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UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar staff picks and predictions

The Bloody Elbow staff makes their picks and predictions for the UFC 156 card.

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgar

Brent Brookhouse: Edgar has good boxing, Aldo has VERY good striking. Edgar has to work a wrestling game while also not getting hit, and not getting hit is something he isn’t very good at. Edgar is a legitimate top tier fighter but this just seems like a bad fight for him. Maybe Aldo is very rusty, or maybe I’m underestimating Edgar, but I think tendencies favor Aldo and I think he can do it early. Jose Aldo by TKO, round 1.

Tim Burke: Edgar’s speed advantage is gone. Aldo’s takedown defense is extremely good. Apparently Aldo has a cut over his eye that might get opened up, but I don’t have a lot of concern of his time out of the cage. Cage rust does affect some fighters for sure, but Aldo’s just too athletic to succumb to that in my eyes. Yes, Edgar is perennially undervalued. But I think there’s a solid case for Aldo finishing this fight, and that’s what I expect to see. Jose Aldo by TKO, round 2.

KJ Gould: Jose Aldo’s time off is the main concern for anyone who’s a fan of his or thinking about putting money down on him. He’s fortunate in a sense that an infection is easier to overcome than a knee ligament ailment that requires precise surgery to correct, but we have seen his stamina wane in his fight against Mark Hominick. Edgar is as durable as they come, and cardio has never been an issue. While on the countdown Aldo claimed Edgar would be coming in weaker because of the weight cut, I don’t buy that Edgar and his team would cut weight that badly. We have though, seen Aldo cut weight badly if the behind the scenes videos of him struggling are anything to go by, so I wonder if Aldo was projecting when he said that.

Edgar just doesn’t get the respect he deserves as a fighter, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he shocks the world again against a rusty Jose Aldo. I also fear the refereeing and judging may have more impact in this fight than it has any right to. Frankie Edgar by Decision / Jose Aldo by Mazzagatti early stoppage.

Mookie Alexander: If Aldo’s health wasn’t a question mark I’d pick him without hesitation. I’m still picking him to win, but with a little bit of doubt in my mind. Edgar is a great fighter and definitely the better wrestler, but I don’t think that the obvious flaws he has magically disappear by dropping 10 lbs. He is very hittable, and while he can take a hell of a shot, Gray Maynard hasn’t finished anyone in 6 years. Ben Henderson hasn’t recorded a finish in his last 6 fights. When Jose Aldo has you hurt, you’re practically doomed. Edgar’s best chance of winning the fight is essentially repeating his performance against BJ Penn (the rematch), because there is pretty much zero reason to believe he can finish Jose. Aldo is a younger, more dynamic fighter and a totally different style than Penn, and I see him turning on the jets in the middle of the 2nd round with a bevy of kicks and punches to send Edgar to his first career stoppage defeat. Jose Aldo by TKO (kick and punches), round 2.

Fraser Coffeen: Oh man, this fight. So very hard to call here. I wrote up a whole thing about why Edgar would win - he’s got the superior wrestling, he can take a shot and keep coming, and he’s skilled on the feet. And logically, I think he has every reason to win this. But at the end of the day, I just can’t envision it happening in my head. So I’ll go with Aldo outpointing him, though probably not to the point of stoppage, though I imagine I will second guess this pick right up until fight time. Jose Aldo by decision

T.P. Grant: To parrot Fraser, oh man this fight. So many points to go back and forth with. Edgar has strength, wrestling, decent enough boxing, and can take a punch. However questions abound, how will the cut effect his cardio and his speed? Ben Henderson showed that you can work leg kicks on him, Maynard showed he can be hit by a competent striker and Aldo is more than competent. And Jose Aldo isn’t without questions heading into this fight, how will he respond against a large, strong wrestler? How will he look after over a year away from fighting? How will his weight cut go, because Aldo has had bad cuts in the past and he sure as heck isn’t getting any smaller. I’ve gone back and forth on this fight, but in the end I feel Frankie Edgar struggles with guys when he can’t dictate the takedown game and while Aldo is actually a pretty good wrestler, so was B.J. Penn. I’ll take Edgar by a very slim margin. Frankie Edgar by Decision.

