(article by Adam LeBarr/image via Zuffa, LLC)
UFC 172, one of three events the organization has hosted within the last 10 days. Though the last couple events weren't half bad, this is the fight-card everyone around the world is waiting for.
In the main-event, Jon Jones, current Light Heavyweight champion is set to defend his title against the heavy handed Glover Teixeira. Teixeira's currently riding a 20 fight win streak and has no plans of slowing down anytime soon. Jones has plans of his own, which include defending his belt at all costs and snapping Teixeira's win streak. Saturday, April 26th in Baltimore, MD, the UFC Light Heavyweight title is on the line and this is one card we have been looking forward to ever since it was announced. Join us after the jump for the full fight card, the extended video preview, and our predictions.
(video via UFC.com)
Max Holloway vs. Andre Fili -
Andre Fili in his UFC debut (October 19th, 2013) displayed great speed and striking combinations - not to mention he also has a solid submission game. However, taking on and defeating Max Holloway will be no easy task. Holloway has the greater experience inside the octagon, fighting the toughest in the world. We know Andre Fili was successful in the music industry (lead singer of "It's Godzilla"), now it's time to prove his place inside the octagon.
With Holloway 2-2 in his last 4 fights and Fili undefeated (besides his lose due to a knee injury), he (Andre Fili) looks to be unstoppable - At least for now.
Pick: Andre Fili
Jim Miller vs. Yancy Medeiros -
Jim Miller who was first set to take on Bobby Green (who was forced out of the fight due to injury) is now set to take on Yancy Mederios on short notice. Yes, taking this fight on short notice shows heart and if victorious, he'll make a huge statement towards the rest of the Lightweight division.
Jim Miller has by far the greater experience in not only the octagon, but MMA in general. With a rocky last couple of fights, MIller's going to walk into that octagon blood thirsty (as he was against Joe Lauzon). That being said...
Pick: Jim Miller
Luke Rockhold vs. Tim Boetsch -
Luke Rockhold, former Strikeforce Middleweight champion (before it was bought out by the UFC) will take on Tim 'The Barbarian' Boetsche.
This fight, definitely a big one for the Middleweight division. Boetsche has proven he's worthy of top tear UFC opponents - This weekend he gets one. While both are riding a single victory after taking loses to tough opponents, they'll be looking to further their "W's". 'The Barbarian' Boetsch has fought some of the best the Middleweight division has to offer, but Rockhold being a former champion in a high level MMA organization, will be on the hunt for his lost gold.
Pick: Luke Rockhold
Phil Davis vs. Anthony Johnson -
Anthony Johnson after his missed-weight and loss to Vitor Belfort in the Middleweight division (also missed weight at Welterweight), was let go from the UFC back in 2012. Outside of the UFC, Johnson made the right decision and moved up to Light Heavyweight (also fought at Heavyweight) and was unstoppable. This weekend at UFC 172, Phil Davis, the multiple time NCAA champion welcomes back Anthony Johnson to the UFC octagon.
This fight is interesting in the fact that Phil Davis looks to be more interested in fighting main-eventer/champion, Jon Jones then his current set opponent, Johnson. That could be dangerous and end up putting Davis in a bad position. We've witnessed Johnson's dominance outside of the UFC. Though some might not have been top tear like some Light Heavyweights that step foot in the octagon, it was still very impressive, especially at Johnson's new found weight-class.
We may be wrong, but basing this off the focus Davis is putting towards champion, Jon Jones and not Anthony Johnson...
Pick: Anthony Johnson
Jon Jones vs. Glover Teixeira -
Your UFC 172 main-event, where the Light Heavyweight championship is up for grabs.
Jon Jones has successfully defended his title 6 times, this weekend he looks to make it 7. There is however a huge threat to that being possible, and that's Glover Teixeira. No matter who it is, Jon Jones will always be a unique challenge for anyone he's up against. He can pick you apart standing, and he can finish you if you get too close. He's has beaten an impressive list of challengers but Teixiera presents a different challenge. A very hard hitting striker with some impressive wrestling. Wil it be enough to overcome all the challenges Jones brings to the cage? Anything can happen in combat sports. It only takes a fraction of a second to end a fight, but Jon Jones has proven time and time again he can find a way to win against stronger and more experienced opponenets. It's a toss up but in the end Jones should go home with the belt once more.
Pick: Jon Jones
Main card (PPV at 10 p.m. ET):
Jon Jones vs. Glover Teixeira
Phil Davis vs. Anthony Johnson
Luke Rockhold vs. Tim Boetsch
Jim Miller vs. Yancy Medeiros
Max Holloway vs. Andre Fili
Undercard (FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET):
Joseph Benavidez vs. Tim Elliott
Takanori Gomi vs. Isaac Vallie-Flagg
Jessamyn Duke vs. Bethe Correia
Joe Ellenberger vs. Vagner Rocha
Prelims (UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. ET):
Danny Castillo vs. Charlie Brenneman
Chris Beal vs. Patrick Williams