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.
Shhh… don’t jinx it, but I think fights are finally back. This, of course, means the return of the longest running segment out there, Prelim Breakout Star. With a star studded line-up that has potential hall of famers on the prelims, it was tough to find an under the radar fighter, but we think we got you.
Nickname – Superman
Affiliation – Fortis MMA
From – Memphis, Tennessee
Height – 6’5″
Weight – 205 lbs (Light Heavyweight)
Record – 17-5 (3-0 UFC)
What makes him impressive
It feels like more people should know the guy who knocked Lil’ Nog into another dimension, but here I am explaining to people the power of Ryan Spann. As a Fortis MMA product, you can expect him to go in with phenomenal fundamentals in the stand-up game. In a division where seemingly everyone can end your night with one well-timed punch, Spann does well at making sure he doesn’t overextend himself with his strikes. This doesn’t mean he isn’t aggressive, but rather that he knows the moments in which to be so and keeps himself safe in the process.
Why he has been overlooked
Despite a 3-0 start in the UFC (4-0 if you count the Contender Series), Spann is not one of those light heavyweight prospects people are drooling over. Johnny Walker won his first three and people wanted him to fight Jon Jones. Ditto with Aleksandar Rakic. Yet here we are trying to figure out why Spann isn’t a household name yet. Having his first two bouts outside of the U.S. might be the answer, but the real answer is that there is for no reason at all.
What makes this a good match-up
Sam Alvey is a guy who has made a career off of punishing guys for getting just a bit too wild. He sent Marcin Prachnio into another dimension when he got a little antsy and he’s done the same to folks like Dan Kelly and Dylan Andrews. As mentioned previously, this is where Spann excels. He rarely puts himself in a bad spot and will probably keep Alvey backpedaling for the majority of the fight. Add in a clear strength and size advantage and this should be an easy one for Spann.
Prelim Breakout Star Record: 193-84-1 (2 NC) (8 DNF)
(The MMA Manifesto is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com)