LowKick.com Strikeforce St. Louis and TUF 12 Finale PredictionsPosted on December 3, 2010, 11:07 AM by Anton Gurevich
Dan Henderson vs. Renato Sobral
Joey Santosus: With a combined 77 fights between them, there's not much either fighter can bring to the cage that the other hasn't seen before. With that in mind, I think it will come down to who wants it more and a disappointing promotional debut, followed by nearly eight months of inactivity have led me to question Hendo's dedication. Renato Sobral via Decision.
Daniel Cassidy: This will be an action packed fight, if Babalu repeats the form of his last fight, and we see a better Hendo than last time. While Hendo is clearly the better striker, I suspect he will take it to the mat with his wrestling, where Babalu will be very comfortable off his back, looking for a submission, which i think if Henderson is even the smallest part careless, he will get caught. Babalu via R2 sub
Paul Daley vs. Scott Smith
Joey Santosus: Paul Daley's game plan is never a secret and don't expect Scott Smith to shy away from exchanging. It should be noted however, that Smith does have enough grappling experience to frustrate Daley if necessary. "Semtex" showed an improved ability to remain composed and find a way to win against Masvidal though and I expect nothing less from the Brit in his Strikeforce debut. Paul Daley via 2nd Rnd TKO.
Daniel Cassidy: This will definitely be a slobber knocker, my only worry is how long Smith will be able to hold on for, or how many punches he can take from Daley. While it will entertain, it will be one sided. Daley via brutal KO R1
Mike Kyle vs. Antonio Silva
Joey Santosus: I don't like Kyle's chances here. With just days to prepare, he will face "Bigfoot" Silva in what will be his first fight at Heavyweight in more than a year. While he may remain competitive early on, I suspect these factors will ultimately have an impact on his cardio as the bout progresses. Antonio Silva via 2nd Rnd TKO.
Daniel Cassidy: Similarly to the Radach vs St. Preux bout, Kyle has little time to make up the weight difference, taking the fight on just a few days notice. While he has nothing to lose, I can't see him winning. Bigfoot will control the fight; with Kyle running low on gas come the second round. Silva via TKO R2
Robbie Lawler vs. Matt Lindland
Joey Santosus: Although Lawler is currently 1-2 in his last 3 bouts; don't let those numbers fool you. The two losses came against former middleweight champion Jake Shields and event headliner "Babalu" Sobral. Expect Lawler to return to his "Ruthless" ways here, as he uses his underrated wrestling to keep things standing and scores an early knockout. Robbie Lawler via 1st Rnd KO.
Daniel Cassidy: This will be a very interesting bout, as the loser will struggle to stay relevant, while the winner will be on course for a future title shot, or at least a number 1 contender fight. I think Lawler is always one punch away from delivering a highlight reel KO, and i don't think "The Law" can go 3 rounds without sustaining a few blows. Lawler via Ruthless R2 KO
Benji Radach vs. Ovince St. Preux
Joey Santosus: Benji Radach is by far the more experienced fighter, but comes into this match on short notice after more than a year and a half of inactivity. St. Preux, on the other hand, is just two weeks removed from an impressive outing at Strikeforce Challengers. While the veteran's current form is yet to be seen, St. Preux recently enjoyed the luxury of a training camp prior to his Challengers fight and will likely ride that momentum to victory. Ovince St. Preux via Decision.
Daniel Cassidy: Normally, I would go with Benji Radach, but given how good he looked against heavy hitter Antwain Britt, im inclined to pull with St. Preux. Over the course of the fight, I expect him to use his weight and strength against a guy who has too little time to fully prepare for his Light Heavyweight debut. St. Preux via decision
Stefan Bonnar vs. Igor Pokrajac
Anton Gurevich: I was more impressed with Stephan Bonnar during his last fights. He's bigger and stronger than Pokrajac, which would be a key factor in this match-up. Psycho via TKO in Round 2.
Jamie Kennedy: Any fight Stephan Bonnar is in is always a slug fest and an instant classic, I see this fight being no different. I expect the fight to start with a high tempo, and should have the crowd cheering for more, I think Pokrajac will eventually run out of steam and ''The American Psycho'' Bonnar will end it by TKO in the 3rd round.
Kendall Grove vs. Demian Maia
Anton Gurevich: Kendall Grove is good enough on the ground to avoid Maia's BJJ. And just like in the Bonnar-Pokrajac fight, "Da Spyder" is much bigger than his opponent, also having good striking skills to his advantage. I'll pick Grove to bully Demian Maia during three rounds, cruising to a Decision victory.
Jamie Kennedy: Maia has said in pre fight interviews that he's been doing a lot of work on his boxing, so expect to see some improved Boxing from the Brazilian submission machine. But Maia will take it to the mat at some stage as his BJJ is his bread and butter, and he'll catch one of Kendall's long limbs to put him away - Maia via 2nd round submission.
Jonathan Brookins vs. Michael Johnson
Anton Gurevich: Johnson's comfort zone is where Brookins wants to be – the ground. But still, it's hard to predict how much these fighters improved/changed during the months after TUF 12. Judging by what we've seen on the show, I'll pick Jonathan Brookins to submit Johnson in the First Round.
Jammie Kennedy: After great performances from both contestants on TUF 12 this fight should be a real war. Both guys have a lot to prove and with a six figure contract with the UFC on the line, expect fireworks folks. Many see Brookins as the favorite going into this, but from what I've seen on TUF, I think Johnson is the better striker and a more explosive wrestler than Brookins. Jonathan has undoubtedly a great submission game, but I see Johnson grinding out a hard fought decision in a very entertaining fight.
Leonard Garcia vs. Nam Phan
Anton Gurevich: It will be an easy fight for Leonard Garcia. Nam Phan is not powerful enough as a striker, and surely has not the best chin to go against a wild puncher like Garcia. Bad Boy via TKO in Round 1.
Jamie Kennedy: I think this will be a great fight to kick off the main card, and should be an eye pleaser. Both guys will want to stand and bang and that's exactly how I see this fight playing out, Im going to give the technical advantage to Nam but Garcia is known for his brawling style. I think Nam will finish in the 3rd via TKO after a great striking display from both fighters.
Johny Hendricks vs. Rick Story
Anton Gurevich: Both Story and Hendricks are amazing fighters. But still, Johny Hendricks convinced me more during his four bouts in the UFC. This one could go either way, but I'll still pick Hendricks to edge a Decision.
Jamie Kennedy: Hendricks is still unbeaten in his MMA career at an impressive 9 - 0 and 4 - 0 in the UFC. Story is on a four fight win streak within the UFC. I think the outcome of this fight will be decided upon who has the better wrestling, I don't see Rick Story being the man to end Hendricks unbeaten streak and I think Johnny Hendricks will take this one by Decision.