UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen 2 will be airing live this Saturday, July 7th, from Las Vegas, NV.
The Nation went 5 for 5 in his last set of predictions, and is now 23 of 32 overall.
Chad Mendes (11-1) vs. Cody McKenzie (13-2) – This is Mendes’ first fight since he lost his title match vs. Jose Aldo, Jr. He has a strong wrestling background, and trains with Team Alpha Male. McKenzie is a former TUF contestant who finishes most of his fights via the guillotine. That seems like a recipe for success for McKenzie – he is fighting a wrestler who likes to shoot for the takedown and he can counter with a killer guillotine choke. The crazy thing about McKenzie’s guillotine is that everyone knows it’s coming (he’s won 11 of his 13 fights via the guillotine) and yet he still gets it on his opponent somehow. I don’t think he’ll be able to get it on Mendes though. Prediction: Mendes with a Mendes-like grinded out decision win.
“The Stun Gun” Dong-Hyun Kim (15-1-1-1 NC) vs. Demian Maia (15-4) – This marks Maia’s 170 lbs. debut, and he drew a tough one in Kim, who’s lost only once in his career. Maia’s a wizard on the ground, and the fight will probably end up there, either through Kim’s judo or Maia pulling guard. Kim’s a big welterweight, but Maia ha been fighting at 185 before this, so that might not be as much of a factor. Maia has not been able to submit anybody in his last 8 fights, 7 of which have gone the distance. This one should go that direction as well. Prediction: Kim via decision
Cung Le (9-2) vs. Patrick “The Predator) Côté (17-7): Côté returns to the UFC after a year and a half of fighting in other leagues, due to being cut by UFC after 3 straight losses. Le – part time fighter and actor – will fight in the UFC for the second time after coming over from Strikeforce. Le has flashy kicks and good standup, but its effectiveness is very dependent on stamina. And at 40, that stamina is pretty much not what it was. Côté will have to fight a smart fight to avoid getting picked off by Cung’s kicks; I do think there’s still some life left in those legs of Cung and that’ll give him the win. Prediction: Cung Le by KO
Tito Ortiz (16-10-1) vs. Forrest Griffin (18-7): After splitting their first two fights, this battle will not only mark the end of the Ortiz-Griffin trilogy, but it will be Tito’s retirement fight as well. Ortiz, one of the most dominant champions in UFC history, is calling it quits after this fight. While he is well past his physical prime, he was one of the best ever at 205. And no one could sell a fight like Tito in those days. Unfortunately, his body is too broken down nowadays, and while Forrest’s is not that much better, it’ll be enough. Prediction: Forrest by decision
For The UFC Middleweight Championship: The Champion – Anderson “The Spider” Silva (31-4) vs. Chael Sonnen (27-11-1): Anderson Silva arrived in the UFC just a bit more than 6 years ago. He won the title in his 2nd fight there and has completely dominated the competition and has not even come close to losing, except on one occasion. And that one occasion was the first time him and Sonnen fought. Sonnen dominated Silva for the better part of 4 and a half rounds, before getting caught in a triangle and tapping out. Silva supposedly fought through a serious rib injury suffered in training, but it was a close call for the champ nonetheless. This fight has taken a very heated dimension as well, as Silva seems to have taken personally Sonnen’s pro-wrestling sytle taunts and interviews; these taunts started before the first fight and has continued in the buildup to the rematch. Sonnen’s mouth and Silva’s response will help sell this fight to the stratosphere and put millions in each man’s pockets. I don’t think it’ll be nowhere near as close as the first one though. Prediction: Silva by KO