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Sunday, December 13, 2009

5 for 5 on UFC 107 Picks (Penn vs. Sanchez)

Congratulations to all of you who purchased our last picks for UFC 107 where our star UFC Predictor nailed every fight and went 5-5 on all the outcomes of the fights. The only thing we didn't nail 100% was the way the fight was won.
Below is the write-up and descriptions on the predictions and fights from the most recent MMA fight that we predicted.
UFC 107 Penn vs Sanchez predictions:


BJ Penn vs Diego Sanchez



This match’s deciding factor will be BJ Penn’s cardio. With the exception of his previous fight against Kenny Florian, his cardio has withered within the first three rounds. This is his only problem against Sanchez, who is a cardio machine. As far is everything else is concerned, Penn is slightly better than Sanchez at everything. Better striking, heavier hands, and better jiu-jitsu. Sanchez’s keys to victory are to try and push BJ against the fence, and much like St.Pierre did, allow the blood to flow into his shoulders, taking away his jab. After three rounds of doing this, Sanchez can outbox Penn and earn the victory. Penn’s keys to victory are to make sure his cardio is up to par, and to circle around the uber-aggressive Sanchez, outboxing him. If it goes to the ground, Penn can take Sanchez’s back and sink in his nasty rear naked choke. I think Penn will be up to par as cardio is concerned, and will be able to outwork and outsmart Sanchez. Look for Penn to take the Unanimous Decision.


Frank Mir vs Cheick Kongo


Although the odds for this fight have yet to be posted, it would make sense for Mir to be the favorite. This would make sense if Mir were consistent. A master strategist, his ego often gets in the way of his should have been-could have been victories. If the Frank Mir that beat Nog comes in against Kongo, he will find a way to get Kongo to the ground and use his top notch jiu-jitsu to submit him. The problem with this is that Mir isn’t a wrestler, and usually changes levels and lets his opponent fall on top of him. Kongo, having the superior standup and virtually no ground game, will not fall into this trap. Kongo is also the bigger man, and can use his reach to wreck havoc on Mir’s face. Mir would need to find a way to take down Kongo to win this fight, and Frank Mir is not quick or explosive enough to take down Kongo. Kongo will need to use his reach and standup to throw combos at a distance, and wear out Mir, as Mir’s cardio is below par. As the fight goes to the beginning of the third round Mir will be too tired and slippery to employ his jiu-jitsu. Kongo will then be able to pepper Mir and take him down without worry of being submitted. The thing to remember here is that Mir wins the fights he isn’t supposed to win, and loses the fights that he is. Mir should win here, and is supposed to win, but this decision is based on a pattern, and the knowledge that at least one fight during the night will be an upset. Mir will take the fight by tko in the beginning by the second round.


Kenny Florian vs Clay Guida


One thing we all know about this bout will that it will be entertaining. My guess is that it will get fight of the night. Both of these fighters are super-aggressive, and know how to play to their strengths. Guida’s strength is undoubtedly his aggression, his cardio, and his wrestling. Guida, in order in win this bout, will need to quickly push Florian against the fence and wear on him. In the late second and third round he will need to take down the potentially weathered Florian and smother him. Florian’s strengths are his diverse and unpredictable movements, accurate striking, and superior guard work. Florian needs to confuse Guida on the feet and peck away, much like in his fight with Roger Huerta. This fight has decision written all over it, unless of course Florian has the same fire that we saw in his fight with Joe Stevenson. Look for Florian to earn a 29-28 unanimous decision.


on Fitch vs Mike Pierce


Why Jon Fitch keeps fighting mid tier fighters when he is clearly a top contender is really quite simple. The only other people left for him to fight in the division are currently in his same training camp. In the future, possible bouts with Anthony Johnson, Paul Daley, and perhaps Martin Kampmann loom, but for now, Mike Pierce will get the Jon Fitch treatment. For anyone betting, this is the easy money pick of the night. Fitch always wins (except against people named GSP), and always wins by decision. This will be no different. Fitch by unanimous decision.


Paul Buentello vs Stefan Struve


After a long hiatus from the UFC, Buentello returns to fight the relatively new up and comer Stefan Struve. This, much like the Mir vs Kongo fight, is a matchup of contrasting styles. Buentello’s striking squares off against Struve’s submissions. Buentello has only lost one fight in the UFC, and that was to then-champion Andrei Arlovski. Times have changed since then, and so has the skill level of the UFC’s stock. This is an either or pick but Buentello’s UFC rust, not to mention lack of reach puts the odds slightly in Struve’s favor. Logic states that you can pick either. I am choosing Struve by triangle in the second round.

Catch all of our next UFC fight Predictions for the next fight UFC 108: Evans vs. Silva live from Las Vegas on January 2nd 2010.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Free Picks for UFC 107 Penn vs. Sanchez

Courtesy of Stan Leung of: Fighting-MMA

Bet on UFC 107 at 5 Dimes

UFC 107: Penn vs Sanchez
December 12, 2009 7 GMT
B J Penn vs Diego Sanchez
UFC Betting Pick: BJ Penn (-270)


Lightweight Championship bout: BJ "The Prodigy" Penn (-270) vs. Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez (+230)

Without a doubt, BJ “The Prodigy” Penn (14-5) is the best 155 pound fighter in the world and there is scarcely anyone in this division that can touch him, however, Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez (25-2) is not your average 155 pound fighter.

It may be surprising to most that Sanchez has been chosen to beat Penn, but Penn has been known to have problems with larger fighters as well as guys who like to press the action. This, along with the +220 online sports betting odds, leads me to lay my money on the underdog in this fight.

Diego is a slightly better wrestler than Penn and he has better striking skills but the determining factor as to why he will be victorious is in the pace this fight will take. Sanchez has been known to push the fight and pressure his opponents whereas Penn, who likes to be in control, tends to lose his composure when his adversary dictates the pace. He has never been one to train very hard and if an opponent could pressure him early in the first couple of rounds he will tend to gas by round three.


Sanchez is always in good form and will pressure Penn from the start. He will push Penn with his aggressive pressure and confuse him with his strikes and kicks. By the end of the second round Penn will be exhausted trying to keep up with Sanchez. When Penn faced Matt Hughes at UFC 63: Hughes vs. Penn, he was dominating for a while, but by round three he was done and all Hughes needed to do was turn it up. In his last battle with George St Pierre, UFC 94: St Pierre vs. Penn 2, the pace of the fight threw Penn off his game and by round four he could not continue. If Sanchez can push the pace he will wear Penn out and take the fight in the latter rounds.

Penn is also known to have difficulties with fighters that are bigger and stronger than himself—he lost Hughes as well as to St Pierre, twice. In all three instances not only was the pace of the fight not of his choosing, he was also the smaller guy in the octagon. Sanchez is a big 155 pound fighter. He is normally a welterweight and could even fight at middleweight if he chose to do so. He will cut a lot of weight coming into this fight and even after this, he will be most likely be at 170 pounds on fight day--he will definitely be the much larger and more powerful fighter which will adversely affect Penn’s game.

When it comes to grappling one would think Penn is the better fighter and though he is, he is not as good as most people tend to believe. At seventeen years of age, he was introduced to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and eventually trained with with Ralph Gracie with whom he earned his purple belt. Soon after he moved to Nova União where in time, he was awarded his his black from Andre Pederneiras. A few weeks after obtaining his black belt Penn became the first non-Brazilian to win the black-belt division of the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. While most people need a decade or more to become a black belt, Penn was able to do it in three years. Penn is known for his jiu-jitsu but if one was to examine his record in MMA all his wins are by rear naked choke.

Sanchez however, is no slouch on the ground. His no gi game is very good and he has even competed at the ADCC 2005 Absolute Division championships. The Abu Dhabi is the most prestigious grappling tournament in the world—an event which Penn has yet to compete. Though Sanchez won his first fight, he lost his second to Marcelo Garcia who is considered to be one of the best grapplers in the world and despite never using a gi in grappling previously, Sanchez had a very tight grappling game. In 2005, Sanchez wrestled for his high school in New Mexico before beginning his MMA training at Jackson's Submission Fighting with Greg Jackson who is considered to be amongst the best MMA trainers in the world.

Unlike most MMA fighters, Sanchez is constantly improving himself. He began his training with the gi with some the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighters in the world—Saulo and Xande Ribeiro. Though he started from the bottom of the class with a white belt, Sanchez was able to work his way up and obtain his black belt in two years—a testament to his character as not many MMA fighters would be willing to start where he did.

When it comes to striking, one would have to give Sanchez a slight edge as he has the reach and power advantage. He is the bigger fighter and can push off and jab his punches without Penn getting close enough to cause any damage. Technically Penn is the better striker with better fundamentals but he will be overwhelmed with the sheer amount of strikes being dished out by Sanchez and frustrated by his inability to get in close without getting hit.

Sanchez also has the advantage when it comes to kicking. He is a black belt in Gaidojutsu, a fighting system from Albuquerque, New Mexico developed by Greg Jackson and taught at his training facility. Though he is no longer with Jackson, Sanchez was able to learn the fundamentals of Gaidojutsu and apply them to MMA. Penn on the other hand has stated that he dislikes kicking and never kicks in a fight—though he likes to check kicks, he never throws them. If Sanchez can establish a kicking game he will be able to hurt Penn with upper and lower leg kicks.

Bottom Line: Diego Sanchez was a format member of the Greg Jackson team, who was in the corner of George St Pierre when he faced off against Penn. In all likelihood Sanchez will fight a similar game plan as St Pierre. Sanchez will be prepared for his meeting with Penn in the octagon and I believe he is set to shock many.

I like the fact that Sanchez is the bigger, stronger and more aggressive fighter. These are the three factors that Penn has had trouble with in the past. In terms of UFC sports betting, the +220 betting odds are perfect and I would lay a small amount on the money line for Diego to win this fight. I do not believe Diego has the power to knock out Penn or the grappling skill necessary to submit him, however, he does have the power and strength to win the stand up and get the take down points.


