2011 has been a great year for fight fans.. it's had a bit of everything.
It looks to be finishing in style - at which point 2012 will start with a bang. I'm having a slow day at work, so I figured I'd make my first fanpost here at BE - I've been lurking for a while and thought I could make a small contribution as a way of saying ‘thanks' to BE - for the amount of MMA news I've read on here to fill the slower days with has been quite staggering. Maybe this piece will fill someone else's coffee break, or sleepy afternoon.
And for the unemployed and/or bored, heck, this is for you too.
Here are 30 UFC fights over the next 3 months, in Chronological order, which I'm very eager to see. I've chosen to show just UFC fights at this stage, although believe me when I say I'm excited about Gilbert Melendez vs Jorge Masvidal and the potential ramifications of that bout.
What the hell, I might even make some predictions here, despite my inability to detach emotionally when doing so.
Probably a good thing I don't put money down.
Obviously this is all subject to change, injuries and what-not, but for now, this is what I'm amped for and how I see it going down.
[Note: I have not used any photos in this as I understand I cannot merely google image for content.. apologies for the wall of text]
@ TUF 14 Finale (December 3, 2011)
This weekend's TUF finale, a 5 rounder for these two. As hated as he is, I'm interested to see if Bisping can get through Jason Miller or falter and fall. Bispings stand-up advantage should provide him an avenue to get a decision win, although 5 rounds is a long time to avoid Millers ground game.
I don't hate Michael Bisping with the intensity that the general internet populace does, and I think he will get past Miller - who hasn't fought in over a year. I pick Bisping, but wouldn't be too surprised if Miller pulled out a submission late.
2. Tony Ferguson vs. Yves Edwards
A new prospect at LW - Tony Ferguson's stand-up is looking meaner and meaner with each outing. Let's see if he can finish Yves Edwards and continue to look like the most impressive guy to come out of TUF in a while. (Despite being an utter douche on the show)
Both guys are coming off of good finishes.. Edwards is experienced, this one is hard for me to pick due to this but I'm going to pick Ferguson due to his size advantage and (comparative) youth. Tough call for me, maybe more experienced fans can shed some light on where and how Edwards will win.
@ UFC 140 (December 10, 2011)
The two most hyped LHW's in recent times, the range fighter vs the range. Who isn't looking forward to this..? I think this could be Jon Jones' toughest test yet - Machida is very elusive, technical and quick. In saying that, I have to pick Jones, but am more worried about this fight than I was about the Jackson fight. Which was not at all.
I love Hominicks technical boxing, and Chan's heart - I think Hominick wins but how he wins is what I am looking forward to.. He could k.o the Korean Zombie , who was finished by the scrappy but tough George Roop, or just outbox him to a decision.
@ UFC 141 (December 30, 2011 - GREAT card..!)
A battle of the behemoths, the return on the UFC's 'PPV saviour' Brock Lesnar, first fight of Ubereems UFC career.. Heck yes, please. This is a fight that should draw in almost record numbers - two of the most imposing figures in MMA, with the most passionate supporters to boot. I think Overeem's cardio is the big question mark here, and was VERY unimpressed by his Werdum fight, which to me was the let-down of the year. I would not be surprised to see Lesnar take this fight, but I pick Overeem to win by TKO in the first 2 rounds. If it goes past the second, I think Lesnar just might win though. How well Lesnar bounces back from his illness and surgery might also play a factor.
Both guys are almost ALWAYS entertaining, both won very impressively in their last fights.. Bring it on! I really like both fighters and this is hard for me to pick, but I have to go with the Cowboy who looked fantastic against Siver, not to take anything away from Nates performance against Gomi, which was great, but I think Gomi looked a little.. underdone, for a lack of a better (if not more offensive) word. The Cowboy, by decision.
I'm not a Jon Fitch fan, which is why I am hopeful Hendricks can upset him here - in the form of a brutal K.O. PLEASE. If Fitch smothers for 3 rounds, then whatever, but I am really hoping Hendricks finishes him. My pick though? Jon Fitch, by decision. But GO Hendricks, Go Man!
Been loving how good this Gustafsson kid has looked, besides a slip to another young gun in Phil Davis due to a savage wrestle-rape, he looks like he has some real promise. Let's see how he goes against another Veteran in Vladdy, after dismantling Matt Hamill. My pick is Gustafsson by TKO.
I like Njokuani's striking displays, he's flashy but seems to struggle under pressure.. Ramsay got ko'd by Tony Ferguson in the TUF finale, much to my dismay, but I like both these guys and hence will like the fight. I pick Njokuani due to his experience, I felt his fight with Barboza was very very close, while Ramsey is still a bit green. Tough fight for Ramsey, Njokuani by decision or TKO.
