UFC 121 is stacked! Up and down the card there is so much awesomeness to take in that it just blows me away. Totally, totally stoked for these fights!
What's that, Mr. T? Enough with the jibber jabber? You got it.
265 lbs.: Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez
Prediction: Lesnar by TKO in Round 4
Reason: While I like Cain Velasquez quite alot and he is an almost local guy (Salinas is the next town over from mine), I am having a hard time seeing where he can win this fight. He's got a great gas tank and excellent wrestling but he's substantially smaller than Lesnar and Lesnar throws absolute bombs with those hands of his. I'd like to see Cain win this fight but I'd also very much like to see Lesnar vs. Carwin II as well.
205 lbs.: Matt Hamill vs. Tito Ortiz
Prediction: Hamill by TKO in Round 2
Reason: Tito talks a great fight but I don't think Tito has the physical assets to back it up anymore. He has excuses for the last four years of crappy fights but excuses don't mean jack. Hamill is an incredibly strong guy with a better wrestling game and heavier hands. I see this one as a pretty lopsided ass-whooping and Tito on the getting rather than giving end of it.
265 lbs.: Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Brendan Schaub
Prediction: Schaub by TKO in Round 1
Reason: Wow, this is a tough fight to call. Gonzaga is a beast when he is on (see the highlight reel destruction of Mirko Cro Cop for a stellar example) but he isn't always on in the Octagon. Schaub is a rising star with a ton of potential and complains that his fights don't last long enough because he goes in, throws a bomb and the other guy goes nigh-nigh.
170 lbs.: Martin Kampmann vs. Jake Shields
Prediction: Shields by Unanimous Decision
Reason: Shields is a champion, he's taken down a bunch of big names. Kampmann is a tough Dutchman but has been beaten by the top echelon. This could be a really good fight but I think its going to end up being a bit of a snoozer.
170 lbs.: Diego Sanchez vs. Paulo Thiago
Prediction: Thiago by Unanimous Decision
Reason: Time was that Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez was the top of the heap in terms of bringing every last ounce of himself to the fight. And he still does bring it all but what he brings isn't as much as it used to be. He is ping-ponging between divisions trying to find a home and keeps getting beat in both divisions. He needs to choose one and commit himself 100% to it. Thiago is a severe ass-kicker who fights in the Octagon as a release from his regular job as a special unit cop in Brazil (the ones who kick in doors and take really, really nasty people down).
185 lbs.: Ryan Jensen vs. Court McGee
Prediction: McGee by Unanimous Decision
185 lbs.: Patrick Cote vs. Tom Lawlor
Prediction: Lawlor by TKO in Round 2
Reason: I make no bones about the fact that I'm a Lawlor fan. He's a funny guy out of the Octagon but takes his fights very seriously when it is time. Cote is a dangerous fighter and this fight could go either way so I'm going with my sentimental pick.
265 lbs.: Gilbert Yvel vs. Jon Madsen
Prediction: Yvel by Submission in Round 3
Reason: Madsen's a strong wrestler but is very fresh to the mma game on the big stage. Yvel has been there, done that, got the t-shirt and then cut the t-shirt up into a workout tank top. He has a wealth of experience and, though Madsen may be more powerful, experience and skill trumps raw power.
155 lbs.: Sam Stout vs. Paul Taylor
Prediction: Stout by TKO in Round 3
170 lbs.: Mike Guymon vs. Daniel Roberts
Prediction: Guymon by Submission in Round 2
185 lbs.: Chris Camozzi vs. Dongi Yang
Prediction: Yang by TKO in Round 3
Fight of the Night: Lesnar vs. Velasquez
Submission of the Night: Yvel
Knockout of the Night: Hamill
Got something different? Post it in the comments or leave a link. I'll come and check it out.