It is a tradition of sorts amongst hack writers looking for material to ring in the New Year with a list of predictions for the next 12 months. Buttressed by my string of success in fight prognostication (having successfully picked every UFC and Strikeforce card main event since UFC 136) I've decided to go big or go home, with five Nostrodamus-like predictions for 2012:
Anderson Silva will lose to a Team Quest fighter who undergoes Testerone Replacement Therapy
Anderson Silva is perhaps the best fighter in the short history of mixed martial arts and during his career he has definitely been better than potential opponents Chael Sonnen or Dan Henderson. He will also be 37-years of age and coming off of surgery if he faces either of them next year. Throw in the fact that the only chink in his armor to ever be demonstrated in the UFC was against wrestlers, specifically the wrestling of Sonnen and Henderson, two fighters that have been on a tear while Silva has been recuperating and I can't help but feel sorry for the security responsible for restraining the sure-to-be angry Manaus crowds.
Ceasar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu will hold at least one UFC belt at the end of 2012
The Gracie team has got just too much talent and will have too many opportunities this year for it not to happen. With Nick Diaz posed for an interim title fight next month, Gilbert Melendez holding the Strikeforce belt and waiting to be brought over to the UFC, and Nate Diaz now moving into title contention the odds are definitely in Ceasar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu's favor.
Needless to say George St-Pierre will not be the champ come January 1st 2013
If there is one thing this past year has shown us it is how big an impact injury and layoff plays on performace. Brock Lesnar, Cain Velasquez, Shogun Rua. All of them came back after surgery and long layoffs. All of them got destroyed. There is a reason Freddie Roach thinks St-Pierre should get a tune-up fight first: he knows how difficult it will be for GSP to come back anywhere close to what he was after an ACL tear and knee surgery.