Friday, May 24, 2013

UFC 160 Preview!

The UFC is back in action this Saturday night with UFC 160 featuring a Heavyweight Title fight in the main event!  Let’s take a look at the five main card matches!

Lightweight Fight
Donald “The Cowboy” Cerrone vs. KJ “King” Noons

Cerrone is 19-5 overall and is 6-2 in the UFC, though he is coming off a TKO loss to Anthony Pettis at UFC on Fox 6 back in January.  Noons makes his UFC debut, and is 11-6 overall, but has lost 4 of his last 5 fights including his last loss, a controversial split decision loss to Ryan Couture at the final Strikeforce show in January of this year.  Noons is a boxer, and Cerrone is known for his striking too, so this should be a barnburner!  Cerrone is the betting favorite here and I think he’ll strike for a while and then put it on the ground where I do think he’s superior to Noons.  Cerrone by Decision is my pick here, early candidate for Fight of the Night though if things go the right way!

Lightweight Fight
Gray “The Bully” Maynard vs. T.J. Grant

Maynard comes in at 11-1-1 overall and 9-1-1 (with 1 No Contest) in the UFC.  He is coming off a split decision win over Clay Guida last June  Grant is 20-5 overall and 7-3 in the UFC and is riding a four fight winning streak with his latest win being a 1st round TKO of Matt Wiman back in January of this year.  Maynard is a wrestler, but Grant is a submission specialist, so being on the ground may not work to Maynard’s strength in this matchup the way it has in the past.  The oddsmakers have Maynard as the favorite, but I’m going to call the upset on this one and say Grant just may get a submission victory.  If Maynard can keep it standing and striking though, I think he could have a slight advantage.  

Light Heavyweight Fight
Glover Teixeira vs. James Te Huna

Teixeira is a superstar in the making at 20-2 overall and 3-0 in the UFC.  His last win came over former Light Heavyweight Champion, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in January.  Te Huna is an injury replacement for Ryan Bader here.  Te Huna is 16-5 overall and 5-1 in the UFC with his last fight being a decision win over Ryan Jimmo.  Both of these guys are huge strikers and either guy can end it with one punch, but Teixeira has the edge on the ground in this fight without question in my eyes.  Teixeira is a favorite and he should be.  He shows off his BJJ skills and pulls off the submission win here, and just might be in line for a future Light Heavyweight Title shot with a win, depending on what Jon Jones does next (if that rumored Anderson Silva fight comes to fruition).  

Heavyweight Fight
Junior “Cigano” dos Santos vs. Mark “The Super Samoan” Hunt

dos Santos is of course the former UFC Heavyweight Champion, who comes in as a heavy favorite with his 15-2 record overall and 9-1 record in the UFC.  He is coming off a crushing decision loss to Cain Velasquez in December.  Hunt is only 9-7 overall, but is 4-1 in the UFC, riding a four fight win streak after an initial loss.  He is an injury replacement here for Alistair Overeem and this is easily his biggest fight of his career.  Both guys have KO power in their hands and I expect this to be a slugfest.  Hunt is susceptible to submissions, but I just can’t see it ending that way.  I think either guy has a punchers chance, but dos Santos is so devestating that I think he gets the KO in the 1st or 2nd round, likely setting up the rubber match with he and Velasquez (if Velasquez retains).  

Heavyweight Title Fight
Cain Velasquez vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva

Velasquez is the defending UFC Heavyweight Champion and comes in at 11-1, with a 9-1 UFC record, his only loss being the KO loss to dos Santos, which he avenged by destroying dos Santos in December.  SIlva got this shot after a shocking KO win over Alistair Overeem in February and comes in at 18-4, with a 2-1 record in the UFC.  His one loss though was a totally lopsided three and a half minute beat down by Velasquez last May.  One year later he gets a chance at the ultimate revenge by hoping to take the UFC Heavyweight Title.  Honestly, I just don’t see it.  While I agree he deserves the shot after the Overeem win, I don’t think there is a heavyweight on the planet not named dos Santos that has a shot right now against Velasquez.  The guys is just a beast of a wrestler and has bricks in his hands.  Velasquez wins this one in the first or second by beat down again and goes on to a big money match with dos Santos for the third time.  

So, there you have my picks and predictions, what do you think?  What are you most looking forward to on Saturday night!  Don’t forget there are three fights streaming on Facebook starting at 6:35pm ET, including former WEC champion, Brian Bowles.  Then more prelims on on FX at 8pm ET featuring a very intriguing matchup between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Abel Trujillo, and a welterweight clash between Mike Pyle and Rick Story.  Then the main card kicks off on PPV at 10pm ET!  Enjoy the fights!

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