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UFC 117: The New Guys

(Morecraft vs. Josh Diekmann, 11/14/09; fight starts at the 2:27 mark.)

Two minor-league MMA prospects will be taking a major leap in competition this Saturday, as they make their Octagon debuts in the preliminary card of UFC 117. As we saw with Charles Oliveira at "Jones vs. Matyushenko" on Sunday, sometimes dreams do come true. And sometimes they get crushed and blown away like dust. Get to know the new guys below and keep an eye out for ‘em this weekend…

Experience: 6-0 record (all wins by first-round stoppage, three within the first minute) competing in the Reality Fighting and Cage Fighting Xtreme promotions. All fights have taken place in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Most recently scored a submission-via-strikes victory over Lee Beane in May to win CFX’s heavyweight title.
Will be facing: Stefan Struve (19-4, 3-2 UFC)
Lowdown: Another large addition to the UFC’s heavyweight division, Morecraft is a 6’6, 258-pound smashing machine that has been drawing lots of attention in Massachusetts. The 23-year-old began studying the sport with John Burke at the Dungeon MMA Academy, and now calls the Cape Cod Fighting Alliance his home. His take on MMA: "For every way there is to put somebody (in a hold), there’s a way of getting out if you do it at the right moment. And everything flows. It’s an art.” Morecraft digs ’80s metal, and walked out to Kiss’s "Calling Dr. Love" for the Beane fight.

Experience: 11-1 as a pro with 1 no-contest in midwestern regional leagues, nine wins by stoppage. Hasn’t competed since last November, when he defeated Rodney Sleepers by second-round TKO.
Will be facing: Tim Boetsch (11-3, 2-2 UFC)
Lowdown: A late replacement for Thiago Silva, Brown runs Midwest Martial Arts in Osceola, Indiana. The 38-year-old is seasoned kickboxer with a brown belt in BJJ. Judging from the interview segments in the above highlight reel, he seems to think very highly of his abilities. Brown feels that his previous experience of cornering training partner Steve Lopez at UFC 103 will temper the Octagon jitters a bit: "I train hard, and I know that the day of (the fight), I’m going to be a little bit, ‘Ooh, this is the big show.’ I was like that when I was in Stevie Lopez’s corner. ‘Wow, this is awesome.’ I’ve kind of walked through it in the corner situation. Now I’ll be doing it as a fighter, and quite frankly, once we hit each other, it’s just a fight. Everything else kind of disappears…Have I had a proper training camp? No, but it doesn’t matter. I’m going to go in and fight my ass off and come out on top. That’s the plan."

Cagepotato Comments

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g0tjits- August 4, 2010 at 7:09 am
what would you like to know?

he moves like a lightweight.. he's very fast and extremely strong.
he became the reality fighting HW champ on this 2nd pro fight destroying a guy who pretty much dominated that division for a while... then coming back in the rematch and doing it all over again but this time by submission.. Kirik Jenness of the UG who was the ref on the 3rd fight came up to us after the event and said he's never seen a HW pull an armbar that smooth so early on in their fight career before.

NorthSouthDudesOnly- August 4, 2010 at 5:24 am
That would be an interesting comment if you said anything insightful concerning his training or skill.
g0tjits- August 3, 2010 at 4:32 pm
I train at the dungeon and have been for the better part of 2 years.

I helped Christian train for his fights before he went to CCFA.. I am very excited to see this.. I think he is going to win.. It's awesome to see someone I've trained with and know on a personal level see this kind of success.

Almost North- August 3, 2010 at 3:33 pm
Lol at "Pitman Hitbull"
Dick_Gozenya- August 3, 2010 at 1:56 pm
Todd "Gravy Stain" Brown and Christian "The Pitman Hitbull" Morecraft
El Famous Burrito- August 3, 2010 at 11:30 am
If that didn't work, you could point behind him and yell "Look out! It's Ray Mercer!"

It would totally be worth it.
Almost North- August 3, 2010 at 10:29 am
But then somebody would have to fly to Irvine and see if it made Timmah crap his pants again.
El Famous Burrito- August 3, 2010 at 10:23 am
Awww...I wanted Bruce Buffer to announce him as Todd "Brown Note" Brown.
Almost North- August 3, 2010 at 10:06 am
Todd "Keeping Boetsch's Career Alive" Brown
MoTropolis- August 3, 2010 at 10:06 am
Christian "Im not Antoni Hardonk" Morecraft.

And lets not waste any good nicknames on Brown, I got a feeling he will be released from the UFC after this fight and janitors dont need nicknames. Or we could call him Todd "Vladdy Matushenko" Brown.
justscrappin- August 3, 2010 at 9:41 am
The first few times I looked at this...there wasn't an ability to comment. I thought new dad was sick of our input. bpd...I like the name...I think Boetsch can handle his guy....not sure about Struve. Specially the fact that the guy admitted he didn't have a proper training camp? Your really going to say that going into your UFC debut? GTFOOH.
El Famous Burrito- August 3, 2010 at 9:40 am
Nice, bpd

The only one I could think of for him was The Pilgrim Pounder, but that sounds just a bit gay.

Todd "Downtown" Brown?
bpd- August 3, 2010 at 9:35 am
Mostly likely to slowly climb the ranks through tedious grinding? Christian "World of" Morecraft
MoTropolis- August 3, 2010 at 9:23 am
Todd Brown even seems bored by himself, almost as if he was forced to put together that lame ass reel. I'd rather watch Jake Shields watch paint dry.
El Famous Burrito- August 3, 2010 at 9:19 am
These guys need nicknames if we're going to take them seriously.

VisitingDeadAncestors- August 3, 2010 at 9:10 am
hopefully that lanky kid Struve won't get knocked out again...
No Leftovers- August 3, 2010 at 9:10 am
It'll be interesting to see how Morecraft does. I don't think Boetsch will have very much trouble with Brown. I don't think 38 is when to make your UFC debut.
banjo- August 3, 2010 at 9:09 am
todd brown might get hurt.