Who You Got?

Who You Got? (UFC 220: Miocic vs. Ngannou)

The UFC returns to Boston when the two baddest men on the planet go head to head in the main event of the evening. Here are my picks and predictions for how all of the main card fights of the night will go down:

Thomas “Thominhas” Almeida vs. Rob Font

These two fast paced strikers will not let this fight anywhere near the judges as you can surely expect a knockout. Thomas Almeida so far has only lost to top contenders Jimmie Rivera and Cody Garbrandt (which is nothing to be ashamed of). Meanwhile, Rob Font is an up-and-comer who utilizes his boxing to wear down his opponents and isn’t afraid to go for takedowns either. The big difference between these two will be speed. Almeida clearly has the faster hands that can surely put Font’s lights out in this one. Font would also be overwhelmed by Almeida’s constant push and ability to stand and trade in the pocket. The ground game is also a no-no for Font as Almeida is a Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Expect a quick win for Almeida via his sharp and accurate punches.

Predicted winner: Thomas Almeida via Knockout/Technical Knockout in Round 1

Gian Villante vs. Francimar “Bodao” Barroso

This fight could be sleeper as both Gian Villante and Francimar Barroso are known for their conservative striking approach in the octagon. The difference of the two is that, even though Barroso has a Black Belt in both Kickboxing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Villante just seems a bit more faster and accurate with his strikes. His striking isn’t always pretty but I feel it will get the job done against the tentative Barroso. Also, Barroso won’t be able to utilize his Jiu-Jitsu because Villante’s takedown defense is superb. Villante does have a chance to get a knockout but I think the fight goes the distance as Barroso will mainly play defense to ensure a knockout from the lethal Villante does not happen.

Predicted winner: Gian Villante via Decision

Calvin Kattar vs. Shane “Hurricane” Burgos

A third striker vs. striker match on this card makes me wonder if the UFC is looking for all knockouts here in Boston. Regardless, this one has two men on impressive win streaks going head-to-head. Both Shane Burgos and Calvin Kattar has utilized their impressive boxing to defeat their foes inside the octagon. Burgos, however, has the greater defense of the two as he is able to roll with the punches thrown at him and also is great at baiting his opponents in to throwing at him so that he can counter. A big question that I have about this fight is ‘who is going to be the one pressuring in this fight?’ This could be the determining factor for ho wins but I still have to go with Burgos who is undefeated and may also shoot for some takedowns if he ever gets in a jam. A finish seems possible, but I think Kattar’s skills should last him to the final horn.

Predicted winner: Shane Burgos via Decision

Daniel “DC” Cormier (c) vs. Volkan “No Time” Oezdemir

I once predicted that Volkan Oezdimir would get a title shot, but I didn’t say he will win it. Daniel Cormier is one of the best wrestlers the UFC has ever seen. I have total confidence that DC will be able to land a takedown on Oezdimir in “No Time.” This will zap the energy right out of Oezdemir as he struggles to get up. This would result in Oezdemir losing his devastating knockout power. He might be able to survive the first, but I predict the second round being where DC puts him away with a submission similar to how DC did against Anthony Johnson (twice).

Predicted winner: Daniel Cormier via Submission in Round 2

Stipe Miocic (c) vs. Francis “The Predator” Ngannou

This matchup is frustrating to pick due to both guys being able to knock each other out. It is all about who is faster on the draw. After watching their footage repeatedly and very closely, I have to go with Francis Ngannou on this one. My reasoning is that Stipe Miocic has been to hittable in his fights where as Ngannou has been great at defense. Miocic can definitely put anybody down with his hands but I feel he will have to eat a few shots before it happens. And if those shots come from Ngannou, then I do not see a clear path for victory. Then again, Miocic does have an impressive wrestling pedigree that can put “The Predator” on his ass. However, I see this being only to stall as I don’t think he can keep Ngannou down or do enough damage from the top. So in the end, I see Ngannou putting Miocic to sleep via one of those devastating nukes he calls fists early in the fight

Predicted winner: Francis Ngannou via Knockout/Technical Knockout in Round 1

What's Going On?

