Josh Barnett vs Daniel Cormier
One of the most anticipated Heavyweight bouts is finally going to happen, and boy are we in for an absolute WAR. Barnett and Cormier in recent years have climbed and cemented themselves into the upper tier of MMA’s Heavyweight division. Both men are top notch wrestlers, and I’d slightly give the edge to Cormier on the feet. Both hold power in the hands, but Cormier is more effective with his strikes. Barnett is a solid if the fight goes to the ground though, as his top game features some good ground and pound, and a deadly arsenal of submissions. On paper this fight is dead even, and I think we are in for a brawl. I’m going to take Barnett here though to finish Cormier in the championship rounds, as Cormier is taken down due to fatigue.
Gilbert Melendez vs Josh Thomson
The rubber match that everyone expected to happen, considering the lack of lightweight competition in Strikeforce. It should be a good one though, as these two guys have lock horns before in 2 great fights. Melendez is widely considered as a top 3 lightweight in the world, and will try to make a claim to that number one spot. Melendez features a good standup game but is most noted for his deadlier top game. Thomson is more of a wrestler, and will look to use the cage to pick apart Melendez. Although the odds say Melendez will clearly win, I’m going with the upset here and picking the more focused/injury free Thomson to edge out a decision.
Rafael Cavalcante vs Mike Kyle
This fight definitely should be for the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Championship, but it’s not. The light heavyweight division is depleted, and this is the two best guys in it, going at it. But despite that, this fight should be a really good one, and a rematch in which Kyle KO’d Cavalcante back in 2009. Kyle since that fight has gone 6-2-1, while going back and forth between fighting at heavyweight and light heavyweight. Kyle carries some heavy power, as well as a decent all around MMA game. He is mostly noted as a striker though. Cavalcante since that fight is 4-1, and once held the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Belt. Cavalcante is the better all around fighter, and has some devastating power in his hands. I expect Cavalcante to knock out Kyle at some point in the fight, as Kyle gasses and succumbs to “Feijao’s” standup.