Stupid Predictions™: UFC on Fox 1

Posted: November 12, 2011 in Fandom, MMA
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Oh boy, is this great!

I doubt I’m telling any you anything you don’t already know when I say that this card will be a hugely important milestone in the history of mixed martial arts. This isn’t something that should be ignored, but I will only briefly comment because it’s outside the scope of this article. I will simply remind you all that my first pay-per-view purchase was the Ultimate Fighting Championship II. Like most of you, it changed my outlook on martial arts quite a bit, and it also represented some of the best entertainment television had to offer. I also worked professionally in the industry when these guys weren’t rich, famous, or insured. They were some of the nicest people I’d ever met. To see this finally arrive, even in a much-changed format, has me feeling like I accomplished something, even though I’m no longer involved in the industry. A fan base that personally relates to your product (as I do to the UFC) shows tremendous brand power.

Moving on . . . .

I’ve always liked to include Jason Probst’s Sherdog picks alongside mine because Jason is one of the few journalists that cover mixed martial arts that has my respect. For this card, Jason isn’t doing the Sherdog picks, so I won’t bother to compare myself to the new guy. Hopefully, Jason will be back. Beating him means something to me. 🙂

Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos for the UFC Heavyweight Championship

I could take either one of these guys.

This isn’t quite the classic matchup between the striker and the grappler. While Velasquez is clearly better on the ground than he is on his feet, his striking offense can’t be ignored. He hits hard. The problem, as demonstrated by the Chieck Kongo fight, is that he doesn’t have particularly good defense on his feet. Since then, his growth as a striker hasn’t been put to the test. Similarly, Dos Santos is clearly better as a striker than a puncher, and he’s shown some takedown defense, but his grappling game hasn’t been fully tested. Both guys could surprise us if taken out of their element, but I’d rather rely on Dos Santos’s takedown defense and, in the worst-case scenario, his ability to stall for the stand-up, than on Velasquez’s ability to prevent getting hit. While recent, higher-level competition has kept Dos Santos from finishing his fights, he dealt with the extra rounds without gassing out. If he can’t knock out Velasquez – a possibility considering how good a chin Velasquez demonstrated against Kongo – he should still beat Velasquez into a decision loss.

The stupid pick: Dos Santos by decision.

Ben Henderson vs. Clay Guida

This man had no clue about how the universe works

This fight could possibly go down in history as one of the most exciting in UFC history. These guys don’t have an off switch. They don’t have brakes. The move at speeds that defy the laws of physics as we know them. However, that doesn’t mean there won’t be a clear winner. Henderson has been on a tear since coming to the UFC. I’ve picked against him twice, and both times it was a bad pick. I’m afraid that if I pick him now it’ll curse his chances, but that’s stupid talk. Guida is a poor man’s Kenny Florian. He’s always in the mix but never able to make it to the big show, in part because he has a single way to win a fight, and once he’s taken out of his element, he gets hammered. It’s hard for me to predict a finish for Henderson, as he hasn’t been able to do that in the UFC, but it’s easy for me to pick a clear, dominant decision, and I do that here.

The stupid pick: Henderson by clear decision.

Dustin Poirier vs. Pablo Garza

Garza is an exciting fighter that finishes fights. In his last fight, I picked him to win but boldly stated it wouldn’t be by “flying anything.” He won by flying triangle choke. He’s also won in the UFC by flying knee, which was not his only victory by strikes. Poirier comes across as more well-rounded, and the quality of his opponents is slightly better. Nevertheless, I’m sticking with Garza.

The stupid pick: Garza by 2nd-round stoppage.

Cub Swanson vs. Ricardo Lamas

Swanson is by no means unbeatable, but his loses are against top caliber fighters. Lamas hasn’t proved himself to be in that category.

The stupid pick: Swanson by 2nd-round stoppage.

Clay Harvison vs. DaMarques Johnson

Johnson hasn’t panned out to be the fighter we thought he might be, but he’ll still get the win.

The stupid pick: Johnson by 1st-round submission.

Norifumi Yamamoto vs. Darren Uyenoyama

Two fighters from the Japanese circuit? Can I predict a double loss? Is that possible? The smart pick is with the more experienced Yamamoto, but these are Stupid Predictions™, so here you go.

The stupid pick: Uyenoyama by 1st-round stoppage.

Mackens Semerzier vs. Robert Peralta

Semerzier has a decent overall record, but only because of his non-Zuffa record. Looking only at his major league experience, his record drops to a losing one.

The stupid pick: Peralta by 2nd-round KO/TKO.

Alex Caceres vs. Cole Escovedo

Caceres has an enjoyable personality, so most fans want him to win. Since coming to the big leagues, he hasn’t, but then again, neither has Escovedo. I’ll go with experience here.

The stupid pick: Escovedo by decision.

Mike Pierce vs. Paul Bradley

Mike Pierce is a solid, mid-tier fighter, whereas Bradley lost in his only shot at the big time. With the amount of experience Bradley has, he should be good enough to win in the UFC. As he didn’t, he probably never will.

The stupid pick: Pierce by decision.

Aaron Rosa vs. Matt Lucas

Rosa has a ground game, but he can’t weather the storm. Though Lucas has no Zuffa experience, his win streak and finish percentage, compared with Rosa’s failure to impress, should give Lucas a late-round win in his UFC debut.

The stupid pick: Lucas by 3rd-round KO/TKO.

Make sure to listen to Fight Fans Radio Monday through Thursday at 3pm for MMA news and analysis. Also listen in on Saturdays at 3pm before fight cards for my live Stupid Predictions™ segment.

Follow me on Twitter @MMADork
Follow Fight Fans Radio on Twitter @fightfansradio
Follow Erika Lewis on Twitter @FightFan_Erika
Follow the Ultimate Fighting Championship on Twitter @UFC
Follow Cain Velasquez on Twitter @cainmma
Follow Junior Dos Santos on Twitter @junior_cigano
Follow Benson Henderson on Twitter @SMOOTHone155
Follow Clay Guida on Twitter @clayguida
Follow Dustin Poirier on Twitter @DustinPoirier
Follow Pablo Garza on Twitter @PabloGarzaMMA
Follow Cub Swanson on Twitter @CubSwanson
Follow Ricardo Lamas on Twitter @RicardoLamasMMA
Follow Clay Harvison on Twitter @ClayHeavyMetal
Follow DaMarques Johnson on Twitter @DaMarques_UFC
Follow Norifumi Yamamoto on Twitter when he decides Twitter is worth joining. He hasn’t yet.
Follow Darren Uyenoyama on Twitter @d_uyenoyama (unverified account)
Follow Mackens Semerzier on Twitter @MackDaMenaceMMA
Follow Robert Peralta on Twitter if you can find his Twitter handle. I couldn’t.
Follow Alex Caceres on Twitter @BruceLeeroyGlow
Follow Cole Escovedo on Twitter @coleescovedo
Follow Mike Pierce on Twitter @MikePierce170
Follow Paul Bradley on Twitter @paulbradley184
Follow Matt Lucas on Twitter if you can find his Twitter handle. I couldn’t.
Follow Aaron Rosa on Twitter @aaronrosamma

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