David Castillo: Like everyone else, I’m not sure how to assess this scrap. Aldo is not immune to looking lackluster, whereas Edgar always looks to be in stellar shape. He’s also been in with much better competition, and his strengths will benefit him here he’ll get Aldo to the ground. The problem here for Edgar is that Aldo is a beast in the scramble, and so long as he can successfully limp leg his way out of tight spots, he’ll land punches and get to Edgar over the course of five rounds. I think Aldo’s knees will be the difference here. Edgar needs to land often over 25 minutes. Aldo just needs to land one. The "five rounds favors the more dynamic fighter" principle is the difference in this one. Jose Aldo by Decision.

Chris Hall: T.P brought up a great point the other day about Aldo’s history of injuries. He’s yet to have a UFC fight scheduled that wasn’t moved due to injury. Chances are that eventually that will catch up to him, but I doubt that will happen tomorrow. Aldo is a terrible stylistic match Edgar. His devastating striking and takedown defense should allow him to succeed where Gray Maynard failed. Jose Aldo by TKO

Staff picking Aldo: Fraser, Mookie, David, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse
Staff picking Edgar: Grant, KJ, Stephie, Dallas

Rashad Evans vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira

Brent Brookhouse: Nogueira has had trouble with fighters much worse than Evans in the past. Evans can probably win this on the feet with relative ease and can probably just get takedowns and win it from the top with even more ease. Nogueira has some pop though and maybe he can catch him. Rashad Evans by decision.

Tim Burke: Seriously, how can Lil Nog win this fight? A knockout is the only somewhat-possible scenario, and that’s extremely unlikely. Rashad’s wrestling and sub defense are going to keep him out of any danger. A finish would be impressive, but I think we’re just going to see a pedestrian 15 minute light heavyweight fight. Rashad Evans by decision.

KJ Gould: It’s hard to see this go any other way than for Evans. Nogueira looked surprisingly crisp when he finally got into the UFC, but has consistently struggled against athletic wrestlers. Evans striking is good but his transitions between striking and takedowns are among the best in the game, and he’s experienced enough to not be troubled by Nogueira’s guard game. The question for me is, can Evans finish Nogueira, or will it go to a decision? Rashad Evans by decision.

Mookie Alexander: I really didn’t like this fight when it was booked, and I definitely fear it will be a lopsided but non-exciting 15 minutes. Rashad is still an elite LHW and he really only has to gameplan for Lil Nog’s left hook, and I think he’s improved enough as a striker not to get caught with that. He’ll probably score takedowns in all 3 rounds, display positional dominance, and land enough ground-and-pound to ensure he wins 30-27. I just hope that after this fight is over, Joe Silva can give Lil’ Nog nothing but strikers so he can finish his UFC career with fun fights. Rashad Evans by unanimous decision.

Fraser Coffeen: This pick reminds me of last week’s Rampage vs. Teixeira fight - I have no doubt who wins this, but the question is how? At this point in their careers, Evans is just flat out better than Nog in nearly every aspect. The one place Nog has an advantage is in the submission game, but Rashad is no dummy, and won’t let himself get drawn into that game. Evans does have the heavy duty KO in him, and he’s shown it at times, but against a Nogueira? Unlikely. Rashad Evans by decision

T.P. Grant: This one is pretty straight forward. Evans is going to win short of a miracle punch or submission by Nogueira. Evans losses to Machida and Jones came when he couldn’t control the distance of the fight and clinch when he wanted to, and I see nothing in the flat footed boxing of Slightly Smaller Nog that will give Evans that sort of trouble. Evans tends to get tired late in fights, but so does Nog, so I don’t see that being a huge issue for Evans. I think Evans reminds everyone that he does have some power and speed in his hands and lands a clean punch for the finish. Rashad Evans by TKO, Round 2.

