In the main event of UFC Fight Night 18 back in April 2009, the Welterweight champion of the recently-dissolved World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC), Carlos Condit, made his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) debut against a scrappy Dane, Martin Kampmann, who was taking just his second 170-pound fight.
"Natural Born Killer" and "The Hitman" went back-and-forth for three full rounds and ultimately Kampmann reigned supreme via razor-thin split decision.
Now, four years after their first meeting, Condit and Kampmann will roll it back in a five-round, non-title rematch that will serve as the main event of UFC Fight Night 27, which takes place at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind., later this evening (Weds., Aug. 28, 2013), airing live on FOX Sports 1.
Their initial battle was waged all over the Octagon -- in the clinch, on the ground and at striking range. Both men were aggressors in the fight, but ultimately the judges deemed Kampmann's control from top position the swaying factor in awarding him the victory. The main difference between the first match and their second one tonight is that it is scheduled for 25 minutes rather than the standard 15.
Rest assured, for every minute this fight lasts there will be constant mixed martial arts (MMA) action.
While both men have progressed their skills greatly since their first encounter, there is one thing common thread among both of them that has not changed -- each fighter almost always attempts to inflict damage. Whether that means hunting down their opponents, throwing punches while moving backward or even opening up with strikes from bottom position, these men like to hit their opponents ... a lot.
In addition to their generally offensive styles, Condit and Kampmann possess very similar skill sets. They match up fairly evenly on the mat -- both are known to have quality submission skills and they both excel at positional grappling. Kampmann held a definite edge in wrestling in their first contest, but that is a hole that Condit has worked tirelessly to plug since then.
Indeed, Kampmann will likely be unable to takedown Condit with as much regularity the second time around.
Condit and Kampmann are also known for their powerful striking, with both finishing many of their professional fights by way of (technical) knockout. However, Condit's style has become a fair bit trickier since they first met, mixing in kicks very well now. Kampmann, meanwhile, is a more technical striker who sometimes struggles defensively and/or mentally, but there is no doubting his power or finishing ability.
When it's time for the UFC Fight Night 27 main event, combat sports fans can expect the very best from Condit and Kampmann -- it's seemingly a "must-win" situation for both veterans. It may very well look like their first clash, but it will be at a higher intensity level because there is so much more on the line.
In a sense, this is a battle for relevancy at the top of the Welterweight rankings; therefore, expect both men to fight tirelessly to keep their names one step ahead of the competition in a pivotal showdown that has all the ingredients to deliver the UFC Fight Night 27 "Fight of the Night."