10. Manvel Gamburyan vs. Diego Nunes
This one has firecracker written ALL over it. Very keen to see how Diego bounces back from his disappointing loss to Kenny Florian, against the mini-juggernaut that is the Anvil. Nunes looked to tire in his fight with Ken-flo towards the end, and Manny will push the pace relentlessly.. I think Manny's takedowns are probably going to play a part in him ultimately winning by decision, but who knows just how Good Nunes is yet. Tough call.. Manny by decision. Won't be surprised if he gets knocked out though, to be honest.
@ UFC 142 (January 14, 2012)
11. José Aldo (c) vs. Chad Mendes
Mendes will be the best wrestler Aldo has faced so far, I'm keen to see if he can make it interesting.. could we potentially see the LW version of the Sonnen v Silva fight? I'm picking Aldo, he hasn't finished a fight since the WEC merger, but this could be it.. if the weight cut hasn't started to become too much - in which case, I think him at LW would be interesting - as stacked as that division already is. Jose, by TKO.
I get the feeling this will end in a k.o - plus, watching Johnson brutalise Charlie Brenneman was ridiculously fun, so I'm keen to see how he goes at Middleweight.. the guy IS massive. I think Vitors hand speed will be too much for Johnson, unfortunately, but even if he loses I'd like to see him back at WW like he's mentioned, fighting the loser of Kampmann vs Alvez.
I pick Vitor, by K.O.
Barboza, a hot prospect, Terry Etim, a unique challenge.. two young guys with good technique - very interesting. I think I have to lean towards Barboza - who was humbled slightly in his fight against Ross Pearson - am just hoping Etim puts up a good fight as I like him as well. Barboza via Decision.
Another one that I think ends in a k.o.. with Maldonado's boxing giving him the advantage over Nedkovs brawling style.. I just think this should be entertaining, Maldonado by ko/tko.
Silva was so impressive in his debut in UFC Brazil, I've been hanging out to see him fight again. Siyar has big wraps and is a striking coach, but I've seen his highlights and he leaves his chin out there. I'm hoping for a k.o by Silva and a meteoric rise for the young Brazilian to begin. Silva by KO.
@ UFC on FX1 (January 20, 2012)
Two guys seemingly on the cusp of contention in the most stacked division of any organisation, possibly ever. Both stumbled, and now meet each other to find some foot-holds on the steep slope that would present itself should they lose again. Although I would like to see Melvin provide us with a highlight reel k.o of Jim Miller and put the Lauzon fight behind him, I think Miller can hold his own standing and is smart enough to know how to win this fight. Jim Miller, by submission. But am (not so secretly) hoping for a K.O from Melvin.
Hey, I'm a sucker for Pat, he's entertaining. I hope he uppercuts Morecraft in one of his man-boobs and wins by tko to get a much needed victory. Morecraft looks like a gigantic freak-child, and is legitimately scary.. not skill-set scary, but waking up to find him in your kitchen, eating your pets, scary. Par Barry, by anything, just please win dude, you're likable.
@ UFC on FOX 2 (January 28, 2012)
The contender fight for the next shot at Anderson Silva, which, let's face it - has to be Chael Sonnen if only just to put the whole thing to bed. I think Sonnen should take this handily, but Munoz getting on top and throwing those bombs is always something to look out for. Watch for Sonnen to use his hands to set up a takedown, and win by either decision or maybe even submission again. My pick, Sonnen by decision.
Mighty Mouse is probably the fastest guy in the UFC - I think too quick for Wineland to be honest. His speed and level changes should see him win this one. MM, by decision.
@ UFC 143 (February 4, 2012)
20. GSP vs Nick Diaz
Oh jeez, please let this go ahead.. another BIG draw for the UFC..
I hope Nick taunts the shit out of GSP, makes him fight, and makes him lose his cool..
Even if Diaz loses, I just want it to be entertaining. Maybe a finish in a WW title fight would be a pleasant change, but as long as it provides one fifth of the entertainment the lead-up has generated, then I'll be happy. I want Diaz to win, just to shake things up, but my pick is GSP, by decision or stoppage due to cuts.
Oh god Carlos, please knock Josh Koschek the f*%$ out, pleeeaaase. Then Dana should just make Kos and Fitch fight, screw this same team bullshit, you can't have these two clogging up the top spots at WW without fighting each other.. obviously you can tell I'm not a huge fan of Fitch or Kos.. however much I want Condit to win this by flying 540 dual knees to the face, I think Kos wins by taking the Rory Macdonald approach, with less gassing. Kos, yawn, by decision
Two young guys vying for a contender spot.. I really like Erik Koch but I think this is a tough fight for him and will be his hardest test to date. Poirier has had the tougher opponents lately, but I have to back the Alien boy here. Erik Koch by either ko/tko or decision.
