UFC Fight Night 122 Newcomer Breakdown: Kenan Song


Prior to each UFC card, Jay Primetown takes a close look at debuting fighters. In the latest installment, we look at Chinese welterweight Kenan Song as he makes his UFC debut against veteran Bobby Nash at UFC Fight Night 122 in Shanghai, China.

Kenan Song

Hometown: Hebei, China
Age: 27
Height: 6’0”
Reach: -
Weight Class: Welterweight
Camp: Chinese Top Tram
Career Record: 12-4
Key Wins: None
Key Losses: None

Background

The 27-year-old Chinese welterweight is a rare debutant making his UFC start off the back of two losses. Song had won six fights in a row before dropping a decision to Elnur Algaev and being knocked out by Brad Riddell in January 2017.

Strengths

  • Good size for the division
  • Strong shoot in to setup takedowns


Weaknesses

  • Slow hand speed
  • Lacks power in hands
  • Vulnerable to strikes to the body
  • Doesn’t check leg kicks


Fighter Grade

Offensive Striking: F
Striking Defense: D-
Knockout Power: F
Athleticism/Speed: D-
Footwork: D-
Chin: D-
Offensive Wrestling: D+
Takedown Defense: D
Submissions: D-
Conditioning: D-
Intangibles: F

Overall Grade: F

Matchup against Bobby Nash

A difficult matchup for Kenan Song in his debut against American Bobby Nash. Song has a decent shoot in which he look to lock up takedowns, but in this matchup he’s facing a more advanced wrestler and he will not have wrestling to fall back on. On the feet, Nash has both a skill and strength advantage. He’s got more power in his hands and more variety in his striking. This is a matchup that Nash should be able to win on the feet, but can also dominate on the ground. The only question mark for Nash is his ability to finish out fights. He’s jumped out to leads in both of his UFC bouts, but faded and was finished in the second round in back to back bouts. Song is a lower tier opponent compared to the fighters Nash has faced previously in the UFC, but there’s still some level of caution with Nash. It is that concern that has me not considering Nash at -320. Once props are released on inside the distance and knockout, I will be looking at both of those options.

UFC Ceiling

Kenan Song is a fighter brought into the UFC for the Shanghai event to fight in front of his home country. He has the size to compete in the welterweight division, but he does not have a skill set that will generate success in the UFC. His hand speed is too slow and he will struggle to land with any frequency in the organization. He has a decent grappling game against inferior competition, but I don’t see that translating over to the UFC when he’s tasked with fighting former collegiate wrestlers and jiu jitsu specialists.

Fight Film

Check out Kenan Song in some of his most recent fights:

Kenan Song vs. Brad Riddell




Tags: scouting reports

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About the Author

Jay Primetown

Jay Primetown

Co-Host of The MMA Analysis Podcast ( Available at //mmaoddsbreaker.com ) / RBNY & USMNT Fanatico, Lives in no spin zone.