He also has the skill in top position to have an effective ground and pound. If he is gets into Penn’s guard Sanchez will do as St Pierre did, which is use his size and power to punish Penn and the Ribeiro’s have shown him how to fight effectively in the guard. If Sanchez stays in the top position he can control the ground game but if Penn is on to it, it will be game over, however, Penn will have a difficult time getting top position or taking Sanchez’s back as Sanchez is the bigger, stronger fighter.

I do not believe Sanchez has the skills to take Penn but he does have the stamina and power to hurt him and bring this fight late into the round. By the forth Penn will be gassed and Sanchez will be able to take over. The best bet is a UFC prop bet for Sanchez to win by decision. Sanchez will hurt and confuse Penn with his strikes and kicks and Penn will not be able to close the distance of his smaller stature. In facing Sanchez Penn has a lot to look out for such as strikes, kicks, takedowns and the ground and pound while Sanchez only has to worry about not giving up his back or being on the bottom.

Look for Diego Sanchez to be the New UFC Lightweight Champion with a Split Decision

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Finale Results, Bonuses, and payouts

The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale took place on December 5, 2009 at the Pearl located at the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. This main bout is preceded by UFC 106 Tito Ortiz vs. Forest Griffin and succeeded by UFC 107 Penn vs. Sanchez.

The total attendance of the event was 1,400 people and it was broadcasted live on Spike TV.

Below are the final results of the Main Card, Bonus awards, and Overall Payouts.

Heavyweight Bouts:
Roy Nelson vs. Brandon Schaub
Result: Roy nelson delivered a knockout punch at three minutes and twenty five seconds into round one.*This crowned Nelson as the winner of the Ultimate Fighter

Marcus Jones vs. Matt Mitrione
Result: Mitrione defeats Jones via Knockout punch in the second round with 4:50 left.

Light Heavyweight Bout:
Matt Hamill vs. Jon Jones
Result: In an odd turn of events that ended up with a very bloody nose for the winner; Matt Hamill who ends up defeating Jon Jones via a disqualification at the end of the first round.

Lightweight Bout:
Frank Edgar vs. Matt Veach
Result: With a rear naked choke hold Matt Veach succumbs to a defeat frommm Frank Egard with 2:38 left in the 2nd round.

Catchweight
(Which is a weightclass between two recognized weight classes mutually agreed-upon by the two competitors. This is also called open weight and is practiced in all sports that deal with a weigh in. Just in case you were wondering.)
Kimbo Slice vs. Houston Alexander
Result: In the most anticipated fight of the night Kimbo Slice defeats Alexander by unanimous decision. The official totals are as follows: Round 1:29-28, Round 2: 29-28, Round 3: 30-27

According to the Nevada State Athletic Commission the following payouts are as follows in payouts from high to low:

Frankie Edgar: $46,000 ($23,000 win bonus) def. Matt Veach: $5,000

Matt Hamill: $46,000 ($23,000 win bonus) def. Jon Jones: $20,000

Brian Stann: $30,000 ($15,000 win bonus) def. Rodney Wallace: $6,000

Mark Bocek: $30,000 (15,000 win bonus) def. Joe Brammer: $5,000

Kimbo Slice: $25,000 (no win bonus) def. Houston Alexander: $13,000

Roy Nelson: $16,000 ($8,000 win bonus) def. Brendan Schaub: $8,000

Matt Mitrione: $16,000 ($8,000 win bonus) def. Marcus Jones: $8,000

James McSweeney: $16,000 ($8,000 win bonus) def. Darrill Schoonover: $8,000

Jon Madsen: $16,000 ($8,000 win bonus) def. Justin Wren: $8,000

John Howard: $14,000 ($7,000 win bonus) def. Dennis Hallman: $15,000

The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale Predictions

The Ultimate Fighter Finale Predictions

Roy Nelson vs Brendan Schaub

Roy Nelson has all the experience to take this fight. The problem is his attitude, which is where Brendan Schaub will have the advantage. Beating Roy Nelson would not only give Brendan Schaub a name but make him a fresh face in the growing but still green heavyweight division. Roy Nelson, as per his shape, is prone to gassing. Look for Brendan Schaub to make the most of his opportunity, but end up falling short to Nelson as he will score either a third round tko or decision.

Matt Hamill vs Jon Jones

This is a huge fight, not only for the fighters, but for the fans. Two well known competitors will put on a show for us to determine possible contendership status in the vicious light heavyweight division. Both fighters have had cardio problems in the past, and both are well accomplished NCAA wrestling champions. The main difference in this fight will be the striking. Although his striking has improved, Matt Hamill is simply not on the same level as Jon Jones. Jones should make another razzle dazzle display for us, catching Matt late in the first or second round for a tko.

Kimbo Slice vs Houston Alexander

Any true fight fan knows how exciting this fight will be. It will certainly be better than Kimbo's 10 seconds of fame in the past. Houston and Kimbo will simply throw bombs until one of them drops. This fight really could be a coin toss, as neither men have a great chin, yet each displays brutal punching power. In my opinion, Houston has more experience, more power, and most importantly, more to lose in this fight and thus he will. Houston, therefore, will be crowned a shame as Kimbo tags him for the win.

Below are how are predicitons played out for the most recent Ultimate Fighter Finale:

Frank Edgar vs Matt Veach

I have absolutely no idea why the well known and possible competitor Frankie Edgar is fighting a virtual nobody in Matt Veach. I mean no disrespect to Veach, but Edgar has nothing to gain by fighting the little known Veach. Frankie Edgar should be fighting higher end competition, and he will prove why after this bout. Frankie Edgar will simply outwork Veach en route to a lopsided decision.

Marcus Jones vs Matt Mitrione

Marcus Jones and Matt Mitrione have personally garnered no interest for me, however, as we all know, the lesser known fighters many times put on the more exciting fights. This fight is no exception. The only difference here is experience, which Jones favors. Mitrione will use his reach to pressure Jones and put him away via ko in the first or second round.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

UFC 107 Odds FedEx Forum - Memphis, Tennessee

U.F.C.

UFC 107

Fight Lines

Sat, Dec 05, 2009 EST
Live Odds
11:45PM

801 BJ Penn
802 Diego Sanchez
Lightweight 5 rounds - FedEXForum - Memphis, Tennessee

10:00 PM

803 Kenny Florian
804 Clay Guida
Lightweight 3 rounds - FedEXForum - Memphis, Tennessee

10:00 PM

805 Frank Mir
806 Cheick Kongo

Saturday, November 28, 2009

UFC Insider The Injuries are Spreading Lesner Style

UFC Insider - The Injury Bug has Hit Hard

by Tim Furious

Nothing has encapsulated the UFC lately than the rash of injuries plaguing its champions. Most notably stands Brock Lesnar, who was treated at the Mayo Clinic for surgery to cure a bizarre intestinal infection that caused him to miss both scheduled fights against the number-one contender, Shane Carwin.

Nothing could stop Brock Lesnar as he romped and rolled through the heavyweight division, but the irony of losing Lesnar to a the tiniest, viral bacteria is not lost on the UFC and Dana White.

White has responded by booking Cain Velasquez against Carwin in a fight that was supposed to happen at UFC 104, before Carwin was inserted to fight Brock Lesnar. It will be a true number-one contender’s match right now, but we don’t know if even Brock will be ready when the time comes to defend his championship. The creative fight planning didn’t stop at the heavyweight division for White as he has two other champions on the shelf.

Since demolishing Thiago Alves by unanimous decision in July 2009, St. Pierre has been absent from action due to a groin injury he sustained during the fight. It’s becoming a sad story in the welterweight division as nobody has looked like they can even touch the man deemed as the best “pound for pound” fighter in the world. Britain’s Dan Hardy earned a shot to face St. Pierre at a later date by dispatching of Mike Swick at UFC 106 picks, but Hardy’s shot at the title won’t come until UFC 111 in March 2010 when St. Pierre will be healthy enough to feet. One has to wonder if it even matters because St. Pierre could likely hand Hardy a defeat with one hand tied behind his back anyways.

Another champ that’s been missing in action since this summer is Anderson Silva, who was last seen breaking Forrest Griffin’s iron will at UFC 101: Declaration after he spent a few weeks beefing up to the 205-pound mark to compete in a light heavyweight fight. That gave strong fuel to the notion that Silva would fight current light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, but Silva’s recent elbow injury is taking a curiously long time to heal.

That’s not the only thing getting away of the Machida-Silva dream fight from happening, because the light heavyweight champ is also licking his wounds after getting pushed to the limit by Mauricio Rua, at UFC 104. The Dragon has already accepted a rematch against Shogun, but you’ll have to wait until May 1st to see that title being defended.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

UFC 106 odds and picks preview

While the epic showdown between two of the most powerful heavyweights in the world in Shane Carwin and Brock Lesnar was unfortunately cancelled, the UFC still has plenty of star power roll out for UFC 106, one of their flagship events of the year in Las Vegas.

While Tito Ortiz was originally scheduled to make his return to the Octagon against Mark Coleman, Coleman was forced to drop out and now he will get what could be an even better matchup in a rematch against Forrest Griffin, one of the most popular fighters the UFC has to offer.

What makes this matchup compelling in many fans’ minds is simply to see how Griffin responds after being embarrassed against Anderson Silva and then running out of the Octagon back to the solitude of the locker room as if he couldn’t bear to face his fans after the TKO loss.

How Griffin rebounds mentally could go a long way in determining whether or not the favorite Griffin, who boasts -165 odds to Ortiz’s +135, can take care of business at UFC 106.

The co-main event promises perhaps more fireworks than the main event as wrestlers and knockout artists collide. Anthony Johnson is ready for the biggest test of his career against Josh Koscheck in a fight that could easily go either way but should end with one of the two laying face down on the mat.

Ultimate Fighter Season 8 winner Amir Sadollah will get a chance to bounce back from his controversial loss to Johny Hendricks in his first fight when he takes on “The Best Eva!” Phil Baroni, one of the cockiest fighters in UFC history. Baroni is an excellent boxer and a strong guy but his lack of a ground game has him as the underdog going in at +145 odds to -175 to Sadollah, the favorite.

