Posts Tagged ‘Antonio Silva’


MAIN CARD 

Donald Cerrone vs. KJ Noons

Donald ‘The Cowboy’ Cerrone fighting style is no secret, he stalks his opponents with vicious muay thai kicks, and can transition to a submission from virtually any position. KJ Noons is making his debut for the UFC, after coming over from the defunct Strikeforce promotion. Noons is also known for his tough, brawling style. This fight has the makings for either Fight of the Night, or a Sub of the Night for Cerrone.

Winner: Cerrone via submission rd 2

T.J. Grant vs. Gray Maynard (#1 Contender spot)

T.J. Grant has quietly earned this fight, riding a 4 fight win with his last being an impressive TKO over Matt Wiman. He has improved with each fight, and will be looking to capture a title shot with a win. Maynard is best known for his trilogy of fights with former champion Frankie Edgar. Twice, Maynard appeared to be just seconds away from the title, only to be thwarted by the heart of Edgar. The winner of this fight, has been guaranteed the next shot at champion Benson Henderson

Winner: Grant via unanimous decision

James Te Huna vs. Glover Teixeira

James Te Huna is one of the most talented fighters in the light heavyweight division. His only problem has been the fact that he is coincidentally making his rise with two of the most heralded light heavyweight prospect in recent history Alexander Gustafsson and Glover Teixeira.  Te Huna lost his second fight in the UFC to Gustafsson. Since that loss, Te Huna has rattled off 4 impressive wins including his last over Ryan Jimmo. Glover Texieira started his career at 2-2, since then he has won 18 consecutive fights. Now at 20-2, Texieira was last seen handing Rampage Jackson his walking papers via unanimous decision. An impressive win over Te Huna could set up a #1 contenders fight with Alexander Gustafsson.

Winner: Teixeira via Submission rd 2 (strikes set up a choke)

Junior dos Santos vs. Mark Hunt

dos Santos is making his return to the Octagon for the first time since losing the title to Velasquez in December. Even though he lost the fight, his striking is still the best in the division. He will need to keep his opponent at the end of his jab, to effectively set up his power punches. Mark Hunt may be tailor-made to beat dos Santos, if his last fight against Stefan Struve is an indicator. Hunt was very effective at closing the distance, and neutralizing a sizable reach disadvantage, and eventually ended the fight with a spectacular knockout.  However, recent visa issues for Hunt (New Zealand) left the bout in limbo up until last week. This leaves Hunt only a small amount of time to acclimate to the environment, and that could be the intagible that gives dos Santos an advantage.

Winner: dos Santos via TKO rd 2

Main Event  Cain Velasquez vs Antonio Silva – for Heavyweight Title

The last time these two faced off in 2012, Velasquez dominated ‘Big Foot’ Silva for 3:36 and left the challenger busted and bloodied. Velasquez then went on to regain the heavyweight title. However, ‘Big Foot’ proved in his last fight, that the illusive creature was still a threat in the division when he destroyed the heavily favored Alistair Overeem in just over 2 rounds. Since rejoining American Top Team, Silva has shown tremendous improvement, and will present a threat on his feet or on the ground. Cain Velasquez is an absolute monster inside the cage. In his last fight he proved he could learn from defeat, and executed a game plan that gave his opponent virtually no chance at winning. After being dismantled by dos Santos, Velasquez came back and returned the favor by pummeling him for 5 rounds. Velasquez will probably utilize a very similar game plan in this fight, to counter the reach of Silva. The key for Silva, is to ride the “Rocky-like” momentum that thrust him in this position to begin with. His hunger to win, will be his best asset.

