Milton Vieira vs. Felipe Arantes

A second degree Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, Milton “Miltinho” Vieira (13-7-1) will make his UFC debut in a featherweight bout that is positioned on the preliminary card of UFC 147 against Felipe “Sertanejo” Arantes (14-4, 2 NC), who is coming off of his first promotional victory.

Vieira, 33, is a Brazil native who fights out of the Brazilian Top Team.  The BJJ specialist made his professional debut in June of 2001 and fought early in his career for multiple international organizations like M-1 Mix fight, Heroes, PRIDE, and DEEP where he won half of his first twelve bouts.  From December 2007 through June of 2011, Vieira fought back in his native country winning five of his next seven contests.  Most recently, Vieira picked up a technical submission win over Sterling Ford last August at a Strikeforce Challengers event.

Arantes is a Brazilian native who now fights out of Newark, New Jersey with the Macaco Gold Team.  The Muay-Thai black belt made his professional debut in May of 2008 and won six of his first eight while competing in his native country.  In 2009, Arantes fought a pair of bouts fighting in the United States coming up winless at 0-1, NC.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu purple belt spent most of 2010-11 fighting back in Brazil where he went undefeated (7-0, NC) to earn a chance in the UFC.  Arantes lost in his UFC 134 debut last August falling via unanimous decision against countrymen Yuri Alcantara, but recently earned his first win for the promotion at UFC 142 with a decision win over Antonio Carvalho.

Prediction – Vieira Decision

Wagner Campos vs. Marcos Vinicius Borges Pancini

Wagner “Galeto” Campos (11-3) will make his official octagon debut at UFC 147 against Marcos “Vina” (19-3-1) in a Facebook televised preliminary card bout that will be at 135 pounds.

“Galeto” is a Brazil native who fights out of the Gile Ribeiro Team.  The well rounded fighter made his professional debut in December 2006 and won his first six bouts before losing his first bout against UFC veteran John Lineker in 2009.  “Galeto” went on to win his next four bouts before losing back to back fights in 2011 and earning a spot on TUF Brazil.  Team Wanderlei made “Galeto” their seventh choice (13th overall) but he lost during the quarterfinals against “Pepey”

“Vina” is a Brazilian native who fights out of the Strikers House.  “Vina” made his professional debut in June of 2008 and won ten of his first thirteen.  After bouncing around the regional circuit in his native country, he went on to win nine of his next ten before earning a position on TUF Brazil.  He was chosen fifth (ninth overall) by Team Wanderlei and lost his quarterfinals round bout to Hugo Wolverine.

Prediction – Vina Decision

Thiago Perpetuo vs. Leonardo Mafra

Thiago “Bodao” Perpetuo (8-1-1) will try and make up for his TUF Brazil semifinal loss when he meets quarterfinalist Leonardo “Macarrao” Mafra (5-0) in a UFC 147 FX televised middleweight bout.

“Bodao” is a Brazil native who fights out of the Furacao Fight Team.  The Sao Paulo native made his professional debut in April of 2009 and went on to win four of his first six contests.  He ripped off a four fight winning streak, however, before earning his position on TUF Brazil.  The Max Fight, Jungle Fight, and Iron Fight Championships veteran was chosen 5th (10th overall) by Team Vitor and went on to win his quarterfinal round bout via TKO over “Massaranduba”.  He was upset in the semifinals via 1st round KO against Cezar Mutante.

“Macarrao” is also a Brazil native who fights out of the legendary Chute Boxe team.  “Macarrao” made his debut in February of 2011 and rattled off five wins in less than one year.  His last two victories have been via 1st round TKO.  Team Wanderlei made “Macarrao” their 8th pick (15th overall) and lost via submission against finalist Cezar Mutante.

Prediction – “Bodao” TKO

John Teixeira vs. Hugo Viana

John “Macapa” Teixeira (13-0-1) will attempt to use his experience to his advantage against Hugo “Wolverine” Viana (5-0) in a featherweight match-up on the FX televised preliminary card.

“Macapa”, 25, is a Brazil native who fights out of the Squadron Orlando Jr. team.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in September 2007 and has toured the Brazil regional fight circuit for about five years fighting in organizations like Iron Man Championships, Arena FC and Amazon Fight.  Prior to earning a position on TUF Brazil, “Macapa” won his last nine fights following his only career draw.  Team Wanderlei chose “Macapa” with their third choice (5th overall) and he went on to lose in the quarterfinal round via decision against Rodrigo Damm.