What’s Going On? (Jan 14th – 20th)

A whole new week means a whole new set of MMA news and events that needs to be discussed by yours truly. So let’s get right into it with some interesting topics for this week:

Tony Ferguson vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov is on!

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The fight that the MMA world has been waiting for is finally upon us as Tony Ferguson is scheduled to face off against Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223. The big question is whether or not it will be for the interim or actual UFC Lightweight Championship. If it is for the real belt then that means Conor McGregor will be stripped a second time due to inactivity. And if for some reason the fight is for the interim belt, then Dana White will once again go back on his promise (shocker) and the fans will more than likely be upset due to McGregor not defending his belt for almost two years.

Cris Cyborg vs. Amanda Nunes?

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This is probably the biggest women’s fight the UFC can make. Dana White has expressed interest in making the matchup happen, but Cris Cyborg seems uninterested in the matchup. Cyborg’s reason is that both fighters are from Brazil and she would rather not fight someone from her own country. Amanda Nunes on the other hand does not seem to care about this fact and would love to have the champion vs. champion fight anyways. Regardless, I would love to see this matchup just like every other sane human being.

Michael Bisping says no to fighting Vitor Belfort

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In their first encounter, Vitor Belfort (who may have been juiced to the gills) gave Michael Bisping his lazy eye by kicking his face into oblivion. Bisping has despised Belfort ever since and has become a strong advocate against steroid usage. Belfort called for this rematch to happen with Bisping responding by saying there is a “zero percent chance” it happens. This is another blockbuster fight that would be big especially in Bisping’s home country of England. Plus, Bisping would have a chance to avenge his loss against Belfort. If he really thinks Belfort only won because of testosterone replacement therapy, then he should have no problem beating him in a rematch with both men clean.

Paige VanZant breaks arm in fight

In Paige VanZant’s last fight against Jessica-Rose Clark, she broke her arm sometime in the first half of the fight. VanZant as able to continue fighting and went on to lose a decision to her opponent. Even though this is valiant and makes her one tough chick, it still does not excuse her coaches for letting her continue fighting. VanZant can clearly be heard telling her coaches in between round 2 and 3 that she had broke her arm and yet they let her continue fighting knowing this fact. I feel this is irresponsible and could have caused VanZant’s arm to be damaged even more and potentially beyond repair.

Cynthia Calvillo fails drug test

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Hot, young prospect Cynthia Calvillo failed an in-competition drug test for marijuana metabolites for her fight against Carla Esparza at UFC 219. Marijuana usage in MMA is a controversial one. While there are many reasons why marijuana should be legal in MMA, the NSAC still has it as an illegal substance. Therefor all fighters must abide by these rules and regulations. There should be no reason to not follow these rules as doing so would just cause a suspension from the commission. Calvillo shouldn’t have taken it knowing thee guidelines and will thus face the price for it. Still, I hope this rule is changed in the near future.

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Tuesday Top Ten

Tuesday Top Ten: Possible Dream Fights

Dream fights are becoming more of a reality these days with everyone wanting big money fights. Who can blame them though? They do it because the fans are willing to pay for it. I have selected the top ten possible dream fights that have slim chance of happening but are still possible today. Only rules are that the fights have to be possible and no fighter can be on more than one dream fight. It’s like we are putting together a fantasy match card. So without further delay, here are the best dream fights to make in the UFC today:

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#10. Rashad Evans vs. Vitor Belfort

First we have two former UFC Light Heavyweight Champions. Both have some vicious knockouts in the past and are known for their expertise in grappling as well with on being a former NCAA Division I wrestler and both being Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belts. They are well past their primes but this could potentially be a close contest due to their will to win.

