Saturday, July 30, 2011

Strikeforce-Battle of the Legends: Fedor vs Hendo

After the last event I came to a great realization. I stink at MMA predictions. So I'm trying the exact opposite of what I would choose (the George Costanza method, for you Seinfeld buffs). We'll see how much better I do.
Heavyweight bout: Fedor Emelianenko (31-3, 1 NC) vs. Dan Henderson (27-8)
Let's be honest. Both of these guys are total legends in this sport. Henderson is looking like he is on more of a win streak. Fedor has a higher percentage of finishes. I'm almost tempted to just sit back and watch this as a fan. How do you break down a fight like this and describe it? Fedor has age on Henderson and a higher percentage of finishes. Statistically, I would pick Fedor. Costanza says I go with Henderson.
Winner: Henderson
Women's Welterweight (135 lb) Championship bout: Marloes Coenen (19-4) (c) vs. Miesha Tate (11-2)
I've said this a million times. I swoon over Miesha Tate. She is my Justin Bieber. This one will be very hard for me to be unbiased. But I admire Marloes Coenen too, and I was the person who saw her winning against Sarah Kaufman. Tate has the momentum, on a 5-fight win streak. Plus, she doesn't have the belt, and you know she has to want it. However, Coenen has never won a decision. She is a finisher. I always tend to go with the finisher. As hard as it is for me, I would say Tate. Costanza says Coenen.
Winner: Coenen
Middleweight bout: Robbie Lawler (18-7, 1 NC) vs. Tim Kennedy (13-3)
This should be another really good fight. Kennedy has better momentum (4 of his last 5), as opposed to Lawler (2 of his last 5). Kennedy has worked on his way up from the Challengers series. Now he gets a chance against one of the golden boys of Elite XC/Strikeforce. Kennedy has a more even percentage of victories. Lawler seems to rely more heavily on the KO. Costanza method says to go with Lawler.
Winner: Lawler
Welterweight bout: Paul Daley (20-10-2) vs. Tyron Woodley (8-0)
What better story? Controversial, seasoned veteran Paul "Semtex" Daley taking on skyrocketing prospect Tyron "T-Wood" Woodley. Daley has more experience, T-Wood is on more of a momentum, winning his last 8. This will be a huge test for former Bully Beatdown fighter Woodley. Being the little mark I am for Woodley, he would be my hands-down pick. But the Costanza rule states to choose Daley.
Winner: Daley
Welterweight bout: Scott Smith (17-8, 1 NC) vs. Tarec Saffiedine (10-3)
This should be another interesting fight to watch. This is kind of the "Bronze Medal Game" from a world Cup. Both of these guys, their last fight was against Daley and Woodley, respectively. Smith needs a victory (badly), 2 of his last 5, 2 fight losing streak. Saffiedine is 3 of his last 5. Smith is a finisher. If this stays standing up, it goes to Smith. If it goes to the ground, I've got Saffiedine. I would says Smith, so I'm going with Saffiedine.
Winner: Saffiedine
To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Raw is Hunter 7-25-11

Last week, we saw one of the weirdest, most bizarre changes in wrestling history. Tonight, there seems to be a new era, the real-life McMahon-Helmsley era, if you will. Questions abound. Who will become champion? Will Alberto del Rio cash in Money in the Bank? Will we see Zack Ryder? Who will Mark Henry sideline? Will we ever see Sin Cara again? Will my wife bring me home my drink from Sonic? (She did, btw.)
The signature opens up. How do they have time for Ultimate Warrior? Are they proud of him? Really? (<------ Miz voice) No wonder CM Punk wants to quit.
Whyyyyy in the blue hellllllllll (<-------- Rock voice) is the championship match kicking off a Raw? I liked the wrestlers watching in the back. These two had a really good match. Rey and Miz had really nice chemistry together. And then, in a move that surprised absolutely no one, Alberto del Rio came in to cash in his Money in the Bank. Rey let ADR know that he was ready when he did a plancha onto ADR. ADR changed his mind and took his briefcase and went to the back. We all saw ADR cashing it in, but not cowering out.
Vince McMahon on commentary used to drive "Anything can happen in the WWF" down our throats worse than Rocky Maivia. I feel like we're getting to that place again.
