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UFC 157 Full Card Preview

By Felicia Spencer

Coming to you from Anaheim, California, the Rousey Vs. Carmouche fight will be monumental- it stands for the moment that the UFC included a deserving demographic of fighters in the most highly recognized fighting organization in the world.  Rousey’s impressive history as a 4th degree Judo Black belt and Bronze medalist in Judo at the Beijing Olympics is just a part of her skills (both in the cage and out) that got her where she is today.  Not forgetting the female trailblazers before her, Ronda Rousey is currently the reason that this fight is happening.  Tune in Saturday 7pm/10pm (PT/ET), live on pay-per-view.

Women’s Bantamweight Championship

“Rowdy” Ronda Rousey Vs. Liz “Girlrilla” Carmouche (135lbs)

Rousey (6-0-0) had her first pro fight in 2011 against Ediane Gomes (who is set to fight Rousey’s rival Cris Cyborg at InvictaFC 5 in April).    She fought three more times before fighting Miesha Tate and became the champion of the Women’s Bantamweight division in Strikeforce in 2012.  Keep in mind that Rousey has finished all of her fights by first round arm bar and eight of her fights (including amateur) ended before the 1:00 mark.

Rousey is not underestimating the dangerous and fearless Liz Carmouche (8-2-0).  This former Marine has four KO/TKO wins and two submissions herself.  Her only losses were in a title fight with Marloes Coenen and top ranked Sarah Kaufmann back in 2011.  One point that needs to be made is that in fighting, judging outcomes based on the facts that Rousey beat Kaufmann, Kaufmann beat Carmouche, therefore Rousey will beat Carmouche, is not valid.  Certain things have to be considered: more time training, style of fighting, aggressiveness (how one fighter reacts to different styles), skillset to counter opponent’s strengths, etc.

The way I see it, Carmouche is prepared and smart- she will not let Rousey walk over her.  The fight will start very fast-paced, but Carmouche will make it into the second round with both arms intact.  Nobody really knows Rousey’s reaction to entering the second thru fifth (potential) rounds.  I predict Rousey winning via armbar in round two after a war that has everyone jumping up and down!

 Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida Vs. Dan “Hendo” Henderson (205)

This Light-heavy weight dream match-up is sure to be entertaining.  With Lyoto Machida’s (18-3-0) unorthodox karate-based striking style and Dan Henderson’s (29-8-0) infamous H-Bomb knockout punches, this fight is likely going to be a stand-up battle that will have people talking.  Henderson has incredible knockout power in both hands, good wrestling and the heart of a champion.  Machida’s speed may pose the biggest threat to Henderson, both offensively and defensively (by avoiding those H-Bombs).  I keep thinking about the epic showdown between Dan Henderson and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and wonder if this is setting up another unforgettable fight.  The only bad thing is that we only get three rounds of this one!

This is an unpredictable fight, but I think if Machida can make it through the first round, he might have Henderson’s timing down and be able to out-maneuver him for a decision win.

Urijah “The California Kid” Faber Vs. Ivan “The Pride of El Salvador” Menjivar (135lbs)

Urijah Faber (26-6-0) faces Ivan Menjivar (25-9-0) in this Bantamweight match-up.  Faber is coming off a loss in the (interim) title fight with Renan Barao.  Looking at his record, his losses have been in title fights since his reign as the WEC’s Featherweight champion.  Menjivar fought in November of 2012, got a quick submission win and is headed right back to the octagon.  He is a true veteran of the sport- fighting since 2001.

Both fighters are incredibly talented, but I think Faber is hungry for the belt and an eventual rematch with Dominick Cruz (Faber is the only person to have a win over Cruz), so I’m calling this one Faber by decision.

Court “The Crusher” McGee Vs. Josh “The Dentist” Neer (170lbs)

Court McGee (13-3-0) squares off with Josh Neer (33-12-1), both coming off of two losses.  Don’t let that take away from the talent and action these fighters bring to the cage.  Remember, McGee was a standout on TUF 11 on Team Liddell and Neer’s impressive history boasts 22 knockout wins in his career.

