arena Ciudad de México headlined by UFC heavyweight champion, Cain Velasquez, and interim heavyweight champion, Fabrício Werdum, in a unification bout that has ‘Fight of the Year ‘written all over it. Also on the main card, we will get to see TUF Latin America winner Yair Rodríguez (4-1-0) take on Charles Rosa (10-1-0) in a featherweight battle.

Rodríguez made his professional mixed martial arts debut in October of 2011. competing for regional promotions across Mexico. Rodríguez would have a (3-1) run while competing in his home country. In May 2014, it was revealed that Rodríguez was a cast member of TUF Latin America competing for Team Velasquez. Over the course of the show, Rodríguez first defeated Humberto Brown in the quarterfinals via submission (triangle choke). In the semifinals, Rodríguez went on to defeat fellow Team Velasquez member, Rudolfo Rubio, via submission (kicks and strikes) to reach the finals. On Nov. 15, 2014, at UFC 180, Rodríguez would face fellow team member Leonardo Morales to find out who would be crowned the first ever TUF Latin America winner. Rodríguez would end up defeating Morales via unanimous decision.

Saturday will be the first time Rodríguez will face a true competitor in Rosa. We will get to see if Rodríguez, with only five professional fights, has what it takes to be in the top promotion. Will Rodríguez  rise to the occasion, or we he crumble under the pressure? Tune in to the main card of UFC 188 streaming live on PPV This Saturday to find out.

Relax:

Rodríguez will want to relax as much as possible for his first big fight in the UFC. As we have seen time and time again, young fighters with only a few fights under their belt cannot handle the pressure of being on the biggest stage in MMA. So relax and focus on your opponent and not your surroundings. If Rodríguez can deal with the pressure of fighting in the Octagon and stay calm, I see him winning this fight.

Go for the KO:

With a black belt in Taekwondo, Rodríguez has a different style, utilizing kicks of all types. If he can set up his kicks with punching combinations, he has a great chance of landing that one head or body kick that will drop Rosa. Utilizing his Taekwondo to keep the distance and setting up his takedowns will send Rosa to the mat, giving Rodríguez his first TKO/KO in the UFC.

Do not leave it in the judges hands:

In five professional fights, Rodríguez has only finished two of is opponents. He will not want to leave this one up to the judges. This day-and-age, the worst thing you can do is leave it up to the judges. We have seen more and more decisions going the wrong way when the judges are left up to deciding who the winner is. Once again, Rodríguez will want to relax, use his kicks, and go for the TKO/KO to make sure the judges have nothing to do with picking the winner of this match. If Rodríguez can come out and show his true potential, we may have a new young star on our hands.

Prediction: Rodríguez via KO/TKO, round 3

About The Author

Jeremiah York
Staff Writer

In 1993 at 16 years old my Mom let me order UFC #1 on PPV. Then and there my life changed! To find a sport that put man against man, skill against skill in the rawest form was absolutely amazing! My love for MMA was found and I have been following all aspects of Combat Sports since. If I'm not traveling to watch fights I am studying and catching up on everything MMA at home. I am a Denver Native, but I live in TX now where the fight scene is booming! When I'm not watching and dissecting fights I'm out in the market selling beer as the TX Area Sales Manager for Uinta Brewing.