UFC 153 Predictions
Predictions by MMAxposed’s Farrell Tremblay
After losing UFC 151 and Strikeforce: Melendez vs Healy, we almost lost UFC 153 as well. Although the card doesn’t have the same relevant fights as it did a month ago, we now have some very exciting matchups that can really be best described as “fun”, even if they have no impact on any division. Let’s break down the insanity of an already broken down card.
Anderson Silva vs Stephan Bonnar
This fight has a lot of people really excited. Rightfully so, these two fighters have a history of exciting fights with spectacular outcomes, but before I cloud the matter with such misleading facts, let’s be clear about something: People aren’t excited about this fight in the same way they were excited for GSP vs Nick Diaz. The excitement people feel for this fight is really more akin to giddy sadism or the strange fascination we have watching wildebeest cross crocodile infested rivers on the Discovery Channel. Stephan Bonnar is one tough S.O.B. but is he ever out of his league. I believe his ability to absorb unnatural amounts of punishment will take this fight into later rounds but I will be shocked if Anderson Silva finds himself in any sort of danger at any point in this fight. Yes, this is MMA and anything can happen (just ask Matt Serra) but this is also the greatest man to ever fight in the sport and he will deliver that greatness by the fistful
Prediction: Silva by TKO
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs Dave Herman
You have to respect a guy like Nogueira. He is a legend of the sport, and if he retired tomorrow would have nothing but fond farewells from the MMA community. He’s a former champion in the two most prestigious promotions this sport has produced. Coming off a devastating loss to Frank Mir and nearly a year of inactivity, the last thing Big Nog needed to do was take a fight on short notice against a lower tier heavyweight on a two-fight losing streak but he stepped up when the UFC needed him the most. Dave Herman probably isn’t the caliber of fighter we would have seen Nogueira fight had he been matched up on more organic terms, but he is still a tough, durable fighter with heavy hands who may have the spryness of a young fighter to put them on the aging Brazilian. The more likely scenario is that Nogueira boxes his way inside Herman’s sloppy standup, takes him down and takes home a limb.
Prediction: Nogueira by submission
Glover Teixeira vs Fabio Maldonado
Since Jones took over the light heavyweight division, there have been few upcoming fighters that seem to pose a credible threat to him. Enter Glover Teixeira and his laundry list of first round finishes. Teixeira has generated more hype after submitting Kyle Kingsbury than even monster-Swede Alexander Gustafsson has in a 6-1 run through the same division. Fabio Maldonado has some great boxing as was on display when he fought Igor Pakrajac but I feel it simply will not be enough against the markedly more well-rounded Brazilian. Expect another brilliant, first-round finish.
Prediction: Teixeira by KO
Jon Fitch vs Erick Silva
Speaking of exciting Brazilian prospects, Erick Silva has been touted as the next big thing in the welterweight division has he has torn through four opponents in less than two rounds worth of cage time. Now we have seen Erick Silva fight a strong wrestler in Charlie Brenneman, but even the Spaniard’s smothering top game isn’t on the level of Jon Fitch. Some may call Fitch’s style boring, but the reality is, he has a tendency to make his opponents look amateurish at best and had he not been clipped inside of 15 seconds against Johny Hendricks, that fight might have gone very differently. I remain a believer that despite his string of bad luck, Fitch is a top fight welterweight and he will stifle the rise of another prospect on Saturday night.
Prediction: Fitch by UD
Phil Davis vs Wagner Prado
Here is a rematch of fight that last ended in a no-contest due to an early eye poke that left Prado unable to continue. Prior to that, Phil Davis was getting outclassed on the feet against a fighter with multiple knockout victories. Was this a slow start for Phil or just a bad game plan? It’s hard to tell given that we didn’t see what Prado’s ground game looked like. With that in mind, expect to see it on Saturday. I don’t see Phil playing rock-em sock-em with the Brazilian this time around and he’ll look to bring Prado to mat as soon as possible.
Prediction: Davis by UD
Demian Maia vs Rick Story
We haven’t seen much of Maia’s submission game over the last few years and for that reason, I find this fight harder to predict. If Maia was still the submission hungry fighter from his early UFC run, I would say it was safe to say this was a sub of the night forerunner, but instead we’ve seen a Demian Maia who fancies himself a kick boxer with his only finish since 2009 coming by way of a rib injury to Dong Hyun Kim when he fell on the Korean. Story his a resilient fighter if not the most technical, but his constant pressure has swayed judges before and it very well could again. The more likely scenario is that Maia uses Story’s cage-pressing tactics against him and announces himself as a submission contender in the 170 lb shark tank.
Prediction: Maia by submission