David Castillo: I doubt Evans scores a finish, but Rashad takes this one comfortably. Diet-Nog is too flat footed, and plodding to make Evans uncomfortable. Rashad will find his rhythm, landing punches, hitting double legs, and win the decision. Rashad Evans by Decision.

Chris Hall: The odds pretty much say everything about this on. Rashad is pushing being a 5:1 favorite over Lil Nog and with good reason. Aside from his victory over Tito, Nog just has not looked great in the UFC. On top of that, he’s coming in off an even longer layoff than Evans. That said, the Nogueira’s are known for their ability to absorb incredible beatings so he should see the final bell. Rashad Evans by Decision.

Staff picking Evans: Fraser, Grant, Mookie, KJ, David, Stephie, Chris, Tim, Dallas, Brookhouse
Staff picking Nogueira:

Alistair Overeem vs. Antonio Silva

Brent Brookhouse: This is what it is. Silva got a win over Browne and that’s enough to position him in this fight. Overeem SHOULD have to win a fight after his suspension rather than just be put into a title fight, and this is as safe of a legitimate fight as there is for him. Nothing wrong with the fight, but it’s pretty clear how this one goes. ...but wouldn’t it be crazy if we were all wrong? Alistair Overeem by TKO, round 1.

Tim Burke: Silva hits hard, but he’s totally outclassed on the feet here. Overeem’s so much faster it’s not even funny. And if Silva tries to take it down, he probably gets his huge head stuck in a guillotine. All Reem, all the way. Alistair Overeem by TKO, round 1.

KJ Gould: This is a gift fight for Overeem. Nothing can convince me otherwise, and Silva is to be sacrificed so Overeem can show off his destructive capabilities and ‘earn’ his title shot. I don’t see Silva pulling off the upset, but should Overeem balls up his opportunity -- especially given his nonsense behaviour surrounding his drug testing and licensing for UFC fights thus far -- he’ll be one of the biggest busts UFC have ever had. Alistair Overeem by TKO.

Mookie Alexander: Silva is clearly a top 10 HW so I shouldn’t say he doesn’t have a chance in this one … but he doesn’t have a chance in this one. This fight is tailor-made for Overeem to look impressive against a credible opponent so he can get a title shot. Overeem busts Bigfoot up on the feet and finishes him with a knee to his leee-ver. Alistair Overeem by TKO, round 1.

Fraser Coffeen: I’m the first one writing my picks, so will be fascinated to see if there any arguments why this isn’t a Reem 1st round win. So, does he do it by strikes, or with his superb guillotine? We’ll go with the former, preferably by Ubereem knee of death. Alistair Overeem by KO, round 1

T.P Grant: Well Fraser wants to know how this isn’t a first round win for the Reem, and all I’ll say is he better win all of his UFC fights in the first round because even by MMA Heavyweight standards the Reem gasses hard. Silva has shown that guys who can stop his takedowns who also have hand speed and power are his bane, and that pretty much fits the bill in Overeem. But I don’t think Silva is a dead dog, Overeem gets hit and, historically speaking, doesn’t tend to like it. His boxing guard is rather porous, as Werdum was able to put hands on him with regularity and Silva has power. Reem should win, but a Silva punch or a successful takedown followed by some ground and pound could have the wheels come off the Reem train real quick. Alistair Overeem by TKO, Round 1.

David Castillo: I’ll be the skeptic and say that Overeem, minus the steady diet of horsemeat and banned substances, doesn’t kill Silva until the second round. Silva is too hittable (by design) to avoid one of Overeem’s right hand, so he’s going down to be sure. Still, I can see how Silva would look like a dangerous opponent on paper, in retrospect should he win. He’s talented, and despite his KO/TKO losses, mostly durable; the kind of guy I’d pick to win going into the 3rd round against someone like Overeem. Not that it’s gonna happen this time. Alistair Overeem by TKO, round 2.

