Log out of your Facebook, change the channel, go to bar, either way, it’s time for UFC 145’s main card. We’ve taken a look at the six fight preliminary card, and following that is the stellar six fight main card. With key bouts in a number of divisions, some exciting scraps, and of course, that one big fight, things are about to get real in Atlanta. Are you ready for some black on black crime?! Here’s a breakdown of the Pay Per View card, which goes down at 10pm ET/7pm PT
-Mark Bocek vs. John Alessio
Mark Bocek is incredibly underrated and often overlooked. He’s a tough, gritty grappler, who is definitely capable of maintaining a high position in the crowded 155 pound division. If you look at his losses, three of his four defeats have come to Frankie Edgar, Jim Miller, and Ben Henderson. That’s kind of a tough group of guys to have fought. He takes on the returning John Alessio. The oft-tenacious fighter has had a long, hard road to the UFC, and has earned his shot at the big time once again. Unfortunately for Alessio, Bocek is the real deal. Coming in on short notice and facing such a skilled grappler in Bocek will be Alessio’s demise.
-Mark Hominick vs. Eddie Yagin
Mark Hominick is probably feeling a little deflated, or humbled, even. Following his quick knockout loss back at UFC 140 in Toronto, the Team Tompkins mainstay looks to rebound and fight his way back to the champ, Jose Aldo. With crazy knockout power in his hands, the always crafty Canadian needs a big win. Durability should be Eddie Yagin’s middle name. With heart, tenacity, and hell of a skill-set in his repertoire, Yagin is a tough match-up for anybody. Despite being as tough as he is, Yagin feels like a rebound opponent for Hominick. “The Machine” should have no problem getting his hands all over Eddie, and should the bout hit the ground, Mark is not exactly a white belt. He takes the decision.
-Miguel Torres vs. Michael McDonald
I remember back in the day when Miguel Torres was near the top of the proverbial “pound for pound” list. The once-fired rape comedian, as he seems to be now, is still an incredibly talented fighter, and skill-wise, one of the best in the bantamweight division. Lately, he’s been fighting a lot safer than he used to, but in his defence, when another man disconnects you from your consciousness, things can change quickly. Fast-rising prospect Michael McDonald, who is still but a young man, physically, has shown unlimited potential and is incredibly mature and intelligent. He looks better in every fight, and he’s right on par with Rory MacDonald in terms of fast-rising, extremely talented young fighters. The winner of this fight could absolutely make a good case for a title shot in the near future. I expect McDonald and Torres to put on an unbelievable fight, but I think the experience and technical prowess of Torres will be the keys in this fight, and Miguel will take home a hard fought, close decision.
-Ben Rothwell vs. Brendan Schaub
In the main card’s only heavyweight bout, which is fine with me, considering what UFC 146 will be, Ben Rothwell takes on Brendan Schaub. Rothwell has faced some stiff competition in Cain Velasquez, Gilbert Yvel, and Mark Hunt, but his biggest competition has been his hilariously bad cardio. Brendan Schaub wanted to beat a legend in Big Nog, and instead, he took a nap. Looking to rebound from that loss, the Colorado based fighter, whose record consists almost entirely of knockouts, is an athletic dude, whose chin may be his only downfall. I give a clear advantage in this fight to Schaub. I just don’t think Rothwell offers him too much, unless he comes in and can fight 15 minutes without even gassing in the slightest. I suspect this does go the distance, and it’s probably going to be tough to watch in the late second and third rounds.
-Rory MacDonald vs. Che Mills
Fast-rising welterweight prospect Rory MacDonald finally returns to the cage after an extended layoff. The British Columbia native, who trains out of Tristar, has absolutely dominated some of the best fighters in the world. Nate Diaz, Mike Pyle, Jordan Mein, and even interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit have all been on the receiving ends of beatings from the 22 year old. His opponent, Che Mills, has kind of been thrown to the wolves. I mean, he has beaten up Marius Zaromskis a couple of times, and that’s always fun, but, there is no way he’s ready for RoryMac. Rory may be underestimating Mills, but if he was, would it make a difference? Submission or TKO for the Canadian.
-Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans
Here is where I get crazy. I expect there will be a lot of discussion on this, and I’m even more positive most of you will disagree. Jon Jones will lose to Rashad Evans. That’s all.
Why? Okay, hear me out. Jon Jones is unquestionably a better fighter, hands down. Having said that, there are several factors that could change the outcome of this fight. Rashad Evans is probably better now than he has ever been. He may not be having these stellar mind-blowing performances like he did against Chuck, but, honestly, he dominated Phil Davis for 25 minutes while barely even breaking a sweat. His wrestling has transitioned better to MMA than just about anyone’s. He also has an unexpected speed to his punches, when he really lets loose. On Jon Jones’ end, Rashad is very much in his head. Watch interviews, videos, he acts confident, but anyone who has a good grasp on the psychological aspect of fighting can see, Jones is not entirely focussed. Also, it’s entirely likely that everyone around him has been blowing smoke up his ass, so perhaps he is overconfident or overly cocky? I don’t think Rashad is going to knock out Jones, in fact, I think Jones dominates him on the feet, but Rashad will show Jones what using striking to set up takedowns is all about, and I think we’ll be looking at a long, exhausting 25 minutes for “Bones”. Am I wrong? Probably.. but these things happen in MMA.