Another intriguing matchup at UFC 106 has Marcus Davis, a top-notch boxer, going up against the lanky muay thai/submission fighter Ben Saunders in a welterweight bout.

Perhaps an even better welterweight bout will also take place on the main card as Karo Parisyan returns from a suspension due to testing positive for a banned painkiller to take on crafty submission wizard Dustin Hazelett. This could be fight of the night, if Parisyan, the slight underdog at -110 to -120 for Hazelett, can stay out of one of his submissions.

Finally, wrestling star and up-and-comer Jake Rosholt will take on Kendall Grove in a middleweight bout. Rosholt is a surprising -210 favorite to +165 for Grove despite Grove’s dangerous submission game. But Rosholt might be a good bet at UFC 106 because he has a big edge in terms of power and leverage on the spindly Grove.

Check out these odds and more on the BetUS.com Sportsbook as we get closer to one of the biggest MMA events of the year in one of the world’s fastest growing sports.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

UFC 105 Predictions Couture vs. Vera and UFC/MMA Fighter List and Rankings

UFC/MMA Heavyweight rankings:


1. Fedor Emelianenko (30-1, 1 NC)
Nickname
The Last Emperor, The Russian Military Experiment
Height
6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight
231 lb (105 kg)
Reach
74 in (190 cm)
Nationality
Russian
Born
September 28, 1976 (1976-09-28)
Fighting out of
Stary Oskol, Belgorod, Russia
Town of birth
Rubizhne, Luhansk, Ukrainian SSR
Team/Association
Red Devil Sport Club
Primary fighting style
Sambo, Judo

Emilianenko is a Russian heavyweight mixed martial arts fighter. He is the current World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts Heavyweight Champion and the last holder of the Pride Heavyweight Championship. Fedor was the main event on the Affliction's "Trilogy" on Aug. 1, but the event got canceled a short time after his opponent, Josh Barnett was tested positive for steroids. Now he is due to fight Brett Rogers in the main event at CBS/ STRIKEFORCE/ M-1 GLOBAL SATURDAY NIGHT FIGHTS on November 7th.

2. Brock Lesnar (4-1)
Height
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight
265 lb (120 kg)
Reach
81 in (210 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
July 12, 1977 (1977-07-12) (age 31)
Fighting out of
Minneapolis - Saint Paul, Minnesota
Town of birth
Webster, South Dakota
Team/Association
Minnesota Martial Arts Academy
Primary fighting style
Wrestling
Strengths
Size, wrestling ability, athleticism

Lesnar is an American mixed martial artist as well as a former professional and amateur wrestler. He is the current UFC Heavyweight Champion. He was better known as a World Wrestling Entertainment star and is the only fighter to have held a WWE and UFC title belt. Lesnar proved to be the undisputed UFC heavyweight king once again at UFC 100 by getting a TKO win over the only person who ever beat him in the UFC, Frank Mir.

3. Josh Barnett (24-5)
Nickname
The Babyfaced Assassin
Height
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight
255 lb (116 kg)
Reach
76 inches (190 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
November 10, 1977 (1977-11-10)
Town of birth
Seattle, Washington, United States
Team/Association
AMC Pankration/Combat Submission NJPW
Primary fighting style
Catch wrestling

Barnett is an American heavyweight mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter and a professional wrestler. Barnett was supossed to take on Fedor Emelianenko on Aug. 1 at Affliction "Trilogy" in a marquee heavyweight showdown but he was tested positive for steroids. Even though this is his 3rd drug test that he has failed, Josh said the results were due to a unfair drug test.

4. Frank Mir (12-4)
Height
6 ft 3 in (190 cm)
Weight
255 lb (115 kg)
Reach
79.0 in (201 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
May 24, 1979 (1979-05-24)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, Nevada
Town of birth
Las Vegas, Nevada
Team/Association
Striking Unlimited
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, Kenpo karate, Wrestling
Strengths
Great submissions, improved striking

Mir currently competes in the heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship where he was the UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion. Frank was sidelined in 2004 for almost 2 years after a serious motorcycle accident. He has since recovered and has wins over Antoni Hardonk and Brock Lesnar. His last match was a re-match agianst Brock Lesnar on July 11th at UFC 100. He lost by TKO 1:48 in the second round.Mir will get a chance to prove he still has what it takes in December at UFC 107 when he takes on the french fighter Cheick Kongo

5. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (31-5-1, 1 NC)
Nickname
Minotauro
Height
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight
241 lb (109 kg; 17.2 st)
Reach
77 in (200 cm)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
June 2, 1976 (1976-06-02)
Town of birth
Vitoria da Conquista, Brazil
Team/Association
Nogueira Team
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing, Judo

Nogueria is a Brazilian mixed martial artist known for his technical mastery of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He competes in the heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, where he is a former UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion. Whether the Couture bout will live up to the hype remains to be seen, but two of the sport's most enduring icons will square off at UFC 102 in August.


6. Brett Rogers (10-0)
Nickname
The Grim
Height
6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Weight
265 lb (120 kg; 18.9 st)
Reach
81 in (210 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
February 17, 1981 (1981-02-17)
Fighting out of
St. Paul, Minnesota
Town of birth
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Team/Association
Team Bison/Ambition MMA

Rogers is a professional heavyweight mixed martial arts fighter. He was picked up by Strikeforce along with the contracts of 41 other ProElite fighters. Few would have denied that his heavy hands gave him a chance against Andrei Arlovski, but Rogers took his opportunity and ran with it against the former UFC champion. It took Rogers just 22 seconds to put down the Belarusian, setting up an Nov. 7th date with Fedor Emelianenko for the CBS/ STRIKEFORCE/ M-1 GLOBAL SATURDAY NIGHT FIGHTS main event.

7. Andrei Arlovski (15-7)
Nickname
The Pitbull
Height
6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight
245 lb (111 kg; 17.5 st)
Reach
77 in (200 cm)
Nationality
Belarusian
Born
February 4, 1979 (1979-02-04)
Fighting out of
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Town of birth
Minsk, Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, USSR
Team/Association
Team Pitbull
Primary fighting style
Sambo, Boxing, Kickboxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Wrestling

Arlovski is a Belarusian mixed martial arts fighter and a former Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight champion. Despite having knocked off the likes of Fabricio Werdum, Ben Rothwell and Roy Nelson in the recent past, those accomplishments now seem like distant memories for Arlovski. "The Pitbull" has been brutally beated in his last two outings by Fedor Emelianenko and Brett Rogers, and conversation now centers on his inability to protect his glass jaw.

8. Junior dos Santos (9-1)
Nickname Cigano
Nationality Brazilian
Date of birth September 17, 1984 (1984-09-12)
Place of birth Salvador
Fighting out of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil
Height 6'4" (194cm)
Weight 238lbs (108kg)
Team Team Nogueira
Primary fighting style Boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

"Cigano" moved up the ranking by beating Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic at UFC 103 on Sept.19th. He is due to take on Gabriel Gonzaga, another fighter who beat “Cro Cop,” at UFC 108 on Jan. 2

9. Randy Couture (16-10)
Nickname
The Natural,
Captain America
Height
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight
220 lb (100 kg; 16 st)
Reach
75 in (190 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
June 22, 1963 (1963-06-22)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, Nevada
Town of birth
Everett, Washington
Team/Association
Xtreme Couture
Primary fighting style
Greco-Roman Wrestling

Couture is an American mixed martial artist, Greco-Roman wrestler, actor, former collegiate wrestler, and the former heavyweight champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. After losing to Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 102 he signed a 6 fight contract with the UFC. His next fight is against Brandon Vera at UFC 105.


10. Shane Carwin (11-0)
Nickname
The Engineer
Height
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight
259.5 lb (117.7 kg; 18.54 st)
Nationality
American
Born
January 4, 1975 (1975-01-04)
Town of birth
Greeley, Colorado
Team/Association
Jackson's Submission Fighting

Carwin is an American mixed martial arts fighter who competes in the heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Just when it looked as if he were on the ropes, Carwin folded Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 96. The victory gave the touted heavyweight prospect his 11th stoppage win in 11 fights.Carwin's next fight will be against none other than the UFC heavyweight champion, the infamous Brock Lesnar, for the title.

Light Heavyweight Champions:



1. Lyoto Machida (15-0)
Nickname
The Dragon
Height
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg)
Reach
74.0 in (188 cm)
Nationality
Japanese-Brazilian
Born
May 30, 1978 (1978-05-30)
Fighting out of
Belem, Brazil
Town of birth
Salvador, Brazil
Team/Association
Black House
Primary fighting style
Shotokan karate, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Sumo

Machida is a Japanese-Brazilian mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter who fights as a light heavyweight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and is the current UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. Fresh off his May 23 blowout of Rashad Evans, it was thought Machida would soon start preparing for a challenge from former light heavyweight top dog Quinton Jackson. However, with Jackson opting for a second coaching stint on "The Ultimate Fighter," Machida's first title defense will come October 24th against Mauricio "Shogun" Rua at UFC 104.

2. Quinton Jackson (30-7)
Nickname
Rampage
Height
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Reach
75 in (190 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
June 20, 1978 (1978-06-20)
Fighting out of
Irvine, California
Town of birth
Memphis, Tennessee
Team/Association
Wolfslair MMA Academy
Primary fighting style
Boxing, Wrestling

Jackson is an American professional mixed martial arts fighter who rose to prominence in Japan's Pride Fighting Championships. He was offered a title shot against Lyoto Machida, but he opted to settle his beef with Rashad Evans instead. The pair are coaching opposite each other in the 10th season of "The Ultimate Fighter." Quinton has expressed his desire to pursue his acting career and quite MMA.

