UFC Fight Night 57 Newcomer Breakdown: Josh Copeland

Prior to each UFC card, Jay Primetown takes a close look at debuting fighters. In the latest installment, we look at American heavyweight Josh Copeland as he takes on Russian Ruslan Magomedov at UFC Fight Night 57.   Josh “Cuddly Bear” Copeland Hometown: Salmon, Idaho Age: 32 Height: 6’1” Weightclass: Heavyweight Camp: Factory X Muay Thai Career Record: 9-0 Key Wins: Jan Jorgensen Key Losses: None   Background American heavyweight Josh Copeland is relatively new to MMA. He started training in jiu-jitsu at Travis Lutter’s Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and would later move to Colorado to train at Grudge Training Center. The undefeated heavyweight has won seven of his nine fights by stoppage. In his most recent bout, Copeland defeated highly regarded prospect Jan Jorgensen by knockout to win the RFA Heavyweight Championship. Strengths

  • Athletic for the heavyweight division
  • Really good in close striking situations
  • Good hands with boxing-heavy technique
  • Excellent left jab which he’s able to land with accuracy
  • Has good timing where he’s able to strike just as his opponent moves forward
  • Decent footwork
  • Made changes to his training camp including work with Jared Rosholt (also fighting at Fight Night 57)


  • Not rangy for the weight class
  • Sometimes has to force his way inside which creates awkward exchanges
  • Relies too much on boxing
  • Lacks offensive wrestling game to threaten opponents with a different option
  • Takedown defense is untested

  0CopelandGrade   Matchup with Ruslan Magomedov An intriguing heavyweight contest at Fight Night 57 pits Russian Ruslan Magomedov against the debuting Josh Copeland. Magomedov has fought his entire career in Russia with the exception of his UFC debut in Berlin, Germany. In this matchup, Magomedov does have a size and reach advantage. He’s a decent kickboxer and could give Copeland problems with leg kicks especially if Copeland does push forward. On the flip side, Copeland does very well to make up distance and has much better hands than Magomedov. He has a beautiful left handed jab capable of dropping the Russian. Magomedov doesn’t have significant power with only four knockouts in 12 fights and no knockouts since 2011. This is a real step up for Copeland, but his punching power could really give Magomedov fits. The Russian doesn’t have a great chin and Copeland has the striking prowess to get the knockout win. If the American is unable to score an early knockout, the Russian could score later in the fight with his superior cardio and earn a decision.   UFC Ceiling Copeland is already 32 years old entering the UFC. He has a decent skill-set and a striking attack that is similar in style to Daniel Cormier; minus the wrestling game. Copeland could surprise some people in the UFC due to his ability to weave in strikes as his opponents move forward. His chin has yet to be really tested and grappling is still an X factor. There are certainly some unknowns when it comes to Copeland, but he’s a fighter who is capable of winning a couple fights inside the Octagon.   Fight Film Check out Josh Copeland in some of his recent fights: Josh Copeland vs. Jan Jorgensen for the RFA Heavyweight Championship

  Josh Copeland vs. Jose Beltran

Written by Jay Primetown

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