Posts Tagged ‘Cain Velasquez’

Your new UPC Unlimited Middleweight Champion

Your new UPC Unlimited Middleweight Champion

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

One of the most exciting aspects of covering mixed martial arts is watching a fighter develop. Watching young men and women transition past pedigree into the realm of contendership is very satisfying. At times it seems like you are on the ride with them.

So tonight make sure you tune in to the preliminary fights on http://www.Bellator.com, before the Spike TV broadcast takes over at 8pm ET. One of the sports top prospects Chris ‘The Cutt’ Honeycutt (4-0 MMA) will be making his promotional debut against Aaron ‘The Daywalker’ Wilkinson (11-6  MMA). Honeycutt is a former two-time NCAA finalist in wrestling out of the powerhouse that is Edinboro College.

Now training in Fresno CA with former collegiate teammate Josh Koscheck’s Dethrone Base Camp, Honeycutt burst on the scene as a series regular on “Fight Factory”, a show which showcased the lives of several fighters including Koscheck, Honeycutt, Phil Baroni, Ron Keslar, UFC Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez, and many other of the fighters who train at either AKA or Dethrone.

Currently undefeated as a mixed martial artist, Honeycutt seems to be ready for the step up in competition. Wilkinson a former finalist on the Ultimate Fighter is certainly no stepping stool. ‘The Daywalker’ is 5-2 in his last 7 fights since his loss to Cody McKenzie at the Ultimate Fighter finale, and a win over the surging Honeycutt will certainly put his name on the Bellator MMA contender list.

Wilkinson should have a clear advantage in the technical striking area. However Honeycutt’s power, and smothering wrestling based attack should dictate the pace and location of the fight. If Wilkinson is unable to defend the takedown, he will be in for a very long night! Once Honeycutt is in a dominant position his power really shows. Like a new-age Mark Kerr, Honeycutt is a finisher. He is a shark, he can sense blood in the water, and his finishing instinct is scary. Scott Coker may not recognize the gem he is sitting on, but he will tonight!Crazy B

Prediction: Honeycutt via TKO Rd 1. When tomorrow comes, the MMA world will know his name!

Note: The fight will also be Honeycutt’s first at 170 lbs… Previously he fought at 185 lbs.

 

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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

 

by: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Derek Brunson (10-2 MMA) WINS via Decision Chris Leben (26-9 MMA)

Recap: Derek Brunson was able to utilize his superior wrestling skills to keep the oft dangerous Chris Leben at bay for the better part of three rounds. Brunson’s smothering grappling prevented Leben from every mounting any significant offensive flurries. The grinding style served Brunson well, as Leben began to show signs of gassing in the first round.

 

Yushin Okami (28-7 MMA) WINS via Decision Alan Belcher (18-8 MMA)

Recap:The second time was not a charm as Alan Belcher fell to Yushin Okami much the way he did the first time. Using his tremendous grappling and size, Okami took a page from the Chael Sonnen book of MMA. For three rounds the most successful Japanese fighter in the history of the UFC  thwarted every effort Belcher made. The loss will keep Okami in contention, and move Belcher out of the very crowded title mix!

Constantinos Philippou (12-2 MMA) Tim Boetsch (16-5 MMA) v

Recap: Tim Boetsch is an absolute warrior. Even though he was injured early on, and nearly blinded by his own blood he never quit coming. Constantinos Philippou threw ever thing he had at the immobile and prone warrior, and eventually in the third round the referee saw enough.  The win catapults Philippou right into title contention alongside fellow Long Islander Chris Weidman, and a few others in the very crowded middleweight division.

Jim Miller (22-4 MMA) WINS via Decsison Joe Lauzon (22-8 MMA)

Recap: This is quite possibly the best fight of the year. Early on Jim Miller utilized an extremely  aggressive offense to land an assortment of strikes to the face of Joe Lauzon as he coiled in response to the repeated assault. In the second round Lauzon seemed to come on strong, until another flurry by Miller had him on the run and covering up. Miller fought off several late slick submission attempts by Lauzon to get the nod unanimously in a very bloody affair!

 

MAIN EVENT

Cain Velasquez (11-1 MMA) WINS via Decision over Junior Dos Santos (15-2 MMA) 

Recap: Cain Velasquez came charging at the man who knocked him out in under a minute last time they fought. This time, the charge last five full rounds. Right from the start the champion was on his heels, as a huge right hand from Velasquez rattled Junior Dos Santos. The punch seemed to leave JDS without his wits for several rounds. Only toward the end of the fourth round did he seem to regain any sort of steam behind his punches. Cain looked tremendous, as he consistently dragged Dos Santos to the mat, wearing him down with consistent pressure, and grinding elbows.

New Champion Cain Velasquez

By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Derek Brunson (9-2 MMA)  v Chris Leben (26-8 MMA)

Analysis: Derek Brunson was one of MMA’s brightest young stars, and still is although that star has lost some of its luster. After starting 9-0, the former Strikeforce fighter will make his UFC debut after dropping his last two fights, the first blemishes in a previously unblemished career. In his way is the ferociously reckless Chris Leben, who is returning to the Octagon for the first time since his suspension for testing positive for Oxycontin following his loss to Mark Munoz. He will certainly be looking for redemption against the younger Brunson.

