By TXMMA Staff // Emil Fischer
Breaking down an exciting featherweight bout between two of the state’s top prospects at LFC 33; Our pre-fight analysis of Rodriguez vs. Peterson
DALLAS, TX, July 17, 2014 – On Friday July 18th, Texas MMA fans and those watching nationwide on AXS TV will be treated with an exciting bout between two up and coming Texan featherweights: Steven Peterson and (Johnny) Ray Rodriguez. Scheduled for the main card at Legacy Fighting Championship 33, this bout between the two showcases two guys that have been angling for championship consideration for some time and both are looking to become the state’s next breakout star in the 145 lbs. division.
Hailing from Plano, Steven “Ocho” Peterson has the upper hand in this fight when it comes to experience. His 10-4 record means that he has been in more than twice the number of fights as his opponent. He’s also a finisher, which means that if he wins fans will likely get to see an exciting end to the fight. The only time Peterson was finished himself in his professional career was from a knockout, so if Rodriguez wants to win this that may be his way to go versus going for a submission. On a side note, Steven Peterson’s last fight (which he won by TKO) was against another Ray Rodriguez (“El Torito” from Warrior’s Edge), so he’ll be looking for lightning to strike twice in this one.
On the other side, San Antonio based Ray “The Judge” Rodriguez has had the shorter career with a 5-2 record but by no means is he inexperienced. Rodriguez has been finished once by submission, so Peterson’s path to success may be found on the ground but that remains to be seen. Half of Rodriguez’s victories have come from decisions and his finishing abilities seem to be equal standing and on the ground. He’s an extremely well-rounded fighter and fights like it utilizing his quickness and speed to bring out the best of himself in all areas. His opponent is similar in that regard so fans can expect this to be a very evenly matched fight. As a side note, Rodriguez has also beaten the other Ray Rodriguez (by submission).
Physically speaking, Rodriguez is the smaller fighter standing at 5’7 and weighing closer to 135 lbs. whereas Peterson is 5’9 and 145 lbs. on any given day. Depending on whether or not Peterson has to cut for this he may be walking in with a disadvantage as far as cardio, but he still has the reach advantage. Also very often lankier guys tend to be more dangerous on the ground. If this holds true in this fight, Peterson would be better off taking it to the ground. Rodriguez’s only loss by finish came from a rear naked choke so Peterson may try to take his back, but Peterson hasn’t found success via RNC since 2011. Fans should expect Rodriguez to use a tight clinch game to negate any possible reach disadvantage as he has shown himself to be particularly successful at attaining KO victories (three of his four amateur wins were by KO or TKO).
To conclude, this fight is exciting for a number of reasons. For starters, there’s the X-Factor that is Ray Rodriguez. He is such a fresh fighter that the fans aren’t going to know what to expect from him. By contrast, since moving over to Octagon MMA Steven Peterson is rapidly making a name for himself as an elite level fighter who is dangerous no matter where he takes the fight.
Fans should expect an exciting action packed event on Friday. The bout between Ray Rodriguez and Steven Peterson will be memorable as it showcases the very best that modern MMA has to offer. These two fighters are evenly matched and will likely bring out the best in each other.
Make sure to tune in at 9PM on AXS TV to see how it all plays out.