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UFC 177 'Prelims' preview and predictions, Pt. 2

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More fights are coming to Fight Pass online digital network and FOX Sports 1 this weekend (Sat., Aug. 30, 2014) when UFC 177: "Dillashaw vs. Barao 2" kicks off from Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California.'s Patrick Stumberg continues the UFC 177 "Prelims" party with the second (and final) installment of a two-part under card preview series.


The first five rounds were a cringe-worthy beatdown, but maybe this time it'll be better?

That's what's running through the collective mind of Nova Uniao's as its former Bantamweight champion, Renan Barao, takes on the man who felled him, T.J. Dillashaw, in the main event of UFC 177, which takes place at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, Calif., this Saturday night (Aug. 30, 2014).

In addition, the resurgent Tony Ferguson will try to pick up his third straight win against Danny Castillo, who will be fighting in his hometown and coming off a brutal knockout win himself.

We've got two more UFC 177 "Prelims" under card matches to preview and predict after we addressed the opening threesome yesterday right here. Shall we?

185 lbs.: Lorenz Larkin vs. Derek Brunson

Lorenz Larkin (14-3) entered UFC officially unbeaten, going 4-0 (1 NC) in Strikeforce with a win over Robbie Lawler in his Middleweight debut. Since then, however, he has gone 1-3, the rough patch beginning with a robbery loss to Francis Carmont and culminating in a knockout loss to Costa Philippou.

Eight of the professional wins for "The Monsoon" have come by knockout.

Following a knockout loss to "Jacare" Souza, Derek Brunson (11-3) opened his UFC career successfully, decisioning Chris Leben before thrashing Brian Houston in less than one minute. He was on track to upset Olympian Yoel Romero as well before falling to a late surge from the Cuban.

He stands two inches taller than Brunson at 6’1."

Larkin is an entertaining fighter, but his struggles with Brad Tavares have me concerned over his chances here. Brunson, while occasionally too much of a blanket, mixes his striking and wrestling well. Meanwhile, Larkin’s takedown defense is excellent, but he can be stifled by the threat of the takedown.

In addition, Larkin still seems to have a tendency to be too passive unless pushed hard.

Despite Brunson’s two knockout losses, he should be able to handle himself on the feet -- Larkin’s last knockout happened eight fights ago in 2011. Even if Brunson can’t consistently hit takedowns, his attempts should be able to open up his striking enough to earn a decision win.

Prediction: Brunson via unanimous decision

125 lbs.: Scott Jorgensen vs. Henry Cejudo

Scott Jorgensen (15-9), the final World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) Bantamweight title challenger, handily dispatched his first two UFC foes, knocking out Ken Stone and out-grappling Jeff Curran. Unfortunately, he has won just two of his last seven, most recently picking up his first Flyweight win after losses to Zach Makovsky and Jussier "Formiga."

He has picked up five submission wins in his pro career.

Henry Cejudo (6-0) made history at the 2008 Olympics, earning gold at just 21 years old in freestyle wrestling. Though he could not make it through the 2012 trials, he picked up five mixed martial arts (MMA) wins in 2013 to kick off his career.

He will give up two inches of height to Jorgensen.

Cejudo’s wrestling pedigree is impeccable and, unlike former captain Daniel Cormier, enters MMA at a relatively young age. I still have my doubts, though. For one, Cejudo hasn’t made 125 pounds yet, missing badly in his last couple of attempts. Even though Jorgensen is just about shot, he’s significantly more experienced and has only lost to quality opposition.

Against a debuting fighter with weight cutting issues, I still feel reasonably comfortable picking him.

If Cejudo gets his weight under control, he has the skills to be a major player in the division. For now, though, I believe Jorgensen’s scrambling ability and striking will carry him to a close victory.

Prediction: Jorgensen via unanimous decision

It's ... well ... it'll probably be violent, at least. See you Saturday? will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 177 fight card on fight night (Sat., Aug. 30, 2014), starting with the Fight Pass "Prelims" match online, which is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. ET, right on through the FOX Sports 1-televised under card bouts at 8 p.m. ET and then main card PPV, which is slated to begin at 10 p.m. ET.

Current UFC "Prelims" Prediction Record 2014: 126-56 (1 NC)