3. Rashad Evans (13-1-1)
Nickname
Suga
Height
5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Reach
74.5 in (189 cm)
Born
September 25, 1979 (1979-09-25)
Fighting out of
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Town of birth
Niagara Falls, New York
Team/Association
Jackson's Submission Fighting
Primary fighting style
Boxing, Wrestling

Evans is an American mixed martial arts fighter from Lansing, MI currently signed to the Ultimate Fighting Championship where he is a former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. After his first and very brutal loss Evans is not taking it easy. "The Ultimate Fighter 2" winner will return to the show on which he first gained his rep, coaching against rival Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. The two light heavyweights were suppossed to meet up later this year but "Rampage" decided to chicken out and pursue his acting career. Evans is slated to appear at UFC 108 against Thiago Silva, this should be one of the best UFC matches of all time.

4. Mauricio Rua (18-3)
Nickname
Shogun
Height
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Reach
76.0 in (193 cm)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
November 25, 1981 (1981-11-25) (age 27)
Fighting out of
Curitiba, Brazil
Town of birth
Curitiba, Brazil
Team/Association
Universidade da luta
Primary fighting style
Muay Thai, Boxing, Jiu-Jitsu

Rua is a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter currently fighting as a light heavyweight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Following UFC 98, it looked as if "Shogun" was a fight or more away from challenging for the UFC title. Now, however, the consensus 2005 "Fighter of the Year" could have a chance to regain light heavyweight supremacy at UFC 104 in October against none other than the unbeatable "Dragon," Lyoto Machida.

5. Forrest Griffin (16-6)
Height
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Reach
77.0 in (196 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
July 1, 1979 (1979-07-01) (age 30)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, Nevada
Town of birth
Columbus, Ohio
Team/Association
Xtreme Couture
Primary fighting style
Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Griffen is an American mixed martial artist currently fighting in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. Coming off of a debilitating loss to Rashad Evans in December, most fighters would've looked for an easy fight. Griffin initially was tabbed to meet Brazilian Thiago Silva at UFC 101. That was before Griffin decided to sign up for bout with MMA's pound-for-pound king Anderson Silva on Aug. 8. We all know how that match ended, to put it simply, he lost in a big way. He will get the chance to redeem himself at UFC 106 when he rematches Tito Ortiz .

6. Thiago Silva (14-1)
Height
6' 1" (185 cm)
Weight
205 lbs. (93 kg)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
November 12, 1982 (age 26)
Fighting out of
São Paulo, Brazil
Team/Association
American Top Team
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, Boxing

Thiago Anderson Ramos da Silva is a professional mixed martial arts fighter and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt who currently competes in the light heavyweight division for the Ultimate Fighting Championships.With only one loss (to Lyoto Machida), Silva looks to build momentum by beating Rashad "Suga" Evans in what is to be a huge bout at UFC 108.

7. Gegard Mousasi (26-2-1)
Nickname
The Dreamcatcher
Height
6'1" (186cm)
Weight
185lbs (84kg)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
August 1st, 1985 (1985-08-01)
Fighting out of
Leiden, Netherlands
Born in
Iran
Team/Association
Red Devil International
Primary fighting style
Kickboxing

Gegard Mousasi is a professional Armenian mixed martial artist and kickboxer. He is the former Dream Middleweight Champion, Cage Warriors Middleweight Champion and the current Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion. He is one of the most youngest, promising fighters out there today and already has an astounding record. He is up to fight Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou in a none title match on the main card of Strikeforce “Fedor vs. Rogers” on Nov. 7th.

8. Luis Arthur Cane (10-1)
Nickname
Banha
Height
6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight
205 lb (93 kg)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
April 24, 1981 (1981-04-24) (age 28)
Town of birth
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Team/Association
Gibi Thai
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai

Cane is a Brazilian mixed martial arts fighter. He competes in the Light Heavyweight division in the UFC. "Banha" showed poise in winning a hard-fought unanimous decision in his April 18 bout with former WEC champion Steve Cantwell. It should be onward and upward for the hot prospect in the 205-pound division.He will be matched up against fellow Brazilian Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in his next fight at UFC 106 on Nov. 21.


9. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (17-3)
Nickname
Minotouro
Little Nog
Height
1,88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Weight
205 lbs
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
June 2, 1976 (1976-06-02) (age 33)
Town of birth
Vitoria da Conquista, Brazil
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Boxing

Nogueira is a professional mixed martial arts fighter from Brazil and fought for Affliction. He is the twin of Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. It took Nogueira seven years and 20 fights to finally have a bout in his native Brazil. Fortunately, he made it a show for Fortaleza fans, as he took out Dutchman Dion Staring with a triangle choke on May 9. He is slated to make his UFC debut against fellow Brazilian Luis Arthur Cane at UFC 106 on Nov. 21st.

10. Rich Franklin (25-5)
Nickname
Ace
Height
6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight
194 lb (88 kg)
Nationality
American
Born
October 5, 1974
Fighting out of
Seattle, Washington
Town of birth
Cincinnati, Ohio
Team/Association
Team Extreme/AMC Pankration
Primary fighting style
Freestyle Fighting

Franklin is a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter and former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight champion. Franklin felt he was cheated in his split decision loss to Dan Henderson in January. At UFC 99, "Ace" got back into the win column with his unanimous decision over Wanderlei Silva, putting the former UFC middleweight champion's light heavyweight hopes back on track...or so we thought. Rich got KO'ed by Vitor Belfort in the first round in the UFC 103 headliner, he apparantly did not have an ace up his sleeve.


Middleweight Rankings:



1. Anderson Silva (24-4)
Nickname
The Spider
Height
6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st)
Reach
77.6 in (197 cm)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
April 14, 1975 (1975-04-14
Fighting out of
Curitiba, Brazil
Town of birth
Curitiba, Brazil
Team/Association
Minotauro Team/Black House
Primary fighting style
Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Silva is a Brazilian mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He is the current UFC Middleweight Champion. Drawing criticism for his below par April title defense against Thales Leites, Silva was clearly in need of an interesting challenge. Now Silva, who has taken out elite welterweights and middleweights in his career, will have the chance to put away an elite light heavyweight at UFC 101 on Aug. 8 when he meets Forrest Griffin.

2. Yushin Okami (23-4)
Nickname
Thunder, Phoenix
Height
6 ft 2 in
Weight
185lbs.
Nationality
Japanese
Born
July 21, 1981 (1981-07-21)
Fighting out of
Kanagawa, Japan
Town of birth
Kanagawa, Japan
Team/Association
Wajyutsu Keisyukai
Primary fighting style
Wrestling, Kickboxing, Judo

Okami is a Japanese mixed martial arts fighter and fights at middleweight for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Okami tweaked his knee while training for a May bout with Dan Miller but will still get a chance to face strong middleweight opposition in his next outing. Japan's top 185-pounder will likely meet former UFC title challenger Patrick Cote at UFC 103 in September.

3. Nate Marquardt (28-8-2)
Nickname
The Great
Height
6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st)
Reach
74 in (190 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
April 20, 1979 (1979-04-20)
Fighting out of
Denver, Colorado
Town of birth
Lander, Wyoming
Team/Association
Jackson's Submission Fighting
Primary fighting style
Gaidojutsu

Marquardt is an American mixed martial artist. He is a 7-time middleweight King of Pancrase Champion, and currently fights in the middleweight division for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. He wants to rematch divisional top dog Anderson Silva, who beat him in July 2007. In order to get another shot at "The Spider" and the UFC middleweight title, Marquardt will need to take out his biggest challenge since his bout with Silva, undefeated Brazilian jiu-jitsu king Demian Maia at UFC 102 on Aug. 29.

4. Dan Henderson (25-7)
Nickname
Hendo, Hollywood
Height
5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st) to 205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Reach
74 in (190 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
August 24, 1970 (1970-08-24)
Fighting out of
Temecula, California
Town of birth
Downey, California
Team/Association
Team Quest
Primary fighting style
Greco-Roman Wrestling, Boxing
Strengths
Mental attitude, wrestling, knockout power in both hands

Henderson is a former Olympic wrestler and current Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) mixed martial artist. Henderson earned a split decision over Rich Franklin at UFC 93 in Dublin, Ireland, on Jan. 17. The former two-division Pride Fighting Championships titleholder has earned a lengthy promotional vehicle coaching against Michael Bisping on the ninth season of "The Ultimate Fighter." The season's larger payoff was a marquee bout against Bisping at UFC 100 in July. Dan Henderson won by Knock Out at 3:20 in the 2nd round.

5. Demian Maia (10-0)
Height
6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st)
Reach
72.0 in (183 cm)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
November 6, 1977 (1977-11-06)
Fighting out of
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Town of birth
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Team/Association
Wand Fight Team
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Grappling, Judo

Maia is a professional mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He currently fights for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) organization. Few fighters, if any, have been as impressive as Maia over the last year. His road to a shot at the UFC middleweight title now runs through Nate Marquardt at UFC 102 on Aug. 29.

6. Jorge Santiago (21-7)
Height
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
1980
Fighting out of
Coconut Creek, Florida
Town of birth
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Team/Association
American Top Team
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai

Santiago is a Brazilian mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He trains with American Top Team based in Coconut Creek, Florida. He is the current Sengoku Middleweight Champion. He will fight either Kazuo Misaki or Kazuhiro Nakamura in the first defense of his Sengoku middleweight title later this year. Jorge was suppssed to fight fellow Brazilian Vitor Belfort on Aug. 1 at Affliction "Trilogy."

7. Thales Leites (14-2)
Height
6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight
185 lbs (84 kg)
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
September 6, 1981(1981-09-06)
Town of birth
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Team/Association
Nova Uniao
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Leites is a Brazilian mixed martial artist, currently fighting at middleweight for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. He is known for his technical mastery of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Wanting to erase the memories of his April title challenge against Anderson Silva, Leites has quickly accepted a bout with Italian striker Alessio Sakara at UFC 101 on Aug. 8.

