First off, i'd like to say hi to everyone, this is my first legit post here. I posted on Sherdog for a while, but got banned a couple times and decided to start posting here instead.
But regarding the actual topic, i'd like to give my picks for UFC 96, as well as an analysis of some of the fights I find interesting.
Rampage vs. Jardine- I'll take Page by (T)KO, 1'st round. Keith's chin has been known to be suspect, and against a guy like Quinton (who I think has the best hands at 205), I can only picture Jardine catching one and either getting knocked cold or getting swarmed with Page's HEAVY GnP. However, Forrest was able to batter Quinton with leg kicks, and I think Jardine has more powerful leg kicks than Griffin. If there's any way for Keith to win, it's by using leg kicks a ton, by sticking and moving, and not getting caught by one of Jackson's nasty hooks. At best, I could see him winning a close split decision.
Gonzaga vs. Carwin- Not sure, but i'll take Gabe by sub in the 2'nd. Gonzaga is a very powerful man, and has looked great in his last few fights. However, they were against relatively subpar competition, b- level fighters. He has very powerful striking, decent wrestling, and great Jiu Jitsu. GG's been known to wilt under pressure though, and although he's been working with Rafael Alejandro (Wand's S&C coach), he had gas tank/ heart problems in his fights with Couture and Werdum. If Carwin can really keep the pressure on Gonzaga, avoid damage in the standup, and work a steady GnP attack while staying out of trouble on the ground, I could see him scoring a late (T)KO or UD. However, his conditioning/ chin is still a bit of a question mark, and it's been (as of yet) undiscovered as to how well he'll fare against elite competition. I see GG getting the better of the standup in the 1'st, and Carwin taking Gonzaga down (but avoiding any damage), and then I see him trying for a desperate TD in the 2'nd after getting battered by Gonzaga's more advanced, well rounded striking, and falling right into a sub (guillotine, anaconda, triangle, armbar, etc.).
Jason Day vs. Kendall Grove- I think Grove gets (T)KO'd in the 1'st or 2'nd. His chin is garbage, and Day is a good enough striker to be able to rock Kendall and put him away.
Jim Miller vs. Gray Maynard- I'll take Jim by UD. I think that Miller's striking is much more well rounded and versatile than Maynard's, I think his wrestling will be at least good enough to allow him to score good points in the standup, and I think his BJJ is tight enough that Gray won't be able to pass his guard or do much damage on the ground if he's on his back. I also think he could potentially sub Gray. However, I'd never completely count out Maynard from taking the wet- blanket, LnP decision win.
Brandon Vera vs. Mike Patt- Vera wins a boring decision. Again. Mike Patt is a much better fighter than he showed in his match against Boetsch, and is actually pretty well rounded. However, Vera will probably outstrike Patt, won't get taken down, and likely won't get submitted. Unless he comes out guns- a- blazin' and finishes Mike early with strikes, I think he eeks out a lame UD.
Brown/ Sell- Pete Sell, UD. I think Sell turns this into a technical boxing match, and turns in a lackluster decision win. However, there is a potential for fireworks, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if Sell obliges to brawl, and a spectacular finish ensues.
Hammil/ Munoz- Hammil, UD. I think Matt will outclass Munoz in every aspect of the game- standing and on the ground. He could potentially rock Mark and finish him with ground strikes, but I see him taking a lopsided decision.
Anyone agree/ disagree? I'd love some feedback.