Are you excited for UFC 133? No? Well I am. I'm going to be there in person and hopefully someone(Rashad) gets brutally knocked out. Sadly I don't see it happening but I'm usually wrong. Oh well, find out who wins after the jump! Oh and you're warned, my grammar sucks. Cry about it.
Contrary to the poster above this, Tito is not back. Ryan Bader was overrated. But still, Tito has and seemingly always will be a tough fight for anyone. There isn't a chance in hell Tito gets finished by Rashad. Tito is tough enough to lose a decision to just about anyone. I don't personally believe the hype around Rashad's striking. He got dropped by Rampage, Thiago Silva, Lyoto Machida, and was easily out struck by Forrest Griffin. I see Rashad using his wrestling and grinding out a decision over the "Huntington Beach Bad Boy". I pray I'm wrong
Rashad via UD
Vitor Belfort vs Yoshiro Akiyama
I can't help but feel bad for Akiyama. He loses to Bisping and gets Vitor? I guess Uncle Dana doesn't care about the Japanese market, because if he keeps feeding Akiyama to top guys he's going to lose one of the few Japanese fighters he has. Unless Akiyama manages to use his judo to grind Vitor out its going to be a short night for him
Vitor by Third Round TKO
This is a tough one. You have experienced vet vs experienced vet. Before I get into who I think will win, I'm going to refer to Ebersole as Arrow. If you don't know why, look at the pic below. Arrow is coming off the destruction of Chris Lytle and is on a 7 fight win steak. Hallman on the other hand, is in the midst of a career revival and has won his last two. I think the defining factor in this fight is the quality of the competition. In my opinion, beating Lytle is much more impressive than beating Ben Saunders or a washed up Karo Parysian.
Arrow via UD
Another tough pick. Again these two are very similar fighters. Sakara is coming off a disappointing loss to Chris Wiedman and Rivera is coming off a (Cough Bullshit Cough) lose to Bisping. I think Sakara is the better of the two in all areas of the game. Rivera's body has some major miles on it and I see him going to sleep early.
Sakara by Second Round TKO
I'm about to piss quite a few Maniacs off. On this site, it is suicide to go against Condit or MacDonald. I am impressed with Rory, but I don't think he's ready for a vet like Pyle. Let's look at Rory's UFC record. Rory submitted Mike Guymon. I like Mike Guymon but I wouldn't take this too seriously as he tapped to a body triangle from back mount. Then he fought Carlos Condit, and lost in a controversial stoppage. After winning the first two rounds he was attacked by a vicious barrage of ground and pound, and the fight was stopped with 7 seconds left. Next he fought Nate Diaz, and rag dolled him easily winning a unanimous decision. However, I'm not too impressed with his smashing of a lightweight. Now on to Mike Pyle. Pyle recently defeated Ricardo Almeida and derailed the hype train of British prospect Jon Hathaway. I see this fight as a grappling clinic with Pyle on top for the entire fight.
Pyle by UD
I'm very pissed that Vladimir Matyushenko got hurt. I was looking forward to seeing him fight and win. Hamill on the other hand is going to lose. Gustafsson is coming of two straight rear naked choke victories. His fight against Cyrille Diabate really impressed me, he dropped the muay Thai expert twice before choking him. That takes some serious skill. This fight will not end with a rear naked choke however. Gustafsson is going to finish Hamill with strikes.
Gustafsson by First Round TKO
Chad Mendes has the best chance to beat Jose Aldo. His wrestling is second to none, and his striking has improved by leaps and bounds. Rani Yahya is a BJJ ace, and is coming off one of the biggest wins of his career over Mike Brown. His best chance to beat Mendes is by submission. Here's an interesting fact: Neither Joseph Benavidez, Chad Mendes, nor Urijah Faber have ever been submitted. They all train under Team Alpha Male have very similar games. Mendes is going to grind him out for a decision or pick him apart striking
Mendes via UD
This is an interesting fight, with both fighters coming off of impressive wins. Nick Pace submitted Will Campuzano with a pillar choke, while Ivan knocked out Charlie Valencia with a very impressive elbow. I think experience will be a big factor in this fight. Pace has only had 7 fights while Ivan has had almost 30 and has generally fought better competition. Also Pace failed to make weight for his last fight which makes me suspect he has weak cardio, plus guys that fail to make weight are unimpressive and I dislike them(see Ruedigar, Gabe)
Menjivar by Third Round KO
It wasn't too long ago that Johny Hendricks was the welterweight division's best prospect. Then Rick Story came along and battered Hendricks for a decision. He is fighting fellow prospect Mike Pierce who is on a three fight win streak and has looked impressive since he lost to Jon Fitch in a classic Fitch fight. Hendricks is coming off of a knockout of the night performance against TJ Waldburger. This is a tough fight to call but I have to go with Hendricks by wrestling him to the final bell
Hendricks via UD
How far has Brown fallen? He went for fighting for the belt to fighting someone best known for losing a bullshit decision to Leonard Garcia. Brown is on a two fight lose streak getting out struck by excellent kick boxer Diego Nunes and out grappled by BJJ stud Rani Yahya. Both of these fighters are more skilled than Phan and I see Brown playing it safe for a much needed win.
Brown via UD
Rafael Natal vs Costantinos Philippou
I saw Philippou lose to Nick Catone at UFC 128 in person. The story of the fight was Philippou being out wrestled by Catone. Natal's BJJ pedigree is much higher than Catone's and I see the fight going very similarly. The one X-factor in this fight is that in Philippou's last fight he stepped up on short notice, and we can't know how much that affected him. Unless he comes out a completely different fighter than last time he loses. This is, however, the best underdog pick on PG.
Natal by Second Round Submission
What do you think Maniacs? Are these picks spot on or horrible? Let me know and thanks for reading!
And to end on a high note...