Monday, December 3, 2012

UFC on Fox 5 Official Picks

Coming up on December 8th, Benson Henderson will try to defend his title for a second time.  2012 has been a confusing and debatably disappointing year for the UFC's lightweight division.  Frankie Edgar lost his title to Benson Henderson in Japan, but Dana White and UFC matchmakers felt that Frankie "the answer" Edgar deserved a rematch.  This decision to give him a rematch never made sense to me.  The 155 lb division is one of the deepest in the sport, so to give Frankie an immediate rematch was a recipe for disaster.  In the rematch, Henderson won a very controversial decision (one which i thought should have been scored 48-47 Edgar).  There was no way they could have them fight 3 times in a row, so Edgar decided to take a chance at featherweight.  That leaves Nate Diaz.  Diaz has bounced up and down between the lightweight and welterweight division, and never really found his stride until now.  Since losses to Dong Hyun Kim and Rory MacDonald, Nate has won 3 straight at lightweight against Gomi, Cerrone, and Miller.  This is a very intriguing matchup that could be a fight of the night possibility, even on such a stacked card.

Also on the card is a battle of top light heavyweights Shogun Rua and Alexander Gustafsson.  Gustafsson is a young up and coming fighter whose only loss came to a brilliant anaconda choke by Phil Davis.  Rua is a veteran that has been through wars, and looks to get a rematch with Jon Jones.

Welterweights BJ Penn and Rory MacDonald will also be squaring off on Fox this Saturday night.  These two fighters do not like one another and have been waiting for this match for a while.  Is the unstoppable force of Rory MacDonald going to keep rolling his way into title contention, or is a "motivated" BJ Penn back and ready to make a statement?

In addition to the Fox main card, the FX under card has a few intriguing matchups.  Ultimate Fighter Live Winner Michael Chiesa was supposed to fight for the first time since submitting Al Iaquinta on the season finale.  However, TUF Live fighters Joe Proctor and Daron Cruickshank will look to fight their first fights since the finale.

Let me first start by blazzing through my preliminary bout predictions:

  • Tim Means defeats Abel Trujillo via TKO (cancelled)
  • Scott Jorgensen defeats John Albert via Submission (Guillotine)
  • Daron Cruickshank defeats Henry Martinez vio TKO
  • Jeremy Stephens defeats Yves Edwards via decision if he can stay out of jail.
  • Joe Proctor defeats Ramsey Nijem via decision
  • Dennis Siver defeats Nam Phan via decision
  • Mike Easton defeats Raphael Assuncao via decision and gets more respect in the bantamweight division
  • Michael Chiesa defeats Marcus LeVesseur via Submission (RNC) (cancelled)
  • Abel Trujillo defeats Marcus LeVesseur via decision in the battle of the lost opponents
Main Event:

  • Mike Swick made an incredible comeback to the UFC on the Fox 4 card against Demarcus Johnson and he will be looking to pick up where he left off against Matt Brown.  I see him finding his range early and delivering another spectacular knockout on Saturday night. SWICK VIA KO!
  • BJ Penn for the 50th time claims that he is taking his training seriously and that he is "the best BJ Penn."  He feels that he is being disrespected and that he wants to be in the talk of greatest fighters in the UFC. Unfortunately, he seems to be past his prime and is really up against a stud.  Rory MacDonald's only loss was on a crappy stoppage to Carlos Condit, in a fight where he dominated the first 2 rounds.  He is a machine and potentially the future of the 170 lb division and I see him dominating BJ start to finish and finishing him off with a TKO beating that sends BJ into retirement (for real this time). MACDONALD VIA TKO!
  • As for Gustafsson versus Rua, I keep flip flopping on what the heck is going to happen.  I like both fighters and I believe they are both forces in the 205 lb division.  For now I am going to take Rua via a TKO but who knows who I think will win or want to win come Saturday.  The only thing I know for sure is this fight will be kept standing up and should be incredibly exciting.  RUA VIA TKO!
  • Lastly comes the main event: Nate Diaz challenging Benson Henderson.  Unlike the co-main event, I am torn because I do not know which fighter I dislike more.  Henderson is the Tim Tebow of MMA, always pushing God onto the fans in an annoying fashion.  Then there is the bad boy from Stockton California.  Regardless of my opinion of the two fighters personalities, I find this to be a great matchup.  Diaz is a guy with solid boxing, going up against someone with deadly leg kicks.  Diaz also is a possessor of quick submissions going up against someone who is known for leaving limbs up for grabs.  However, just because Diaz gets Henderson in a submission does not mean he will finish the fight.  I see this being similar to the first fight between Donald Cerrone and Benson Henderson, a fight of the night where Henderson survives submissions and uses wrestling and ground striking to win a decision.  He will then quote the bible verse tatted on Jon Jones' chest and walk away lightweight champion again.  HENDERSON VIA (controversial) DECISION!

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