Chris Hall: We all knew what this was when the fight was originally announced. It’s a chance for the UFC to give Reem a respectable win before sending him on his way to a title fight. And that’s exactly what will happen here. Bigfoot’s chin won’t be able to handle the power striking from Overeem and he’ll get put down early. Alistair Overeem by KO, Round 1

Staff picking Overeem: Fraser, Grant, KJ, David, Mookie, Chris, Stephie, Tim, Dallas, Brookhouse
Staff picking Silva:

Jon Fitch vs. Demian Maia

Brent Brookhouse: Great matchmaking again here. Maia has two finishes in a row, but one was a fluke injury thing against Kim. So really he has a finish in his last fight, a badass neck crank of Rick Story. Still, before that it was eight fights in a row, dating back to 2009, since he got a finish. Fitch is not an easy guy to finish which means this almost certainly goes long and Maia does tend to fade against guys who fight like Fitch. I imagine Maia is going to get tired after one round and get beat up for the next two. Jon Fitch by decision.

Tim Burke: In case you didn’t know this, I LOVE THIS FIGHT. This is my main event. I’m so torn on how to pick it though. Fitch’s wrestling seems to be the thing that the fight hinges on, but Maia has the ability not not get laid on. His bout with Mark Munoz (a much bigger wrestler) was very close. And Fitch kinda scared me when he got stick in an Erick Silva RNC. I’m going to lean Fitch, but I honestly don’t care who wins. I just hope it’s awesome. Jon Fitch by decision.

KJ Gould: Probably the closest fight to call outside of the main event, but there’s the risk this becomes bad kickboxing if neither fighter can get it to the mat. Which for grappling purists would be bitterly disappointing. Or it could end up with Fitch Wall’n’Stalling if Maia can’t reverse him or get the best angle to pull guard from. I’ve just bummed myself out with this fight. Jon Fitch by decision.

Mookie Alexander: This fight is either going to be awesome grappling or absolutely terrible. There is no in-between. The key thing for me is cardio, which Fitch has plenty of. If Fitch gets Maia on the ground and starts "Fitching" early, Maia will get worn down and it will become increasingly difficult for him to even set up a submission attempt (likely off of his back). Fitch’s ground skills are fantastic, and add in his strength and cardio and I see Jon winning this one from bell-to-bell. Jon Fitch by 30-27 decision.

Fraser Coffeen: It’s an almost knee jerk reaction to pick Fitch by decision, and I’m doing it again here, but there’s a reason. I see Maia as a tough challenge, but I also don’t envision how he wins. Certainly not on the feet - a kickboxing Maia is a bad Maia. On the mat, Fitch won’t spend much time on his back, and while Maia will certainly threaten from the bottom, Fitch will avoid those attempts and punch Maia in the face in return. Fitch showed more aggression last time out, but even if he doesn’t, we know how fighters score fights where a wrestler is on top, and a submission guy is trying from his back. Jon Fitch by decision

T.P. Grant: Uggggh this fight. I’ve agonized over this pick for the better part of a week. Additionally I’m horrified we might get 15 minutes of these two boxing. Fitch has said he intends to grapple Maia and Maia has made grappling his A-game at welterweight, so I’m hopeful we see some masterful mat work. Maia is much better at takedowns than people give him credit for and at Welterweight Maia is one of the larger fighters in the division. The big thing is that Maia is not content to lay on his back and play for submissions, he actively works for sweeps and creates scrambles. If he sweeps Fitch or gets a dominant position on Fitch I think that very well may be all they wrote from the Purdue Boilermaker. But Fitch is no slouch on the ground, but there is also the question how often have we seen him on the ground against an elite grappler? Not really, unless you count a 2011 version of B.J. Penn. Cutting to the case, Fitch isn’t going to finish Maia. His game is going to be to control Maia for 15 minutes, which he might be able to do, but larger wrestlers like Sonnen and Munoz struggled mightily with that and it only takes one mistake, but this is what Fitch does and he does it very well. So I’m going to do the stupid thing and go with my heart instead of my head and take Maia. Demian Maia by Submission, Round 1.

