UFC returns to pay-per-view this Saturday with UFC 108. The main event features former light heavyweight champ "Suga" Rashad Evans taking on Thiago Silva. Another great fight on the card is a heavyweight clash between former Pride contender Gilbery Yvel and Junior Dos Santos, who recently defeated Mirko Cro Cop at UFC 103. This article gives some background and predictions for the main card fights.
UFC fans in the Huntsville area can watch the action at a number of local sports bars such as Micky's, Hooters, and Bumpers. Feel free to leave a comment about any local spots where you enjoy watching UFC pay-per-views.
"Suga" Rashad Evans (18-1-1) vs. Thiago Silva (14-1)
This is a huge fight in terms of the UFC light heavyweight title picture. Both fighters have only lost to current UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida. However, Evans may be looking past Silva towards a possible match with rival Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. Jackson will likely be Evan's next opponent regardless of a win, loss, or draw against Silva. Both Evans and Silva have knock out power, but there could be an interesting mix of styles if the fight goes to the ground since Evans was an All-American college wrestler and Silva is a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Predction: Evans by decision.
Dustin Hazelett (12-4) vs. Paul Daley (22-8-2)
Hazelett was scheduled to fight Karo Parisyan at UFC 106, before Parisyan backed out just a few days prior to the event. This fight will be interesting because Daley is a striker with seventeen knockout victories, whereas Hazelett relies on submissions for most of his wins. Hazelett's armbar victory over Josh Burkman was named "submission of the year" for 2008 by Sherdog.com. Prediction: Daley by knockout
Joe Lauzon (18-4) vs. Sam Stout (14-5-1)
Lauzon's main fighting style is Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Stout relies on muay thai and wrestling. Stout has been involved in three UFC fights that were named "fight of the night", two against Spencer Fisher and one against Matt Wiman. This should be an active and exciting fight regardless of who ends up winning. Prediction: Stout by decision.
Jim Miller (15-2) vs. Duane Ludwig (19-9)
UFC.com lists Ludwig's record as 27-9 for some reason, but the 19-9 record listed here comes from Sherdog.com. There is often a discrepancy between the records UFC lists and sites such as Sherdog based on differences of what might have counted as a professional fight. UFC is in the business of promoting, not accurate record keeping. In regards to the fight, this is yet another interesting striker vs. submission specialist match up. Ludwig has quick hands; he knocked out Jonathan Goulet only a few seconds into their 2006 fight. Miller has nine submission victories, most of those from some variation of a choke. Miller is the more stocky of the two and should be able to take Ludwig down and work some submission attempts. Prediction: Miller by submission.
Junior Dos Santos (9-1) vs. Gilbert Yvel (36-13-1, 1NC)
Dos Santos has won all three of his UFC fights by knockout. His opponents in those fights were Mirko Cro Cop, Stefan Struve, and Fabricio Werdum; certainly no push-overs. Dos Santos' next opponent was scheduled to be Gabriel Gonzaga, with the winner of that fight moving into the conversation of heavyweight title contention. However, Gonzaga pulled out of the fight due to a staph infection. Gilbert Yvel will be a great test for Dos Santos in Gonzaga's absence. Yvel has a tremendous amount of international mma experience. He has fought such notable opponents as Dan Henderson, Vitor Belfort, Gary Goodridge, Wanderlei Silva, Kazuyuki Fujita, Don Frye, Jeremy Horn, Cheick Kongo, Josh Barnett, and Pedro Rizzo. That is an A list of mma fighters. The problem is that Yvel usually loses in high profile fights against notable opponents. He had a 2-7 with 1 NC record in the now defunct Pride organization in Japan. Yvel is also infamous for his bad behavior during fights. He bit an opponent in 1998, raked the eyes of Don Frye in their 2001 fight, and punched the referee during a 2004 fight. According to mmajunkie.com, Yvel was granted a one fight only license by the Nevada State Athletic Commission in October. Even if Yvel's bad behavior is in his past, unfortunately, so is his prime as a fighter. Dos Santos should pass this test and continue up the UFC heavyweight ranks. Prediction: Dos Santos by knockout.
|UFC 108: Evans vs. Silva
|Evans - Decision||Predictions for UFC 108 Evans vs. Silva|
Mixed Martial Arts
|Silva - TKO||UFC 108 predictions: Looking for KOs from Thiago Silva, Paul Daley and Junior Dos Santos|
|Silva - Unanimous Decision||UFC 108 predictions and picks|
|Evans - Decision||UFC predictions for UFC 108: Evans vs. Silva|
|Silva - 2nd Round TKO||UFC 108: Fearless predictions|
|Evans - 2nd Round TKO (but it's really a toss-up)||UFC 108 main card predictions|
Mixed Martial Arts
|Evans - 1st Round KO||UFC 108 predictions and analysis|