The Ancient Romans were big on divinity. In an uncertain world threatened by war, famine, pestilence and natural disaster, reading omens to predict the future was a critical function of government. The preferred method was to beat a bull to death, spill its entrails, and divine the will of the gods by scrutinizing the steaming pile of ordure and bullshit that resulted.
Predicting mixed martial arts (MMA) matches is a very similar science. Generally speaking, one examines a lot of bullshit, sees what one wants to see, and comes to a conclusion. The freshest and most recent deposit of forecasting material comes from the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) pre-fight open workouts. At these events, the fighters' past performances become moot, and their actual pre-fight form, orientation and condition is revealed.
Today, UFC 145 main event fighters Jon Jones and Rashad Evans hit the mitts, worked up sweats and participated in one of the final pre-fight rituals before they step inside the Octagon at the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Ga., on Saturday night (April 21, 2012) and wage war like modern-day gladiators.
What do you see? As one well-versed in rootling through bullshit, I will help you with a few pointers as we watch the UFC 145 open media workouts videos for Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans:
Rashad Evans (3.5 minutes):
- Crisp, sharp punches
- Stable, wide stance
- Poised, calm and deliberate
- No kicks
- No grappling
- Some misses in striking defense
- Apparently good cardio
Jon Jones (8 minutes):
- Starts workout with multiple front snap kicks
- Typical long, slow punches
- Deliberately switches stance between orthodox and southpaw
- Practices roundhouse kicks with both legs
- Falls into typical slow, deliberate rhythm
- Grapples with tree stump
- Plenty of shooting for doubles and singles
- Follows up single with roundhouse kick to head
Having peered deep into the omens, savored the aroma and divined the patterns, I have seen the future. And you? Within the bullshit, what do YOU see?
If your crystal ball is blurry and needs a little friendly assistance, be sure to check out the latest UFC 145 odds and betting guide for "Jones vs. Evans" right here. And to check out our complete UFC 145: "Jones vs. Evans" event archive for all the latest news and notes click here.