Heavyweight Pat Barry is coming off a first round KO against Christian Morecraftat this past January’s UFC on FX event. Though Barry’s stand up is excellent and entertaining, he has been up and down in the UFC, with this win over Morecraft bringing his record to an even 4 wins and 4 losses. Barry is set to return on May 5th on the scheduled UFC on FOX 3 event, where he will take on veteran Lavar Johnson. Barry was brimming with confidence after his last outing, and was talking about using takedowns and submissions in one of his fights. Johnson, though a veteran, is known more as a brawler, and has been susceptible to submissions in his MMA career, so Pat is going to have his chance to back up what he says.
If the UFC is trying to pick up a few wins for Barry, it is understandable. The guy is talented and seems to have charisma and a solid work ethic. They are going to need to book him a bunch of fights, especially if he can’t submit Johnson in this upcoming bout. Hey he said he could do it!
The two experienced strikers that Barry has faced, Cheick Kongo and Mirko CroCop have both beaten him. I would like to see Barry in there with another experienced striker, someone like a James Toney. To many the idea of bringing back Toney may seem preposterous, but he is a guy who is dangerous, but Barry can explore the other options in the MMA game.
Christian Morecraft is a good fighter, but he was not ready for the UFC. There is the impression that his purpose was more to get Barry a win.
Lavar Johnson is a heavy hitter, but his standup techniques are nowhere near as polished as Barry’s. Johnson is 1-2 in his last three fights, and he lost the two he did by submissions. Barry is going to have the advantage in the standup, but rather than go for a KO, he should do what he said he would do – get the takedown and the sub. If he can’t get the job done here, then James Toney it is!