clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Stephen Thompson confident in his ability to finish UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler

Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

The stars are aligning for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight contender Stephen Thompson.

With a recent five-round dissection of perennial title hunter Rory MacDonald back at UFC Fight Night 89, "Wonderboy" has now won seven in a row in a crowded 170-pound division. He has finished the likes of Johny Hendricks, Jake Ellenberger, and Robert Whittaker along the way.

As the consensus No. 1 contender moving into the second half of 2016, Thompson has set himself up to fight the winner of Robbie Lawler vs Tyron Woodley currently scheduled to go down at UFC 201 on July 30 from Atlanta, Georgia. But with one of the most unique skill sets in the game today, Thompson is more than confident in a potential tilt with current champion Lawler.

"I know I can knock Robbie Lawler out," said Thompson in a recent interview with FOX Sports. "He's going to move forward and he's going to end up walking into something."

While "Wonderboy" has looked spectacular in finishing the opponents he has, "Ruthless" hasn't been stopped by strikes since Nick Diaz knocked him out cold at UFC 47. Since then, Lawler has become a human wrecking ball inside of the Octagon.

"I think I am the better striker," added Thompson. "He's the type of guy that stands in front of you, he's very, very tough. I believe he's slower than Rory MacDonald. I believe I'm faster than him. The speed is going to be tough for him, and I think the angles are going to be tough for him. But he's a champion, he's going to be coming with his 'A' game. I need to be ready for the best Robbie Lawler in the world."

Thompson was nice enough to detail Lawler's upcoming title defense opposite Woodley.

"Just from what I've seen in the past from both fighters, Robbie Lawler gets stronger as the fight goes on," said Thompson. "He breaks a lot of guys mentally that way. When guys are starting to get tired, Robbie Lawler's just picking it up. Tyron's the opposite of that."

Whoever is able to capture gold at UFC 201 next month, they better prepare for the most puzzling striker in mixed martial arts (MMA) since the arrival of Lyoto Machida.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Mania Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Mania