The UFC is finally coming back home. Well maybe Brazil is not technically home to the UFC, but its home to the first family of MMA, and home to many of the greatest fighters ever. The UFC plans on returning in or around August of 2011, which will give us the opportunity to play the role of Joe Silva.
The way that the UFC has their championship bouts set up right now is perfect for a HUGE Brazilian fighter heavy card to go down in August.
So without much ado, he is what I would like to see the UFC put together:
**(I know, some of the undercard fighters are currently booked in fights, but I don't see the UFC caring to much about W's or L's for the undercard, so don't bitch about it!)
Whenever you see the UFC in a foreign country, the undercard is always lined with local fighters who help draw fans to the event. Luckily, the UFC is filled with fighters who are exciting and Brazilian, so they wouldn't have to look to hard to find their fighters.
Fight 1: Rafael Dos Anjos vs. Paul Sass:
You always want your first fight to start off with a bang. Dos Anjos is a fun, well rounded fighter, with good BJJ. Sass seems to be a one trick pony, but if you give him someone who will go to the ground with him, it should make for an exciting fight.
Fight 2: Mario Miranda vs. Jason MacDonald:
Super Mario vs. The Athlete. I know Miranda is 1-2 in the UFC, and he's got a fight against Aaron Simpson up coming, but I think he's able to beat Simpson. He's got good jits, he's really big and strong, and if he can get Simpson to the ground, he should be able to control him. MacDonald is the man. He's not great, but he always brings it and is never an easy fight.
I'm gonna go out on a line and say that Roop beats Hominick this month. Nunes has beaten Mike Brown, Tyler Tooner and Raphael Assuncao, and looks like he could be the real deal. And exciting fight between these two could lead to one of the two fighters being a win away from a title shot.
Prelims (LIVE ON ION TV or Spike, or whatever...Hopefully)
PaulHarris is legit. He got lit up by Mardquart, but only after a laps in judgement. And he was able to get Marquardt down to the ground within the first 3 minutes of the fight. That said, he still has a tough fight against fellow submission master Alexandre "Cacareco" Ferreira. Dollaway seems to be the perfect opponent for Palhares. He's not going to be able to pick Palhares apart on the feet, and his best way to win is taking it to the mat.. a real no no against Toquinho.
Noke should be able to handle Cammozi pretty easily at UFC 127, making him 3-0 in the UFC, and that would give him a good amount of time to recuperate for a fight against Maia. Maia doesn't have a fight scheduled, that I know of, and seem's to be proving that he's stuck right in between the best MW's in the world and the very good MW's. A Convincing win over Noke should put him back into a contender spot, but I doubt the UFC will be anxious to book him for a title shot as long as Silva is the still the Champ.
AND WERE LIIIIVEEE...Main card time!
Fight 1: Lil Nog vs. Forrest Griffen:
Does anyone actually think Tito will beat Lil Nog? Really? And with Forrest matched up with Franklin in February, he'll be ready just in time for a fight in August. This fight was originally supposed to happen back at 114, but Forrest pulled out, and Lil Nog won a very unconvincing decision over Jason Brilz. This fight has the potential to be an epic standup war, and I can see someone (cough..forrest..cough) being KO'd in the first 2 rounds.
Leben just got KTFO. Wanderlei only has one win at MW, so he won't be fighting for a title quite yet. This is nothing more then a really fun fight. Both guys swinging with reckless abandon. Someone is bound to be asleep within 2 minutes, and what is more exciting then that?
Fight 3: Thiago Silva vs. Rich Franklin:
Franklin is making a quiet run as a contender for the LHW belt, and I can see him beating Forrest in their upcoming fight. A fight with these two not only would guarantee a slugfest, but would also create a bonafide #1 contender outside of the same fighters (Rashad, Shogun, Rampage, Lyoto). I think that they are both pretty evenly matched on the feet, and up until UFC 125 I would have said that Franklin has the advantage on the ground. But Silva showed that he can dominate with GnP and control as well. Its an intriguing match up and one that I would love to see.
Anderson Silva is either loved or Hated by the hardcore MMA fans. I honestly have no idea how he is received in his home of Brazil. I have to imagine that Wanderlei or the Nogs are the equivalent of GSP in Canada, but Anderson is the best fighter alive (yea, thats right, big whoop, want to fight about it?) so its a must to have him fight in front of his home country. Okami is the #1 contender, and assuming that Silva gets past Belfort, this would be the perfect spot for this fight.
Co Main Event: Shogun Rua vs. Quinton Jackson for LHW Championship:
A rematch of 2005 when Shogun stomped Rampage out. Only this time, no soccer kicks are allowed. There is a great history between these fighters (well a history with Rampage and Chute Boxe in general), and I'm sure Shogun would love the opportunity to avenge his Masters loss to Rampage (Rampage's KO of Wandy..although I think Wandy avenged that KO the first two times he fought Rampage). It certainly would be a hell of a fight, and I don't see it going the distance, so what a perfect way to end a crazy night of fights!
Are there some favorable match-ups for the Brazilian fighters on this card? Sure, but why the F not? And I know there are tons of fighters who could be on this card that I left off (Vitor, Big Nog, Jose Aldo, Renzo Gracie, Dos Santos...) but, unless the UFC wanted to pull a Dynamite Card and have 20 fights, there just wasn't enough room.
So what do you think? Is it crazy that there is a Brazilian fighting in every fight? Is this too stacked of a card for an overseas PPV? Am I totally dreaming when I think that Dana is going to make this one of the best PPVs of all time?