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Rampage Jackson vs. Matt Hamill
Anton Gurevich: It’s hard to pick against Rampage Jackson in this one. He’s simply too powerful for Matt Hamill. Yes, Hamill is a great Wrestler, but Rampage is a decent wrestler himself, and will surely not allow “The Hammer” to take him down at will. My pick is Rampage Jackson via TKO in Round 2.
Joey Santosus: Rampage is capable of ending any fight with a single punch… Duly noted. However, short of that puncher’s chance, I’m taking the underdog in this one. I expect Hamill to execute a solid, wrestling-heavy gameplan. Matt Hamill via Unanimous Decision.
Ryan Ventura: I may have said some things about Quinton Jackson in my last piece, but even with a Rampage giving 60-70% effort I believe he has what it takes to beat Matt Hamill. Matt Hamill is a strong guy, but relies too much on his wrestling for offense. Rampage via. 2nd round TKO.
Frank Mir vs. Roy Nelson
Anton Gurevich: Frank Mir is better than Roy Nelson in every aspect of Mixed Martial Arts, from striking to grappling. Yes, grappling. Mir is one of the best submission fighters in MMA, as I expect him to avenge the Grapplers Quest loss to Roy Nelson by submitting Big Country in Round 2. Frank Mir via Submission in Round 2.
Joey Santosus: Excellent match-up between two guys I’ve waited patiently to see meet in the octagon. Its hard to say who has the edge on the mat, but if this one remains standing, which I believe it will, I expect “Big Country” to find a home for for one of those haymakers. Roy Nelson via 2nd Rnd KO.
Ryan Ventura: Roy Nelson is the Homer Simpson of Mixed Martial Arts. If JDS couldn’t knock his block off, neither can Frank Mir. However, if Frankie can get The Burger King on the ground Frank will have the advantage. I don’t think he’ll be able to tap out his fellow BJJ black belt though. Frank Mir via Decision.
Stefan Struve vs. Travis Browne
Anton Gurevich: Once again, I expect Stefan Struve’s submission game to be the key to victory. Browne has a serious power in his hands, but in my humble opinion, he lack the necessary technique to send someone like Stefan Struve down to the canvas. I expect Struve to pick Browne apart in stand-up, before finishing the business via Submission in Round 3.
Joey Santosus: Though the “Skyscraper” has become quite the knockout artist as of late, he originally made his bones submitting guys off of his back. I suspect Browne will look for the takedown often and meet with the same fate late in the bout. Stefan Struve via 3rd Rnd Submission.
Ryan Ventura: The Skyscraper is young and hungry with much to prove in his young career. Travis Browne is your typical boxer with some skills in BJJ. I doubt the fight will go to the ground, but if it does Struve I think is much more dangerous. On the feet using his lanky reach and power or on his back attempting subs, this is Struve’s fight to win. Stefan Struve via. 1st Round KO.
Brian Stann vs. Jorge Santiago
Anton Gurevich: I believe in Jorge Santiago, and his abilities to become a top contender in the UFC Middleweight division. Brian Stann is a great fighter, but Santiago knows how to fight smart, and has the necessary tools to go to distance. My pick is Jorge Santiago via Decision.
Joey Santosus: This is a tough fight to call. Santiago is widely rated among the top ten Middleweights in the world, but as we’ve seen before, things can change once a fighter enters the UFC. Since its Memorial Day weekend, I’ll take the extra motivated Marine. Brian Stann via 2nd Rnd TKO.
Ryan Ventura: The former Sengoku Middleweight Champion Jorge Santiago hasn’t been in action since August 22 and he’ll be facing a very game Brian Stann. The Marine has proven to be a threat in all aspects of the game, but I believe Santiago’s all-around skill set will get him the W. Santiago via. 1st Round TKO.
Thiago Alves vs. Rick Story
Anton Gurevich: Both Story and Alves are tough as nails fighters, and are well known for giving their 110% in every fight. I’m curious to see if Rick Story can “Jon Fitch” Alves, thanks to his excaptional wrestling skills. I would go with the upset here, picking Rick Story to defeat Thiago Alves via Decision.
Joey Santosus: Alves’ area of weakness has long been his wrestling and against Story this could be a problem. However, with the help of the Dolce Diet, the Brazilian appears to have his weight under control and should be strong enough to stop the takedown and utilize his Muay Thai. Thiago Alves via Split Decision.
Ryan Ventura: Rick Story has good wrestling, but he is no GSP or Jon Fitch. Thiago Alves will be very hungry going into this fight and I think he will bring back that Pitbull killer instinct that the fans fell in love with. 2nd round TKO.
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