The one fight this weekend that isn't getting that much play but could possibly be the fight that I am looking forward too the most is the fight between former welterweight champion Matt Serra and "Mr. bonus check" himself Chris Lytle. Considering the weakness of this card (MMBB's opinion) I can't believe this fight isn't getting more attention. They are hyping the hell out of Lil Nog/Bader, don't get me wrong, I'm a hug Lil Nog fan, but do they remember his last performance? Anyways, back to Serra/Lytle.
Chris Lytle is a -140 favorite while Serra sits at +110, and I can't believe this! I'm a huge fan of both and feel this is one of the most even fights (as far as betting odds go) in recent memory. Lytle has been using his jiujitsu as of late, most recently submitting Matt Brown with a double submission. For those that don't remember, he used a mounted triangle and arm bar at the same time, and it wasn't the first time he's one using this submission. Problem is, Serra is a Renzo Gracie jiu jitsu black belt and won't be submitted easily.
Lytle is also very willing to stand and bang too, and I don't think Serra has a problem with that. Serra is known to have heavy hands and a solid chin. Lytle is a former professional boxer who also has a very good chin. If I had to, I'd give a small advantage to Lytle in the stand up department, but it's not a significant advantage. I'd say the clinch is where Lytle will have to work from if he wants to take this fight. Serra is short and stocky and will be susceptible to knees in the clinch. I think if Lytle can get in close and get hold of a thai plumb, he could really do some damage with his knees. If Lytle wins, is he in anyway towards the front of the line for a title shot?
Serra's strengths as I mentioned is his jiu jitsu, his heavy hands and his solid chin. Problem is he doesn't utilize his jiu jitsu very often and relies too much on his ever improving striking. Sometimes you've got to get back to basics. Serra needs to close the gap and go for some trip takedowns. He showed during his stint on TUF that he is very good at those trips, so why not use them against a guy that you are better on the ground than? Once he gets it to the ground, he can use the same type of ground and pound he used against GSP. OK, I know he "stunned" GSP with a solid punch (to the back of the head), but I do feel that with Serra's compact base, he will be able to hold Lytle down and ground and pound him while looking for submissions.
MMBB thinks this will possibly be a full 3 round fight, but am predicting Matt Serra to pull of the upset and submit Chris Lytle sometime in the second round.