David Castillo: I could be wrong, but I think this fight is pretty easy to call. Fitch is still a grinder on the feet, whereas Maia has cleaned up his boxing. I’m not praising Maia’s striking, since we all remember his head over heels loss to Marquardt, but Fitch should be more worried about Demian’s boxing than Demian about Fitch’s boxing, and if it goes to the ground, I know who I’m picking. Plus I doubt Fitch ever ends up in top control. Maia’s strength at WW is for real, and I think Fitch will find that out when he gets outmuscled everywhere the fight takes place. Just don’t expect this fight to be pretty. Demian Maia by Decision.

Chris Hall: Typically in a wrestler vs. BJJ specialist matchup I’d choose the wrestler. But Fitch isn’t just any wrestler and Maia isn’t just any BJJ fighter. Fitch’s takedowns and control are relentless, but he tends to leave openings for grapplers. If he gets caught in an RNC like he did against Silva, or a triangle like he did against Sanchez, I don’t see him getting loose regardless of his "black belt challenge". Demian Maia by Submission

Staff picking Fitch: Fraser, Mookie, KJ, Stephie, Tim, Brookhouse
Staff picking Maia: Grant, David, Chris, Dallas

Joseph Benavidez vs. Ian McCall

Brent Brookhouse: I want to pick McCall but I can’t bring myself to. Benavidez is a bad fight for him and McCall has all kinds of other distractions. I’m going with the guy who can win though being relentless. Joseph Benavidez by decision.

Tim Burke: I still think McCall is underrated. He can wrestle with Benavidez, and I really don’t think Joe B. can overwhelm him with speed. McCall’s bigger and stronger in my eyes, and I’m going off the rails and saying Uncle Creepy takes a super-close decision. Ian McCall by split decision.

KJ Gould: It seems unfair to dismiss McCall as formerly the best Flyweight in the world only because there was virtually no one of note in his division, but now the UFC has taken on board Flyweights and really good Bantamweights are dropping down, I think more people may come to this realisation. Benavidez has more big fight experience, and is as well rounded as they come, McCall is exciting and unorthodox but I don’t think has any tools that will particularly bother Benavidez. Benavidez also has legit fight stopping power, and all Alpha Male guys seem to work their guillotines like sharpened weapons. It could be a bad night for Uncle Creepy fans. Joseph Benavidez by TKO.

Mookie Alexander: Joe B will spam that fastball right hand and work his wrestling to get a dominant victory. I don’t like playing the "head games" card when making predictions, but that’s essentially what is preventing me from believing McCall can make this a closer fight. Joseph Benavidez by decision.

Fraser Coffeen: Another good fight - man this card is incredible. Benavidez is, at this point, the best fighter out of Team Alpha Male. He gave Johnson a go (as did McCall), but also has more big fight experience and more variety to his game. I would lean towards Benavidez no matter what, but recently, it’s seemed like McCall may not be in the best headspace for this one, which seals it for me. Joseph Benavidez by decision

T.P. Grant: This should be a fun fight. Flyweight is a tough division to pick fights in because so many of the top fighters have yet to meet and we have yet to see how their styles really match up. Both are fantastic fighters and have good wrestling, McCall with the size advantage and Benavidez with the speed. Coming from Team Alpha Male, Benavidez has that sweet front head lock series typical of fighters from that camp. I think Benavidez has the edge in technical wrestling and submissions, and on top of that we don’t know how in the game McCall is mentally right now. Joseph Benavidez by Submission, Round 3.

David Castillo: McCall is the type of fighter that can be easily frustrated, whereas Benavidez will keep moving forward. Expect Ian to take a round, but I don’t think he’ll be able to find his rhythm on the feet, despite being the technically better striker. My only problem with this fight is that it’s happening so soon. I’d much rather see Benavidez fight a Darrell Montague with McCall fighting some random Shooto veteran. Joseph Benavidez by Decision.