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#9. Anthony Pettis vs. Jose Aldo

This was a dream match back in the day when both men were champions. To me it would still be amazing to see because of their fast paced and high volume striking. I feel Jose Aldo would look to grapple while Anthony Pettis would try to keep it standing. But if does stay on the feet then do not expect Aldo to just roll over. This would be a great fight between two former champions.

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#8. Cris Cyborg vs. Amanda Nunes

Here is the only women’s fight on the list. Both fighters have been dominant throughout their career, finishing almost all of their opponents. Both are also champions in their respected divisions. I would have put Holly Holm instead of Amanda Nunes but I am pretty sure that Cyborg and Holm will face each other that it is no longer a dream match and instead is reality. This is a dream match because of the Nunes being unwilling to face Cyborg. Cyborg would clearly have the edge with her frame and impressive winning streak but Amanda Nunes’ hands and Jiu-Jitsu should give Cyborg her toughest challenge yet.

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#7. Demetrious Johnson vs. Cody Garbrandt

This is a fight that both fighters have requested but were refused. The magnitude of this fight would be huge. It would be the biggest little man fight in UFC history with both winning streaks on the line as well as a title. The UFC wants TJ Dillashaw to face Demetrious Johnson instead. This is baffling because this fight makes more sense since both are champions. Plus, both are gifted athletes who have impressive striking and great wrestling to make this a barn burner.

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#6. Tyron Woodley vs. Michael Bisping

These are probably the two most hated champions in not only UFC today but also in UFC history. Tyron Woodley has the power and wrestling to takeout anyone in his division. Michael Bisping has the reach and size advantage as he is the king of the middleweight division to Woodley’s welterweight division. You can make a case for either fighter but expect many boos to fill the arena if the two meet face-to-face in the octagon.

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#5. Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier

Daniel Cormier started his career at heavyweight, where he is undefeated at, and was the form UFC Light Heavyweight champion . Stipe Miocic is the current heavyweight champion who is one win away from having the most title defenses in the heavyweight division’s history. What more needs to be said? If Cormier moves to heavyweight and gains a win or two, he can petition for a title shot in this potential dream fight.

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#4. Anthony Johnson vs. Alistair Overeem

Two of the baddest and most scariest knockout artists in the history of MMA going up against each other is what any sane man would want to see. Alistair Overeem may be the bigger fighter, but he has shown that his chin is not hard to crack if you so much as touch it. Anthony Johnson meanwhile has never been finished via strikes except for one time by an eyepoke. This is very unlikely to happen due to Johnson’s apparent retirement and unwillingness to move up weight class. But a fan can dream, right?

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#3. Conor McGregor vs. Nick Diaz

Two of the most toxic fighters in UFC history. The press conferences alone would be amazing. Conor McGregor already had a couple of fights with Nick Diaz’s younger brother Nate Diaz, but how would he fare against the older brother who is a former Strikeforce champion? They also have some of the best boxing in the business which would make for a fun fight to watch.

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#2. Jon Jones vs. Brock Lesnar

Here is the fight that is possibly closest to happening. Both are monsters in their divisions, so putting them against each other makes sense. I’ve talked about this fight before in the past so if you want to see that be sure to CLICK HERE. Even though this would be a huge draw, it is not number one on my lift. That goes to two of the greatest of all time.

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#1. Anderson Silva vs. Georges St-Pierre

Number one on this list if a fight fans have been asking for for many years. The fact that this fight has not happened yet is depressing. These two dominated their division and are known by nearly every fight fan and casual alike. The fight is still possible though with both fighters still competing, but a lot would have to happen for it to come to fruition. I guess in the meantime I will have to just play EA Sports UFC 2 with these fighters instead until then.

What's Going On?

What’s Going On? (May 7th – 13th, 2017)

A whole new week means a whole new set of MMA news and events that needs to be discussed by yours truly. So let’s get right into it with some interesting topics for this week:

Conor McGregor’s baby is born

The world finally got another Conor McGregor (as if one wan’t enough). The media is already making articles of him as you read this article that I wrote about him. It’s unknown how long McGregor is going to spend raising his child until he come back to the UFC, but at least we finally see something happen and maybe we will see him defend a belt after all…or maybe not.