8. Robbie Lawler (16-5, 1 NC)
Nickname
Ruthless
Height
5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight
185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st)
Nationality
American
Born
March 20, 1982 (1982-03-20) (age 27)
Fighting out of
Granite City, IL
Town of birth
San Diego, California
Team/Association
H.I.T. Squad
Primary fighting style
Freestyle

Lawler is an American mixed martial arts fighter. Lawler was the EliteXC middleweight champion before EliteXC filed for bankruptcy. Lawler has recently signed with Strikeforce. He appeared to be in control on the feet in his June 6 bout with Jake Shields. Then, in the blink of an eye, he was tapping out to a Shields guillotine choke.

9. Vitor Belfort (18-8)
Nickname
The Phenom
Height
6'0"
Weight
185lbs.
Nationality
Brazilian
Born
April 1, 1977 (1977-04-01)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, NV
Town of birth
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Team/Association
Xtreme Couture
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing

Belfort is a Brazilian mixed martial artist, who has fought both in Japan and the United States. The majority of his bouts have taken place in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and he is the former UFC light heavyweight champion. He is the current Cage Rage light heavyweight champion. His latest fight was supossed to be with Jorge Santiago, another top 10 middleweight at Affliction "Trilogy," but the event was cancelled.

10. Chael Sonnen (23-10-1)
Height
6 ft 1 in (185cm)
Weight
185 lbs (84kg)
Reach
74 in (190 cm)
Born
April 3, 1977 (1977-04-03)
Fighting out of
Portland, Oregon
Town of birth
West Linn, Oregon
Team/Association
Team Quest
Primary fighting style
Greco-Roman wrestling, Wrestling

Sonnen is an American mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He is currently signed as a middleweight with the UFC. He was a 2x National Champion, NCAA All-American, and he was a US. Olympic team alternate. His last victory was over Dan Miller at UFC 98.

Welterweight Rankings:



1. Georges St. Pierre (19-2)
Nickname Rush, GSP
Nationality Canadian
Date of birth May 19, 1981 (1981-05-19)
Place of birth Saint-Isidore, Quebec
Fighting out of Montreal, Quebec
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight 170 lb (77.1 kg; 12.1 st)
Reach 76 in (193 cm)
Style Kyokushin, Muay Thai, Boxing,
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Wrestling
Strengths
Athleticism, very well rounded
Team Jackson's Submission Fighting

St. Pierre often referred to as GSP, is a Canadian professional mixed martial artist. He is currently the Welterweight Champion of the UFC, and is ranked as one of the top "pound-for-pound" fighters by multiple MMA sources. Despite debate over the improper use of Vaseline by St. Pierre's cornermen, GSP tore thru B.J. Penn in their Jan. 31 superfight at UFC 94. He also beat Thiago Alves by Unanimous Decision at UFC 100 in the co-main event.

2. Jon Fitch (23-3, 1 NC)
Height
6 ft. 1 in. (183 cm)
Weight
170.5 lbs (77 kg)
Nationality
American
Born
February 24, 1978(1978-02-24)
Fighting out of
San Jose, California
Town of birth
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Team/Association
American Kickboxing Academy
Primary fighting style
Wrestling,Guerilla Jiu-Jitsu, Kickboxing, Muay Thai
Strengths
Wrestling

Fitch is an American professional mixed martial arts fighter in the UFC. He avenged his American Kickboxing Academy teammate Josh Koscheck by beating Paulo Thiago at UFC 100 on July 11th.


3. Thiago Alves (22-5)
Nickname
Pitbull
Height
5 ft 9 in (1.75m)
Weight
170 lbs (77 kg)
Reach
68 in
Nationality
Brazil
Born
October 3, 1983 (1983-10-03)
Fighting out of
Coconut Creek, Florida
Town of birth
Fortaleza, Brazil
Team/Association
American Top Team
Primary fighting style
Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Strengths
Striking and Jiu-Jitsu

Alves is a Brazilian professional mixed martial arts fighter in the UFC. His noted 2008 breakout has earned him a shot against Georges St. Pierre at UFC 100 in July. GSP ended his 7 win streak after going the distance.


4. Jake Shields (23-4-1)
Height
5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight
170 lb (77 kg)
Born
January 9, 1979 (1979-01-09)
Fighting out of
San Francisco, California
Town of birth
Mt. Ranch California
Team/Association
Cesar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu
Primary fighting style
Wrestling & Jiu-Jitsu

Shields s an American mixed martial artist, currently fighting at 170 lbs (77 kg). He is the Rumble on the Rock 175 lb (79 kg) champion. He is the first & last Elite XC Welterweight Champion. He is also the former Shooto World Champion. He may have looked out of his depth for a minute or so, but Shields' submission skills shined through once again June 6 against Robbie Lawler. The former EliteXC welterweight champion submitted the former EliteXC middleweight titleholder 2:02 into their Strikeforce bout, recording his 12th straight win. Shields' unbeaten streak now spans almost five years.

5. Martin Kampmann (15-2)
Nickname
The Hitman
Height
6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Weight
170 lb (77 kg)
Nationality
Danish
Born
April 17, 1982 (1982-04-17)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, Nevada
Town of birth
Aarhus, Denmark
Team/Association
Xtreme Couture
Primary fighting style
Muay Thai

Kampmann is a mixed martial artist who is currently fighting out of Las Vegas, Nevada and trains at the Xtreme Couture gym. He is currently fighting in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.For a short matter of hours, fans were excited to see MMA's foremost Dane take on fast-rising prospect T.J. Grant at the TUF 9 finale in June. However, Kampmann turned down the bout, saying that he was looking for bigger fights in the 170-pound division.


6 . Paulo Thiago (11-1)
Height
5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight
170 lb (77 kg)
Reach
74.5 in (189 cm)
Fighting out of
Brasilia, Brazil
Team/Association
Constrictor Team
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, Judo
Strengths
Very focused, strong chin

Thiago is a Brazilian mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. Thiago is currently signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championships fighting in their welterweight division. He's gutsy, if nothing else. Having aced his February UFC debut against Josh Koscheck, the relatively unknown Brazilian attempted to knock off Koscheck's teammate and consensus top-three welterweight Jon Fitch at UFC 100 on July 11. Thiago lost by Unanimous Decision.

8. Josh Koscheck (12-4)
Nickname
Kos
Height
5 ft 10 in (178 cm)
Weight
170 lb (77 kg)
Reach
73 in (190 cm)
Nationality
USA
Born
November 30, 1977 (1977-11-30)
Fighting out of
Fresno, California
Town of birth
Waynesburg, Pennsylvania
Team/Association
American Kickboxing Academy
Primary fighting style
Wrestling, kickboxing

Koscheck is an American mixed martial arts fighter from Fresno, California, a former collegiate wrestling champion, and is currently fighting at welterweight for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. A foot injury deprived Koscheck of a chance to get back into action against Chris Wilson at UFC 98 in May. Koscheck's next bout may be even sterner now. His likely opponent for UFC 103 on Sept. 19 is former UFC welterweight title challenger Frank Trigg, who returns to the promotion and the division after a run at middleweight.

8. Carlos Condit (22-5)
Nickname
Natural Born Killer
Height
6'2" (188 cm)
Weight
170 lbs (77 kg)
Nationality
American
Born
April 26, 1984 (1984-04-26)
Town of birth
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Team/Association
Arizona Combat Sports

Condit is an American professional mixed martial artist (MMA) from Albuquerque, New Mexico. He made his debut in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) organization but a victory was not in the cards, but his wildly entertaining April 1 split decision loss to Martin Kampmann did show that the former WEC kingpin belongs in the Octagon with the sport's top 170-pounders.

9. Mike Swick (14-2)
Nickname
Quick
Height
6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight
169 Ibs (76 kg)
Born
June 19, 1979 (1979-06-19) (age 30)
Fighting out of
San Jose, California
Town of birth
Houston, Texas
Team/Association
American Kickboxing Academy
Primary fighting style
Kickboxing

Swick is an American mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter currently competing in the Ultimate Fighting Championship as a welterweight. Though the first eight minutes wasn't anything to write home about, Swick seized control of his June 13 bout with Ben Saunders and put the AKA product away with punches in the second round. The victory pushed Swick's UFC record to 9-1 and a perfect 4-0 in the welterweight division. Mike will be taking on Martin Kampmann on Sept. 19 at UFC 103

10. Dan Hardy (22-6, 1 NC)
Nickname
The Outlaw
Height
6 ft (183 cm)
Weight
170 lb (78 kg)
Nationality
English
Born
May 17, 1982 (1982-05-17) (age 27)
Fighting out of
Nottingham, England, UK
Town of birth
Nottingham
Team/Association
Team Rough House
Primary fighting style
Muay Thai, Jiu-jitsu, Tae Kwon Do

Dan Hardy is an English professional mixed martial artist who competes in the welterweight division. A professional MMA competitor since 2004, Hardy fought in various promotions such as Cage Force and Cage Warriors before signing a contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship in 2008. He is the current Cage Warriors welterweight and light-welterweight champion. His last fight was a split decision win over Marcus Davis at UFC 99

Lightweight UFC Rankings:



1. B.J. Penn (13-5-1)
Nickname
The Prodigy
Height
5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)
Reach
70 in (180 cm)
Nationality
American
Born
December 13, 1978 (1978-12-13)
Fighting out of
Hilo, Hawaii
Town of birth
Kailua, Hawaii
Team/Association
BJ Penn's MMA/Nova Uniao
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing

Penn is an American professional mixed martial arts fighter and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner who is currently the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight Champion. In 2000, he became the first American-born winner of the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship in the black-belt category. Penn has accepted the offer to defend his UFC 155-pound crown against Kenny Florian. The long overdue lightweight matchup is set for UFC 101 on Aug. 8.

2. Shinya Aoki (20-4, 1 NC)
Nickname
Tobikan Judan
Height
5 feet 11 inches (180 cm)
Weight
155 pounds (70 kg)
Born
May 9, 1983 (1983-05-09)
Town of birth
Shizuoka City
Team/Association
Nippon Top Team, Paraestra Tokyo
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Judo

Aoki is a Japanese mixed martial artist, grappler, and former police officer. Aoki is the current World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts (WAMMA) Lightweight Champion and Shooto Middleweight Champion. Coming off his crushing loss against Hayato Sakurai in April, Aoki hasn't opted for a gimme. He came back by defeating returning lightweight standout Vitor Ribeiro at Dream 10 on July 20 by Decision (Unanimous).