Staff picking Benavidez: Fraser, KJ, Mookie, Grant, David, Stephie, Chris, Brookhouse
Staff picking McCall: Tim

Evan Dunham vs. Gleison Tibau

Brent Brookhouse: Tibau: big. Dunham: better. Fight: good. Evan Dunham by decision.

Tim Burke: I love this fight too. Dunham’s loss to T.J. Grant surprised me, and made me think that I’m overrating him a bit. Tibau’s obviously huge, but Dunham has a speed advantage for sure. I’ve gone back and forth on this, and I’ve decided that I’m just going to pick the guy I’ll actually be rooting for. Evan Dunham by decision.

KJ Gould: Tibau is a solid mid-level gatekeeper in the Lightweight shark tank, and Dunham gets the opportunity to bounce back from his fight of the night decision loss to TJ Grant. Should Dunham lose to Tibau though, it’s hard to know what to do with him since it would appear he can only compete at a certain level. Given the mass Tibau carries around at Lightweight, Dunham should be able to push a pace that will wear out the Brazilian quickly, though he might not be able to do enough to get a finish. Evan Dunham by Decision.

Mookie Alexander: Dunham is going to outstrike him and work for takedowns late against a worn out Tibau. But I’m still just trying to wrap my head around Gleison Tibau being 29 years old. Dunham doesn’t look 31, and it feels like Tibau is 36. Evan Dunham by unanimous decision.

T.P. Grant: This one seems like a solid win for Dunham. Tibau is a massive Lightweight and Dunham is more that capable of taking him down. Once he is on the mat, I expect this one to be all Dunham. Evan Dunham by Decision.

David Castillo: Tibau is 29? Wow. Anyway. It’s always hard to judge a Tibau fight. On some days he actually knows what to do with his massive size advantage, and on other days, he’ll barely make it past a Kurt Pellegrino. Still, I can’t pick Dunham. I feel like he’s just gonna get taken down, and might even be stung on the feet. The kid has taken punishment over his last several fights, and I suspect Tibau catches him, despite his size never manifesting itself in KO’s. Call it a hunch I guess. Gleison Tibau by Decision.

Staff picking Dunham: Mookie, Grant, KJ, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse
Staff picking Tibau: Fraser, David, Stephie

Jay Hieron vs. Tyron Woodley

Brent Brookhouse: Sometimes I find myself too hung up on Woodley’s fight with Nathan Coy back in 2010, but that’s far enough in the past that I need to forget it. But I haven’t forgotten Hieron’s fight with Ben Askren. I think Hieron has a lot of the tools it takes to beat Woodley so I’m picking him. Jay Hieron by TKO, round 3.

Tim Burke: I’m going against the crowd here. I think Hieron can wrestle with Woodley, and he’s definitely got better standup. I’ve never been sold on Woodley and have picked against him in most of his fights, and the trend continues here. Hieron gets to his chin early and gets a finish. Jay Hieron by TKO, round 1.

KJ Gould: Woodley is younger and appears a better MMA wrestler than Jay Hieron. I don’t think Hieron can compete with the young lions of MMA any more, though he surprised people with how competitive he made his title fight with Ben Askren in Bellator over a year ago. Woodley is your more typical power wrestler than Askren’s funk wrestler, and I just seem him beating Hieron at every phase Hieron is typically good at other than Hieron’s boxing. I don’t think that will be enough to win this fight though. Tyron Woodley by Decision.

Mookie Alexander: I really really really hope this fight doesn’t turn out as boring as your typical Tyron Woodley win, but that’s pretty much how I see the outcome of this one. Tyron Woodley by unanimous decision.