Winner: Velasquez via TKO rd 3

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by: Jonathan King

JOSEPH BENAVIDEZ VS IAN MCCALL
 
This fight is an interesting match up. Both fighters can stake a claim for a title shot against champion Demetrious Johnson with a decisive win. Benavidez is as strong as they come in the 125 lbs weight division. His wrestling maybe the best in the division. Ian McCall brings a very dynamic striking game to the table. McCall is 0-1-1 against the current champion. Benevidez will need to avoid McCall’s counter punching to secure a take down. If he is able to bring the fight to the mat, he may be able to secure the win. McCall will need to utilize his wrestling defense, to avoid any take downs. However, if he does get put on his back McCall will need to stay active from the bottom as he has in the past. Both fighters bring a contrasting style that should provide great entertainment.
 
Prediction: Joseph Benavidez Unanimous Decision.
 
JON FITCH  VS DEMIAN MAIA
 
Very often we hear the term “Grinder” when referring to a fighters style. No one exemplifies that label better than Jon Fitch. Fitch has been a contender at the 170lbs division for nearly a decade. His wrestling and conditioning, have become legendary. He has wins over some of the biggest names in the sport, and has even gone the distance with Georges St Pierre. His only sign of weakness came by way of a  flash KO at the hands of Johnny Hendricks. Demian Maia is also known as a legend. His grappling and jujitsu game may be one of the most feared in the sport. At 185 lbs, Maia was out gunned by stronger fighters. Now comfortable at 170 lbs, Maia’s power increase will only serve to strengthen his grappling. 
 
Prediction: Jon Fitch Unanimous Decision
 
ALISTAIR OVEREEM VS ANTONIO SILVA
 
In his first fight after being suspended for having testosterone in his system, Alistair Overeem is already looking for a title shot. Unfortunately for him, standing in his way is another mountain sized heavyweight named Antonio Silva. Silva is coming off a dominating win over Travis Browne, and feels that Overeem is disrespecting him.  With a long history of animosity between the two fighters, stemming from their camp decisions (Silva left the Blackzilians and rejoined American Top Team once Overeem signed on with the camp) there should be no shortage of heavy exchanges. Overeem will hold a clear advantage in the striking department, while Silva will have an edge if the fight goes to the ground. Both fighters have extremely heavy hands, and are capable of knocking the other out. 
 
Prediction: Alistair Overeem via TKO
 
RASHAD EVANS VS ROGERIO NOGUEIRA
 
Rashad Evans may be the most talented fighter in the UFC without a belt. His wrestling background, and versatile striking have kept Evans at the top of the division, since his brief reign as champion. He will need to utilize his excellent head movement to counter the tremendous boxing skills of Rogerio Nogueira. “Lil Nog” (as he is known) for a long time has been over looked in 205 lbs division. Known for his precision boxing skills Nogueira like his brother is also deadly on the ground. If he is able to stagger Evans, or somehow able to drag him to the mat, he will have a distinct advantage. As dynamic as his boxing is, Evans will still have an advantage on his feet through sheer athleticism alone. Evans will look to land effectively at distance, setting up his own take downs in order win the fight. However, if he is too aggressive in Nogueira’s guard, he could very easily get caught in a submission. 
 
Prediction: Rashad Evans via 2nd rd TKO
 
MAIN EVENT FEATHERWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT
 
FRANKIE EDGAR V JOSE ALDO (CHAMPION)
 
Jose Aldo is one of the most dynamic fighters in any weight class. His combination of speed and technique have laid waste to an all star cast of opponents. His reign at the top, has never been challenged and his name is very often mentioned at the top of the pound for pound rankings. Frankie Edgar embodies the dark horse spirit. His history of exciting fights, and come from behind win seem to be from the pages of a Hollywood script. Edgar’s chin and ability to recover may be his best attribute in a very crowded quiver of mma weapons. If Edgar is able to close the distance and grab a hold of Aldo he might be able to slow the pace and grind on the champion. Both fighters are no strangers to late rounds, and both can take a punch so look for this fight to head into deep water. However, lets not forget one very important wild card in this fight, the referee. Steve Mazzagatti could play a role in a questionable stoppage!
 
Prediction: Frankie Edgar via Split Decision