The Prelim Breakout Star is a once per event article that helps fans get to know those who will be entertaining them from the undercard. The intention of the article is not to bring attention to the most talented fighter on the preliminary card, but rather one that the common fan may have overlooked or underestimated.
Another local card delivered this weekend and it continues to beg the question; why do we keep getting down on these cards. Well don’t get down on UFC in Hamburg, get up early instead.
Affiliation – MMA Red Star
From – Belgrade, Serbia
Height – 6’0″
Weight – 205 lbs (Light Heavyweight)
Record – 12-1 (0-0 UFC)
What makes him impressive
Being built like a house and having a judo base, you would assume that the clear and easy thing to love about Stosic is his takedowns. While he has his fair share of solid throws, his leg kicks are what to write home about. He doesn’t telegraph them at all and throws each one with bad intent. In doing so he neutralizes most of his opponents strength on the feet and either uses that to take them down, or sets up the finish with his hands. If you’re looking to check this out, look for footage of his 2017 fight with 30-fight veteran Emil Zahariev, in which he lands four or five leg kicks in the first two minutes before the referee has to stop the fight.
Why he has been overlooked
There’s not a huge MMA following for Serbia. Although he does get some regional pop from his neighboring countries on the Balkan Peninsula, which have much larger MMA followings, he still hasn’t really got the recognition he deserves.
He also has fought most of his career at heavyweight, which takes away some of the mystique. He’s really short for a heavyweight and as a result is a much better fit to light heavyweight, where he fights this weekend.
What makes this a good match-up
Jeremy Kimball is not a master of defensive strategy. In his bouts in the UFC, Kimball has overachieved using a combination of a tough chin and solid counter striking. However, Stosic is really good at bringing his strikes in and getting away from counters. In addition, if Kimball doesn’t check the leg kicks, he won’t be standing for more than one round.
Prelim Breakout Star Record: 148-64-1 (2 NC) (6 DNF)