The legendary Gracie lineage makes it’s return to the Ultimate Fighting Championship this weekend, as clan member Kron Gracie makes his fifth professional walk against promotion Featherweight gate keeper Alex ‘Bruce Leeroy’ Caceres on the main card of UFC on ESPN 1.
Kron, the youngest son of the legendary Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu pioneer Rickson Gracie, arrives with big expectations following two submission victories in Japan over UFC alumni Tatsuya Kawajiri and fellow submission specialist Hideo Tokoro bringing a four fight undefeated record with him. The ADCC gold medalist faces a stern yet winnable first test in the Octagon by way of 26 fight veteran Alex Caceres.
Caceres, the Florida native holds a notable victory over recent Flyweight title charger Sergio Pettis but has become unstuck against the likes of Yair Rodríguez and Urijah Faber with ‘El Pantera’ spring-boarding into main event contention with his win over the 30 year old.
Holding the obvious striking advantage over Gracie, Caceres will have his work cut out if Kron lands the all important takedown or decides to pull guard, similarly to another submission grappler Dillion Danis who recently made his mixed-martial arts bow in Bellator, proving successful as he secured a first round toehold finish.
Saturday’s clash with Caceres will be Kron’s first walk in just over two years. Some expect a hesitant start from the Brazilian, but his Judo black belt and grappling expertise should be more than enough for him find a probable finish over ‘Bruce Leeroy’. The 30 year-old has submitted the likes of Gary Tonon, UFC Lightweight contender Beneil Dariush, Otávio Souza and ONE FC mainstay Shinya Aoki during his illustrious submission grappling.
Kron isn’t necessarily biased toward choke or joint finishes with countless variations in his search for the tap on display throughout his five year stint in submission grappling. Expect Kron to finish within the opening round.
Official pick: Kron Gracie via submission.