Then we get a nice recap featuring a champagne bath featuring Zack Ryder. And then they cut to John Cena who shook his hand. Don't worry, John. You'll get it back in no time.
Then we have Dolph Ziggler versus Evan Bourne. (My wife likes Evan Bourne, so she stayed awake during this match.) Commentary was strong during this match. Lawler made Bourne seem important. This was a really strong match. It got over Ziggler and the sleeper hold. And I don't think Bourne lost anything by losing here.
Keith Stone is once again on my tv. This is not acceptable. Maryse & Melina vs. Kelly Kelly & Eve Torres. I am liking Eve more and more. And Maryse is sexy. This is quite possibly the worst match on Raw I have seen in some time. I'm just happier that this match got longer than the Keith Stone segment.
R-Truth is talking to Triple-H. Back from the commercial break, Triple-H is in the ring. This feels important. This monologue gives me what I need to browse some Ring of Honor and WWE and MPX (Buy a $Payday$ t-shirt. Just because I said so.) t-shirts. I loved the swerve of us thinking CM Punk was coming out and getting Jim Ross instead. Though I gotta admit. The moment I hear the snare drums, I think of Roddy Piper. Then Cole cut a promo. HHH gave him the rest of the night off as an announcer. But not as a wrestler. Cole had a match next. Then R-Truth got the hottest segment of the night. HHH got to channel his old DX self. "Are you talking to me or are you talking to these other guys?" R-Truth does the psycho eyes better than anybody else. HHH watches R-Truth walk away and lets him know HHH re-signed somebody else-John Morrison.
Then Michael Cole came out to the ring in Triple-H's music. And his opponent... Zack Ryder. In the span of a minute, my Twitter timeline had 16 comments about Zack Ryder. It was worse than the diva match, but in Cole's defense, he's not a wrestler. The crowd went nuts. It was nice. Please tell me they are going to use him.
We had a Kofi-Alberto del Rio match. Kofi is such an incredible athlete. Aside from Rey, I don't think I've ever seen a luchador adjust to the WWE in-ring style as well as del Rio. The finish was really strong. Kofi almost had del Rio down for the pin. Kofi had an injured arm and tapped out because of the injury and looked pretty strong even after a loss.
HHH will be on Smackdown! The exclamation point is there because it's on the name, not because I'm enthused.
My tv does not need to be adjusted. Jim Ross is supposed to be there. Who has an "Add Jim Ross" on their settings? Maybe he can do commentary on General Hospital. "Stone Cold! Stone Cold!" regarding Jason. (I'm married. Don't judge me.)
Miz is not happy. A champion needs a face. And, in a cheap plug worthy of DX, Miz will be on The George Lopez Show on Wednesday. Something tells me Miz may NOT be the focal point of that show, as it most likely will be crashed. Then Rey comes out to face the Confederate Warrior. The crowd really is in to John Cena. Maybe they're in Charleston, SC. I heard the Confederacy was big there. While I can mock them all I want, this was a hot crowd. Cena and Rey fought a really good match. I really had no idea who was going to win this one. Watching Cena win made me a little sick, but then Punk's music hit and he has new music. They had a nice stare-down with their belts.
All in all, this was such a good Raw. There are things I didn't like. I didn't like Cena winning the belt. I didn't like the divas segment/match. But all the rest of the matches were great.  (I'm not counting Ryder-Cole as a match.) It was undpredictable, fun, and it sounds like they are listening to us. 
To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Strikeforce Challengers Preview 7-22-11

The MMA live action has been a little quiet over the past few months. There's plenty of hype around the MMA world. We've had Tito Ortiz replace Phil Davis to face Rashad Evans in the next UFC Pay-Per-Views. Little Nog is out of his big match against Rich "Ace" Franklin. And now Alistair Overeem is out of the Strikeforce Grand Prix Tournament. So the news has been full, but our viewing pleasure has not.
Strikeforce is bringing us a Challengers show to give us some MMA.
Welterweight bout: Roger Bowling (9-1) vs. Bobby Voelker (23-8)
This is the rubber match between two well-fought fighters. Bowling's only loss was to Voelker. Bowling is 4 of his last 5, as opposed to Voelker's 3. Bowling is looking better in the momentum category. Both have the same percentage of TKO's in their total victories. I can see this being a good stand-up bout. I'm going to say Bowling second round by TKO.
