The Prelim Breakout Star is a once-per-event article that helps fans get to know those who will be entertaining them from the undercard. The intention of the article is not to bring attention to the most talented fighter on the preliminary card, but rather one that the common fan may have overlooked or underestimated.
Affiliation – Xtreme Fitness Machala
From –Quito, Ecuador
Height – 6’0″
Weight – 170 lbs (Walterweight)
Record – 12-0 (0-0, UFC)
What makes him impressive
There are a ton of things that make this 22-year old prospect impressive, but if you have to boil it down to one thing, the easiest thing to talk about is his explosiveness. This can come in the form of strikes, where he has serious one-touch knockout power. It can also come from the clinch, where he has wildly powerful trips for a guy with such a long frame. Despite all his physical gifts, he doesn’t rely on them to accomplish his goals. His technique is air tight. However, because he’s so strong, you’re going to have a tough time finding a welterweight that can bully him on the defensive side of things.
Why he has been overlooked
At only 22-years old, there has not been very much time for him to build up a following. That’s not to say that he’s inexperienced – he’s fought twelve times already. Most of those fights come in Ecuador though, where North American fans can’t really catch. His one bout for American eyes was on the Contender Series, where he won by decision. Although a decision perhaps didn’t draw the most eyeballs, it was over Nikolay Veretennikov, who was the Fury FC champion and had beaten UFC veteran Anthony Ivy to win it. With all that being said about Morales being overlooked, the books seem to realize he’s something to keep an eye on. Despite fighting an 8-fight UFC veteran, he’s still coming in at -144 (Odds courtesy of FanDuel).
What makes this a good match-up
Trevin Giles fights a lot of his fights in close range. While some of it comes from going for takedowns, which he gets a little over 1.25 per 15 mintues, he also just works in the clinch against the cage a lot. This works for Giles more often then not because he’s powerful and he has great cardio. However, those aren’t the attributes that you want to rely on when you’re facing someone like Morales. Morales is likely going to be the stronger fighter here and will dominate clinch positions. Worse for Giles, I don’t think he has an advantage striking either, which leaves him in a virtual no-man’s land.
Prelim Breakout Star Record: 237-109-1 (2 NC) (14 DNF)
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