“Wolverine” is a Brazil native who fights out of the Champion Team.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu blue belt made his professional debut in May of 2010 and won three times in his first year as a professional.  He won only two bouts in 2011 while competing for regional promotions like Win Fight and Entertainment.  After fighting his way into TUF Brazil, “Wolverine” was chosen second (4th overall) by Team Vitor.  He won his quarterfinal round bout via decision over Marcos Vina and then lost his semifinal round fight via decision against Rony Jason.

Prediction – “Macapa” Decision

Delson Heleno vs. Francisco Drinaldo

Mixed Martial Arts journeyman Delson “Pe de Chumbo” Heleno (23-6) will attempt to secure his first official octagon victory when he meets Francisco “Massaranduba” Drinaldo (10-1) in a UFC 147 FX televised preliminary card bout.

Heleno, 34, is a Rio de Janeiro, Brazil native who fights out of Gracie Fusion.  “Pe de Chumbo” made his professional debut in June of 2001 and won eight of his first ten competing mostly out of Brazil.  He spent about two years from April 2006-April 2008 fighting for IFL in the United States advancing to fight for the organizations’ welterweight title.  Since breaking from the team oriented league in 2008, Heleno has won ten of his last eleven including victories over Bellator’s Waachiim Spiritwolf and Japanese standout Yuri Shirai.  After winning his most recent fight last November, Heleno was chosen second (3rd overall) by Team Wanderlei.  The submission specialist lost in his quarterfinal bout via submission against Sergio Moraes.

“Massaranduba” is a Brazilian native who fights out of the Brazilian Top Team.  Drinaldo made his professional debut in May of 2006 and won his first six bouts while fighting in regional organizations across Brazil.  His only career setback came in May of 2010 against current UFC fighter Yuri Alcantara.  The well rounded “Massaranduba” won his last four fights before earning a position on The Ultimate Fighter Brazil.  Chosen with Team Wanderlei’s fourth pick (7th overall), “Massaranduba” lost in the quarterfinal round against Thiago “Bodao” Perpetuo.

Prediction – Heleno TKO

Anistavio Mederios vs. Rodrigo Damm

Anistavio “Gasparzinho” Mederios (15-7) will attempt to settle his differences with TUF Brazil rival Rodrigo Damm (9-5) in a UFC 147 featherweight bout that is part of the FX televised preliminary card.

“Gasparzinho”, 24, is a Brazil native who fights out of both Team Nogueira and Pitbull Brothers teams.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in May of 2005 and has seen his career take ups and downs.  “Gasparzinho” won four of his first seven fights before rattling off a career long four fight winning streak.  The seven year professional has seen more success as of late winning seven of his last ten fights while competing for organizations like Shooto Brazil, Jungle Fight, and Mr. Cage.  His most recent victory took place last September at a Mr. Cage event submitting Orleans Smith.

Damm, 32, is a Brazil native who fights out of both Alliance MMA and his own Team Damm.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in October 2004 and lost his professional debut.  After suffering a defeat in his first official action, he went on to win eight in a row including an impressive TKO over Jorge Masvidal at Sengoku 3 in June 2008.  Since his landmark victory, he has dropped four of his last five while participating for Sengoku, Jungle Fight, and Strikeforce organizations.  Damm earned his way into the TUF Brazil house and was selected fourth (8th overall) by Team Vitor.  He earned a decision victory over John Macapa in the quarterfinals before being forced out of the competition due to an injury.

Prediction – Damm Submission

Yuri Alcantara vs. Hacran Dias

The streaking Yuri Alcantara (27-3) will attempt to continue his impressive thirteen-fight winning streak at UFC 147 when he meets promotional newcomer Hacran Dias (20-1-1), who has a current eight fight winning streak, in a main card featherweight bout.

Alcantara, 31, is a Brazil born mixed martial artist who fights out of Pattaya Fight.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in March 2004 and won eight of his first ten over the first four years of his career.  Fighting exclusively in his home country, “Marajo” lost only one bout over his following seventeen contests.  The former Leaf Combat and Jungle Fight Lightweight Champion earned his way into the WEC in late-2010 and won his only fight at WEC 53 via KO over Ricardo Lamas.  After making the transition into the UFC, Alcantara has won both of his bouts inside the octagon defeating Felipe Arantes at UFC 134 last August and Michihiro Omigawa at UFC 142 this past January.