Winner: Bowling
Women's (135 lbs) bout: Liz Carmouche (5-1) vs. Sarah Kaufman (13-1)
This should be a really great fight. Kaufman's list of opponents makes me swoon (Miesha Tate & Roxanne Modafferi mostly), but one thing stands out to me. Kaufman has still never won a fight by submission. Matter of fact, her only loss came about via submission from Marloes Coenen. Carmouche has a ground game (even though it was her first pro fight and her only loss was also to Coenen). I love Sarah Kaufman and think she's a really good role model, and I say that as a parent who is very selective about who my daughter sees as a role model. But something tells me Carmouche walks away with a TKO in the second round.
Winner: Carmouche
Heavyweight bout: Devin Cole (18-9-1) vs. Lavar Johnson (15-4)
I would like to begin this saying that if my last name was Johnson, my nickname would SOOOOOOOOOO be "Big." Both fighters are coming off a loss: Cole to Grand Prix replacement Daniel Cormier and Johnson to Shane del Rosario. Johnson has won 4 out of his last 5, as opposed to Cole's 3. Lavar Johnson is a big guy that has always impressed me. He's made it to the third round once. I'm going with a TKO by Johnson in the first three minutes.
Winner: Johnson
Light Heavyweight bout: Joe Cason (9-1) vs. Ovince St. Preux (10-4)
This is what Strikeforce Challengers Series is all about. Haitian OSP is a total beast. I live in total utter fear of him. He looks kind of like Bobby Lashley but with talent. There's just one tiny thing. One of his four wins in Strikeforce have been a finish. He's won three (very good, impressive) decisions, but up here at this level, he's struggled to finish off his opponents. Iowa resident Joe Cason is a total blue-chipper. He's never made it beyond 6 minutes in a fight. And he's gone beyond 2 minutes 1 other time. Cason has only fought in 2 states, and this will be his debut on a Zuffa stage. He's not fighting the best in Iowa. He's fighting the best in the world now. My major concern for Cason is conditioning. I am not going to doubt OSP. But this fight actually has me excited for this night. OSP TKO in the first round.
Winner: OSP
Middleweight bout: Ronald Stallings (9-3, 1 NC) vs. Adlan Amagov (7-1-1)
Both of these guys are established fighters but will be making their debut on a national stage. What stands out to me is that Stallings has lost one decision, and that is the only time he has ever made it the distance (and to the 3rd round). Stallings is a finisher with both TKO's and submissions,  and I expect him to finish off Amagov with a submission in the second round.
Winner: Stallings
To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Raw Is... A Tournament? 7-18-11

Vince is walking to the ring (wearing a hideous coat with a color that does not exist in nature) with Johnny Ace in tow (whom I have decided is now mute). CM Punk is ingrateful. There will be an 8-Man Tournament for the championship. John Cena is fired. Tonight will be a night of epic proportions. Will this be a WWE night of epic proportions or will this be TNA's huge announcement that turns out to be Shark Boy's evening dinner.
The first match was Miz vs. Alex Riley. Alex Riley is coming along nicely. Miz got the win so I was happy to see that. Miz has been through a lot in the past few weeks in his knee and has done a great job of selling his injuries from last night. Miz ended up with the win so he can lose in the next round and not lose anything.
We were treated to Jack Swagger and R-Truth. The crowd could care less about this match. So could I while watching it. While everybody was so in love with King of the Ring, I wasn't. The only reason I cared about the results was because it was a launching pad for a lot of careers. I'm not the biggest fan of tournaments (except for ECWA's Super 8).
Then we got Alberto del Rio vs. Kofi Kingston. And the return of Ricardo Rodriguez, the man with the best hair in the WWE. They had a really exciting match that got the crowd going for a little. Kofi Kingston is slowly becoming one of the top babyfaces on Raw. Kofi came out of nowhere to pin Alberto del Rio. This was the highlight of the night up to this point. (And then it plummeted very quickly as my wife discovered Wikipedia and started giving me the life story of Alberto del Rio. But you already knew that.)
At the point they were interviewing Kofi Kingston, I knew he was getting attacked. And then he didn't get attacked. Is Kofi getting a rocket strapped to him? Rey-Dolph started out really well. My wife once again ruined wrestling for me by comparing Vicki Guerrero to Carol Burnett. They fought a really good match with Rey picking up the victory.
