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UFC 178: Johnson vs Cariaso Fight Pick & Preview

UFC 178 isn’t a great card, the main event is headlined by fighters that few casual fans have even heard of, but, at least it’s a better card than some of the others the UFC has trotted out this year.  The main event features flyweight champion Demetrious “Mighy Mouse” Johnson versus Chris Cariaso. Yup!  If you’re asking “who?”  You’re not alone.  It almost seems like the UFC is trying to force the fans to like the flyweight division.  Personally, it’s not my favorite, not even close, but, maybe this fight can show the fans that the flyweight division is something to get excited about.  Let’s take a closer look at these fighters, and then I’ll make my fight pick. 

Demetrious Johnson walks into the Octagon tonight for this title defense with an overall MMA record of 22-2.  Johnson hasn’t lost a fight since 2011 at UFC Live 6 where he lost a decision to Dominick Cruz.  Since that loss, Johnson is 6-0-1. He’s shown the fans that he is one of the most athletic fighters in the UFC.  He’s not just athletic, he has a full toolbox of MMA skills and is constantly improving. 

Chris Cariaso comes into this title shot with an overall record of 17-5.  He’s not exactly a finisher as 12 of those fights have come via decision.  He’s only 3-2 in his last 5 fights and many people are wondering why he’s even on this card.  But, he has won three in a row against tough opponents.  This fight can put Cariaso on the map!

Unfortunately for Cariaso, Johnson is a beast right now.  He’s tough to beat!  Cariaso will have to fight an absolutely perfect fight to defeat and snatch the title away from Johnson.

Look for Demetrious Johnson to use his speed to fluster Cariaso.  Cariaso will be the first to make a mistake, and Demetrious Johnson will use his experience, skill level, and athleticism to capitalize on mistakes. 

Demetrious “Might Mouse” Johnson will leave the Octagon tonight with the UFC Flyweight belt. 

Check out the video Count Down to UFC 178: Demetrious Johnson vs. Chris Cariaso

UFC 177 Fight Card Disappoints Bad to Worse

One of the aspects that made the UFC an awesome sporting event to watch was it was the World Series, the Super Bowl, the World Cup, the greatest and biggest event in Mixed Martial Arts competition.  Each PPV was stacked with known fighters and exciting fight match ups. The greatest event in MMA also happened about once a month. But, the UFC seems to be watering down their PPV events more and more. 

UFC 177 is the second example of a watered down UFC PPV event in 2014. For the last few years I’ve been writing up fight previews, predictions and picks for UFC PPV main event fights. I’ve established a reputation for picking main event winners.  It was fun researching the fighters in the main event and then picking a winner.  Earlier this year, I skipped writing one for UFC 174 ( Johnson vs. Bagautinov) because the fight card was so bad and the main event was extremely uninteresting. 

I love MMA, and have great respect of the UFC, but, I will be boycotting this event as well.  It’s the UFC’s duty to give the fans the best, and this, definitely is not it.  It’s not even close.  With Renan Barao backing out of the main event, the card went from bad to worse. Here’s the fight card for UFC 177:

UFC 177 Main Card

T.J. Dillashaw vs. Joe Soto
Tony Ferguson vs. Danny Castillo
Bethe Correia vs. Shayna Baszler
Ramsey Nijim vs. Carlos Ferreira
Yancy Medeiros vs. Damon Jackson

Prelims on Fox Sports 1

Lorenz Larkin vs. Derek Brunson
Ruan Potts vs. Anthony Hamilton
Chris Wade vs. Cain Carrizosa

The thing that makes championships of any sport interesting is the excitement in the die hard fan that spills over and creates buzz amongst casual fans and to even the casual observer of sporting competition. This buzz brings people together and truly makes an event worth watching. 

The buzz connects people to the athletes, and everyone feels like they have a stake in the event.  UFC 177 did not create a buzz.  The casual fan doesn’t care, the die hard fan is disappointed, and the sport as a whole loses. 

So, no fight pick from me for UFC 177.  Dana White and the UFC need to reward the fans with better UFC’s (UFC PPV fight cards)in the future, or this sport will suffer the consequences. 

UFC 175 Chris Weidman vs Lyoto Machida Fight Pick & Preview

Many of you might have noticed I didn’t even bother writing a Fight Pick and Preview for UFC 174.  As a PPV, that card was an absolute joke.  The card was bad and the fights weren’t much better.  I’m not sure what the UFC was thinking when they made that a PPV event.  Anyway, enough of that for now.  I’m just glad the UFC is back to a real PPV with UFC 175 Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida.  This one is for the UFC Middleweight belt and MMA fans are truly intrigued with this matchup.  Let’s take a closer look at the fighters, and then I’ll make my fight pick!

Lyoto Machida is one of the most intelligent fighters in MMA.  He knows how to win fights. His style can sometimes bore fans because of the defensive counter striking approach, but when he does strike, they count! Machida has an overall MMA record of 21-4 with 8 KO/TKO’s and 2 submissions. He held his own in the Light Heavyweight division and is now looking good at Middleweight. Machida definitely deserves this title shot. 

Machida will come in with a good game plan as always, but to beat the champion Chris Weidman, Machida is going to have to open up his offense more than usual.  Most likely, that will mean he’ll leave himself open for takedowns.  If Machida has an answer for the takedowns, he’ll do well.

Chris Weidman, like many UFC champions has a strong wrestling base and has developed good stand up.  Add to that some KO power as he showed in his first win over Anderson Silva and that makes him almost unbeatable.  His record so far has shown that, Weidman is 11-0 with 5 KO/TKo’s and 3 submissions. 

While Weidman has two victories over Anderson Silva, who many thought was unbeatable, both of those victories some have attributed to flukes and or luck.  Anyone who’s ever trained or competed in combat sports, or any sport for that matters knows that an athlete makes his own luck by being prepared and earning the opportunity for luck to flow his way at the right time. 

Luck or no luck, Weidman is well prepared for opportunities.  His game planning has been stellar, and I expect it to be stellar in this fight with Machida.  Weidman will not allow Machida to dictate the fight, and that will be a problem for Machida.  Look for Weidman to pull out the victory by smothering Machida with his wrestling, or even finishing him off with some KO power or ground and pound. 

Check out the video, Countdown to UFC 175: Chris Weidman vs Lyoto Machida