Sup folks? We’ve returned from the UFC On FOX, also known as “The Day Dana Shit His Pants On National Television”. We’ve got a stacked as fuck card headlined by two legends, a No. Cal legend, and THE Legend, Wandy Silva. Let’s stop fucking around with the oakie doke and get shit moving. You know the drill. I’m ITALICS, Cruelty is not, LETS GO!!
Danny Castillo over Shamar Bailey – Round 2 TKO
Castillo has been severely outwrestled in his previous two UFC fights, but both times he found a few openings to employ his wild striking game. Volkmann shut him down, but I don’t think Shamar is good enough to hold him down. This is a well-made fight because we’ll find out where the guys are in terms of skill: Shamar thinks he can wrestle and Castillo thinks he can sprawl-and-brawl. I think neither is UFC LW quality but this way we decide who to cut. Speaking of cutting, Shamar struggled and still didn’t make weight so he may not be in great shape. When Shamar slows down, Castillo will land a wild flurry.
Danny Castillo over Shamar Bailey – JD
Shamar came in like 3 lbs. overweight, this would be the PERFECT time for Dana to go into “You don’t wanna fuck around” mode and cut this kid, and show the future TUF fighters that weight cut is important and fuck excuses. Castillo got that Alpha Male camp pedigree so maybe he takes Shamar down? Shamar showed hella chin last fight, I’m torn, but going Castillo to win two of the three.
Matt Brown over Seth Baczynski – Round 3 JD
Brown spent a good deal of his fight with Doomsday Howard on the bottom, and the argument here is that Seth can win by getting on top earning a decision. Brown stays busy, though, and I don’t love Seth’s top-control. Brown will be the more active fighter on the feet and from the bottom, and that will sway the judges.
Seth Baczynski over Matt Brown – TKO RD 2
I’m all in on Baczynski as a solid addition to this division. Kid fights like a Mini-Fedor. Brown is game as fuck and I’m wondering if this turns in to an epic brawl and sprawl battle. Brown has been in more grappling matches recently and maybe he’s game for a brawl? I’m thinking he gets caught and dropped during a scramble and punched in the head until the ref steps in.
Miguel Torres over Nick Pace – Round 1 TKO
When I saw pace fight in Philly he was treated as a hometown fighter, coming from Team Tiger-Schulman which is vaguely local, and he proceeded to stink up the place. Menjivar worked him over pretty good, and Torres is a much more dangerous fighter. Torres is going to put volume strikes on Pace including some nasty leg kicks, and Pace won’t be safe even if he get take the fight to the ground. Both guys struggled to make weight but Pace isn’t even close. I don’t know the backstory but I don’t think the talent-level is close enough for the weight-cut to matter.
Miguel Torres over Nick Pace – JD
In two weeks we’ll be watching Torres on MMA Live talking about how he wanted to take more chances, saw spots, saw chances for sub finishes, but stuck to his game plan and won the fight easily. BTW Torres keeps falling further and further down the card. Sigh.
Rafael dos Anjos over Gleison Tibau – Round 3 KO
I love Rafael’s sideburns, but I’m only lukewarm on his chances for this fight. Tibau is pretty good at holding guys down for two rounds to win a decision, but he looks very slow and hitable on his feet. Tibau cleaned up his punches but his footwork is still garbage. I will be watching to see if this has improved, and if it hasn’t Rafael dos Anjos can put him to sleep. I’m splitting the difference with this pick, and predicting that RdA lands a big shot after Tibau tires from his trademark 2-Round Blanket Attack.
Rafael dos Anjos over Gleison Tibau – JD
RdA is back!! Fresh of the G-Sot SHOCKER, I’m concerned he’s going to be throwing more leather now and not working his strong sub game, this could be a bad thing. Shit Tibau is a grinder as well, this has the potential for GRAPPLEFUCK!! Any grapplefucking in San Jose will get hit with boo birds with the quickness. I say RdA out grinds Tibau in a match where Dana spends majority of the time reading Twitter.
Chris Weidman over Tom Lawlor – Round 2 RNC
Weidman is raw but very impressive. He’s a powerful wrestler who loves to grab for submissions because he’s a good enough wrestler to recover if he misses. He completely manhandled Jesse Bongwater in his last fight, and he’s facing another inferior wrestler in Lawlor. I enjoy Lawlor but he’s not technically proficient enough to catch Weidman or defend the wild subs for long.
