UFC 142: Aldo vs. Mendes LowKick.com Staff Main Event PredictionsPosted on January 13, 2012, 04:57 PM by Anton Gurevich
UFC Featherweight Title: Jose Aldo (C) vs. Chad Mendes
Staff Picks: Aldo - 3, Mendes - 4
Community Top Pick: Aldo via TKO in Round 5
Joey Santosus: In terms of overall ability, there's no question who, between Jose Aldo and Chad Mendes, the more well-rounded fighter is. In 20 professional victories, over half of Aldo's opponents have met their demise at the end of one of his limbs, and though we've yet to see it utilized, the champ sports a BJJ black-belt. Mendes, on the other hand, has went the distance in all but four of his 11 bouts, and prior to joining Team Alpha Male, had no formal martial arts training. With that said, the more skilled fighter doesn't always win in MMA, and what "Money" does have is a mean double-leg that he's not afraid to use. Not only do I like Mendes to upset the Brazilian at home, but I'll boldly predict that Saturday will be Aldo's final outing at 145. Chad Mendes via Decision.
Anton Gurevich: I firmly believe Chad Mendes is the toughest test Jose Aldo ever faced in WEC/UFC. Finally, Aldo will test his skills against a strong wrestler with great striking skills. Mendes is a mismatch for the Brazilian, and has every required attribute to grind out a clean Unanimous Decision in this fight. Aldo cuts a lot of weight to make 145, which will cost him dearly when the fight goes to the Championship Rounds. Love it or hate it, but I put my bet on Chad Mendes. Money via Decision.
Trent Reinsmith: Aldo is clearly the better striker of the two, there is no way that Mendes has close to the power or velocity of Aldo’s strikes, especially his powerful leg kicks. The question is will Aldo be willing to deliver those kicks knowing full well that Mendes is going to look to catch one of them and take him to the ground? Just like Aldo has the striking advantage, Mendes has the clear wrestling advantage. I look for Aldo to use his speed to evade Mendes, moving in for quick strikes. Don’t be surprised if Aldo works strictly arm strikes for the first round or two in order to lure Mendes into a false sense of security before he winds up with some big kicks. In the end, I think the fear of Mendes’ wrestling keep this fight mostly at distance and Aldo will take the unanimous decision.
Mike Drahota: To me, this is one of the most unanticipated title bouts that the UFC has seen since, well, Aldo vs. Florian. I have the utmost respect for what Jose Aldo accomplished in the WEC, but since his move over to the UFC, he has looked drawn, tired, and even a little bit unmotivated. He is still the champ, but I think Chad Mendes is more motivated at this point in his career. His ground-and-pound should make the difference here. Of course, Aldo might come out of the gate screaming and pull off one of his signature finishes, but if his wrestling is the same as it was versus Mark Hominick, his night could end quickly. I like the Team Alpha Male product Mendes to utilize his wrestling pedigree here and get the upset, winning in the 3rd round with a TKO.
Daniel Cassidy: In the main event we have Pound for Pound stalwart Jose "Junior" Aldo facing off against his toughest challenge in Chad "Money" Mendes for the hotly coveted Featherweight strap. While Aldo is the betting favourite, it would be ignorant to discount the challenger. A Team Alpha Male fighter with some of the best wrestling credentials at Featherweight, Mendes has more than enough tools to take the belt from the champion. While "Money" has the wrestling to put Aldo on his back and wear him down, that's not how I see this fight going down. Aldo has the best striking at 145 pounds, without a doubt. I see him using leg kicks to take away the power from his opponents lead leg to nullify his takedowns. While I expect Mendes to be successful with the takedowns early, I think by round 3 or 4 Aldo's striking starts to take effect, with "Junior" securing a mid-fight stoppage. My prediction is Jose Aldo retains his belt following a Round 3 TKO.
Bryan Fontez: Jose Aldo is dealing with an elite wrestler here. This guy is no joke, and bringing in Gray Maynard for one camp doesn't convince me that Aldo can develop the skills to shut down the life-time of wrestling experience Mendes possess. You can claim that this isn't a wrestling match as much as you want, but we've all seen the legitimate success American wrestlers have had in MMA, and as a low kick member commented previously “It's hard to land leg kicks while on your back”. Mendes via Unanimous Decision