3. Eddie Alvarez (18-2)
Nickname
The Silent Assassin
Height
5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)
Nationality
American
Born
January 11, 1984 (1984-01-11)
Fighting out of
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Town of birth
Kensington, Philadelphia
Team/Association
Fight Factory

Alvarez is an American mixed martial arts fighter, stuntman, and former BodogFIGHT welterweight champion.With his May 1 submission over Eric Reynolds, Alvarez reached Bellator's lightweight tournament final, just as everyone had expected. However, the world expected him to meet Jorge Masvidal in the championship. Instead, he'll meet upset author and potential "Submission of the Year" owner Toby Imada on June 19.

4. Joachim Hansen (19-7-1)
Nickname
Hellboy
Height
5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Weight
152 lb (69 kg)
Nationality
Norwegian
Born
May 26, 1979 (1979-05-26)
Town of birth
Oslo, Norway
Team/Association
Hellboy Hansen MMA
Primary fighting style
Submission Wrestling, Shooto

Hansen is a Norwegian mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He began his career fighting for FinnFight before moving on to fight for Shooto where he became the first Scandinavian person to hold a MMA world title after winning the Shooto World Welterweight Championship in 2003. Despite the attention given to his New Year's Eve rematch with Gesias Cavalcante, the bout was cancelled at the last minute when a pre-fight medical test revealed an undisclosed head injury to Hansen.

5. Kenny Florian (11-3)
Nickname
Kenflo
Height
5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)
Born
May 26, 1976 (1976-05-26)
Fighting out of
Brookline, Massachusetts
Town of birth
Westwood, Massachusetts
Team/Association
Team Sityodtong
Primary fighting style
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai

Florian currently fights as a lightweight for the UFC. "Kenflo" will take on UFC lightweight champion B.J. Penn at UFC 101 on Aug. 8. It will be his second crack at UFC gold.

6. Satoru Kitaoka (25-9-9)
Height
5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Weight
154 lb (70 kg)
Nationality
Japanese
Born
February 4, 1980 (1980-02-04)
Town of birth
Nara, Japan
Team/Association
PANCRASEism
Nippon Top Team

Kitaoka is a Japanese mixed martial arts fighter. He has fought the majority of his career as a welterweight for Pancrase, but moved down to lightweight in 2008 when he joined MMA promoter World Victory Road. Kitaoka's Pancrase homecoming on June 7 was every bit as predictable as expected, as he leglocked an overmatched Yukio Sakaguchi in 86 seconds. The real challenge for Sengoku's lightweight champion came Aug. 2, for a title match against Mizuto Hirota. Satoru lost by TKO.

7. Tatsuya Kawajiri (24-5-2)
Nickname
Crusher
Height
171 cm (5 ft 7 in)
Weight
72.9 kg (160.7 lb)
Nationality
Japanese
Born
May 8, 1978 (1978-05-08)
Town of birth
Inashiki, Ibaraki, Japan
Primary fighting style
Shooto

Kawajiri s a Japanese mixed martial arts fighter and a former Shooto welterweight champion, currently competing in Dream's lightweight division. For the last six years, Kawajiri has been one of MMA's best lightweights, but in a red-hot, hyperactive division, he didn't quite have the wins to show for it. His blue collar unanimous verdict over standout Gesias "JZ" Cavalcante on May 26 proved that the "Crusher" has still got it.

8. Gray Maynard (7-0, 1 NC)
Nickname
The Bully
Height
5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg)
Born
May 9, 1979 (1979-05-09)
Fighting out of
Las Vegas, Nevada
Town of birth
Las Vegas, Nevada
Team/Association
Xtreme Couture
Primary fighting style
Wrestling, Boxing

Maynard is an American amateur wrestler and professional mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter. He currently competes as an MMA fighter in the UFC lightweight division. Despite virtually no fanfare, "The Bully" has dominated three strong lightweights in a row. His March 15-minute thrashing of a high-quality Jim Miller was Maynard's most consummate outing to date.

9. Frankie Edgar (10-1)
Nickname
The Answer
Height
5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg)
Nationality
American
Born
October 16, 1981 (1981-10-16)
Fighting out of
Toms River, New Jersey
Primary fighting style
Wrestling,KickBoxing, Submission Wrestling

Edgar is a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter from Toms River, New Jersey, currently fighting in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Not wanting to hear any more discussion about him cutting to 145 pounds, Edgar made a strong statement that he can hang against elite lightweights, staying a step ahead of former UFC lightweight champ Sean Sherk for the full 15 minutes of their May 23 bout.

10. Sean Sherk (33-4-1)
Nickname
The Muscle Shark
Height
5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Weight
155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st)
Nationality
American
Born
August 5, 1973 (1973-08-05)
Fighting out of
Oak Grove, Minnesota
Town of birth
St. Francis, Minnesota
Team/Association
Minnesota Martial Arts Academy
Primary fighting style
Wrestling, Submission Wrestling, Boxing

Sherk is an American mixed martial arts fighter currently fighting for UFC. He currently holds a professional mixed martial arts (MMA) record of thirty-three wins, four losses, and one draw. Sherk has fought in both the UFC and Pride FC, and is a one-time UFC Lightweight Champion.

All data courtesy from our friends over at BetUs

Location: Manchester, England

Venue: Manchester Evening News Arena

Broadcast: Spike TV

MAIN CARD


Randy Couture -120 vs. Brandon Vera -110

This fight is going to be exciting; you will either witness 46yr old Randy Couture ground and pound Brandon Vera for three rounds proving that age is only a number and that he is determined to show that he can make a run at the 205lb Belt. The other outcome that you could witness would be Vera finally living up to his hype and potential by using his range to pick Couture apart on his feet.

Prediction: Vera has great Muay Thai, solid wrestling and high caliber BJJ but don’t forget that he is going against Couture who probably has some of the best wrestling in all of MMA. If Vera can keep distance and use his kicks to keep Couture away then I can see him pulling out a decision because I don’t think Vera can finish Couture. On the other hand I think Couture could pick up and slam Vera for three rounds and just use his top game to control the fight. I’m going with Randy Couture on this fight because he is the master at coming up and executing the perfect game plan. If you want to be standing during this fight put a decent size wager on Randy Couture because I can promise he won’t give up and he will keep attacking Vera.

Dan Hardy +180 vs. Mike Swick -225

A lot is at stake in this fight, the winner will earn a shot at George St. Pierre’s welterweight title. Mike Swick has been in the UFC after being on the first season of the Ultimate Fighter and has only been beaten once in the octagon. Swick is a big welterweight with lighting fast hands, he also trains with Jon Fitch and Josh Koscheck every day so that means his wrestling is always improving. Swick really impressed me in his last fight because he knocked out Ben Saunders who was known for his striking. Before Hardy entered the UFC he was only really known overseas but after going 3-0 in the UFC and beating Marcus Davis he is now known for his great striking abilities. Hardy trains with the best boxing coach around Freddie Roach.

Prediction: If the fight stays standing I think Hardy will get the better of Swick but I think when Swick realizes that he will use his wrestling to take the fight to the mat were he can control Hardy. Swick will pull out a three round decision earning him a shot at the welterweight title.

Michael Bisping -105 vs. Denis Kang -125

This fight is hard to pick, Bisping will be the hometown favorite and needs this fight after being brutally knocked out in his last fight against Dan Henderson. I always said I was never impressed with Bisping but that doesn’t mean I don’t think he is a great fighter, I just don’t think he was ready to fight a top 5 fighter in the world. Denis Kang is a great fighter mainly known from fighting in Japan; he is very well rounded and can mix it up a lot. The one thing that I found missing from his fighting in his first two fights in the Octagon was his cardio, he was clearly destroying Alan Belcher until he got caught in a choke because he was out of gas.

Prediction: One thing about Bisping is that no matter what he will fight hard for all three rounds, I see Kang taking round one but after that Bisping will get the crowd back into the fight and will finish Kang by TKO. Bisping knows he needs this win to remain the UK’s poster boy for MMA.

Matt Brown-155 vs. James Wilks +125

I will admit right away that I am a big fan of both of these fighters, they both are very tough and aren’t afraid to get into a stand up war. Matt Brown puts on an exciting fight every time he steps into the Octagon; the one question people always wonder about Brown is his ground game. James Wilks has good stand up but is known for his jiu-jitsu; on the Ultimate Fighter he used his ground skills to win the show.

Prediction: For this fight you might as well flip a coin, so I wouldn’t put a large wager but if you want action my prediction is Wilks wins this fight by submission.

Ross Pearson +160 vs. Aaron Riley -200

Prediction: This fight is also very tough to pick, Riley is a more seasoned veteran with very solid skills all around. Pearson is the young up and comer who is tough as nails and likes to strike in close using wrestling to take the fight to the ground. I think these fighters are evenly matched, but something about Rileys fights with Shane Nelson didn’t impress me too much. I am going with the young fighter in Pearson, I think it will be a war but Pearson will grind out the decision win.

P’s Picks:

Lock of the Night: Randy Couture -120

Upset of the night: Ross Pearson +160, Wilks +125

Parlay of the night: Couture/Bisping.

For all the best MMA Picks for the next big UFC fight check out Cooper's Sports Picks

Friday, September 18, 2009

UFC Predictions

MAIN CARD

Nate Diaz -260 vs. Melvin Guillard +200

The main event of the show is between two fighters who became known from the Ultimate Fighter show. Nate Diaz the winner of Ultimate fighter season 5 is coming off back to back losses. Diaz main strength is on the ground and has won four fights in the UFC by submission. Guillard never impressed me that much; he always came off as the cocky young fighter with a lot of ability but was not skilled enough to back it all up. Guillard is on a two fight win streak and win in this fight would be huge for his career.

Prediction: Diaz will use his long reach advantage while standing and when the fight goes to the ground Guillard will not last too long before Diaz finishes the fight by submission.

