St. Pierre and Hendricks ahead of their big fight – Source: The Star Phoenix
Thanks for checking out The Real Mid Card. We hope you enjoy our latest extensive look into the recent happenings in the world of the UFC, courtesy of our resident MMA guy Arun Paul Smith. Beware, this article contains some strong language.
So here’s the deal. We have had two events this week AND The Ultimate Fighter. TUF was pretty much a non-event. Michael Wootten lost to the much favoured American Helmsworth. I’ve got to honest with you, I’m not really caring much about the men this season. The women are the only thing intriguing me enough to continue watching the show. On
Wednesday, we had a UFC event titled Fight for the troops 3. It was actually an enjoyable event. Lots of quick fights and some exciting decisions. The main event was quick. Kennedy getting the TKO early in the first. Another fight on the card that stuck out was Khabilov v Masvidol. Good back and forth action, with dance-like, almost majestic ground work with sub attempts and escapes. The submission of the night for me was in Chiesa v Smith. I’ve never liked Smith, but the way Chiesa got the sub was a thing of beauty.
The shock of the night was Bobby Green winning, but after a kick to the nuts. He kicked his opponent twice in the cup and was deducted a point. He threw yet another kick. His opponent fell to the ground grabbing his manhood. McCarthy thought “Fuck this shit!” and stopped the fight, giving the win by TKO to green. McCarthy said the shot was legal, but what legal shot sounds like it hit the cup. Even on the replays, you can hear that thud as something makes contact with the top of the cup.
Last night was Belfort v Hendo, coming from Brazil. Belfort became the only man in the world to even come close to knocking out Hendo. The stoppage was correct, but the fact that Hendo was still lucid and making an attempt to continue to fight by holding onto Belfort’s ankle leads me to believe that the call of Belfort winning by KO was a bit strong. The question mark that always hangs over any Belfort win is his TRT usage. He has one of the best physiques in the business. How much of that is down to steroids? It’s true that he looks like he did when he was lamping dudes, back in the dark ages of pre-Zuffa UFC. Does anybody really care? Its a bit strange. I can’t put my finger on how I feel about it.
Belfort is now a title contender after Jon Jones plays slap n tickle with Teixiera. The rightful challenger Mr Gustuffson is fighting Jimi Manuwa in London. Don’t get me wrong, I’m Fucking happy about that. Hopefully, I’ll get to go to it! But it’s so bad that he will have to take a dangerous fight with no real upside and a whole lot of risk, while Belfort gets another chance to lose against someone who’s arm he really should have already broken. The question remains, how much has TRT got to do with it. There were plenty of other nice fights on the card and I actually really enjoyed it on the whole.
Coming up next weekend it’s Pierre v Hendricks. I am super excited for this card. Its ridiculously stacked and contains very hard-to-predict fights. This could potentially be the most amazing card of the year. Going back to Pierre v Hendricks. I’m going to try some predictions.
Cerrone v Dunham: I love Cerrone, but he can be amazing one day and terrible the next. That being said I’m going to pick Dunham as he’s tough and good everywhere. Here is a fun fact. Both of their last losses came at the hands of Raphael Dos Anjos. I think that Dunham has a mental edge. I think it will be a decision, maybe even a split, but Dunham gets the nod. Elliott v Bagautinov: I pick Bagautinov simply because I picked against a person with a similar name before and that went badly wrong.
Koscheck v Woodley: Similar styles but I’m going with Woodley because he hasn’t yet suffered from a five round beat down at the hands of GSP. I think GSP stole his soul. He has lost two in a row and I think this will be his 3rd. MacDonald v Lawler, the man that give koscheck his last loss: MacDonald has been on a tear since his loss to Condit many moons ago. He has the tools to beat Lawler, but I think that his tenacity will be his undoing. Lawler has ripped through his opponents since coming back to the UFC. He seems to have put the pieces together and I feel that he can showcase his veteran skills and make a run for the title. Lawler by a nasty KO.
Evans v Sonnen: The question going into this fight is what can Sonnen bring to the table that Evans hasn’t ate before? Simple answer. Absolutely nothing. I’m not sure what Evans’ aspirations are, but I do know that he can and will beat Sonnen. He already beat a heavy-handed replica in Hendo. Sonnen is faster than Hendo, but he is not faster than Evans. Evans may well smash Sonnen into retirement.
And now my prediction for the main event of the evening. Johnny Hendricks gets to battle the most dominate champion in UFC welterweight history. Hendricks is a stud wrestler with heavy hands. GSP is a mixed martial artist, with no graspable weakness and an ability to make a mistake and seemingly never make those mistakes again. The biggest question for me though is how much does GSP still want this? This fight will definitively answer this question.
Hendricks doesn’t use his wrestling for takedowns, he uses it for strikes. He is becoming his own biggest fan and loves those knock-outs. The last person to KO GSP was Matt Serra, and that was mainly because GSP was reckless and got caught. GSP is going to pop in-and-out of Hendricks’ range and hit him with those pin point jabs. He may use kicks to take out Hendricks’ legs and go for the double-leg takedown. GSP does not want to stand and bang, he wants this on the ground to work his classic ground and pound game. I think he will use his game plan and destroy Hendricks over the five rounds. If he can weather the first two rounds, this fight is all his. For Hendricks to beat GSP, he will have to use his wrestling and be heavy with the use of strikes against the cage, working the body and then the head to break down GSP. I’m predicting that GSP will win it by soul destroying decision.
Thanks for reading,
Arun Paul Smith