McGee coming down a weight class may cause problems for Neer and though this fight looks close, I see McGee pulling off a win via decision.

Josh “Kos” Koscheck Vs. Robbie “Ruthless” Lawler (170lbs)

Josh Koscheck (19-6-0) and Robbie Lawler (19-9-0) are both very experienced fighters with standout athleticism and wrestling skills.  Will one be able to take the other down or will their skills nullify each others?

My prediction is that Koscheck is a step ahead of Lawler in skills and that he will secure takedowns enough to get a decision victory.

Brendan “The Hybrid” Shaub Vs. Lavar “Big” Johnson (240lbs)

Brendan Shaub (9-3-0) has been in front of the big names in the UFC and has fallen short in his last two fights.  He faces Lavar Johnson (17-6-0), who has finished every fight he has won and he has never gone the distance as a pro.  Both fighters have the hands to win the fight and as we know, in a fight anything can happen-especially between two strikers.

Shaub is probably feeling the pressure from all the recent cuts to the roster and I think he will find his way to win in a first round KO/TKO.

Michael “Maverick” Chiesa Vs. Anton Kuivanen (155lbs)

Michael Chiesa (8-0-0), known by fans as the unorthodox fighter from TUF season 15.  Anton Kuivanen (17-5-0) is a well-rounded fighter from Finland, coming in with eight submission wins as well as four KO victories.  Chiesa has six submission wins, including his last fight at the TUF Finale.

I think Kuivanen may have a hard time figuring out Chiesa once he is in the cage.  I’m calling a Chiesa win by submission.

Dennis “The Menace” Bermudez Vs. Matt “The Real One” Grice (145lbs)

Dennis Bermudez (10-3-0) a wrestler and ground and pound enthusiast faces Matt Grice (15-4-0), another wrestler with well-rounded skills.  Grice recently has a win over Leonard Garcia and Bermudez may be most recognized as a Team Miller member on TUF 14.

I am calling this a TKO victory by Dennis Bermudez.

Sam “Hands of Stone” Stout Vs. Caros “The Future” Fodor (155lbs)

Sam Stout (19-8-1) fighting Caros Fodor (7-2-0) is sure to be a match with fireworks.  Stout has four Fight of the Night awards and both fights with Fisher were top ten fights of their respective years.  Fodor is a Strikeforce pick up that has a record including three submission and two knockout wins.

I predict that the more experienced Sam Stout will strike his way to a TKO win.

Kenny Robertson Vs. Brock “The Machine” Jardine (170lbs)

Kenny Robertson (11-2-0) faces Brock Jardine (9-2-0).  Robertson has a wrestling background, but has proven himself a dangerous striker in the cage.  Jardine is another well-rounded fighter, so stylistically this fight may be one of the best fights of the night.

These guys are both tough as nails, but I’m giving Robertson the win via decision in a potential fight of the night.

Jon Manley Vs. Neil Magny (170lbs)

Jon Manley (7-2-0) has excellent submissions (a Brown belt in BJJ) and even earned the Submission of the Season on TUF 16 when he was on Team Nelson.  Neil Magny (7-2-0) was on Team Carwin on the same season of TUF and is a well-rounded fighter.

I predict Jon Manley with a submission win on Saturday.

Nah-Shon “The Rock N Rolla” Burrell Vs. Yuri Villefort (170lbs)

Nah-Shon Burrell (8-2-0) faces Yuri Villefort (6-1-0) in this Welter weight fight.  Burrell is a stand-up fighter who has six wins by KO, two by decision.  Villefort is the second youngest fighter in the UFC currently.  At age 21, Villefort has three submission wins and two knockouts.

We will see how Villefort feels in the standing part of the fight if he goes for a takedown right away.  Burrell will try to keep it standing most likely and may go home with a TKO victory.


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