Roger Huerta +250 vs. Gray Maynard -350

The line should be a little closer in this fight because it is going to be a war. Huerta hasn’t fought since August 2008 so it makes me wonder if he has a lot of ring rust. Huerta has also been pursuing a career in acting lately and this is his last fight on his UFC contract. Maynard has won his last five fights in the octagon with big wins over Frank Edgar and Jim Miller. Maynard is a three time All-American wrestler from Michigan State with incredible conditioning. What impressed me about Maynard in his last fight was his improved striking, he seemed very quick on his feet.

Prediction: Huerta has a big heart and you can never count him out of a fight but I think Maynard will control the fight with his improved stand up and great wrestling to win the fight by decision.

Carlos Condit -400 vs. Jake Ellenberger +300

Jake Ellenberger is taking this fight on short notice and even though he is a very skilled wrestler he is going to have his hands full in this fight. Condit the former WEC champ, is coming off a split decision loss to Martin Kampmann and is looking to show that he is one of the top welterweights in the UFC. Condit has great muay thai, solid BJJ and now trains at Arizona Combat Sports

Prediction: Ellenberger’s only shot in this fight is to use his wrestling to grind out a decision win but that won’t be easily considering Condit trains with All-American caliber every day. Condit will finish this fight no matter where it goes. Condit will get the win but it may be harder than expected.

Tim Credeur +220 vs. Nate Quarry -300

This fight was very hard for me to pick, both fighters have looked impressive lately but that doesn’t make me forget some of their rocky performances from the past. Credeur is from season seven of the Ultimate Fighter, on the show he proved that he is a very high level black belt in BJJ but has just average wrestling and stand up. Quarry is from season one of the Ultimate Fighter and years ago before his back surgery he had his shot at the middleweight title. Quarry has good takedown defense with very heavy hands. Quarry in his last fight looked very impressive by beating Jason Mcdonald and showed that he has very good submission defense.

Prediction: If this fight ends by TKO I give it to Quarry and if the fight ends by submission I give the edge to Credeur. On that note I feel that Quarry will be able to control the fight and gain top position to win a very close decision.

P’s Picks:

Parlay of the night: Gray Maynard -350, Nate Diaz -260 and Carlos Condit -400.




Saturday, August 29, 2009

UFC Fight Night Card Predictions

September 16th, 2009 - UFC Welterweights - Ultimate Fighting Championships - Fight Night - Cox Convention Center, OK LIVE

MAIN CARD

Nate Diaz -260 vs. Melvin Guillard +200

The main event of the show is between two fighters who became known from the Ultimate Fighter show. Nate Diaz the winner of Ultimate fighter season 5 is coming off back to back losses. Diaz main strength is on the ground and has won four fights in the UFC by submission. Guillard never impressed me that much; he always came off as the cocky young fighter with a lot of ability but was not skilled enough to back it all up. Guillard is on a two fight win streak and win in this fight would be huge for his career.

Prediction: Diaz will use his long reach advantage while standing and when the fight goes to the ground Guillard will not last too long before Diaz finishes the fight by submission.

Roger Huerta +250 vs. Gray Maynard -350

The line should be a little closer in this fight because it is going to be a war. Huerta hasn’t fought since August 2008 so it makes me wonder if he has a lot of ring rust. Huerta has also been pursuing a career in acting lately and this is his last fight on his UFC contract. Maynard has won his last five fights in the octagon with big wins over Frank Edgar and Jim Miller. Maynard is a three time All-American wrestler from Michigan State with incredible conditioning. What impressed me about Maynard in his last fight was his improved striking, he seemed very quick on his feet.

Prediction: Huerta has a big heart and you can never count him out of a fight but I think Maynard will control the fight with his improved stand up and great wrestling to win the fight by decision.

Carlos Condit -400 vs. Jake Ellenberger +300

Jake Ellenberger is taking this fight on short notice and even though he is a very skilled wrestler he is going to have his hands full in this fight. Condit the former WEC champ, is coming off a split decision loss to Martin Kampmann and is looking to show that he is one of the top welterweights in the UFC. Condit has great muay thai, solid BJJ and now trains at Arizona Combat Sports

Prediction: Ellenberger’s only shot in this fight is to use his wrestling to grind out a decision win but that won’t be easily considering Condit trains with All-American caliber every day. Condit will finish this fight no matter where it goes. Condit will get the win but it may be harder than expected.

Tim Credeur +220 vs. Nate Quarry -300

This fight was very hard for me to pick, both fighters have looked impressive lately but that doesn’t make me forget some of their rocky performances from the past. Credeur is from season seven of the Ultimate Fighter, on the show he proved that he is a very high level black belt in BJJ but has just average wrestling and stand up. Quarry is from season one of the Ultimate Fighter and years ago before his back surgery he had his shot at the middleweight title. Quarry has good takedown defense with very heavy hands. Quarry in his last fight looked very impressive by beating Jason Mcdonald and showed that he has very good submission defense.

Prediction: If this fight ends by TKO I give it to Quarry and if the fight ends by submission I give the edge to Credeur. On that note I feel that Quarry will be able to control the fight and gain top position to win a very close decision.

P’s Picks:

Parlay of the night: Gray Maynard -350, Nate Diaz -260 and Carlos Condit -400.




Past Picks:

Event name: UFC 101: Declaration

Date: August 8, 2009

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Venue: Wachovia Center

Broadcast: Pay-per-view

All Betting Lines are from Betus.com

MAIN CARD

B.J. Penn (c) -230 vs. Kenny Florian +180

UFC Lightweight Championship

This fight is going to be a high paced back and forth battle. BJ Penn is coming off a loss to GSP at 170lbs but at 155lbs he has been merely untouchable. His last two fights at lightweight he has won in devastating fashion submitting Joe Stevenson and knocking out former champ Sean Sherk. Penn is a quick boxer with great takedown defense and is highly skilled Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu grappler. Penn has always been known as a great fighter; Florian on the other hand had to work his way up to get to this point. Florian started to get recognized when he made the finals of the Ultimate Fighter Season 1, he was undersized for the weight class and just used his BJJ and nasty elbows to make it to the finals. After the show he dropped to lightweight and won 3 straight fights to earn a shot at the vacant title. In losing the title fight to Sherk he proved that he is one tough guy but has a lot to work on. Since that fight he has not lost and has improved his strength and conditioning as well as his overall MMA skills.

Prediction: BJ Penn is one of the best fighters in the world but I think that in the later rounds Florian will get the better of him and win a 5 round decision. This fight will be very close so I would be placing a small wager on Florian +180.

Anderson Silva -350 vs. Forrest Griffin +250(non-title bout)

Anderson Silva the best pound for pound fighter in the world and UFC middleweight champion is going up a weight class to Light Heavyweight to take on Ultimate Fighter season 1 winner and former Light Heavyweight Champion Forrest Griffin. Griffin is big for the weight class and is very well rounded, I think no matter where the fight goes Griffin will test Silva and make him show if he has heart and can be pushed to the limit. Silva is probably the best striker in all of Mixed Martial Arts and is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Prediction- Griffin could pull off the upset if he can take Silva down and control the fight for 3 rounds, but I think Silva will be too much standing and will eventually knock out Griffin with his accurate striking. Silva wins by TKO

Johny Hendricks -105 vs. Amir Sadollah -125

Looking at the odds for this fight you can tell right away that this is a very close and evenly matched fight. Hendricks is undefeated and coming over from the WEC and was also a two time national champion wrestler for Oklahoma State. Sadollah only has a record of 2-0 in MMA but somehow shocked everyone to win the Ultimate Fighter Season 7. What I like about Sadollah is that he can finish you anywhere, either on your feet by TKO or submit you off of his back. Sadollah reminds me a lot of Forrest Griffin that he can take a beating and will never give up.

Prediction: I don’t like going against a dominate wrestler because they can dictate where the fight goes but in this case I feel that Sadollah will become too much for Hendricks in the later rounds and will win by TKO. This fight is going to be tough and in the first round you might think my pick of Sadollah looks bad but don’t worry because in the third round once his ring rust wears off you will be smiling.

Ricardo Almeida -165 vs. Kendall Grove +135

This is a fight I would stay away from because you never know what you are going to get from both of these fighters. Grove is a big middleweight that is 6’6 and has a very long reach advantage but after everybody thought he was going to be a star he showed that he has suspect chin after being knocked out in back to back fights. Almeida on the other hand is known for his excellent ground game but showed against Patrick Cote that he needs to work on his striking and takedowns. Almeida will be fighting only 45minutes from his hometown which can’t hurt and will give him a slight advantage. I see this fight ending in two ways either Almeida by Submission or Grove by decision.

Prediction: I think Almeida is in another league as a fighter then Grove so if he fights like I have him seen him fight before he will win. Too bad he will not fight that way in this fight and Grove will win by decision which will make Almeida drop down to 170lbs. I wouldn’t touch this fight but a small wager on Grove at +135 is not a terrible idea.

Josh Neer -220 vs. Kurt Pellgrino +175

If you like excitement then this is the fight to bet on. Josh Neer is called the dentist for a reason, all of his fights become wars and he has knock out power. Neer doesn’t have the best record but he is coming off a big win in his last fight against Mac Danzig. Pellegrino is on a two fight win streak and this fight is very important to him working his way back up the lightweight division. Pellegrino is a solid wrestler and a black belt in BJJ. I give the edge in the stand up to Neer, the problem for Pellegrino is that he isn’t afraid to stand up and trade which could lead to him seeing stars. When this fight goes to the ground I am confident that Pellegrino will have up the upper hand as long as he has control on top.

Prediction: When betting on a Neer fight you have to understand that at any moment he could knock the other fighter out and you will be sitting on the edge of your seat. I predict Pellegrino will win by decision and is a good bet at +175. If Pellegrino fights a smart fight instead of a street fight he will use his wrestling to take Neer down and use his top game to control the fight and win the decision.