They did a 14-diva match. There were 28 reasons to watch this match. I don't think this match lasted 28 seconds. It was long enough for me to swoon for A. J. and wish Sara del Rey was here.
Then we got Kofi and Miz. This match was really good and we had a bloody smile from Miz. I found myself asking if Kofi was really going to win it. It's been a long time since I've seen one of those matches on a Monday Night Raw. If Miz wins this tournament, I don't see how he can still be a heel. Maybe that's what they're doing.
We found time for an Andy Leavine video package. They need to do more of these. Give me a reason to care about these guys. Then we got Rey vs. R-Truth. This should make a pretty good feud because R-Truth hate the "Little Jimmies" and Rey does everything he can for them. The guys are great athletes and would feed off of each other really well. (Break from Raw: The cops in the Twix commercial crack me up every time.) The two fought such a great match with such intense drama. The crowd really got into it as well.
I knew the finals of their tournament wasn't going to be this week. I thought we would have had to wait til Summerslam. If they had just been up front with us, we would have been fine. I just can't but feel it was bait 'n' switch. Vince introduced Cena. Cena made a reference to "Kevin [Dunn]." So we're still keeping with the shooting. I like this Cena. He made sense and was rational. "I will walk on somebody else's show, Brother." HHH came out and Vince introduced his son-in-law, HHH. Trips is now "The Corporate Game." HHH is now taking over the day-to-day operations. So Vince is relieved of his duties (with tears).
This Raw was a pretty good disappointment. The only reason is we didn't get CM Punk. Punk hasn't gone anywhere yet. He's building up plenty of buzz for himself and the company. Some people like tournaments. I don't. But I think the crowd did a good job of building up their momentum. I hated the ending angle. This is typical of the past 10 years. Anything that has gotten hot, the McMahons have tried to insert themselves into it. Looks like my timeline really liked it, but I hated it. I am curious to see where it goes from here.
To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Raw is Anticipation-7-11-11

Tonight I will try the live blogging again. I can't remember the last time I anticipated a Raw this much. There aren't any gimmicks behind this one; there is just a Raw I want to see really badly tonight. Let's be honest. Last week was phoned in. This is going to be the true test. Do we get Punk unleashed? Might we even get Cena or Vince unleashed? (Hey, you can't blame a guy for dreaming.) Are we on the brink of a glory period of wrestling? Rather than a "Golden Age of Wrestling," we have an "Adamantium Age of Wrestling?"(Better than Gold or Platinum)
We have some questions to answer. Will we see Zack Ryder again? Will Alberto del Rio tell us it's his destiny to be champion or something? How is Riley doing after Miz’ beatdown? What of the Nexus? And what about this potentially explosively legendary epic moment between Mr. McMahon, John Cena & CM Punk?
The WWE has announced Punk leads off the night with a live mic. This is either going to be "The Promo" or the infamous Matt Hardy promo where he killed his career in 5 minutes. The skinny young Bill Cowher walked to the ring with a megaphone. (Ring of Honor chant #1) Punk cut a great promo about how he has made the WWE relevant. And then John Cena comes out to a hometown pop. The two have a confrontation. This is still all about the match, not Tony Schiavone shooting on Mike Tenay.
John Cena vs. David Otunga & Michael McGillicuddy
God, are you mad at me? Maybe this is a reminder that the WWE has not gone a total 180 and is still a work-in-progress. I'd love to go on the details of this match. But it's just the last 5 John Cena handicap squash matches. Again. I hate handicap matches. Unless it's The Giant vs. Pez Whatley & The Gambler. No single person should ever pin the tag team champions cleanly. Can't we give him Hacksaw Jim Duggan or something? As much as I hate to say this, it was not a bad match. I just hated the premise. It could have been worse. I could have been watching a Keith Stone commercial.
One of the biggest signs that something big was happening during Raw-Twitter crashed. (And something called a Home Run Derby) Dolph and Vickie are talking about the US Title. Drew McIntyre and Vickie both mock "The Boss." And the Boss showed up. He books them in a handicap match against Big Show. So Vince is a face? And then Scott Stanford asks Vince what the rest of the world thinks or something. Vince tells "the rest of the world" they can go to Hell. So Vince is a heel now? He turns faster than the Acolytes/APA.
