Saturday, March 2, 2013

UFC on Fuel: Stann vs. Silva preview

Brian Stann has certainly been on a downhill slide recently, losing two of the last three bouts, but they have been against elite competition.

Now he faces formerly elite competition in his opponent on this Japan card: Wanderlei Silva. The Axe Murderer may well be fighting for the final time in his career, and at the very least this will probably be his last fight in Japan, where he became an MMA legend in PRIDE FC.

I firmly expect an enjoyable stand-up clash, but Stann's wrestling background, size and overall endurance should make him the favorite in this fight.

I have always been a huge fan of Silva and I hope that tonight is yet another great entry into his career of great fights. That said, he will be going down swinging.

I'll take Stann by decision.

Heavyweight bout: Mark Hunt v. Stefan Struve

Two guys really looking to get their names in the title hunt have a real chance today. I give Hunt a slight edge in stand-up, but Struve has just been a monster on the ground.

I'm expecting the traditional Struve fight: Struggle at the beginning, recover between rounds, explode with fury Round 2. As such, I take Struve by KO 2.

Rest of the main card

Catchweight Bout (158 lbs.): Takanori Gomi v. Diego Sanchez - I should note that this was scheduled as a lightweight fight, but Sanchez missed weight. As such, I'm taking Gomi as the more motivated for this fight, and I'm taking him to win an exciting decision.

Middleweights: Hector Lombard v. Yushin Okami - The positioning for who gets the shot after Chris Weidman has begun, and I've got to say, Lombard finally looked like he's gotten up to the UFC's speed. I'll take him by KO 1.

Featherweights: Mizuto Hirota v. Rani Yahya - Hirota finally gets to fight in his true weight class, and I think it shows with a KO 3 victory.

Welterweights: Dong Hyun Kim v. Siyar Bahadurzada - This is going to be an awesome fight, my pick for FOTN, actually. I'm going with Bahadurzada by decision as he is on a roll, but this fight could end at any second.

After a 5-0 week with last week's UFC card, here's hoping that continues this week.

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