Posts Tagged ‘Donald Cerrone’


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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Edson Barboza(10-0 MMA) recently solved Terry Etim’s(15-4 MMA) sleeping disorder at UFC 142, by introducing him to heal therapy. Barboza’s spinning heel kick landed squarely across Etim’s jaw, instantly forcing his limp body to fall dramatically. like a fallen tree.
As the crowd watched in shock, the referee dove to protect the unconscious fighter. In his native Brazil, initial shock briefly staved off Barboza’s celebration. However soon, the young fighter was in tears as he celebrated in his native tongue!

The knockout overshadowed a very good performance by Terry Etim. The three rounds leading up to the knockout were very entertaining, and the UFC acknowledged that by awarding the bout “Fight of the Night” honors. For their efforts each fighter was awarded a $65,000 bonus. Barboza, also earned another $65,000 with the flashy “Knockout of the Night” bonus. The payday was by far the young Brazilian’s largest to date. The attention has already put Barboza’s name in mouths of pundits as a possible contender for the 155 lb title.

Barboza has a very rough road ahead, before he can be ready for those expectations. The lightweight division, is by far the UFC’s deepest division, regarding talent. With fighters such as Renan Berao, Donald Cerrone, Nate Diaz, Benson Henderson already underneath champion Frankie Edgar, Barboza’s success is still not assured.

In order to make it to the elite ranks in the lightweight division, Edson Barboza will most likely have to face a fighter such as: Joe Lauzon, Thiago Tavares, Sam Stout, or even Melvin Guillard or Jim Miller. If Barboza can show his striking prowess against fighters of this caliber, then it will be time to start putting expectations on time-lines. Until then, just make sure to tune in for his fights, because they are usually exciting.

 

 

UFC 141 Main Card Predictions:

John Fitch (26-3-1 MMA) v. Johnny Hendricks (11-1 MMA)

Its been almost a year since John Fitch and BJ Penn fought to a draw in February 2012. Since then Fitch has undergone surgery, and suffered a few setbacks trying to get back into the octagon. His record however, should put all doubt aside. Fitch has notable wins over Thiago Alves, Mike Pierce, Paulo Thiago, Diego Sanchez, and many others. Basically John Fitch has beat everyone except the champion! His fights may be drawn out wrestling matches, that may not be as exciting as two guys standing and trading swollen faces, but his record and toughness silence all. Simply put, all John Fitch does is win!

Johnny Hendricks is looking to continue his rise in the 170lbs division with a solid performance against a very game John Fitch. Hendricks is a former wrestling champion, who has seen his striking improve with every fight. Since losing a decision to Rick Story in December 2010, Hendricks has put together consecutive victories over Mike Pierce, and TJ Waldburger.Hendricks has been recently training with his old collegiate wrestling team, preparing for the ground fighting Fitch.

Prediction: John Fitch via unanimous decision

Nathan Diaz (14-7 MMA) v. Donald Cerrone (17-3-1nc MMA)

This is a fight that should leave us all slack-jawed and hypnotized. Both fighters are virtually evenly matched in all areas of the game. Nathan Diaz has been moving out of his older brother (Nick)’s shadow since winning the Ultimate Fighter. With his latest and most impressive victory over Takinori Gomi, Diaz firmly planted his feet in the title mix for the 155lbs weight class. The Stockton California native is a cardio freak like his older brother, competing in triathlons, and xterra events to stay in pinnacle condition. His boxing skills, combined with Cesar Gracie inspired jujitsu make Nathan Diaz one of the most well-rounded fighters in any division.

Greg Jackson has produced some of the best fighters in MMA, Donald Cerrone certainly adds to that stable of greatness. ‘The Cowboy’ posses a great combination of striking, wrestling, and jujitsu. His latest win over Dennis Siver in dominating fashion pushed Cerrone back to the top of the contender list. Greg Jackson insists that Cerrone is full of tricks, that he plans to display against the very tough Diaz. Both fighters can strike, and grapple, this is going to be a shootout!

Prediction: Nathan Diaz via 2nd round submission

Brock Lesnar (5-2 MMA) v. Alistair Overeem (35-11-1 MMA)

Brock Lesnar is one of the largest and strongest men in the UFC. His wrestling pedigree and sheer size made him an instant contender in the division, simply because he was so massive. His athleticism for a man his size is almost unfathomable. At almost 300 pounds (by the time the fight starts) he shoots faster than most lightweight wrestlers. Lesnar’s critics are quick to point out his striking weakness. His technical striking may be lacking, but anyone he punches will certainly feel differently (ask Heath Herring and his broken orbital bone from a right cross). Every fighter he has faced, he has taken down. He will look to do the same against Overeem.

Dutch strikers usually have a glaring hole in their game, the Dutch are not known for their grappling prowess. Alistair Overeem is the exception to this rule. His record proves this as he has more wins by submission (19) then he does by TKO (14). His vicious legs, knees, and elbows have left a wake of defeated champions behind him. Currently he is the Dream, Strikeforce, and K-1 Heavyweight Champions, and since moving up in weight he has looked unbeatable! Overeem will look to avoid Lesnar’s take-downs by utilizing distance. Once inside, Lesnar had better be aware of Overeem’s tendency to use his patent guillotine choke.

Prediction: Brock Lesnar via rd 2 TKO