I listed this fight as one of the honorable mentions in my five fights to be on the lookout for during the month of April. I really like both of these guys because they both come to fight, so this one should be faced paced with slick transitions, with the winner launching himself into that next tier of UFC lightweights.
Terry Etim comes into this fight on a four fight winning streak, in which he has won the submission of the night twice(his last two fights). He's very tall for a lightweight, standing at 6'1" tall, and fairly well rounded possessing some solid muay thai to go with his submission game. He brings an overall record of (14-2) into UFC 112, with 11 wins via submission. He has never been submitted or knocked out in MMA. His lone two losses were back to back losses to veteran Rich Clementi and Gleison Tibau.
Raphael dos Anjos comes into this fight winning his last two fights via unanimous decision after dropping his first two UFC fights. Normally fighters get cut after two consecutive losses, but dos Anjos performed well against veteran Tyson Griffin and was winning the fight with Jeremy Stephens until he got hit with an uppercut from hell. In fact, the Stephens KO is the only time dos Anjos has been stopped in his career. He brings an overall record of (12-4) with 6 wins via submission. He is a BJJ blackbelt under Roberto Correa and also possesses solid kicks from his muay thai background.
After thinking about it, these guys are almost mirror images of one another. Both are really young, extremely durable, good on the ground, and good kicks. The biggest difference will be the height/reach advantage that Etim will have over dos Anjos. However, dos Anjos could use those kicks as a setup to take Etim down to the ground. While Etim is good on the ground, I'm not sure he'll be able to submit dos Anjos from his back if they reach that position. Although, Etim's length could pose some problems or make it difficult for dos Anjos to keep him there. Ultimately, I think this is going to be a war of attrition with the winner being whomever has the best cardio. I know dos Anjos can go all three rounds, and I'm pretty sure Etim can as well. So it's basically a pick'em fight. Which fighter you riding with?