He's as complete as his teammates," said Thiago. "He has a good reach, good cardio and ground game and is aggressive. I have the intent to transform this to an advantage for me. As I can't base my study in the matches I had against his teammates, he can't base himself either. If he does it, he will be surprised. I prefer to stay in my opponent’s place. 'What would I do if I was him?' I think this way I can block his tactics. MMA is a complex game."
"This is going to be a nonstop action fight, and because of it the cardio is very important. I think clinches will happen and eventually a takedown by him will be inevitable. From this point, I'll explore my ground game," said Thaigo. "So I just need to keep my focus on my training each time more than the last, and to not think about rankings."
This is an interesting matchup. I have to admit that Thiago has changed my initial perception of him as a one dimensional grappler. While he's not the most technical standing, it is servicable and he has a good chin. I think he's right in that cardio will be a very important factor in this fight. We know Thiago can hang against a tough opponent in a grueling 3 round fight, but Swick went the distance in his last fight as well. However, most of that fight was standing. I wonder how Swick will perform once this fight hits the ground?
SBN coverage of UFC 109: Relentless