Wednesday, August 25, 2010

UFC 118: Edgar vs. Penn II Picks

UFC 118: Edgar vs. Penn II

Date: Aug 28, 2010
Location: Boston, Mass.
Venue: TD Garden
Broadcast: Pay-per-view and Spike TV
MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view)

Champ Frankie Edgar vs. B.J. Penn (for lightweight title)
Randy Couture vs. James Toney
Demian Maia vs. Mario Miranda
Kenny Florian vs. Gray Maynard
Marcus Davis vs. Nate Diaz

Joe Lauzon vs. Gabe Ruediger
Nik Lentz vs. Andre Winner

Dan Miller vs. John Salter
Nick Osipczak vs. Greg Soto
Amilcar Alves vs. Mike Pierce
BJ Penn
Randy Couture
Demian Maia
Kenny Florian
Nate Diaz
Joe Lauzon
Andre Winner
Dan Miller
Nick Osipczak
Mike Pierce
Event Summary
When I heard the UFC was going to Boston. I thought the company would pull out all the stops the make sure New England was getting a great event. Well, not only is Boston getting one of the most highly anticipated rematches of the year. They get a first of it's kind...MMA Legend vs. Boxing Legend match up in Randy "The Natural" against Michigan's own James "Lights Out" Toney. Even more, the UFC is holding it's second Fan Expo of the year right in President Dana White's backyard. There will almost 100 UFC star's from the past and present in attendance this weekend.
The Main Event pitts two of the best Lightweight fighters against each other for the second time this year. In April, Frankie Edgar pulled off the biggest upset of the year when he defeated BJ Penn by unanimous decision after 5 rounds at UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi. Penn has since said he had a sinus infection during that bout and has vowed to win back his Title. I believe BJ Penn will be able to take his Championship back but it certainly won't be easy. Frankie Edgar is a new breed of MMA fighter who comes from Wrestling and has been able to round out his skills with outstanding boxing and superior speed. Will it be enough for Frankie to retain his Title or will Penn erase the memory of his recent defeat?
The Boxing vs. MMA debate has long been discussed among the fans on MMA forms across the Internet for years. Now, we will get to see a real (although fading) Boxer against one of the most decorated Champions in the history of the UFC. The co-Main Event features Randy Couture vs. James Toney and believe me when I say...there will be fireworks! I think Randy is going to play this one smart, takes Toney down and introduces him to the wonderful world of Ground and Pound. Although there have been Boxers in MMA before. No one with name as high as Toney as ever attempted to step into the Octagon. And for good reason too. "Lights Out" has talked a ton of trash leading up to this contest and has even said he would knock out Dana White if given the chance. That tells me, Toney does not respect the sport of MMA or even the UFC for that matter. And so, for that, he shall pay dearly.
A late addition to the card is Demian Maia vs. Mario Maranda. Maia should be able to work his excellent Jui-Jitsu to his favor and end this fight before the end of three rounds. Maranda is no pushover as his record stands at 10-1 and has ended 80% of his fights. Maia was set to face rising Middleweight Alan Belcher in September but Belcher had to pull out with a devastating eye injury that occurred during training in Brazil. The change of timing could have a negative effect on Maia more so than Maranda but I think Maia's experience will prevail and take home the victory.
In what I think will be the Fight of the Night this Saturday. Boston's Kenny Florian faces Michigan State's Gray Maynard. I am only picking Florian because I am a Wolverine fan. No, no...that wouldn't be right. This bout is honestly a hard one to pick. Florian and Maynard match up very well and the winner has been promised a title shot at the winner of the Edgar vs. Penn fight. Gray has great boxing and moves in and out very, very well. He also has the bonus of being an All-American wrestler. I just think Kenny's Muay Thai, BJJ and Boxing will to much for Maynard to overcome. This one has the makings of a great show. Florian has fought for the 155 title twice already. Will the third time be the charm?
Rounding out the main card is New England's Marcus Davis vs. Nathan Diaz. This fight will probably end up being all over the place. Both are outstanding Boxers (Davis has fought as a Pro before). Both are very well versed on the ground (66% of Diaz's wins have come by submission). As always, it will come down to who is the better Fighter that night. I'm picking Nate because I know he'll be smart enough to stay on the outside and pick his shots. If it goes to the ground, he has a better chance of winning there than Davis by far. Davis tends to get into wars of attrition and usually lands a shot that sets up his way to victory. I just don't think it will come against the former Ultimate Fighter Champion. Diaz by submission. That said, this one could also steal the show before the Main Event starts.
Don't miss this Event on Saturday night. I made my pick's. Who you got?
David Doig


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