 

Prediction: Leben via 2nd Round TKO

 

Alan Belcher (18-6 MMA) v Yushin Okami (27-7 MMA)

Analysis: Alan Belcher is looking to prove to the world that he is a title contender in the very crowded 185 lbs division. With many other fighters looking to claim rights to the next title shot, a win over Yushin Okami would certainly solidify his claim. Okami is a legend in MMA, and has beat a murders row of fighters with huge names! After back to back losses, that included a title shot loss to Anderson Silva, Okami returned to his winning ways with an impressive win over Buddy Roberts in his last bout. Okami is looking to keep his name in the top tier of middleweights as well.

Prediction: Belcher via Unanimous Decision 

 

Tim Boetsch (16-4 MMA) v Constantinos Philippou (11-2 MMA)

Analysis: Tim Boetsch is coming off his most impressive win thus far in MMA, with his upset decision victory over Hector Lombard. His reward is facing another hard hitting fighter, with very much the same type of skills. Costa Philippou has racked up 4 wins in a row, and is now looking to make a name for himself off of Boetsch’s name. Both fighters have a history of going the distance, so this fight should follow suit.

Prediction: Philippou via Unanimous Decision

 

Jim Miller (21-4 MMA) v Joe Lauzon (22-7 MMA)

Analysis: This fight is an obvious early candidate for Fight of The Night. Lauzon is coming off his most impressive win to date, when he submitted Jaime Varner in a back and forth affair at UFC on Fox 4 in Los Angeles. Jim Miller’s career can best be described by those he has lost too. His only four losses came against Nate Diaz, Benson Henderson, Frankie Edgar, and Gray Maynard arguably 4 of the top lightweights in UFC history. Miller will need to avoid Lauzon’s submission game and keep the fight standing.

Prediction: Lauzon via 2nd Round Submission

MAIN EVENT

Cain Velasquez (10-1 MMA) v Junior Dos Santos (15-1 MMA) Current UFC Heavyweight Champion

Analysis: In there first bout Dos Santos only needed 1:04 seconds to take the title from Cain’s waist. This time Velasquez will need to avoid the heavy hands of Dos Santos and land a few of his own. Standing up either fighter can knock out the other however, Dos Santos’s boxing pedigree is the best in the business. The Champion will look to keep the fight standing, while Velasquez will certainly be trying to set up his technical wrestling in order to control the fight on the ground. Dos Santos although not seen on his back often, does possess a Noguiera brothers Black Belt, so he is no push over on the mat himself.

Prediction: Dos Santos via 2nd Round TKO

 

 

Behind the scenes for the history making UFC on Fox debut! Dana White gives us an inside view of the UFC.


(Video:Bob Arum at his best, and THE UFC on FOX)

Saturday night the world was introduced to Mixed Martial Arts’s at its finest, when the UFC debuted in a prime-time market; on a prime-time network: Fox. A few months ago the media giant FOX, and the UFC came to an agreement to showcase octagon battles live beginning in 2012. Previously the sport was relegated to secondary cable networks, late-night slots, and Pay Per view channels. Last night was just a taste of this new venture.

The first Heavyweight Championship fight on network television in recent memory lasted only 1:04. Junior dos Santos caught a passive Cain Velasquez with an overhand right hand to the temple, that knocked the champion senseless, just long enough to allow a swarming dos Santos to finish the fight with unanswered strikes on the ground.

An estimated 60 million viewers in Brazil alone tuned in to watch countrymen dos Santos capture the Heavyweight Championship in remarkable fashion.

Commentary:The UFC debut on FOX was a huge success,in spite of what critics and fans might claim. Many have stated the UFC’s ‘one-fight’ format backfired, when the 25 minute fight ended in just over 1 minute. However the ratings will certainly show, worldwide, that people watched. Finally, the fastest growing sport in the world, was shown to the world, for free, live! The way the fight ended only matters in one respect: it ended definitively and it ended fairly.

Can the same be said of the other major fight this weekend? This weekend boxing sunk to an all-time low, with the robbery of Juan Manuel Marquez in Las Vegas. I watched the fight through 7 rounds (before i lost my feed), and had marquez ahead 5 rounds to 2. From most legitimate accounts, the scoring of this fight ranged from a draw, to a Marquez win by two or even three rounds! Only one judge agreed! The other two judges saw the fan favorite Manny Pacquiao winning. The crowd was obviously in disagreement, as the boos thundered throughout, and press-row took a bath in discarded beer. The boxing world as whole seemed to disagree.

The sport took another devastating shot, this time delivered below the belt, and directed from Bob Arum’s racial tirade after the fight when he claimed the only ones who cried robbery were people with “Mexican” last names. Bob Arum is slowly becoming as detestable as Don King, they are both a skid-marks on the sport they earn their living in! The simple truth of the matter is Marquez won that fight! Now ask yourself why?

There are many reasons why this fight ended the way it did. In fact there are 200 million reasons. A Marquez victory surely would have dampened a possible Mayweather v Pacquiao fight, that some say would generate over 200 million dollars. Im pretty sure the Nevada State Athletic Commission is not going to investigate themselves, so they are hoping the Mayweather hype will replace the discussion entirely. However, they are sadly mistaken. Boxing fans are quick to jump ship when the product is corrupt (see Heavyweight division since Tyson). This time, it may be the death rattle, the casual fan can now find MMA on network television, a similar product, with rising stock. The overall winner in the Pacquiao v Marquez fight was The UFC, and FOX!