This board is dead and I am bored.
UFC 91 is a weeks away so Id be interested on hearing what your thoughts on the card what bouts you are looking forward to how they will pan out and what affects that has on the different weight classes.
Lesnar vs. Couture: This one is pretty cut and dry as its pretty clear the strength and weaknesses each fighter has. Randy is the true crafty vet who can never be counted out. He has the great wrestling, boxing both from a distance and in the clinch, has great ground control and very hard to submit. He tailors his gameplans to his strengths and his opponents weaknesses and does not waiver from his gameplan at all. Every fighter comes up with a gameplan during a fight but it is randys execution and committment to the gameplan that are so great.
He has been inactive for awhile now so will age have caught up with him? How will he overcome Lesnars size and strength? He fought big strong guys in Gonzaga and Sylvia but they did not have the wrestling that Lesnar has.
Lesnar is a force of nature with size, strength, explosiveness, agility, and overall athletic ability. His size and wrestling ability will make it hard for him to get bullied in the clinch and if he is taken down its hard to imagine him getting held down for extended periods of time.
His standup is still pretty much an unknown. He showed against Herring that he has tremendous power but we dont know how great his chin is or how he will react if Couture can take his punches and deliver his own.
The longer the fight goes you would have to think it favors Couture. Couture I would think want to weather the early storm of Lesnar try to tire him out, get him frustrated and put him in positions he is not used to being in.
Maia vs. Quarry- This is a good style match up as Maia is an elite grappler but has limited striking. Quarry has a lot of power and is a pretty big mw so he will look to defend takedowns and hurt Maia standing.
I have been impressed with Maias wrestling as he has shown good technique with his takedowns. If he gets this to the ground it is over, but like Lesnar we do know about his chin.
I think Maia is a contender in the division and it is just a matter of time before he receives the recognition. I like Quarry but I dont think he has the hand speed to keep Maia off of him so if he does not land a huge shot he will get tied up and taken down.
Florian vs. Stevenson- The most impressive thing to me about Florian is the development of his wrestling. You see a lot of guys develop pretty good takedown defense but Florian has been able to go on the offensive and takedown guys who have wrestling backgrounds. He trains with Moose (the All American from American whose name I cant spell) as well as Kurt Pellegrino so I expect to see continued growth. In this fight I expect him to use his reach and kicks to keep Stevenson at a distance. It will be interesting to see who is able to get top position but I do think Florian will be a little hesitant to shoot on Stevenson because of the guillotine.
Stevenson I would think would look to have a similar strategy as Sherk. He is short compact and a powerful wrestler just like sherk so I expect him to go on the offensive with double legs and work to gain control from the top.
Hazelett vs. McCrory- I think in another year or so Hazelett is going to be a force in the division and someone that everyone knows. He has the perfect body type for mma. He is long and has good kickboxing so his kicks and knees are very effective. His wrestling is not that great but he is incredible off his back due to how long he is. McCrory is a game opponent but I do not think his submission game will be able to keep up with Hazelett.
Gonzaga vs. Hendricks- Gonzaga has shown to have all the skills needed to succeed but he seems to either lack the gas tank or the mental toughness to ever reach the top. Couture seemed to break him as the fight went on, and against Werdum he started out great but was gassed by the second round and seemed to give up. Hendricks is a collegiate wrestler and is training with Couture so I am interested to see if he is a legit prospect.
Sadollah vs. Catone- Everyone knows Sadollah and will be expecting him to win this. Catone wrestled at Rider and made it to Nationals a few times. He also is a strong tough guy who trains Almeida occasionally along with one of his satellite schools. I doubt Catones striking will be very advanced so that is a clear edge to Sadollah. I expect Catone to use his strength and wrestling to get on top and grind on Amir, but Amir has been able to survive against other solid wrestlers in CB and Harris.
Amir has to have good submissions off his back but it is his toughness both phsyicall and mental that allows him to take a beating early on and then come through in the end.
Either I have to root for the jersey wrestler.
Sorry if this was long winded but as I said I am bored and this place dead right now.
As for how this affects the different weight classes.
If Couture wins it sets up a huge showdown with Nogueria. If Lesnar wins there will be a lot of backlash that there is an undeserved champ but that will be settled when he fights Nog or Mir.
Maia will emerge as a contender to Silva and I would imagine would have a big time fight in his future.
Gonzaga puts himself back into contention in a thin division. Now that Werdum has been pushed aside he could be waiting after the dust settles in heavyweight tournament. In the meantime I could see him facing one of the rising stars in Carwin or Velasquez another option would be a fight against Kongo.
It looks like the winner of the Stevenson/Florian match will have to fight Sherk. I could see Florian getting a title shot if he wins especially if it is in impressive fashion as this would be his sixth straight win.
No way Stevenson gets a title shot as he was already mauled by Penn and I would definitely expect a fight against Sherk if he wins.