UFC On Fox 3 Fight Card Primer: Alan Belcher Vs. Rousimar Palhares

Rousimar Palhares and Alan Belcher face off during the UFC on FOX 3 weigh-ins at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, N.J. on May 4, 2012. Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

In a Middleweight contest at UFC on Fox 3, it will be leglock master Rousimar Palhares (14-3; 7-2 UFC) facing Alan Belcher (17-6; 8-4 UFC). This is the second of four bouts on the Fox card. The USA TODAY / MMA Nation Consensus MMA Rankings, have Palhares as the #16 Middleweight in the world, and Belcher one spot below at #17. The Fox card begins Saturday, May 5 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT, with prelims starting at 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT on Fuel TV.

This is the kind of fight where you really know what to expect from each man. Palhares is known for his nasty leglock submissions. You can expect him to try and get Belcher down, grab a leg, and pull. But Belcher is a veteran who will look to use his experience to avoid Palhares's game. Which strategy will prevail in this Middleweight clash?

How do these two stack up?

Palhares: 32 years old | 5'8" | 71" reach
Belcher: 28 years old | 6'2" | 75" reach

What have these two done recently?

Palhares: W - Mike Massenzio (Sub) | W - Dan Miller (UD) | W - Dave Branch (Sub)
Belcher: W - Jason MacDonald (Sub) | W - Patrick Cote (Sub) | W - Wilson Gouveia (TKO)

How did these two get here?

Rousimar "Toquinho" Palhares has become quite a cult favorite among hardcore MMA fans, partly for his brutal submission skill, and partly for his wild behavior. With Palhares, there's always the chance for something just plain weird to happen, such as his premature celebration against Dan Miller, or his odd fight with Nate Marquardt. A student of former UFC champion Murilo Bustamante, Palhares is a throwback fighter in that he has one specific specialty - the leglock - but it's a specialty that he is incredibly skilled at using. In the UFC, he has used his submission skills to put together a strong 7-2 record, with his only losses coming against top contenders Marquardt and Dan Henderson. If he wins here, can a Toquinho #1 contender fight be far away?

Related: Palhares vs. Belcher In Depth Dissection

Alan "The Talent" Belcher is an 8 year veteran of the sport who made his UFC debut way back at UFC 62 in 2006. At one time, he was seen by some as a possible title contender to Anderson Silva, but injuries have really slowed his career lately. This is only his second fight in the past two years as he spent a lot of time sidelined with an eye injury. Just looking at Belcher's recent wins above, he seems like a fighter from a different era in the UFC - MacDonald, Cote, Gouveia... these are names that just don't seem to fit in the current UFC landscape. Of everyone on the main card, I would argue no one needs a win as badly as Belcher. A loss here will almost surely send him to a meaningless prelim where he'll be fighting for his job.

Why should you care?

For the crazy Toquinho factor, plain and simple. The guy is a total wild card - a reminder of the days when fights could end in brawls or weird No Contests or mangled limbs. You just never know what will happen when he fights, and that's a great feeling. Plus, you'll get to see Belcher's horrid Johnny Cash tattoo once again, and you know you've missed that.

More UFC on Fox 3 preview coverage from Bloody Elbow after the jump.

SBN coverage of UFC on Fox 3

UFC on Fox 3: Diaz Vs. Miller - Rousimar Palhares Vs. Alan Belcher Dissection - Dallas Winston

UFC On Fox 3 Weigh-In Video And Coverage - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3: The Grappling Tendencies Of Jim Miller And Nate Diaz - Ben Thapa

UFC On Fox 3 Staff Picks And Predictions - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3 Judo Chop: The Southpaw Striking Of Jim Miller - Fraser Coffeen

UFC On Fox 3: Diaz Vs. Miller - Pat Barry Vs. Lavar Johnson Dissection - Dallas Winston

UFC On Fox 3's Jim Miller: 'When I Get Hold Of Him, I'm Going To Be The Stronger Guy' - Steph Daniels

UFC On Fox 3 First Two Prelims Now On Facebook - Ben Thapa

UFC On Fox 3 Pre-Fight Press Conference Video - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3: Diaz Vs. Miller - Fuel TV Prelims Dissection - Dallas Winston

UFC On Fox 3: Danny Castillo Says He'd Rather Die Than Let His People Down - Steph Daniels

UFC On Fox 3: Full Card Betting Lines - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3 'Dark Matches' Dissection - Delorme Vs. Denis, Massenzio Vs. Vemola - Dallas Winston

UFC On Fox 3: Lack Of Star Power Will Test The UFC Brand - Fraser Coffeen

UFC On Fox 3: ESPN Will Not Show Event Live In UK - KJ Gould

UFC On Fox 3: Johny Hendricks Discusses Josh Koscheck, Koscheck Talks About Boxing - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3: Dana White Video Blog Number 2 - Tim Burke

UFC On Fox 3: Is Josh Koscheck Too Old To Beat Johny Hendricks? - Kid Nate

UFC On Fox 3: Dana White Video Blog Part 1 - Clowning On Faber - Tim Burke

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