We come back from commercial and Melina is back in the ring. We didn't get to watch her entrance?
Kelly Kelly vs Melina
The Bellas did commentary. I think that is the worst plague to be unleashed on Earth since Glenn Close on the 4th season of The Shield. Kelly finished Melina quicker than Goldberg finished Rick Fuller. And then the Bellas mocked Kelly for being too skinny. So Kharma was too fat? And now Kelly is too skinny? Make up your mind, Bellas. I don't like the Bellas being in the anti-bullying ad. Are they characters or not? Too many blurry lines.
When we come back from break, Miz climbs on top of the latter and cuts a great promo. And of course he gets interrupted by Jack Swagger. And then Evan Bourne interferes. And then Kofi comes out and we see pyro (I squee). Then we get R-Truth. He is an Acrophobe (me too) and an Arachnophobe. And then Alex Riley runs out. And then we get Alberto del Rio. Then the Anonymous Raw GM makes a match.
We got to see Big Show and Bruce Campbell together in the same segment. Pure awesomeness. Too bad it was for Burn Notice.
The 6-man was hard to keep track of. It got to help further the PPV. This is what they call a go-home show. And they definitely went home. Alex Riley got the pin, so it looks like they are committed to strapping a rocket to Alex Riley. I sure hope he's ready for it. And Alberto del Rio got to stand in the middle of the ring like he was going to win. That means he will not win.
Big Show vs. Drew McIntyre & Dolph Ziggler
My iPod froze during this match so I spent my focus on resetting it. This is exactly what a handicap match should be. Neither wrestler lost anything. Mark Henry came out and took Big Show through a table. It was a pretty good visual. I love this deadly Mark Henry.
Vince and Punk did their showdown. While Vince sat at the table, Punk paced around the ring with a microphone. Vince called CM Punk by his first name. No wonder Phil goes by "CM Punk." Punk went over the provisions of his contract. 1. He gets to push Vince. 2. He wants to be WWE Ice Cream Bars. 3. He wants to be in Chaperone II. 4. He wants the Wrestlemania Main Event. 5. He wants Vince to apologize for suspending him. After much prodding (that included Colt Cabana & Luke Gallows), we had this:
"I apologize, you son of a bitch."
-Vincent Kennedy McMahon
Then Cena came out to the ring. Before his music hit, we had "Colt Cabana" chants. (WTF? Was that real?) Cena regressed into 5th grader Johnny. But there were some moments where Cena would turn into sober, serious John. Punk called Cena the New York Yankees. (Oh, no he didn't.)
I'm trying to think of what I liked and didn't like about this Raw. I really liked the WWE's focus. They needed to push a pay-per-view, and that is exactly what they did. The matches were sub-par. The promos were really good. I am feeling sold on the pay-per-view and I don't know how this is supposed to end. I'm very intrigued.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Monday Night Raw 7-4-2011

Tonight I will be attempting a live blog about a special 4th of July Monday Night Raw. I understand J-Call likes to give his opinion before. Last week's Raw was one of the greatest moments in the history of Raw and the "real-est" wrestling has been for me since Bash at the Beach. Tonight's Raw is already in the books. I've hidden myself under a rock so I know very little of what has happened beforehand.
Tonight is going to be a little weird for me. After one of the greatest promos in history, CM Punk does this. How I feel about using homosexuality as an insult is very well-documented. I think if I can forgive Michael Cole for using the cigarette term (f*****), I can forgive Punk for calling somebody a homo. Nobody is perfect. Punk has apologized, and I can move on. Punk has owned up to it (way more than WWE has). I think the WWE has done a good job of joining anti-bullying campaigns (except for putting the Bellas in the PSA). Wrestlers (and fans, too, for that matter), just be careful. You don't know the life history of the wrestler or the fan.
Now forgive my serious moment. It is time for Raw is Punk. And of course, how else should Raw is Punk begin other than an entrance from "The Confederate Warrior" John Cena. Cena doesn't want to pretend that Punk never existed. Cena wants to insure that WWE superstars retain the ability to speak their minds.
"I'm no fashion icon. I look like the Kool-Aid Man in shorts."
