The Octagon’s gonna be a rockin’ this weekend in Vegas as ten of the top MMA Heavyweights in the business square off at UFC 146: dos Santos vs Mir. With their combined weight of approximately 2505 pounds (1138kg), the floor and cage walls of the Octagon will be tested like never before.
In addition to the five main card Heavyweight bouts there are seven other decent matchups that should also keep you entertained. Definitely worth the price of admission, if you can drag yourself away from the poker tables that is.
Here are my picks for the CageWall featured fights:
Does Frank Mir honestly think he can beat JDS? Yes, he does. Does anybody else besides besides his immediate family think he can beat JDS? Nada. Let’s face it, unless Jon Jones moves up a weight class there’s not a Heavyweight in the world that can beat JDS. He’s in his prime and he’s a beast. This one will be over in a hurry.
JDS by KO in Round 1
I’ve been swaying back and forth on this one. Silva is 3″/7.6cm taller, about 15lbs/6.8kg heavier, and has a 5″/12.7cm reach advantage. We’ve seen him dominate smaller fighters like Fedor and Mike Kyle so it’s possible he could do the same with Cain. Unfortunately for him though he’s got a Forest Griffin chin.
Cain’s chin can be just as fragile but he’s also shown that he can withstand some heavy blows, like against Brock and Kongo. With Cain it seems to be all about how prepared he is physically and mentally. The loss to JDS was his first and it didn’t sit well with “Brown Pride”. I’m thinking we will see the Cain that beat Brock in this one. Quick, strong, and dangerous.
Cain by KO in Round 2
Dave Herman’s last fight was a TKO loss to Stefan Struve. Should I go on? Nelson has lost three of his last four but the losses were against Junior dos Santos, Frank Mir, and Fabricio Werdum. They were all Decision losses as well. Big Country has been in with the best and they couldn’t take him out. I’m pretty sure Herman won’t either.
Nelson by KO in Round 2
Really tough one to call here. Both fighters are undefeated and have faced a similar level of opponents in the past. They are also close to identical in every physical aspect. Shane del Rosario seems to be a bit more versatile and experienced with his submissions though, especially given the armbar win over Lavar Johnson his last time out. There will probably be big blows rocking each other back and forth but when it gets to the ground, Shane should be able to work in a Submission.
del Rosario by Submission in Round 2
I’m going to pick this one purely based on my “Struve Pattern Theory”:
Win vs Dave Herman by TKO (punches) in Round 2 at 3:52. Event: UFC on Fuel TV: Sanchez vs. Ellenberger on February 15, 2012
Win vs Pat Barry by Submission (triangle armbar) in Round 2 at 3:22. Event: UFC Live: Cruz vs. Johnson on October 1, 2011 (Submission of the Night.)
Loss vs Travis Browne by KO (superman punch) in Round 1 at 4:11. Event: UFC 130 on May 28, 2011
Win vs Sean McCorkle by TKO (punches) in Round 1 at 3:55. Event: UFC 124 on December 11, 2010
Win vs Christian Morecraft by KO (punches) in Round 2 at 0:22. Event: UFC 117 on August 7, 2010 (Knockout of the Night.)
Loss vs Roy Nelson by TKO (punches) in Round 1 at 0:39. Event: UFC Fight Night: Florian vs. Gomi on March 31, 2010
He wins a few and looks good, and then he gets brutally knocked out. Rinse and repeat.
Lavar by KO in Round 1
Miller looked really bad against Bisping his last time out, really really bad. Lucky for him Dollaway has also looked pretty bad getting KO’d in his last two. However, the key here is that Miller’s pillow fists won’t be able to exploit Dollaway’s suspect chin. Dollaway has been out with a hip injury since last Augusy but I expect him to come in very hungry and get back to his winning ways. I’m not sure he has enough to KO or submit Miller but I keep thinking of Miller’s loss to Bisping so it’s possible. Tough call on how he will win.
Dollaway by Decision
Barboza is coming off a ‘KO of the night’ spinning wheel kick KO against Terry Etim, and before that he took a close decision against DUI Pearson. The KO against Etim was brilliant but prior to that it was a pretty even and rather boring fight. He’s winning fights but needs a few more impressive victories to run with the Lightweight elites. Barboza was supposed to fight Evan Dunham but Dunham was forced out with an injury and replaced by former WEC Lightweight Champion Jamie Varner.
Varner used to be one of the best Lightweights in the world. He’s a couple years past his prime now though and has been keeping busy fighting behind 7-11′s for Big Gulps. Varner is tough as nails and has always been enjoyable to watch because he goes in and bangs, but that style will lose him a Big Gulp against such a powerful striker like Barboza.
Barboza by KO in Round 3
In his last four fights we’ve seen Dan Hardy go from a Decision loss to GSP in a title bout, to a devastating KO at the fists of Carlos Condit, to a unanimous decision loss to Anthony Johnson, and finally to getting choked out by a retiring Chris Lytle. With that descent from prominence, he’s in danger of becoming the Vanilla Ice of MMA. I don’t think that will happen though.
Ludwig does have one of the best nicknames in the business and has certainly been around the block, but I don’t think he’ll be able to handle the more diverse and powerful Hardy. I was going to pick Hardy by Decision but Ludwig has only lost once by Decision in his whole career. Hmmm, what the heck.
Hardy by Decision
Just to round out the picks, look for Diego Brandao to KO Darren Elkins in Round 2, Jacob Volkmann by Decision over Paul Sass (I only pick Volkmann because he has the worst physique in MMA), Glover Teixeria by KO in Round 2 over Kyle Kingsbury (I’m a Yankees fan. This will be a good Light Heavyweight fight), and Mike Brown by Decision over Daniel Pineda (again, a Yankees fan who is still hurting from news of Michael Pineda getting injured for the year. Brown has enough left in him to get this one).
Bring on the Heavyweights!