It’s been 5 months since the last one, but the Nation is back with a UFC preview. UFC 160: Velasquez vs. Bigfoot 2 will be airing live on PPV from the MGM Grand Arena on May 25th, starting at 10 PM Eastern.
The Nation went 2 for 5 on his last set of predictions and is now 42 of 69 overall.
Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone (20-5) vs. K.J. Noons (11-6): Cerrone is coming off a dominant loss against Anthony Pettis, while Noons has lost 2 in a row (although his last loss against Ryan Couture was debatable at best, an outright robbery at worst). This should be a stand up war for the most part, as both have professional kickboxing experience, with Noons having pro boxing experience as well. But, Cerrone’s ground game is much more advanced than Noons’ (14 of Cerrone’s 20 wins have been by submission, while Noons has never won by that route), so expect Cerrone to try to get this to the ground eventually and work from there. Prediction: Cerrone by decision.
“The Bully” Gray Maynard (12-1-1, 1 NC) vs. T.J. Grant (20-5): With the winner of this matchup scheduled to get a shot at the 155 lbs. title next, this should prove to be an interesting fight. Maynard has only lost once in his pro career, to Frankie Edgar, in a fight he was close to winning at one point. Grant, after only 5 fights at lightweight, is knocking on the door to a title shot after wins over some impressive 155’ers. What intrigues me about this fight is that both guys are big lightweights who use their size and strength advantage against most opponents. But what happens when it’s strength vs. strength, size vs. size, as will be the case here? Should be a close one, but I think Maynard pulls it off. Prediction: Maynard by decision.
Glover Teixeira (20-2) vs. James Te-Huna (16-5): Teixeira is a destroyer, and quite frankly, is the only guy at 205 right now who I think has a legit chance against Jon Jones besides Lyoto Machida. Glover will finish Te-Huna and will do it in devastating fashion. Prediction: Teixeira by K.O.
Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos (15-2) vs. “The Super Samoan” Mark Hunt (9-7): Hunt has had quite the career renaissance, as improved takedown and ground defenses, along with better conditioning, has seen him won 4 fights in a row. Not bad for someone the UFC really didn’t want but was forced to honor his Pride contract for. I mean, this is the guy who was submitted by Gegard Moussasi, a 205 lbs. fighter who can also fight at 185, and by Sean McCorkle, both times in barely over a minute. Junior has a black belt in BJJ, so I can see him winning this via submission. But what I see more likely as happening is a repeat of the Dos Santos-Roy Nelson fight, where Junior uses his quicker hands and feet to pick off and batter Hunt from range, avoiding the one punch KO power both Nelson and Hunt have, and the only thing saving Hunt is the iron chin he shares with Nelson. Prediction: Dos Santos by decision
For the UFC Heavyweight Championship: The Champion – Cain Velasquez (11-1) vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (18-4): This is the 2nd time these men are fighting, and this won’t end any differently than the first one. Cain will push forward, take down Bigfoot and just ground and pound him relentlessly on the ground. Silva has a black belt in BJJ, but that’s not gonna help him. Cain is just a tireless machine, and he’ll wreck Bigfoot. Prediction: Velasquez by TKO