PRELIMINARY CARD

Shane Nelson vs. Aaron Riley

Prediction: This is a re-match from UFC 96, Nelson knocked out Riley in just 44 seconds. The reasoning for the re-match is because most people watching this fight thought that it was stopped premature. In the first fight I predicted Riley to win so I am going to stick with my original pick and go with Riley.

John Howard vs. Tamdan McCrory

Prediction: Both of these fighters started out in the Ring of Combat and I have seen them fight several times. McCory doesn’t look like much but he is very tall for the 170lbs division and has good submissions. Howard is solid in all aspects of MMA but most of all he impresses me with his toughness, he doesn’t get finished often and that is why I take him winning this fight by unanimous decision.

Thales Leites vs. Alessio Sakara

Prediction: This one is easy to predict, if and when Leites take this fight to the ground the referee will be waking up Sakara after he is put to sleep. Leites world class grappling will be too much for Sakara.

Dan Cramer vs. Matthew Riddle

Prediction: I will be at this event live so I am lucky to be able to see this fight. Both of these fighters are very young and hungry. Cramer shocked everyone with a split decision win over Matt Arroyo and Riddle is 2-0 in the UFC. I like Riddle in this one because he is very strong for 170lbs and since he has the superior wrestling he will be able to dictate where the fight ends up. Riddle wins by decision.

Prediction:

George Roop vs. George Sotiropoulos

Prediction: Roop is taking this fight on short notice after Rob Emerson had to back out with an injury. George Sotriopoulos whom is known from Ultimate Fighter 6 is making his 2nd appearance in the octagon. I feel that Sotriopoulos is a better all around fighter and will either win this fight by submission or decision.

Jesse Lennox vs. Danillo Villefort

Prediction: I have never seen Lennox fighter but I know he is 14-1 and is a solid wrestler. Villefort on the other hand I have seen fight a few times and have always been impressed. He always seems to be in great shape and has a great ground game. Villefort is a big 170lbs and trains with one of the best MMA gym, American Top Team. Villefort will get the victory by submission.

P’s Picks:

Lock of the night: Thales Leites -350

Upset of the night:

Fight of the night: Josh Neer vs. Kurt Pellegrino and BJ Penn vs. Kenny Florian



Event name: UFC 102: Couture vs. Nogueira
Date: August 29, 2009
Location: Portland, Oregon
Venue: Rose Garden
Broadcast: Pay-per-view

MAIN CARD

Randy Couture -180 vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira +150

This is a fight I have been waiting to see for a long time, yes I know both men are probably out of their prime but that doesn’t mean that they still aren’t two of the top heavyweights in the world. Nogueira is coming off a knockout lost to Frank Mir and while watching this fight I just thought to myself that Nogueira’s better days are behind him. Nogueira has decent stand up and his main attribute is his submission game. Couture lost his last fight to Brock Lesnar but in that lose he impressed me. He gave Lesnar a hard time wherever the fight went, the older Couture gets the more he shocks the fighting world with impressive game plans and athleticism.

Prediction: The only way Nogueria can win this fight is if he catches Couture in a submission during the later rounds. I see Randy controlling the entire fight and using his wrestling to decide where he wants the fight to go. Randy will win this fight and work his way back up to getting one more shot at the heavyweight title. I don’t see Randy losing this fight so I advise placing a wager on him.

Keith Jardine -145 vs. Thiago Silva +115

I have gone back and forth on who I think is capable of winning this fight. Thiago Silva is a very aggressive fighter who likes to take his opponents down and use his dominant ground and pound. Jardine is a very different fighter; he uses his unorthodox style by using leg kicks to set up his other strikes. Jardine has fought some of the best light heavy weights in the UFC and has looked impressive in some of those fights or showed a weak chin in the others.

Prediction: Jardine has some of the best training partners in the world and I find that to be a big advantage. Jardine has never lost back to back fights in the UFC and I see him using his leg kicks and solid takedown defense to gain the advantage and pull out the victory.

Chris Leben -155vs. Jake Rosholt +125

This fight is my pick to be upset of the night. Leben who is mainly known from his crazy antics on season 1 of the Ultimate Fighter, is stepping back into the Octagon after being suspended for 9months after testing positive for steroids after his fight against Michael Bisping. I will give Leben credit he is one tough guy, he will get hit and keep on coming but the one question I have about his game is if his skills can back up his toughness. Jake Rosholt is one of the best collegiate wrestlers to step into the octagon; he was a 3time National Champion at Oklahoma State University. Rosholt looked good in his first televised fight for the WEC by showing that he has a good chin and great top game on the ground. In his second fight he lost by submission to Dan Miller after getting caught early in a guillotine.

Prediction: At any time in his fights Leben can come out of nowhere to win by devastating knockout but in this fight I feel that Rosholt who is in need of a big win will come out and take the fight to the ground right away and control his way to victory.

Demian Maia +130 vs. Nate Marquardt -160

I am so excited for this fight; if you love MMA then you have to put some action on this fight. Nate Marquardt is on a two fight win streak and looked amazing in his win over Wilson Gouevia. Marquardt had his shot once at the middleweight title but now is only one fight away from getting another shot. Maia has been dominant since he has entered the UFC winning all of his five fights by impressive submissions. This fight comes down to Maia’s amazing ground skills vs. Greg Jacksons fight game plan. Greg Jackson is Marquardt coach and main trainer who is known to have the best MMA gym and for coming up with great game plans.

Prediction: Both of these fighters are great but I think Maia is going to display his top level ground game and be able to finish off Marquardt by submission. If Marquardt can stay away from his submissions for 15minutes then maybe he can pull out the victory but I don’t see that happening. Maia is a good play at +130 but remember when placing your wager that Greg Jackson will have Marquardt ready for Maia but we will find out if that will be enough.

Krzysztof Soszynski +140 vs. Brandon Vera -170

This fight is hard to pick for several reasons, Krysztof Sosynski was always a good fighter but most thought that he wouldn’t last too long in the stacked UFC light heavyweight division. Kyrstof is 3-0 in the UFC and has looked real impressive in his last few fights. Krystof is mainly known for his striking ability but lately he has shown his improved ground skills by winning submission of the night at UFC 97. Vera is the complete opposite, when he first entered the UFC there was a lot of hype around him. Vera lived up to the hype in the beginning going 6-0 in the UFC heavyweight division but since then he has been nothing but a disappointment. He has looked very lethargic in his fights; it has made me wonder if the weight cut to 205lbs is too much or if he is just not all there mentally.

Prediction: I like Kyrstof a lot because he trains with Dan Henderson and you know he will be fully prepared for this fight but on the other hand Vera is a very technical fighter with a brown belt in BJJ under Lloyd Irvin and he is also a very skilled muay thai fighter. People also forget that Vera did wrestle in college so he is skilled there as well; I think Vera has the upper hand in where ever the fight goes. I predict Vera to take this but remember when betting Vera there is always a chance that his A game might not show up.

PRELIMINARY CARD

Gabriel Gonzaga -350 vs. Chris Tuchscherer +250

Prediction: I wish this fight was being televised; Chris Tuchscherer is a big heavy weight who is a former collegiate wrestler that trains with heavy weight champ Brock Lesnar. Gonzaga is a BJJ black belt that had his shot at the UFC title before and is trying to work his way back up. Gonzaga was beating Shane Carwin during his last fight before being knocked out. Gonzaga is tough no matter where the fight ends up; I don’t see Gonzaga being finished in this one. Gonzaga will win by impressive fashion to keep him alive in the title picture.

Ed Herman -150 vs. Aaron Simpson +120

Prediction: This is going to be a very interesting fight, Herman has more experience in the cage and is coming off a big win over David Loiseau but before that fight he was on a two fight losing streak. This will be Simpson’s second fight in the UFC but there has been a lot of hype around him. Simpson was an All-American wrestler at Arizona State and trains a lot of solid fighters at Arizona Combat Sports such as Ryan Bader and Carlos Condit. Simpson has impressed me so far and if he feels in trouble during this fight he will use his superior wrestling to come out with the win. I have a good feeling about this one so I recommend putting a wager on Simpson.

Mike Russow -260 vs. Justin McCully +200

Prediction: This fight I would stay away from, McCully is a UFC veteran who trains with Tito Ortiz. In his last few fights he has looked pretty boring but has a win over Antoni Hardonk. Russow is making his UFC debut and is known to have good grappling skills. I think Russow is too heavy of a favor to put a wager on him but I do see him taking this fight by a boring decision.

Todd Duffee -155 vs. Tim Hague +125

Prediction: This could actually be a very exciting heavy weight fight. Hague in his UFC debut went to battle with Pat Barry and pulled out the big upset by showing his submission game and finishing Barry. Duffee is a big heavyweight who trains with American Top Team, when you just look at Duffee you can tell he is a big athletic fighter. Duffee is going to want to keep this fight standing to stay away from Hague’s submission game. Hague usually has the advantage of size in most of his fights but not in this one and I see Duffee winning his UFC debut.

Nick Catone +155 vs. Mark Munoz -185

Prediction: I would like Catone to win this fight and stay in the UFC but I feel this is a bad matchup for him. Catone’s main strength is the ground, he is a BJJ purple belt and was a solid wrestler for Rider University but in this fight he is going against Munoz who was a former NCAA Champion for Oklahoma State University. This is Munoz first cut to the middleweight division but if he acclimates well he should have no problem pulling out the win.

Evan Dunham vs. Marcus Aurelio

Prediction: In this fight you have the up and coming young talented fighter Dunham against the season veteran Marcus Aurelio. Dunham trains out of Xtreme Couture and is supposedly a real tough young kid with good wrestling. Aurelio has been around for a long time, his last stint in the UFC wasn’t too impressive but you can’t forget who Aurelio once was and his amazing grappling game. I think Aurelio is too experienced for Dunham and should finish this fight by submission.

P’s Picks

Lock of the night: Randy Couture -180, Mark Munoz -185, Gonzaga -350

Upset of the night: Jake Rosholt +125, Maia +130, Simpson +120

Fight of the night: Maia vs. Marquardt

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