-John Cena, in the line of the century
Cena cut a very nice promo for him. He didn't sound like he was pandering to an army of 10-year-olds. He mentioned fans getting their signs taken away at events. Must be all of the people holding up "Push Zack Ryder" signs.
First match up is Bella Twins vs. Kelly Kelly & Eve Torres. The Bella Twins took on a nice heel style. Kelly is learning some new moves. It was short for what it is. Jerry Lawler was a little more "vocal" during the Divas match. Are they going to an edgier TV-PG product?
We got a video package of Andy. Turns out he is still in Florida. Plus, we got to see Ricky Steamboat and Steve Keirn on our TV.
Then R-Truth is calling Flo, yet went with Geico. They couldn't even do cheesy right.
The second match is Santino Marella & Vladimir Koslov vs. Michael McGillicutty and David Otunga. We had a cobra attempt by Santino. He really is one of the unsung heroes of the WWE. (And my inner Jim Cornette died inside saying that.) McGillicutty scored a nice pin and the tag champs are being built up nicely. After the match we saw Zack Ryder say "Woo Woo Woo." Not exactly sure why he did that, but I'm happy that he's doing that. Raw needs to make me ask questions so that I keep coming back.
Miz told us he was awesome. Then we got to see Evan Bourne & Sgt. Slaughter and then Jack Swagger. The great part of Swagger's promo is that he was 100% accurate. Now we get to see Jack Swagger vs. Sgt. Slaughter. And we got to hear him call somebody maggot. My night is complete.
The third match was Jack Swagger vs. the world's largest chin Sgt. Slaughter. It was short. According to my wife, "That was shorter than the girl's match." We got our Cobra Clutch, Swagger got an amazing rub, and so did Evan Bourne by coming to his rescue. This is a wonderful way to use a legend.
We have a triple threat with Alberto del Rio, Rey Misterio Jr. & R-Truth. I'm beginning to not hate Rey as much any more. He's just going out there and wrestling really good matches. On commentary, we got Spanish 101 from Jerry "The King" Lawler. R-Truth is an amazing athlete and can do some great stuff in the ring. So is Rey. Alberto del Rio came out of nowhere to submit Rey. I like the arm-breaker. It is a good finisher and builds up a lot of drama.
(Random non-Raw comment. Watch Suits on USA. It's good.)
Now coming to the ring is Sonny from Miami Vice and the most effective voice in the WWE. At least King is calling her an old bag rather than fat. (Personal note to fans: It's "Viva la Raza," not Rasa as some idiot had on their sign.) The great thing about Ziggler's segment here is that the US Title was made to be important. Kofi Kingston interfered in the segment. The segment was nice. Vicki ended up doused in cake. I'll say it again. She's the top heel in the company.
(Non-wrestling comment: DirecTV sure is pimping Damages. Too bad they haven't made it watchable by using somebody other than Glenn Close in it.)
We then had Miz vs. Alex Riley. We got a nice video package on Alex Riley. There are fewer better heel wrestlers than the Miz right now. Alex Riley reminds me so much of The Rock in the ring. It was a nice match. The Miz lost the match, but he didn't lose anything by losing it. The commentary is pointing out that Miz has been on a losing streak as of late. For a while, Cole was so busy putting over his feud with Lawler, they lost their most important purpose: to put over what was going on in the ring and out. Miz' post-match beatdown on Riley was awesome.
A 4th Orton-Christian match. Really? (<---Miz voice)
Why did we need two recaps of the same exact thing?
Now we have Mr. McMahon. He says Punk was never worthy of all the things he wanted. Then Cena came out to confront Mr. McMahon. I liked this John Cena. Cena and McMahon worked very well together. Vince told Cena Punk is back in, but if Cena loses, he is fired. (And we got to hear Vince McMahon turn "fired" into a 20-syllable word as only he can do it.)
I really liked this Raw. They raised a lot of questions. What's up with Zack Ryder? How will Alex Riley react to Miz' beatdown? Can Ziggler beat Kofi alone? And CM Punk? There were some good matches. I'm really looking forward to the Raw side of Money in the Bank.

To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

UFC 132 Preview

Taking a look at UFC 132, we're expecting good things. I will be begging my wife to let me go out to a bar to watch this one. I really tried to get her to order but something about "my daughter's belated birthday party with family" was too much for her to host a party for UFC 132. (I'm going to be in so much trouble for this blog when I get home.)
