Welcome to the UFC: Hamdy Abdelwahab

Hamdy Adelwahab, UFC 277
Hamdy Adelwahab, UFC 277 ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Youtube/UFC

UFC 277 this Saturday is topped off with two title fights, including a rematch between Julianna Pena and Amanda Nunes. Under that are some important fights on the main card in the light heavyweight, heavyweight, and flyweight divisions. On the prelims, the card was shaken up a few times with injuries and other factors leading to fighters dropping out. At heavyweight, DonTale Mayes was supposed to fight Justin Tafa, but now Mayes is welcoming newcomer Hamdy Abdelwahab to the UFC.

Hamdy Abdelwahab
Standing at 6’2″
Fighting at 264 lbs (heavyweight)
Fighting out of Cairo, Egypt
Training out of Killer B Combat Sports
A pro record of 3-0

How will Abdelwahab fare in the UFC:

I understand this was a short notice call-up but there had to be someone more deserving than Abdelwahab available. He’s an intriguing guy with his wrestling background but that’s all. Abdelwahab is just 3-0, his opponents had a combined 7-6 record, and he has only been fighting as a pro since January. Not to mention, the guys he’s been beating look like they were randomly picked from a local 7-11. Honestly, most amateurs are more proven than Abdelwahab. In short, this is way too soon.

Abdelwahab is a Greco-Roman Olympic wrestler but watching him fight you wouldn’t know that. His wrestling does seem decent but what are takedowns if you don’t know what to do with them? Abdelwahab has no desire to pass the guard but instead rides out a position landing short punches here and there. His footwork to close the distance is poor and there are no setups in his takedown entries. He’s a strong physical guy with little technique.

Abdelwahab on the feet is stiff, flat, and sluggish. He has a bit of power but not enough to match the other heavyweights in the UFC. I don’t like the signing, in fact, I hate the signing. The UFC would’ve better off just scrapping the fight as a whole instead of signing someone that’s years behind the division, which won’t work out well for fighter or promotion.

How he matches up with Mayes:

Mayes hasn’t looked great so far and has had an up and down UFC run but this is a fight he can’t lose. He’s got a massive advantage on the feet. Along with a lot more speed and athleticism, Mayes is four inches taller and has an eight-inch reach advantage. Mayes does struggle with takedown defense but I can imagine Abdelwahab will struggle to take down someone much bigger. There is no evidence that he can take Mayes down and especially hold him there. If Mayes doesn’t win this I’d be shocked.