UFC 75: Champion vs Champion was a great event. It revealed what we will be seeing in the future:
Rampage is back. He is the real deal and his win against Chuck Liddell was not a fluke. What impressed me the most about his fight against Henderson was his stamina.
Henderson is also a great fighter. He was way smaller than Rampage and won two out of the five rounds. Very explosive with his punches as well. Expect him to give Anderson Silva trouble if he goes down to 185.
Crocop is an idiot. It seemed like he does not want to fight in the UFC. He does not have the motivation anymore. I don’t know why, he hasn’t even gotten the belt yet.
Pride FC fighters exposed? Say it isn’t so. I’m a big Pride fan but their fighters that have fought in the Octagon hasn’t been too impressive. Besides Anderson Silva and Hendo, the former Pride fighters has not looked too great. Nogueira was boring and sloppy against against Herring. Herring moves slow as hell and hasn’t been the same since the injury. Mishima got choked out twice, when he’s suppose to be a grappling expert. And of course, there’s Crocop. If you don’t want to fight, retire already. Who’s next? Shogun, I hope not.
UFC 76 isn’t as exciting as 75 because the main and co-events look one sided. Without further ado, here are my predictions:
Liddell vs. Jardine
Both fighters have lost their previous fights and they’re headlining an event. Is this a first for an MMA event, or even boxing? Oh well. Liddell will win in the first round by guess what? That’s right, knockout. Jardine has heavy hands but his style is perfect for Liddell’s counters.
“Shogun” Rua vs. Griffin
I’m a bit skeptical on picking Shogun because it seemed like Pride fighters have not transitioned well into the UFC. Maybe it’s the cage, rules, or location but they look like a fish out of water. Shogun was the 2005 GP champ, defeating Rampage Jackson in violent fashion, beating Little Nog and TKO’ing Overeem and Arona in the finals. Shogun has not been the same after he got injured in the hands of Coleman. He has been a little slow and hesitant. Griffin is a fighter with plenty of heard and it might be his biggest weapon against Shogun. He took a beating against Tito and came back, almost beating him. I’ll still pick Shogun to win but it won’t be as easy as some people think.
Fitch vs. Sanchez
Sanchez supposedly had staph infection when he fought Koscheck, contributing to his loss. Fitch is a great wrestler so we might see a similar fight to Koscheck/Sanchez. Difference between Fitch and Koscheck is that Koscheck has better striking skills. I think this will be the difference in the match. If Diego can’t take Fitch down, he’ll use his striking skills to control the fight and win in the form of unanimous decision.
Nakamura vs. Machida
Nakamura is also a former Pride fighter and his opponents make his fights. He can either be really boring or really exciting. If he fights grapplers, it’s usually boring. But if he fights strikers, it’s pretty damn entertaining. With Machida being an uneventful and counter fighter, this fight will be a snoozer. Machida is a great fighter but he is happy with decisions and that makes for a boring fighter. Machida will get the judge’s decision. Hopefully I’m wrong how this fight will turn out.
Tavares vs. Griffin
This will be the fight of the night. Both fighters are exciting and will try to finish(KenFlo, I hope you don’t sue me for copying your line). They don’t stall and always press forward. I see Griffin winning because of his wrestling background and enough submission defense to escape Tavares attempt. It will be a war.