Forgive my pro wrestling reference, but in the days of WCW, you had the big names like Hulk Hogan, Macho Man (RIP), Sting, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Ric Flair. And then you had the guys who fought at the beginning of the cards and had the really exciting Cruiserweight matches: Eddie Guerrero (RIP), Chris Jericho, Dean Malenko, Rey Misterio Jr., Billy Kidman, Ultimo Dragon. For a while in the MMA world, UFC was the big names. WEC was where you went to see the good fights. Finally, the two companies have merged (and by merged, I mean they have been absorbed into the Borg collective, also known as Zuffa). Now we get to watch the exciting fighters in the main event. Well-done, Zuffa.
Bantamweight Championship bout: Dominick Cruz (c) (17-1) vs. Urijah Faber (25-4)
Cruz has lost only once in his career. Guess who that loss was to. If you guessed Urijah Faber, you win. Cruz IS currently the champion. And you know that one loss to Faber has got to be eating at him. Cruz' numbers look great until you look at one tiny thing. Over HALF of his victories have come by decision. He's had 6 TKOS and 1 submission. If Faber takes him to the floor (25 minutes is a lot of time to strike), over half of Faber's victories have come by submission. And Faber's KO percentage is very close to Cruz'. I hope Cruz likes shopping for lights. Because he's going to get a chance to sample plenty of them after his knockout from Faber.
Winner: Faber
Middleweight bout: Wanderlei Silva (33-10-1, 1 NC) vs. Chris Leben (25-7)
So we have the legendary Axe Murderer (Silva) taking on a man I like to call "Mr. DUI"(Leben). One of MMA's biggest heroes taking on one of MMA's biggest villains. Silva hasn't fought in 16 months. The word "ring-rust" really isn't appropriate there, but it's something you have to look at. Leben, regardless of how I feel about him, has been in there regularly fighting. Leben wants to face his hero. What kid watching Manny Pacquiao right now wouldn't love to box with him someday (if they want to become a boxer)? Who wouldn't want to catch a pass from Peyton Manning? Who wouldn't want to face Roy Halladay at the plate? My inner MMA fan is going for Silva, but my objective self says (and this disgusts me to type) that Leben will win by TKO.
Winner: Leben
Light Heavyweight bout: Tito Ortiz (15-8-1) vs. Ryan Bader(12-1)
Ryan Bader is about to learn a very important lesson. It's not about losing. It's about what you do after that loss. He suffered his first loss. It's no shame. It's at the hands of Jon "Bones" Jones. Now he gets to face the legendary Tito Ortiz in the cage. This is BY FAR the biggest fight in his career. And Tito is ripe for the picking. While I respect what Tito has done for the sport (I mean, my daughter had a Team Punishment onesie.), he hasn't won a fight since '06. And that was against Ken Shamrock. Thanks for what you've done, Tito. Now go get a made-up job like Chuck Liddell and start being a face of the sport's history.
Winner: Bader
Welterweight bout: Carlos Condit (26-5) vs. Dong Hyun Kim (14-0-1, 1 NC)
Wow, ok, this is a huge fight. Both have 4 wins out of their last 5. Both have major skins on the wall. Condit has beaten Dan Hardy, Frank Trigg & was perfect in WEC. Kim has victories over Amir Sadollah, Nate Diaz and Matt Brown. What stands out for me here is that Condit is nearly split between Submissions and TKO's. Kim has a LOT more decisions than Condit. The below picture says it all.
Winner: Condit
Lightweight bout: Dennis Siver (18-7) vs. Matt Wiman (13-5)
I'm not exactly sure why this is on the main card. I'd much rather see Simpson-Tavares, but then again, the pay-per-views don't put money on MY table. I don't have to make that decision. Siver seems to have the momentum advantage with 4 of his last 5, as compared to Wiman's 3 of his last 5. This should be a good fight though. Wiman has 3 Fight of the Night honors, as Siver has one, two knockouts of the night and one submission of the night. I hope they have their highlight reel cameras going. Now even I'm a little excited about this one. I'm going with Siver. He looks to me like the guy you wouldn't mess with.
Winner: Siver
To follow me on Twitter, click here. For Facebook, click here.