When: Saturday night - Feb 23rd 5:00pm MST
Where: Honda Center – Anaheim, CA
Channels: PPV, FX and Facebook
ALERT: The UFC will make history yet again on Saturday night as women’s MMA superstar, Ronda Rousey will put her brand new women’s 135lb Bantamweight Championship belt on the line when she tangles with the very well rounded and hard working challenger in former US Marine, Liz Carmouche. This will be the first time the UFC has ever held a women’s fight in the hallowed grounds of the UFC Octagon….let alone a women’s main event….let alone a women’s title fight.The co-main event of UFC 157 will feature none other one of the greatest fighters in MMA history, Dan “HENDO” Henderson when he takes on the unpredictable former champion and Brazilian MMA riddle, Lyoto The Dragon” Machida in what many feel could be an incredibly difficult fight for the legendary Henderson.We also get to see the return of the California Kid and all around good guy, Urijah Faber as he takes on the super skills of the 135lb El Salvadorian, Ivan Menjivar in what many feel could be a make or break fight for the smiley Californian. The ever dangerous and super tough “Dentist”, Josh Neer makes his return to the Octagon as well when he faces TUF Season 11 winner, Court McGee in what should be a great scrap. And rounding out the main card for UFC 157, we get to see the most hated man in MMA, Josh Koscheck as he welcomes Ruthless Robbie Lawler back to the big time in what could be Fight of the Night…or more probable….KO of the Night.Colorado’s own Brendan Schaub will make his return to the UFC as he will surely slug it out with the big hitting Californian heavyweight, Lavar Johnson in what also could produce the KO of the Night. However, the always entertaining Sam Stout may have something to say about those bonuses since he will definitely be looking to knockout the super talented Caros Fodor.Let’s get right into this mixed bag of super-scraps for Saturday night and see if we can pick some better wins than last time for this absolutely historic event.
Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche – (for the UFC women's bantamweight title)
Ronda Rousey is without a doubt the hottest thing going in sports today. She’s beautiful, she’s strong, she’s accomplished…and she can fight! The bombastic beauty will be looking to continue her undefeated streak by beating the former Marine, Liz Carmouche in what should be an absolutely fantastic female melee to see which woman will wear the UFC’s 135lb Bantamweight Belt.
Liz Carmouche is another beautiful woman that deserves all of our respect. First and foremost…she is a combat tested US Marine that has served her country with honor. She also happens to be a very well rounded and mentally tough mixed martial artist and this fight should be a testament of exactly why she is the number 1 contender to challenge The Rowdy One.
Examiners Pick; It is no surprise that both women are truly amazing women and athletes. Ronda has shown a tremendous Olympic judo pedigree with all 6 of her wins coming by way of armbar, but Liz Carmouche is absolutely a rugged enough and durable warrior to dethrone the blonde bombshell. This fight will be a tremendous fight regardless if you are a man or woman but this Examiner is picking Ronda Rousey to defeat Liz Carmouche in what many people will see as an amazing test of wills….and without question a MAJOR defining moment in all of womens sports. Dan Henderson vs. Lyoto Machida
Dan Henderson is undoubtedly one of the greatest modern day warriors in our history. Hendo is facing an absolute ninja in Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida. Hendo’s uncanny power in both of his hands will need to find their marks early and often to keep the elusive Machida on the defensive. Hendo’s vulnerability lately has been his cardio and injuries that have created a glimmer of opening for more mobile fighters….and Machida is the most mobile 205lber there is. Can Hendo do it again and cement his Hall of Fame legacy with yet another title shot?....
Lyoto Machida is the epitome of poetry in motion in MMA. He is what many call the ultimate MMA riddle. Just like his opponent, Machida has fought the “who’s–who” in MMA’s elite & prevailed. His trademarked movement, elusiveness and footwork will be the key to quieting down the living legend in Hendo. Will Machida be able to keep Hendo off balance with his movement enough so that Hendo cannot land that ever devastating “H-Bomb” that has literally knocked the expression off of his opponents faces? We’ll see tonight.
Examiners Pick: Dan Henderson is this Examiner’s favorite pioneer fighter that is still fighting, but the riddle of Machida is very real and very debilitating to most of his opponents. I see this match-up being a very difficult one for Hendo due to the elusive offense that Machida has consistently brought to his opponents. If Hendo can land the big right hand…its straight up game over for Machida. However, if Machida can avoid Dan’s clinch game and stay on the outside, he will expose Hendo’s lack of movement and win a unanimous decision. Lyoto Machida will defeat Dan Henderson by unanimous decision.
Urijah Faber vs. Ivan Menjivar
Urijah Faber is a beloved fighter by most. The California Kid can sometimes seem like The Pied Piper, but Faber is a perennial top 5er in the bantamweight division. His unorthodox striking and continuous movement and pressure has given his opponents fits in dealing with his usual fast pace. Will he be able to out muscle the crafty Menjivar who is one of the most experienced fighters in MMA today.
Ivan Menjivar is not only one of the most experienced fighters in MMA today, but he is absolutely one of the best fighters in all situations when he’s in the cage. Not only that, but Ivan seems to rise to the occasion when he is facing tougher competition and with Faber…we should expect to see Menjivar shine like a bright light tonight.
Examiners Pick: Faber, as mentioned, is a perennial top 5er in the bantamweight division without a shadow of a doubt….but Menjivar has the skills to be a real problem for the California Kid. It seems as though Menjivar can put Faber into uncomfortable situations that can expose openings to submit Faber…and this Examiner sees this fight as a pivotal fight for Faber in his career. Examiner is picking Ivan Menjivar to defeat Urijah Faber by submission late in round 3 in an absolutely sizzling fight.
Josh Koscheck vs. Robbie Lawler
Josh Koscheck is very much like Faber….a perennial top 5er whether you like him or not. He clearly loves for people to dislike him but “Kos” is an absolute beast and also one of the best welterweight fighters of all time. He is facing a lion with a mighty punch in Lawler, but Lawler has not been at 170lbs in a long time. Will the well rounded game of Koscheck be too much for The Ruthless One or will the fierce power of Lawler be enough to turn the lights off on Koscheck?....Tonight we will know.
Robbie Lawler is one of those guys that is just purely “no-nonsense”. He doesn’t smile much and when he is in that cage with his opponents, he is in there to knock your head clean off your shoulders. Will the Ruthless One be able to hurt Kos with heavy leather enough to neutralize his balanced attack or will Koscheck use his All-American wrestling to keep the heavy hitting Lawler on his back….
Examiners Pick: As much as this Examiner respects Lawler’s devastating power in his hands, Koscheck just doesn’t really lose and he’s fought his entire career at 170lbs. This Examiner sees this weight cut for Lawler take its toll on Robbie around the middle of round two. That’s when Koscheck will put the heavy pressure on Lawler and catch him enough to hurt Lawler and eventually knockout the former UFC welterweight. Koscheck by TKO in round 3.
PRELIMINARY (FX, 6 p.m. MST)
PRELIMINARY (Facebook, 4:30 p.m. MST)