Thomas-de_AlmeidaPrior to each UFC card, Jay Primetown takes a close look at debuting fighters. In the latest installment, we look at Brazilian bantamweight Thomas Almeida as he debuts against American Tim Gorman at UFC Fight Night 56.   Thomas “Thomasinhas” Almeida Hometown: Sao Paulo, Brazil Age: 23 Height: 5’7” Reach: 72.5” Weight class: Bantamweight Camp: Chute Boxe Career Record: 17-0 Key Wins: None Key Losses: None Background The former Legacy FC bantamweight champion enters the UFC undefeated with 17 straight wins to start his career. Almeida is one of the top prospects in MMA with all of his victories coming inside the distance. Almeida is a vicious striker with some of the best technical stand-up skills in the entire bantamweight division with his origins coming from the legendary Chute Boxe in Brazil. Almeida has stayed active in 2014 having fought twice during the calendar year. His cardio was tested in his four round finish of Vinicius Zani; a test he ultimately passed. Strengths

  • Very good athlete with good size for the division
  • Fantastic muay Thai striker
  • One of the top technical strikers in the entire division
  • Strikes with high volume
  • Aggressive on the feet and always looking for the finish
  • Mixes up head and body shots well
  • Clinch game is solid and works in elbows effectively
  • Very good takedown defense

Weaknesses

  • Due to volume of striking, keep his defensive posture a bit too open
  • Hasn’t been tested on the ground by a great wrestler
  • Submission defense is an unknown

0AlmeidaGrade Matchup with Tim Gorman Gorman presents an important test for Thomas Almeida. Gorman is the best offensive wrestler that Almeida will have faced thus far in his career. Gorman is a strong, physical fighter at bantamweight and will certainly look to take this fight to the ground and work in top control. Furthermore, Gorman has proven very durable in his career having never been knocked out. He survived 15 minutes with Mitch Gagnon earlier in 2014; a fighter who has a propensity for first round finishes. In this bout, Almeida has a three inch height, four inch reach, and a significant speed advantage. Expect Almeida to use those physical advantages to pick apart Gorman on the feet.  Almeida has the technical striking to give Gorman all sorts of fits. Almeida’s lone concern in this bout is defending the takedown and he should have his camp focused to pass this test. The aggressive striker should be able to keep the fight standing. As Gorman slows down in the second round, look for Almeida to push the pace, landing combinations in volume to give the American his first ever knockout loss. UFC Ceiling As you can probably tell from grades, the sky is very high for Thomas Almeida. His striking acumen is as fluid as any 23 year old fighter in MMA today. He has the offensive technique, output, and power to compete right away with most of the top fighters in the division. On talent alone, he’s right there with Aljamain Sterling as the best prospect in the division. What will really determine his level of success in the sport is his ability to prevent the takedown against accomplished wrestlers. If Almeida is put on his back, how will he defend positions? Will he be able to transition to better situations? His ground is a complete unknown and until he’s tested in that regard it’s difficult to say whether he’ll be simply a top 10 level fighter or a future title challenger. Videos Check out Thomas Almeida in some of his recent fights: Thomas Almeida v Caio Machado

  Thomas Almeida vs George Pacurariu

  Thomas Almeida vs Vinicius Zani