Dias, 28, is a native of Rio de Janeirio, Brazil who fights out of the Nova Uniao team.  “Barnabe” made his professional debut in August of 2005 and went undefeated through his first thirteen bouts, all in Brazil.  His only loss came in his only bout outside of his home country dropping an M-1 Challenge 17 fight in South Korea to Yui Chul Nam.  After losing that July 2009 fight, Dias has won his last eight fights while competing for organizations like Jungle Fight, Pancrase, and Shooto Brazil.  His most recent action took place last December at Shooto Brazil 27 where he submitted Paulo Dantas.

Prediction – Alcantara TKO

Fabricio Werdum vs. Mike Russow

Heavyweight contender Fabricio Werdum (15-5-1) will attempt to take the next step towards sealing a title fight appearance at UFC 147 in the co-main event against once-beaten Mike Russow (15-1, NC).

Werdum, 34, is a Brazil native who fights out of Kings MMA.  The BJJ, Muay-Thai, and Judo black belt made his professional debut in 2002 and went undefeated through his first five bouts while competing in Brazil and England.  Werdum stepped on the big stage in 2005 when he posted four wins out of six total PRIDE FC fights in Japan.  He made the move into the UFC in 2007 and won half of his four fights before earning his pink slip.  He then won his first three in Strikeforce before losing to Alistair Overeem in June of 2011 at the Heavyweight Grand Prix Quarterfinals.  In his return to the UFC, Werdum earned a unanimous decision victory over Roy Nelson at UFC 143 this past February in a “Fight of the Night” performance.

Russow, 35, is an Illinois born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Death Clutch in Minnesota.  The former division 1 wrestler made his professional debut in 1998 but then took eight years off before returning to action.  Overall, Russow was undefeated after his first five bouts while competing in regional organizations across Illinois.  His lone career loss came in February 2007 at PRIDE 33 where he submitted to Sergei Kharitonov.  Seven straight victories in the XFO, Adrenaline MMA, and Yarrennoka organizations earned him the opportunity to fight inside the UFC.   Beginning in 2009, Russow won all four of his bouts for the promotion.  Consecutive victories over Justin McCully, Todd Duffee, Jon Madsen, and Jon Olav-Einemo have put him in place to make a possible jump into contender status at 265 pounds.

Prediction – Werdum Submission

Godofredo de Olveira vs. Rony Mariano

Godofredo “Pepey” de Olveira (8-0) will attempt to win The Ultimate Fighter Brazil Featherweight Tournament Final when he meets Rony “Jason” Mariano (10-3) in a main card match-up.

Pepey is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt who has six submissions victories in eight career fights.  The Fortaleza, Brazil native fights out of the Marcio Fight Team.  He began his professional career in 2003 but took almost three years off before returning to action.  Pepey won only once in 2006 and 2007, but won three times in 2010 and twice in 2011.  Pepey earned a position on TUF Brazil and was chosen sixth (12th overall) by Team Belfort.  After winning his quarterfinal fight he was flipped to Team Silva and won a semifinal match-up to advance into the finals.

Jason is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt who fights out of Team Nogueira.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in 2006 and won five of his first eight bouts before getting in a groove and winning his final five fights prior to earning a spot on TUF Brazil.  Jason, who has a career victory over UFC veteran Felipe Arantes and a loss against current Featherweight contender Renan Barao, was chosen first overall by Team Silva.  He advanced into the TUF Brazil finals by defeating Gasparzinho in the quarterfinals and Hugo Wolverine in the semifinals.

Prediction – Pepey Decision

Sergio Moraes vs. Cezar Ferreira

The Ultimate Fighter Brazil Middleweight Final is set with Cezar “Mutante” Ferreira (4-2) ready to face Sergio “Serginho” Moraes (6-1) after original finalist Daniel Sarafian was forced to pull out because of an injury.

Moraes, 29, is a Sao Paulo, Brazil native who fights out of Team Nogueira and Alliance Jiu-Jitsu.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in October 2006 and won his first five bouts including a Bellator 12 submission over American Josh Martin.  Moraes, a two time gold medalist in the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Championships, lost an October 2009 bout against Brett Cooper but bounced back to win his most recent fight in March 2010.  After fighting his way into the TUF Brazil house, Moraes was chosen seventh (14th overall) by Team Vitor and defeated veteran Delson Heleno in the quarterfinals before losing to Sarafian in the semifinals.