Anderson Silva and Dana White have war of words

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UFC president, Dana White, and one of the greatest of all time, Anderson Silva, have now been going back and forth in regards to UFC 212 in Brazil. Anderson Silva has requested to fight Yoel Romero for the interim UFC Middleweight Championship at UFC 212 in his home country of Brazil while the current UFC Middleweight Champion, Michael Bisping, waits to defend his belt from Georges St-Pierre sometime after October. It made sense to me for Silva to get a interim title shot especially from a company that gave Dan Henderson a legit title shot after only one win when he wasn’t even in the top 10. But White had other ideas when he said he believd Silva should just retire. I think this is heavily disrespectful to a legend who has helped build the very company that White helps manage. But White does not care about any of his employees and only cares about the money they make him. He will give McGregor and immediate rematch after being submitted in the second round but will not give arguably the GOAT of MMA an interim title shot when the current champion is going to wait a full year in between title defenses? This saddens me especially since a lot of younger MMA fans agree with him. I feel we need a better send off for The Spider, but I guess I’m the only one that thinks so.

Kelvin Gastelum punished for failing marijuan test

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Some lighter news (smoking joke), Kelvin Gastelum recently tested positive for marijuana, which is banned in most MMA and athletic associations, and has thus been given a 90 day suspension from MMA and had his win against Vitor Belfort turned over to a no contest instead. This comes as no surprise and yet many people are up in arms against the decision to turnover the win to a no contest. I think, as much as I do not believe marijuana should be illegal in MMA, that this was Gastelum’s own fault. As a professional fighter you need to know what is legal to take and what is not so that you don’t get yourself in trouble. He should know that marijuana is illegal but decided to take it anyways. That to me is unprofesional. Now I know a lot of you are thinking to yourself that it is a dumb rule that should not even have a punishment to beging with and to that I agree with you. But if you do not like a rule then you need to find a better way to combat it then just not following it. There are many laws in the U.S. that people do not like and we don’t just go breaking them because we do not like them. That could lead to a fine or jail time. Instead there is a process to get the law changed or removed entirely. Gastelum should have chosen this but instead did the unprofessional thing of blazing it. I also blame his camp for letting him do that as well. Keep control of your fighter and this won’t happen.

Daniel Cormier explains the reason for so many Jon Jones supporters

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Daniel Cormier had a few choice words for his haters and the flock of sheep that follow Jon Jones when he was on the Edge and Christian Podcast of Awesomeness:

People don’t want to be told, ‘I’m good so you should cheer for me.’ Jon Jones is a guy that has made a lot of mistakes, so maybe people relate to him more. They go, ‘Forget this Daniel Cormier goody two-shoes, him and his kids and his family. I want the guy that does coke and parties and crashes cars. That’s the guy I want.’” – Daniel Cormier

He even related himself to that of John Cena and Roman Reigns who are good guys in the WWE but are booed because of being too good. Honestly it makes a lot of sense since Jon Jones is the bad boy and Daniel Cormier is his opposite. But I think it more has to do with Jon Jones just being the better athlete. People like to cheer for winners, and when Jon Jones got into trouble his fans turned on him. But when he announced his return, his fans ran back to the winning side that he was a part of. Unless Cormier beats Jones in a rematch, things will stay like this. But hey I’m a fan of you, Cormier, so there’s something you have going for you.

Some more Al Iaquinta news

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Al Iaquinta said to the UFC to “cut me you sissies” on twitter. If you expect me to talk any more about this then you’re out of luck. I really do not know what to say about him anymore. So here is the jist of what I’ve been thinking: Iaquinta is crazy, the UFC is crazier. They are a bitter angry ol couple that can’t stand eachother but can’t leave one another. That’s all for this episode of “What is Al Iaquinta Doing Now?

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