Bruce Leroy surprised almost everyone with his performance against Cole Escovedo recently, and seems to have taken well to the Bantamweight division. I want to check his next fight out to see if he continues to impress. I'll pick him over Figueroa, as I don't know much about him. Caceres via decision.
@ UFC on FUEL 1 (February 15, 2012)
‘Jake Ellenberger could just be the next big thing' wouldn't be the most ridiculous thought you could have after seeing his destruction of Jake Shields. ‘Sure, he didn't get his eye socket finger-banged all to shit' would be an appropriate response, if it weren't for the fact that he just didn't give Shields the time to get to fourth base on his.
Although Diego brings it, I think he'll be bringing himself to the slaughterhouse in this one - as Jake's hands look a LOT heavier than Martin Kampmanns'. Ellenberger, by TKO.
@ UFC 144 (February 26, 2012)
25. Frankie Edgar (c) vs. Benson Henderson
I'm a massive fan of both guys involved in this title fight, like the Cain/JDS bout - I just want to see a decent fight and I don't care who wins - but if Edgar gets mauled instantly I will be a bit sad though, again, like the Cain/JDS fight.
I have to back Edgar due to being a HUGE fan of his, but Bendo proposes some problems where Maynard should have, but didn't - in his wrestling. He also poses problems Maynard couldn't - in his flexibility and unpredictability. I have to pick Edgar, by decision - but don't quite know how it will go down.
Rampage back in Japan. Bader, fresh of pulverising Jason Brilz side-head. I honestly think Bader could surprise Rampage with his right hand, but he should really just wrestle him, Rashad Evans style. But stiffer, obviously. I think if Bader doesn't control, Rampage wins by decision, or Ko. Rampage, decision or KO. "For the fans".
If Kongo stands with Hunt, we are all going to be better off for it. Alas, I think Kongo plays it safe and grounds Hunt as often as possible. I am going for Mark Hunt, I love the guy, but I am picking Kongo by decision.
The submissions and finishing instinct of Lauzon vs the dynamic nature Pettis, should be a guaranteed fun fight! I think Pettis might just have the ground game to avoid being submitted, and should have the advantage striking. Then again, we saw what happened to Melvin Guillard, but this could have been more a Guillard thing, than a Lauzon thing.. who knows. I am hoping Lauzon pulls out the win, but I'm picking Pettis by decision or maybe even a TKO if he links some strikes together.
I'm an Aussie and am hoping G-Sot can get back to winning, although maybe Tak will throw a fastball for the Japanese home crowd right into George's jaw.. which would be saddening for me. George has the submissions to pull this off, if not the chin or wrestling.. if it gets to the ground, I think he can take it. Gomi should be pumped to fight in Saitama again.. hard for me to pick.. want George to win, so I'm picking George.. by decision or submission, as Gomi looked pretty ‘average' against Nate Diaz.
I reckon Hatsu got lucky in his first UFC outing against George Roop, considering the hype behind him I thought he should handle Roop easily, which was not at all the case. It could have been Octagon jitters, first outing and all, but he would want to move past this phase as Bart's hands are heavy and could probably KO Hatsu if he is not up to speed. I have a feeling Bart can KO Hioki here, but I think in front of the Japanese crowd Hioki should get it together and show us the form he has built his name on. Hatsu, by decision or submission.
Phew, so there it is - for those who made the lengthy and possibly painful journey, thanks again, for those whose eyes began to profusely piss blood I would like to extend my humble apologies and state with great indifference that maybe such reactions are not entirely natural, even if understandable.
Honorable mentions: Frank Mir vs Big Nog & Tito vs Little Nog.
Which fight are you looking forward to the most?
Michael Bisping vs. Jason Miller (7 votes)
Jon Jones (c) vs. Lyoto Machida (47 votes)
Brock Lesnar vs. Alistair Overeem (109 votes)
Nate Diaz vs. Donald Cerrone (14 votes)
José Aldo (c) vs. Chad Mendes (4 votes)
Chael Sonnen vs Mark Munoz (5 votes)
Vitor Belfort vs. Anthony Johnson (4 votes)
Melvin Guillard vs Jim Miller (5 votes)
GSP vs Nick Diaz (119 votes)
Carlos Condit vs. Josh Koscheck (4 votes)
Diego Sanchez vs Jake Ellenberger (3 votes)
Frankie Edgar (c) vs. Benson Henderson (32 votes)
Quinton Jackson vs Ryan Bader (2 votes)
Mark Hunt vs. Cheick Kongo (6 votes)
Anthony Pettis vs. Joe Lauzon (1 vote)
Gilbert Melendez vs Jorge Masvidal (1 vote)
363 total votes