Tom Lawlor over Chris Weidman – TKO RD 1
Weidman has 2 impressive W’s in the UFC, I’m wondering if he turns this into a GRAPPLEFUCK. Lawlor’s got a pretty strong wrestling base and is gonna test the kids chin. I think he catches him, the kid gets Stanky Leg with it, and Lawlor pounces on him for the finish. Goofyness will ensue.
Michael McDonald over Alex Soto – Round 3 JD
I already used up my “Michael McDonald the singer” jokes in a previous preview, so this fight brings me no joy. Both guys are ostensibly grapplers but they aren’t fantastic wrestlers. I’m worried they will stalemate in some lame clinchfest with neither guy willing to go to their back. There could be footstomps and other lameness. I can’t quite tell which guy’s mediocre bjj is better, so I’ll pick the UFC vet on the basis of “octagon jitters” messing up Soto’s footstomp game.
Alex Soto over Michael McDonald – Sub RD 2
Soto got mad wins in Mexico, so you know he’s the real deal. This could be less of a grapplefuck and more of a high paced grappling match with sub attempts and takedowns and guys giving up their backs, entertaining type shit. I think Soto catches an arm sometime in the 2nd and finishes.
Ryan Bader over Jason Brilz – Round 3 JD
These two good wrestlers are coming of back-to-back losses. Bader got the best of Lil’ Nog who is a recent common opponent, which is a fact that would matter in other sports and means very fucking little in this one. Bader is the better striker and wrestler. Bader should and may look to keep this standing, and that’ll win him the fight on points. Both guys will have shit cardio so don’t expect a ballet of violence in the third. It may look a bit more like 2:45am in the street outside a Vegas strip club… just wild swinging.
Ryan Bader over Jason Brilz – JD
Poor Ryan Bader. He had a solid run before getting caught in back-to-back chokes. Will he ever shake the “Ortiz’s last win” black cloud? The same pity could be felt for Brilz. People got excited over his close fight with Lil’ Nog, then he gets ETHER’D by The Janitor? Ay yi yi. Anyway, Bader is the better wrestler, and should be able to get more takedowns then Brilz. Wu-Tang said it best Bader, Protect Ya Neck.
Kyle Kingsbury over Stephan Bonnar – Round 3 JD
Bonnar has been injured and on the shelf for almost a year. If it wasn’t for the long layoff, I would give him a chance but coming into this fight rusty will doom him. Kingsbury will gnp while Bonnar tries to work his guard game. You can’t simulate getting facepunched in front of millions, and I think Bonnar will wear himself out trying to escape. Both guys will be gassed by the third (I’ve said that for like half of these fights… fucking bodybuilder wrestler types) and Bonnar will win the third with his standup. Close decision win for Kingsbury based on his earlier ground dominance.
Stephan Bonnar over Kyle Kingsbury – TKO RD 2
I’m just not impressed with Kingsbury. His best win was versus Romero, and the jury is still out on Romero. Bonnar is well versed and I’m not sure Kingsbury will be able to keep him hemmed up the entire fight. I think Bonnar catches him later in the fight and finishes with clinch knees and punches.
Rick Story over Martin Kampmann – Round 3 JD
The top four fights on this card are fucking awesome. Story and Kampmann have both been working their way up the Welterweight ladder, and they’re both fairly young. It’s good to have some new faces on the scene, because Fitch-Alves-GSP has gotten a little stale. Story relies on his athleticism more than technique with his standup, and Kampman will outclass him if that’s where the fight stays. I don’t see that happening, though. Story will get on top, and Kampmann will counter with attacks from guard. I was impressed with Story’s bjj in his loss to Brenneman, so I think he’ll keep himself safe. Three gnp decisions in a row, but I think this one will look slick. Both guys are gonna be hovering around the top of the weight-class for the next couple years for sure.
Martin Kampmann over Rick Story – JD
This fight is pretty awesome. Story was on a tear before getting caught by The Spainard in a Texas Switch due to injury fight. I still think Kampmann is in the mix of top 170ers, you could legit argue that he got robbed in decision losses to Sanchez and Shields. He trains with a top team, has CRAZY hands, and has developed some great grappling skills. I think Kampmann will be able to stuff majority of the takedowns, work his great hand combos, and steal two of three rounds in what could end up being a very close fight.