T.P. Grant: I think Woodley is going to make a lot of MMA fans upset here, because I think he is gonna get the win here. I’m hoping to see a little more from Woodley offensively here, not because his fights are ungodly boring, but because it is a shame to see a talented fighter like Woodley regress skillswise. Hieron is a tough veteran, but I expect this to look something like his close loss to Ben Askren. Tyron Woodley by Decision.

David Castillo: While I think Marquardt’s aggression made him look more adventurous than usual, I do think Woodley is getting a little bit more comfortable with his hands. When he wants to, and decides to sit down on his punches, he can look relatively dangerous. I think with the UFC spotlight, and a favorable matchup, he’ll shock some people by being more aggressive than usual. Hieron hides his crackable chin well these days, however, so it still goes to a decision. Tyron Woodley by Decision.

Staff picking Hieron: Fraser, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse
Staff picking Woodley: Mookie, Grant, David, Stephie

Bobby Green vs. Jacob Volkmann

Brent Brookhouse: Takedowns, grinding, maybe a finish? probably not though. A dumb joke in the post-fight? Absolutely. Jacob Volkmann by decision.

Tim Burke: King of the Cage gets subbed by the guy nobody likes. Jacob Volkmann by submission, round 1.

KJ Gould: Jacob Volkmann will shock the world and get a submission. One day. He’s certainly learning from talented enough coaches to. Edit: He submitted Roller, yet it didn’t leave a lasting impression. That’s telling, since I typically like Greg Nelson fighters. Jacob Volkmann by … decision.

Mookie Alexander: KJ, Volkmann did just submit Shane Roller into retirement, so the upset already happened. Twice in a row in the UFC? That’d be miraculous.I just hope that when Volkmann wins he isn’t interviewed. Jacob Volkmann by decision.

T.P. Grant: This one seems pretty straight forward, Volkmann is going to wrestle Green into the ground. Jacob Volkmann by Decision.

Staff picking Green:
Staff picking Volkmann: Fraser, Mookie, Grant, KJ, David, Stephie, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse

Yves Edwards vs. Isaac Vallie-Flagg

Brent Brookhouse:Sometimes I watch Yves and I think "that dude is done." And then he shows up all classically violent against a Jeremy Stephens and I have to reassess. I don’t know that Vallie-Flagg can handle all of Yves’ tricks though. Yves Edwards by TKO, round 2.

Tim Burke: IVF is bigger than Edwards, but Yves is too crafty for him. Unlike everyone else though, I think he finishes the fight by submission this time. Yves Edwards by submission, round 1.

KJ Gould: Yves Edwards continues his career resurgence with another impressive stoppage. Yves Edwards by KO.

Mookie Alexander: I have lobbied to make it an SB Nation-wide rule that rooting against Yves Edwards should be a bannable offense. It has failed. Yves Edwards by KO, round 1.

Fraser Coffeen: Yves Edwards rules. That is all. Yves Edwards by KO, round 1

Staff picking Edwards: Fraser, Mookie, KJ, Stephie, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse
Staff picking Vallie-Flagg:

Chico Camus vs. Dustin Kimura

Tim Burke: It’s too bad Steve Americana had to back out of this fight. Dustin Kimura by submission, round 1

Mookie Alexander: Chico Camus by decision.

Staff picking Camus: Fraser, Mookie, Stephie, Chris, Brookhouse
Staff picking Kimura: KJ, Tim

Edwin Figueroa vs. Francisco Rivera

Tim Burke: Someone’s getting knocked out. Figueroa can take a hell of a beating, but Rivera hits really hard. I’ve gotta go with Cisco. Francisco Rivera by TKO, round 2

Mookie Alexander: Haven’t been remotely impressed with Figueroa in either of his wins, and somehow impressed with his loss to Michael McDonald. Rivera’s striking revolves around his right hand, he’s got stinging power, and I think he sends Figueroa to sleep. Francisco Rivera by KO (punches), round 2.

Staff picking Figueroa: Fraser, KJ
Staff picking Rivera: Mookie, Stephie, Chris, Tim, Brookhouse

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