The more you know about your opponent the more informed choices you can make.
While that makes sense it rarely works out that way. Serendipity enters and you may be facing anyone with any level of skill.
Still, as training advances working to understand how other system do things increases your awareness.
I will give one example. Suppose you face a senior stylist in Fann Tzi Ying Jow Pai (Northern Eagle Claw), and the technique choice you face is a claw to your left arm, then they retract their claw to place a claw on your throat.
Part of the equation is knowing the person has senior ability with the Eagle Claw.
The finishing claw to the throat which might choke or rip the throat, depending on how it is applied. While a concern is not the real threat, that would be the initial claw to the forearm, before they pull that arm after the grab has locked on.
The reason for this is the manner which the clawing movement is developed over the years, Both a combination of strength training, and drills that develop the sensitivity to enter any attack and form that claw.
The reason the initial claw is critical is that they are not just grabbing the limb. The manner in which they condition the hand allows their clawing motion to cause intense pain. That claw immobilizes you with that pain, and sets up the closing throat claw.
So, the best defense is not to allow the initial claw in the first place. Or if the claw is set, have technique well practiced so you can react through that pain to counter it and allow you to respond to the following claw.
My theoretical answer is to begin the Kata Nihanchi movement for a interior line of defense open hand left side block against their initial punch which then turns into a claw. As that claw begins to form then take that arm and punch down as their other arm begins reaching for your throat. Your right hand strikes up into their reaching arm. This would deflect their arm upward. Continuing with that uppercut, the arm after the strike drops the elbow down into their upper chest.
I realize this is more a training exercise than an actual attack to face. There is little likelihood you would face someone with the Northern Eagle Claw skills. But developing training against what others styles would use develops depth in understanding what is possible in an actual confrontation.
Of course the most important thing is do it first.