UFC 168 LowKick Staff Predictions

5618640869 8f36808b30 z

Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva II:

Mike Drahota: I can’t remember the last time I was this excited for a fight. The unpredictable nature of the outcome leaves a great air of speculation to the bout, and everyone truly wants to see if Weidman’s UFC 162 was a fluke or not. I wouldn’t call it a fluke; however, I do think that Weidman got a bit lucky as Silva basically gift-wrapped the knockout by doing a Matrix-style dodge directly into a left hook. Judging from the pre-fight staredowns, Silva is taking a much more serious line here. He looks focused and has said this may be his last fight. I doubt he plans on losing if it is. Silva via first round TKO.

Rory Kernaghan: Anderson Silva is the best striker in MMA right now, regardless of his most recent dethroning.  Chris Weidman knocked Silva out the last time around, but the truth is that Silva will outstrike Weidman, and I expect ‘The Spider’ to look for a very fast finish.  Head kicks and knees for Weidman as Silva takes back his crown with a first round knockout.

Brian Cox: Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva is a heck of a fight. I think Chris will be ready, motivated and better prepared than he was the last time, with the psychological advantage of knowing that he’s already faced and defeated Silva. On the other hand, Silva can win this fight by way of devastating kicks, knees, elbows and punches. That said he enters the fight with a great deal of pressure on him. Silva has stated that he lost because he made mistakes and that Chris was lucky. I think Chris will have a better shot at winning on the ground than on the feet. If he can’t get Silva down then it’s a crapshoot. I think Weidman has all the tools to take Silva down, mount him and pound him on the ground. I’m picking Chris Weidman to win by TKO in round two.

READ MORE:  Breaking - Tom Aspinall defends interim title at UFC 304 in rematch fight with Curtis Blaydes in July

Buster Evans: At UFC 162, Chris Weidman shocked the world when he knocked Anderson Silva out cold. Weidman is one of the most well rounded fighters in the middleweight division. He showed this when he beat Silva, taking him to the mat with ease. However, in that first round of their last fight Silva escaped from Weidman’s submission attempt with relative ease and stuffed a lot of his takedown attempts with hardly any effort up against the cage. On the feet, Silva may have got knocked out, but prior to that he was picking away at Weidman with ease. Anyone can knock anyone out with the right punch as Weidman proved, but overall Silva is far superior. That’s why I’m picking Silva for a first round TKO.

Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate II:

Mike Drahota: The hype and buildup to this fight is absolutely massive thanks to TUF 18. However, I’m skeptical that the actual fight can deliver the same kind of buzz because no one has simply been able to solve the puzzle that Rousey presents. Tate’s only hope seems to be in the striking game, and indeed she had Rousey turning her head away with punches early on in their first bout. But Rousey has undoubtedly gotten much better standing in the time since then, and she still dominated Tate. Basically the onus is on Tate to stop Rousey’s inevitable armbar attempts. Can she? I doubt it. Rousey via submission in round one.

READ MORE:  Ex-Champion Rafael dos Anjos slams door on 155lbs future, eyes July fight in welterweight return

Rory Kernaghan: Ronda Rousey will look to continue her incredible streak of first round armbars, as she faces her arch nemesis Miesha Tate at UFC 168. Tate is a tough cookie, and an all rounder, but I can’t see her winning this time. I just think that ‘Rowdy’ is too much for her, and it is merely a matter of getting the fight to the mat. Once there, I predict yet another first round submission win for Rousey.

Brian Cox: “Rowdy” has tremendous ground skills, a great clinch game, wonderful throws and a Diaz-esque attitude. However, other than round one fights of throwing people around and armbarring them, she’s failed to show any other aspects of her game. The other knock on Rousey is that we’ve never seen her go more than a round. The champ also fights with a lot of emotion. The question going into her rematch with Tate is whether or not she’s become overly invested emotionally. She may well play into the hands of Tate, who has adopted a much more businesslike approach to the match. Tate can win but she has to be careful. She needs to use her wrestling in reverse, keep the fight standing, maintain her distance and box the champion. She most certainly needs to demonstrate that she`s learned how to avoid and get out of an armbar. I`m picking Miesha Tate to upset Ronda Rousey and steal the women`s bantamweight title via unanimous decision.

READ MORE:  Amazon Studios announces Road House sequel, UFC icon Conor McGregor not expected to return

Buster Evans: Let’s cut to the chase here. Rousey is the far superior grappler, if the fight gets to a clinch or hits the deck it’s going to be all “Rowdy,” and the fight could quickly be over. Tate is going to have an advantage over any of Rousey’s former opponents coming in as she has already fought the champion. Tate was clearly winning the standup before she was thrown to her back in the first fight. “Cupcake” has said she has learned from rushing in during the last fight and that’s why I’m picking her to pull off the massive upset here. Tate by round 2 TKO.

Outer Photo: Jayne Kamin-Oncea for USA TODAY Sports