Urijah Faber over Brian Bowles – Round 3 JD
There was a time when I thought Brian Bowles was so well-rounded that he was going to enjoy a nice long title reign. Dominic Cruz beat him in the next fight and I felt like a bit of an idiot, but Bowles has floated back to the top of the weight class. Faber is pretty well-rounded himself, and he will enjoy a speed advantage. This will probably be a kickboxing match for the most part: Bowles will rely on a jab, and Fabe will try to move in and out. I think it will be about even. Bowles hasn’t faced a great wrestler in awhile, and Faber will take him down enough to impress the judges.
Urijah Faber over Brian Bowles – JD
Honestly I think Bowles could be prime to pull off a big upset. He’s got heavy hands, solid grappling, and great submissions. Could he use in and out footwork and outwork Faber? It’s very possible. I doubt it though. Faber does a solid job of taking guys down and doing enough work while down to impress judges, and he’ll do the same here. The Sactown Faber fans will be in the building, Faber’s a huge draw in No Cal. He’ll get his hand raised and the place will go nuts. Then Faber will ask for another title shot and we will all quietly giggle, but turn away so he can’t see us.
Wanderlei Silva over Cung Le – Round 3 JD
The judges will be tired from all of their watching, thinking, and adding… so they’ll be happy to put their cards away and watch some violence at the top of this card. Fucking Cung Le hasn’t fought in a year and a half. It feels much more recent than that, but maybe I saw Pandorum on Encore Action and that confused me. Wandy is a bit chinny these days, but Cung doesn’t really have great punching power. Cung Le will try to win this fight from the outside and Wand will charge in with those hooks. Cung will cover up and go down.
Wanderlei Silva over Cung Le – KO RD 2
This fight is beyond fucking awesome and I just hope Wandy’s chin can hold up ONE LAST FUCKING TIME. Maybe he can mix in some head movement? All of the experts picking Le point to Wandy’s chin, and rightfully so. His Leben loss was embarrassing and I think majority of the MMA fans want him to go out with one last great performance. Another thing folks aren’t realizing is Le is nearly 40 years old, and has 32 kickboxing/ San Shou fights as well. Mix in his MMA fights and he’s got 40 pro fights So he’s just as old, if not older! I think this is a perfect fight for Wandy if he doesn’t gas. Le withers, doesn’t protect his face as well as he used to, and fights from the outside using his kicks rather then hands, although he has a sneaky right hook that may ice Wandy. I think Wandy fights safe for a round, gets a clinch in the 2nd, and destroys Le with knees and punches. There will be A TON of angry Asians, because Le is a huge fucking draw in No. Cal.
Dan Henderson over Shogun Rua – Round 3 TKO
Shogun slept Forrest Griffin because Forrest got old and chinny, but never adapted his style. Hendo still has a good chin, and he has great natural power that will threaten Shogun in every exchange. Shogun will gamplan to stay outside and use leg kicks and jabs. It seems too far-fetched to think he can do it for 25 minutes on bad knees, so he’ll need to come in and land power punches at some point. When he comes in, Dan will be ready and land a big right hand. If I’m right about this fight, is Dan fighter of the year automatically? Knocking out Feijao and two former champs and Pride legends is a decent year’s work.
Dan Henderson over Shogun Rua – TKO RD 2
I’ll take Cruelty’s argument a step further, and say Henderson may be the greatest MMA fighter of the past 10 years and we just haven’t realized it yet. He’s bounced between three weight classes and been successful. That’s fucking unheard of in this sport. He’s beating future stars like Feijao and legends like Fedor and he should be at the tail end of his career. It’s fucking mind boggling. I don’t take Shogun’s win seriously. Forrest wanted no part of Brazil, or that fight. His mind was on having his first kid, and it was crystal clear as Shogun was dribbling his head off the mat like a tennis ball with hammerfists. The telling fight was the Bones fight. His legs were gone, his killer punches were gone, and when he got put in deep waters he fucking drowned. Henderson eats steaks with A1 sauce in deep waters. The Shogun era is over. Injuries wrecked his career and that’s how he’ll be remembered. Rua will make a mistake, the H-BOMB will once again detonate, and we’ll all scratch our heads, think of what I just wrote and say, “Fuck. Hendo really is the best fighter of the past 10 years.”
Enjoy the fights!!