Ferreira, 27, is a Brazilian native who fights out of Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in April of 2007 and won four of his first five while competing in XFC Brazil, Bitetti Combat, and Ring of Fire promotions.  “Mutante” lost his Superior Cage Combat bout last August in Las Vegas via KO before earning a spot on TUF Brazil.  Team Vitor chose Ferreira with his first pick (2nd overall) and watched as he submitted Leonardo Macarrao in the quarterfinals and knocked out “Bodao” in the semifinals to earn his position in the final.

Wanderlei Silva vs. Rich Franklin

“The Axe Murderer” Wanderlei Silva (34-11-1, NC) will headline UFC 147 against former Middleweight Champion Rich “Ace” Franklin (28-6, NC) in a 190 pound catch weight bout.  Franklin steps in for The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil coach Vitor Belfort, who had to bow out due to an injury.

Silva, 35, is a Brazil native who fights out of his own Wand Fight Team in Las Vegas, Nevada.  “The Axe Murderer” made his professional debut in 1996 and fought in Brazil regional organizations until joining the UFC in 1998.  Silva competed on and off for the promotion until 2000 when he began competing full-time in Japan for PRIDE FC.  Silva had a very successful tenure in PRIDE until 2007, winning both the Middleweight Championship and Middleweight Grand Prix during his time in Japan.  After the organization fell on hard times, Silva returned to the UFC in 2007 and has posted three victories in seven bouts since.  Silva has seen a little more success lately winning two of his last three including a TKO win over Cung Le at UFC 139 last November.

Franklin, 37, is an Ohio born mixed martial artist who fights out of JG MMA and Team Extreme.  “Ace” made his professional debut in 1999 and went undefeated through his first twelve fights while competing for regional organizations like Extreme Challenge, Rings USA, and WEF.  His UFC career began in 2003 and has included numerous highlights.  Franklin won the Middleweight Championship in 2005 and defended his title twice.  He also earned another title fight in 2007, however was stopped by current Champ Anderson Silva.  The former Champ returned to the light-heavyweight division in 2008 and has won two of his last five over his last three years of fighting.  His most recent fight took place last February at UFC 126 losing to Forrest Griffin.

Prediction – Silva TKO

 

Nick Russell
ProFightingFans.com Staff Writer

Dustin Pague vs. Ken Stone

The Ultimate Fighter 14 semifinalist Dustin Pague (11-5) will fill in on less than two weeks’ notice against fellow bantamweight Ken Stone (10-3) in a UFC on FX 4 preliminary card bout.

Pague, 24, is a Pennsylvania native who fights out of Virginia and New Mexico with Disciple MMA and the Tapout Ranch.  The submission heavy fighter made his professional debut in 2008 and won ten of his first fourteen while competing all over the east coast in regional promotions.  Pague earned a position on TUF 14 and was drafted as part of Team Mayhem advancing all the way into the semifinals where he was defeated by TJ Dillashaw.  At the end of the TUF 14 season Pague was awarded a $25,000 bonus for “Fight of the Season” for his first round victory over Louis Gaudinot.  In his official debut at the TUF 14 Finale last December, Pague was defeated by John Albert via TKO.  He bounced back and picked up a rear naked choke submission victory over Jared Papazian at the UFC on FX 3 event earlier this month.

Stone is a Massachusetts born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Coconut Creek, Florida with the American Top Team.  The 5’8” Stone made his professional debut in August of 2007 and won nine of his first ten while competing mostly in the regional circuit across Massachusetts.  Stone was signed by the WEC in late-2010 but lost his only bout for the organization via KO to Eddie Wineland.  His contract was transferred into the UFC after they merged the divisions and lost his debut there as well via KO to Scott Jorgensen at the TUF 13 Finale.  In rebounding fashion, Stone picked up his first Zuffa victory last September with a submission win over Donny Walker at the UFC Fight Night 25 event.

Prediction – Stone Decision

Dan Miller vs. Ricardo Funch

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belts Dan Miller (13-6, NC) and Ricardo Funch (8-3) will meet in a UFC on FX 4 preliminary card bout that will be fought at 170 pounds.

