Prediction time! Another pre-fight prediction.
Saturday night brings us the 56th installment of the Ultimate fighting Championship. This should be a great night of fights, if you've never checked one out this may be a good one for you to try. If you don't have a place to watch you can come on down to the Bruceleeroy party. 8 fights in all, 6 will make the PPV and the other 2 will be aired at the end if there are a lot of KO's. This night should bring us some KO's and submission. There is a very good chance that none of these fights will go the distance. This is a good field of aggressive fighters who do not want to leave anything in the ring.
The Undercard - Aired if time permits
Thiago "the pitbull" Alves (13-3-0) vs Ansar Chalangov (7-0-0)
Alves is a Brazilian Thai Boxing Champion and a purple belt in Brazilian Jui-Jitsu. He's is a good striker and loves to throw low kicks. Chalangov will counter that striker style by utilizing his extensive background from the ground. In a classic striker vs grappler match up I look for the grappler to come out on top. Chalangov has only went the distance 1time in his 7 victories, 3 KO's and 3 submission's. I look for him to take this figh to the ground and work until he ends it.
Nick "the goat" Thompson (22-8-0) vs Keith "the polish connection" Wisniewski
Thompson is an extremely busy fighter, this will be his 15th fight in 2005 (11-3 this year). He is unorthodox and unpredictable. Wisniewski likes to controlthe fight from the ground at a little bit slower pace. This is the one fight on the card that cold be a yawner! If Thompson is as aggresive as everyone hopes he will be Wisniewski might be content to fight very defensively and wait on a mistake. If that mistake doesn't come, which I don't feel it will, Thompson will win the decision.
Sam "the alaskan assasian" Hoger (6-1-0) vs Jeff "the karate kid" Newton (4-1-0)
Hoger was the least likable character on the 1st series of The Ultimate Fighter. He is likable in the ring. Hoger's got a lot of attitude and we shall see if he can back it up. Newton has an extensive Martial Arts background he spent most of his time in competitive sport Karate. This is his 6th MMA fight and his first in jsut over 2 years. He has looked impressive against lesser opponents. As much as I'd like to see Sam loose I don't believe he will on Saturday. I think Newton's only chance is to land big and early. I believe Hoger will win this fight.
Kevin "the shaman" Jordan (7-3-0) vs Gabriel "napao" Gonzaga (4-1-0)
Jordan is fun to watch because he is not afraid to stand toe to toe and take a few to give a few, those make for the most exciting of fights. I was a little dissapointed in his conditioning the last time out. Gonzaga is a BJJ black belt that also has some good striking skills. We should all hope he chooses to stand up and punch this one out with Jordan, it will be a 1st round KO for 1 of the fighters if that happens. I'm looking for Jordan to improve on his conditioning and be prepared to go in this fight.
Jeremy "gumby" Horn (85-14-6) vs Trevor Prangley (11-2-0)
Horn has one of the more impressive records in MMA history, he stays very active and competes year round. He is a skilled striker and grappler. Prangley is a very skilled grappler with a strong wrestling background. I don't like Horn in big fights, he was incredibly lucky to beat Chuck Liddell in their 1st fight in 1999. Chuck owned him in the last fight and I think Prangley will own him tonight. This fight goes to the ground early and Prangley pounds him to a stoppage.
Georges "rush" St Pierre (10-1-0) vs Sean "muscle shark" Sherk (28-1-1)
Wow, great match up!!!!! Both of these fighters have 1 loss, both lost to Matt Hughes in a UFC. St Pierre can do it all, he likes to take his opponent and work the ground and pound while looking for a submission. In his last outing he demolished Frank Trigg, who had referred to him as a 'b' list fighter. Sherk is a very accomplished wrestler. For the 1st time in his career St Pierre may be the weaker fighter, the Muscle Shark is strong. The winner of this fight will surely be fighting for the title in about 6 months. I'm looking for St Pierre to improve his status in an incredibly close and technical match up. If you don't know what grappling is all about pay attention to this one!
The Main Events
Welterwieght Championship Match
Matt Hughes (39-4-0) vs Joe (diesel) Riggs (26-6-0)
Champion Matt Hughes will be fighting in his 14th UFC. He is an incredibly decorated collegiate wrestler who has molded himself in to an almost unbeatable MMA monster. Hughes has victories over a who's who of the welterweight class. His trademark slams are a thrill for everyone to see. Riggs is a strong 170 pounder. He used to fight at well over 250. When he steps into the ring at 170 he will look like a body builder. Riggs will come out and throw for the fences, unfortunately I think that is really the only chance he's got. If he lands a clean shot he has the chance to KO anyone, I just don't think he will do it against Hughes. Hughes is one of the best and I don't think anyone out thier can beat him right now. St Pierre gave him a good run for his money but i don't think Riggs will do the same.
Rich "ace" Franklin (20-1-0) vs Nate "rock" Quarry (14-1-0)
Franklin is coming of wins against MMA legend Ken Shamrock and his title earning performance over Evan Tanner. Franklin is a well rounded fighter who prefers to keep it up and strike. Quarry will be more than happy to accomodate Franklin's style of striking. Coming from team Quest Quarry should be in tremendous shape in body and mind. He will need all of that to defeat Franklin. I like both of these fighters but this is my big upset pick of the night. I think Quarry will shock everyone with an upset victory over Franklin. Quarry has come out and say that he believes Franklin has a weak chin, I don't know that I agree with him but we will surely find out on Saturday.