Paul Craig


Standout effort in upset win
Light HeavyweightUFC
June 12, 2021
Craig defeated Jamahal Hill via TKO (punches) at 1:59 of Round 1 at UFC 263 on Saturday in Glendale, Arizona.
Craig didn't knock Hill out, he defeated him after snapping his arm with a vicious arm bar. The fight should have been called right there, but Hill never officially submitted and referee Al Guinee allowed Hill to absorb a couple dozen unanswered head shots with his arm flopping around like a fish. It's a huge victory for Craig in a fight in which he entered as a +220 underdog. Craig offers very little on the feet, but he's a threat to snap a limb whenever he gets an unsuspecting opponent to the ground. The 33-year-old Scot is now unbeaten (4-0, 1NC) in his past five fights. He'll also take home a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus for his efforts.
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Re-booked versus Jamahal Hill
Light HeavyweightUFC
March 24, 2021
Craig is slated to fight Jamahal Hill at UFC 263 on June 12, Marcel Dorff of MMADNA reports.
Craig and Hill will in fact get the light heavyweight matchup they were slated for back in March, but which then had to be cancelled. Hill remains undefeated in his pro career, while Craig is 3-0-1 in his last four matches. This matchup will be dictated by where the fight takes place, as HIll is the more highly-regarded striker, while Craig should sport a significant grappling edge. Despite the advantage on the mat, Craig enters fight week as a (+240) betting underdog.
Fight with Jamahal Hill called off
Light HeavyweightUFC
March 10, 2021
Craig announced Wednesday via his personal Twitter account that his upcoming light heavyweight fight versus Jamahal Hill at the UFC's March 20 event has been cancelled following Hill's withdrawal.
Craig didn't provide an explanation for Hill's withdrawal, but the 33-year-old noted that he and Hill have already agreed to a rematch at a later date. "Bearjew" has won in both of his last two trips to the Octagon since taking a draw against Mauricio Rua in November 2019.
Facing Jamahal Hill in March
Light HeavyweightUFC
January 15, 2021
Craig will fight Jamahal Hill in a light heavyweight bout at a UFC event March 20, Nolan King of USA Today reports.
Craig beat Mauricio Rua via TKO in November and is 3-0-1 in his last four fights after starting off his UFC career with a 3-4 record. Hill remains undefeated in his professional career and is coming off a win over Ovince Saint Preux in December.
Knocks out Shogun Rua
Light HeavyweightUFC
November 21, 2020
Craig defeated Mauricio Rua via TKO (punches) at 3:36 of Round 2 at UFC 255 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
It's just the second knockout of Craig's 19-fight mixed martial arts career. Craig isn't known to be a fighter who generates a ton of offense, but he had a significant edge of Shogun both on the feet, and obviously on the mat. Craig landed 54 of 88 total strikes in addition to 4-of-8 takedowns in a fight which lasted less than nine minutes. Craig is an elite submission specialist who has long been held back by a lack of power in his hands. It seems highly unlikely that Craig -- who turns 33 years old next week -- has suddenly developed some additional skills. More likely, this was just a good matchup for him against an aging veteran. On a positive note, Craig is 3-0-1 in his past six bouts dating back to September 2019. He fights often and there's real value in that for a company which holds an event seemingly every week.
Facing Shogun in November
Light HeavyweightUFC
August 18, 2020
Craig will take on Mauricio Rua in a light heavyweight matchup at the UFC event scheduled for November 21, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
The two will finally settle the score from what was a lackluster draw the first time they faced off back in November of 2019. While Craig landed 51 significant strikes to Rua's 25 in that matchup, and was even credited with a takedown, an advance and a submission attempt, it was still a disappointing outcome for fantasy owners given the lack of a finishing bonus. Since that fight, Craig picked up a Performance of the Night bonus in a first-round submission over Gadzhimad Antigulov, while Rua beat a 44-year-old Rogerio Nogueira via decision. Craig closed as a big betting underdog for the first fight, but look for the odds and salaries to be closer this time around.