Miller, 30, is a New Jersey native who fights out of the AMA Fight Club with his twin brother and fellow UFC fighter Jim.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in 2005 and won eight of his first ten while competing for organizations like Jersey-based Ring of Combat, International Fight League and Reality Fighting.  Miller arrived inside the octagon in 2008 and won his first three bouts for the organization.  Almost as quick as he rose up the ranks of welterweights, he quickly plummeted after dropping three in a row.  He followed up his three fight losing streak with back to back victories before yet again dropping back to back bouts.  His last two bouts were a UFC 128 loss against Nate Marquardt and a UFC 134 loss against Rousimar Palhares almost one year ago.

Funch, 31, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Link in Massachusetts.  “Golden Boy” made his professional debut in 2006 and went on to win his first seven fights mostly while competing in regional organizations in Massachusetts.  Funch was signed to a UFC contract in 2009 but dropped his first two bouts against Johnny Hendricks and Claude Patrick before earning his release from the promotion.  It took the hard-hitting jiu-jitsu specialist only one win while back on the local fight scene to earn his way back into the UFC.  In his return to the organization, Funch was defeated by Mike Pyle via TKO at UFC 142 this past January.

Prediction – Miller Decision

Nick Catone vs. Chris Camozzi

Rising middleweight Nick Catone (9-2) will attempt to win his third straight bout inside the octagon when he meets TUF 11 participant Chris Camozzi (16-5) in a preliminary card bout at the UFC on FX 4 event.

Catone, 30, is a New Jersey based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Almeida/Gracie.  The former division 1 wrestler made his professional MMA debut in 2007 and won his first six bouts while competing primarily for Ring of Combat.  Catone earned his way into the UFC in early-2009 and won his octagon debut, however back to back losses followed to put his status in doubt.  He remained with the organization and has proven that he is a legitimate contender winning back to back bouts.  He defeated Jesse Forbes in January 2010 and then won a unanimous decision over Constantinos Philippou at UFC 128 last March.

Camozzi, 25, is a California born mixed martial artist who fights out of Colorado with Factory X Muay Thai/MMA.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu purple belt made his professional debut in 2006 and won his first seven bouts and twelve of his first fifteen overall while fighting in Canada and the western United States’ regional events.  Camozzi’s first big break came when he earned entry into The Ultimate Fighter 11 house, but he was forced to leave the house after it was found that he had injured his jaw.  Camozzi returned at the live finale and won back to back bouts to begin his UFC career but was given his walking papers after losing a UFC 127 bout with Kyle Noke.  His absence from the promotion was short lived fighting only one bout outside the organization before returning in late-2011.  Since his return to the promotion, Camozzi has split a pair of fights losing at UFC 137 to Francis Carmont and defeating Dustin Jacoby at UFC on Fox this past January.

Prediction – Catone Decision

Rick Story vs. Brock Jardine

Former welterweight contender Rick “The Horror” Story (13-5) will try and work himself back into the title picture when he meets replacement fighter Brock Jardine (9-1) in a UFC on FX 4 preliminary card bout.

Story, 27, is a Washington born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Brave Legion in Tacoma.  “The Horror” made his professional debut in November 2007 and won seven of his first nine while competing across Washington, Oregon, and Alaska in local events.  After almost two years of touring the regional circuit, Story was brought into the UFC but lost his debut against fellow prospect John Hathaway.  After a quick turnaround, Story went on to win his next six fights making himself a legitimate contender.  Victories over Dustin Hazelett, Johnny Hendricks, and Thiago Alves put him a good position within the 170 pound division; however recent back to back losses have bumped him back down the ladder.  Story lost against Charlie Brenneman at UFC Live in June 2011 and then again to Martin Kampmann at UFC 139 last November.

Jardine, 26, is a Utah based mixed martial artist who fights out of The Pit Elevated Fight in Orem.  “The Machine” made his professional debut in October 2007 and won his first six bouts before falling to TUF 13 winner Tony Ferguson.  Jardine bounced back from his first career loss by winning three straight fights.  The Pure Combat, Xtreme Combat, and Showdown Fights veteran won his most recent fight this past May via TKO against veteran fighter Blas Avena.

Prediction – Story TKO

Matt Brown vs. Luis Ramos

Back on the upswing, Matt Brown (14-11) will try and prevent Brazilian Luis Ramos (19-7) from coming up with his first win inside the octagon when they meet at UFC on FX 4 in a preliminary card bout that will be fought at 170 pounds.

