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UFC 146: Picks And Predictions

By Matt Leyshock - Posted on 25 May 2012

                            UFC 146 Picks And Predictions

This is one of the best cards in terms of name value that I can remember in quite awhile and the first "all heavyweight" main card ever.  Here are my picks and predictions starting with the Facebook Prelims and ending with the main event between Dos Santos and Mir.

Check them out after the break:

Mike Brown  vs. Daniel Pineda

Mike Brown has hit a rough patch in fighting and in life, surprisingly enough they are more linked than one would think, but as a long time fan I am always pulling for him.  Pineda hasn’t dropped a fight since 2010 and has 11 submission wins.  Not a great stat for Brown.

Pineda via submission rd. 2

Paul Sass  vs. Jacob Volkmann

Volkmann’s “tough” but doesn’t have a great finishing game. Sass is also “tough” but has finished 11/12 opponents.  Volkman is a wrestler with average skills but good conditioning,  Sass has 8 wins via triangle.  This decision isn’t exactly “Tough”.

Sass by Sass-angle Rd. 2

Dan Hardy  vs. Duane Ludwig

I am a big fan of both guys even at this stage in their respective careers.   Hardy has been eating off of one left hook for 3 years now and I don’t hate him for it.  Ludwig is better everywhere and has more options on the feet.   Hardy can’t control where the fight goes and doesn’t have one area where he holds a clear advantage.

Duane Ludwig via decision.

C.B. Dollaway  vs. Jason Miller

Jason Miller went from a contender to a novelty with one shitty MTV show.  C.B Dollaway maybe the most unlikable guy in the UFC for reasons unknown.  Logic says if Miller loses here and they’ll keep him because he’s a “Star” but the reality is he’s already on the undercard even though he is probably the most recognized fighter on the bill (MTV Ratings).  Miller should win but he looked particularly bad against Bisping, soooo I’m not sure I’m convinced.

Jason Miller via split decision

Edson Barboza  vs. Jamie Varner

Hey Jamie Varner’s back!  Glad to see him pick up a couple wins and get back to the big show. Too bad Barboza will probably have him eating through a tube for awhile.  Varner’s great for beating the Drew Fickett’s of the world but he’s limited against top tier competition.

Edson Barboza via TKO Rd. 3

Diego Brandao  vs. Darren Elkins

Brandao’s claim to fame is that he swings really, really hard at everyone and won the Ultimate Fighter. Elkins is being brought in to be an expensive target in this one.

Diego Brandao via TKO Rd.1

Lavar Johnson  vs. Stefan Struve

I like Lavar Johnson’s style; what can I say it’s fun to watch a big guy with tattoo’s try to kill someone for a couple grand. Stefan Struve gets hit a lot and usually survives to win late.  Struve needs to get this fight to the ground in a hurry but how much does he absorb in the process is the question.   I’m back and forth over this one but what the hell.

Lavar Johnson Via TKO Rd. 2

Shane Del Rosario vs. Stipe Miocic

If you haven’t read my full break down, pick that one up here.   But in short I think Stipe is a bad match up for anyone coming in off of a long layoff.

Stipe via Decision

Dave Herman vs. Roy Nelson

Dave Herman is going to beat Roy Nelson about the head and face in ways that make all of us cringe.  Nelson has the skills to win but not the physical edge it will take to derail Herman long enough to make it happen.

Dave Herman via decision 

Antonio Silva vs. Cain Velasquez

A lot of people, including myself, have all but forgotten just how great of a fighter Cain Velasquez is.  Antonio Silva is a giant faced, skilled athlete who hits hard and looks to finish but has many exploitable holes in his game.  Cormier put him down and out while he was still figuring out the striking game.  Velasquez should push him hard and put him out early.

Cain Velasquez via TKO Rd. 2

Junior dos Santos  vs. Frank Mir

Dos Santos may have the most effective hands in the heavyweight division sport. 

That doesn’t mean a whole lot when Mir takes him down in the first round.   My guess is that Mir uses his striking skills just enough to convince JDS that he’s committed to striking and then takes him down during the transition.   Let’s be real here for a second; JDS’s boxing skills aren’t anywhere near that of a James Toney and we saw exactly what that equals in terms of a standalone skill.  

Yes, Junior is a black belt in jiu jitsu.

He has subbed exactly one person in 2006 with a guillotine and has “Avoided the ground like its poison” according to Mir.  And I agree.   JDS may be well suited on the ground but the curve is too steep for him to compete against a guy who broke his BJJ teacher’s arm off.

Frank Mir by wrangling submission Rd. 1  (and this one is iffy because I can totally see Mir getting merked against the fence early too)

Main Card:

  • Junior dos Santos  vs. Frank Mir
  • Antonio Silva vs. Cain Velasquez
  • Dave Herman vs. Roy Nelson
  • Shane Del Rosario vs. Stipe Miocic
  • Lavar Johnson  vs. Stefan Struve

Preliminary Card:

  • Diego Brandao  vs. Darren Elkins
  • Edson Barboza  vs. Jamie Varner
  • C.B. Dollaway  vs. Jason Miller
  • Dan Hardy  vs. Duane Ludwig
  • Paul Sass  vs. Jacob Volkmann
  • Kyle Kingsbury  vs. Glover Teixeira
  • Mike Brown  vs. Daniel Pineda