By Benjamin Bieker
Mike Pierce vs. David Mitchell
Mitchell has lost two fights by being controlled on the ground, and this fight will be no different. Pierce has the ability to take nearly any fighter down that he fights. Look for Pierce to control this fight on his way to a unanimous decision victory.
Seth Baczynski vs. Brian Melancon
Baczynski has beaten a lot tougher fighters than Melancon. He will used his increased skills in grappling and standup to win this fight by TKO in the second round.
Edson Barboza vs. Rafaello Oliveira
Barboza is a world class striker facing a fighter who has nearly half his losses by knockout. That does not look good for Oliveira who will have trouble evading the big punches and kicks as the fight goes on. Look for Barboza to take this by knockout late in the first.
Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Dave Herman
Gonzaga is a world class grappler who has knockout power in his hands while Herman is a fighter who has been finished in every one of his losses. Look for Gonzaga to wear Herman down on the ground until he stops him with punches in the second round.
Norman Parke vs. Kazuki Tokudome
This fight will eventually go to the ground, because both Parke and Tokudome have finished a lot of fights there. Unfortunately, Tokudome does not have the skill on the ground that Parke possess. Look for Tokudome to make this fight interesting until Parke catches him in the second round with a submission.
Chris Leben vs. Andrew Craig
Leben is a tough fighter who has fallen on hard times as of late, but he is nothing if not able to re-invent himself. He has moved to Alliance MMA where fighters such as Dominick Cruz, Phil Davis, and Alexander Gustafsson train. That work in the training camp will put Leben in the lead in this fight as he captures a hard fought decision victory.
Cub Swanson vs. Dennis Siver
While Siver does not have the knockout ability of Cub Swanson, he does have the technical striking that can keep Swanson’s power punches at bay. Also, Siver has proven to have excellent takedown defense and submissions so he can control this bout where it goes and can be dangerous if it hits the ground. Swanson will make this a back and forth fight, but Siver takes this based on control for a decision victory.
Mark Munoz vs. Tim Boestch
Mark Munoz is a tough fighter, but when you cut over 50 pounds in four months you are not going to have a stamina that will be able to hold you in a three round fight. Boestch has the ability to drag this into the late third round where he will stop Munoz by TKO when Munoz tires.
Tim Kennedy vs. Roger Gracie
Roger Gracie may have some of the best grappling in the MMA game, but that means nothing if he cannot get the fight to the ground. Kennedy may never be a champion, but he is a tough fighter who will beat most of the fighters put in front of him. If Souza could not submit Kennedy then do not expect Gracie to be able to. Kennedy takes a clear cut decision win.
Frankie Edgar vs. Charles Olivera
Edgar has had some rough losses as of late, but that was against top flight competition. Olivera, on the other hand, has had some impressive wins, but he has never beaten anyone that great. This fight will be similar to Olivera’s fight with Jim Miller, because Edgar will be able to out grapple Olivera on the ground en route to a stoppage by ground and pound in the third round.
Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman
Who has heard this story before? Anderson SIlva is facing his biggest test to date, this is the man that will beat him, or his opponent has the skills to finally put him at his limit. I think I have heard all that and more multiple times. Weidman is a great fighter and may even be a champion someday, but that day is not today. Silva takes this fight by TKO in the first or second round by pinpoint accuracy and the power in his hands. Those are two things that Weidman has never faced and two things that are extremely hard to train for.
What are your thoughts?