34-Year-Old UFC Light Heavyweight 1-1-0
April 13, 2018 Gokhan Saki News
RotoWire Fantasy Analysis
Saki (knee) is set to take on Khalil Rountree at UFC 226 on July 7 in Las Vegas.
Saki was supposed to fight Rountree at UFC 219 back in November before he was forced to pull out due to a meniscus tear. The recovery seems to have gone smoothly, as Saki was originally given a timetable that would hold him out until March, and he'll now have the opportunity to take part in the bout vs. Rountree that's been in the works since October. Saki last fought in September of 2017, when he knocked out Henrique da Silva in his UFC debut.
Gokhan Saki: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Fantasy AnalysisSaki suffered a "bucket handle tear" during his first-round knockout of Henrique de Silva in September at UFC Fight Night 117. This comes five years after initially injuring the knee, which Saki attributes to added stress because of the different movements and footwork required in the UFC. Although Saki tried to recover in time for his bout against Khalil Rountree in late December, it became apparent that he would need to shut it down, and is hoping for a fight against Rountree in March or April once the meniscus in fully healed.
Fantasy AnalysisSaki took down Henrique da Silva in his UFC debut back in September and was looking to ride the momentum into a fight against Khalil Rountree, but has now surprisingly pulled out. It's unclear if it's injury related or a personal matter of some sort, and until clarification is provided, we won't have much of an indication for when Saki will be back in the octagon.
Fantasy AnalysisSaki was backed up against the fence in his UFC debut against Henrique da Silva back on Sept. 22, but emerged with one of his patented "Saki bombs" -- a devastating left hook that put da Silva to sleep. He'll now get a step up in competition against the 27-year-old Rountree, who has collected back-to-back first-round stoppages of his own against Daniel Jolly and Paul Craig. Though Rountree isn't currently in the UFC's 205-pound rankings, a victory for Saki could warrant a ranked opponent his next time out.
Fantasy AnalysisAs expected, Saki looked great on the feet in his UFC debut. The kickboxing legend landed huge punches early in the fight and seemed to hurt da Silva's eye. He also showcased good takedown defense as he defended multiple attempts. "Frankenstein" lived up to his nickname as he was able to survive, but it was only a matter of time until Saki finished him. Saki did take some big knees from the Thai clinch, but he planted his feet and blasted da Silva with a huge left hand which ended the fight. Saki will be a treat to watch against any striker in the UFC light heavyweight division.
Fantasy AnalysisSaki made a name for himself in the kickboxing world, where he shared the ring with the likes of Rico Verhoeven and Alistair Overeem. He's also a World Muay Thai champion, so there's no doubt he's comfortable on the feet. The 33-year-old lost his only true MMA fight to James Zikic, but is confident his second tour in the sport will yield better returns. Standing at six feet tall, Saki is a bit undersized for the light heavyweight division, but it's a class that needs depth, and he can surely provide it.