Abu Azaitar, a Moroccan newcomer to the UFC who debuted two and a half years ago without entering the octagon since his victory, is scheduled for an early preliminary card at UFC 260 against Mark-Andre Barriol in the middleweight division. The Canadian Barriol broke his three-fight losing streak with a successful fight last year but received an annulment due to doping.
Abu is a 35-year old German fighter. He started his professional career in 2009 and before joining UFC, he mostly fought in European minor leagues (Poland’s KSW, where Abu had two fights, the UK’s Cage Warriors).
Abu Azaitar, the Moroccan fighter in UFC fight 260 at late preliminary card, is scheduled to fight against Canadian opponent Mark-Andre Barriol in the middleweight division. Azaitar made his first successful UFC debut two and a half years ago but has not been seen since then. Meanwhile Barriol’s last victory was annulled due to doping.
- What’s good. Azaitar is a basic boxer who uses numerous aggressive tactics. He has a lot of stand-up fighting and explosive power, but his jaw is strong and he hasn’t been knocked out in his career so far.
- Weaknesses of the fighter. The level of Abu is hard to assess. The athlete fights against second-tier fighters and doesn’t show all his skills. Secondly, the fighter hasn’t fought for 2.5 years and we don’t know what kind of shape he’s in anymore.
Marc Andre is a 31-year old fighter from Canada. He started his professional career in 2014, at which time he competed exclusively for regional associations across North America. It should be noted that Barrio achieved the greatest success in TKO Fighting League where he became the simultaneous light heavyweight and middleweight champion.
As a champion of both the UFC and another organization, Barrio made his UFC debut against Andrew Sanchez in May 2019 with an unsuccessful outcome. He has had 4 fights total for the world’s strongest league: 3 losses without as clear winner, 1 annulled after doping.
- What’s good. Marc Andre likes to work at distance, which puts his accurate shots and powerful punches to good use.
- Weaknesses of the fighter. Barrio is an inaccurate and unreliable fighter. His tendencies are to stand second and his stance in parterre lacks the skills to improve or get up.
Summary of the fight
Advantage in size, punching power and activity are factors that should work in Barriol’s favor. The Canadian has fought many fights at bantamweight, while Azaitar is visually a welterweight. The Moroccan’s prolonged downtime has also benefited Marc-Andre. I wouldn’t rule out a Barriol win by knockout. The Canadian should finally win legitimately in the UFC. In the end, Abu Azaitar was defeated by a technical knockout..