Well, I’ve analyzed the main card previously, so I’ll try to make this breakdown short and to the point. This main event could not be any better to cap off the year. Seriously, two of the very best mma practitioners will collide for a second time. This time, and at least I believe so, they will make it out of the first round. I actually think it will last up until the third. Now, Velasquez’s biggest chance in this fight is to use his wrestling but I don’t think people realize how good Dos Santos is at defending the takedown. Also he now holds a black belt in jui-jitsu. Although he hasn’t used all of his mma skills, doesn’t mean being on the ground is his weakness. I actually think Dos Santos will take care of business here, and finally put away Velasquez in the 3rd round.
I’m going back and forth with our Co-Main event, and it’s a fight I just wouldn’t touch if you are a betting person. It depends what fighters show up because the very best Miller will utilize his wrestling, and strong submission game to a tee. If the wrong Miller shows up, he will take a beating standing up. There is one thing though about Miller, is that the man keeps coming forward, and will not give up. As for Lauzon, will we see the guy who’s striking game, sets up the quick submissions or the guy who doesn’t pace himself, and runs out of juice in the later rounds. Granted he beat Jamie Varner in the third round, he paced himself better than the example I’m referring to is against George Sotiropoulos. Miller will probably be able to take Lauzon down, but I’m thinking Lauzon trained stop that to a degree. I think we are in for a hell of a fight, with Lauzon edging it out, barely.
I really like Costa Philippou here, but I don’t understand why he is the favorite. His striking game is very sharp, and he utilizes his wrestling very well. Boetsch is very similar in ways, which is why we are in for a brawl here. I do not believe this fight will end early, but I think Philippou paces himself so well in fights, he will be the fresher man in the third round. That’s when he will put Boetsch away, and pull off the upset in terms of rankings.
This fight is tearing me apart, and it’s actually pretty similar to that of Jim Miller vs Joe Lauzon. Yushin Okami’s gameplan will be like always, and that’s to get this one to ground where he can grind you away for an entire round. He did that to Boetsch for two rounds, but he couldn’t close out that fight. Belcher is very well rounded, but it his weakness is takedown defense. Now I’m sure he is fully prepared for it, and if Okami can’t take him down, Belcher will capitalize on the feet. I think Belcher has the ability to put him away, but Okami is a game fighter, and I don’t think he will go away. Belcher via decision.
Our First fight to start the card off features the Strikeforce crossover Derek Brunson against fan favorite Chris Leben. Now, Leben was suspended for a year, so ring rust might be a factor, but he looked really in shape at the weigh in’s. This fight is simple, Brunson is not going to strike with him, and try to take Leben down. If Leben can stuff some early shots, Brunson is going night night real early. I’m really surprised “Jacare” knocked him out, and Leben hits way harder. This will not end well for Brunson in my opinion.