Brown, 31, is an Ohio born mixed martial artist who remains in-state and fights out of JG MMA in Cincinnati.  The Judo specialist made his MMA debut in 2005 and won only seven of his first thirteen bouts while fighting in small organizations across the Midwestern United States.  Brown earned his way into The Ultimate Fighter 7 house and was part of Team Forest advancing into the semifinals before losing.  He returned at the live finale and won his official debut and was victorious in four of his first five overall inside the UFC.  Just as quick as he rose up the welterweight ladder, he quickly fell after losing four of his next five.  Brown reversed course once again and has won back to back bouts defeating Chris Cope at UFC 143 and Stephan Thompson at UFC 145.

Ramos, 31, is a Brazilian native who fights out of the legendary Nova Uniao team in his native country.  The 5’8” Ramos made his professional debut in 2001 and spent almost ten years touring the regional fight scene in Brazil fighting for organizations like Shooto Brazil, Max Fight, and United Glory.  Prior to earning his UFC debut, Ramos was victorious in three straight and nineteen of his first twenty-five overall.  At UFC 134 earlier this year, Ramos was knocked (TKO) out in forty seconds by fellow Brazilian Erick Silva.

Prediction – Brown TKO

Steven Siler vs. Joey Gambino

The Ultimate Fighter 14 quarterfinalist “Super” Steven Siler (20-9) will attempt to ruin Joey Gambino’s (9-0) octagon debut at UFC on FX 4 in a preliminary card bout that will be contested in the featherweight division.

Siler, 25, is a California born mixed martial artist who fights out of Oren, Utah with The Pit Elevated.  “Super” made his professional debut in April of 2005 and spent almost six years on the regional circuit fighting in a variety of organizations winning eighteen of his first twenty-seven contests.  The Throwdown Showdown, PFC, and UCE veteran made his debut after a quarterfinal round finish on The Ultimate Fighter 14 with Team Miller.  Siler hasn’t officially lost while with the UFC, winning his TUF 14 finale bout by outpointing Josh Clopton and then picking up his second consecutive victory at UFC on FX over Cole Miller.

Gambino is a New York born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Canadian based Tri-Star Gym.  The 5’7” Gambino made his professional debut in late-2009 and has produced eight stoppage victories in nine total fights.  The submission specialist has appeared in seven different organizations over his two plus years as a professional.  The Mixed Fight League, VFL, and Ringside MMA veteran won his only bout this year at CFFC 13 in February with a decision over veteran Kenny Foster.

Prediction – Siler Submission

Ramsey Nijem vs. CJ Keith

The Ultimate Fighter 13 runner-up Ramsey Nijem (5-2) will attempt to win back to back fights inside the octagon when he meets undefeated UFC rookie CJ Keith (8-0) in a UFC on FX 4 preliminary card bout in the lightweight division.

Nijem, 24, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of Oren, Utah with the Riven Academy.  Nijem made his professional debut in April of 2008 and won four of his first five while competing in different Utah based regional organizations.  The well rounded Nijem earned a position in the TUF 13 house and ran through the competition until falling to Tony Ferguson at the June 2011 Finale.  He bounced back in his lightweight debut last October at UFC 137 with a decision victory over Danny Downes.

Keith, 25, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of Pro Buhawe.  The five year professional made his MMA debut in September 2007 and won his first five bouts with only two stoppages.  His last three victories have all been via TKO or KO including an October 2011 TKO victory over John Reedy.  Keith has competed in both California based TWC and Cage Gladiators organizations throughout his career.

Prediction – Keith Decision

Hatsu Hioki vs. Ricardo Lamas

Former Japanese and Canadian Champion Hatsu Hioki (26-4-2) will attempt to get closer to a UFC title shot when he meets the reeling Ricardo Lamas (11-2) in a UFC on FX 4 preliminary card bout.

Hioki, 28, is a Japanese native who fights out of ALIVE Shooto Jiu-Jitsu Academy as well as part-time for the Tri-Star Gym in Canada.  The submission expert made his professional debut in October 2002 and lost only three times over his first twenty-two bouts fighting for notable organizations like Shooto, Hero’s, PRIDE , and TKO.  Hioki signed with Sengoku in 2009 and won five of his six fights for one of the top promotions in Japan including the Featherweight Title.  Losing only one time over his last fourteen fights earned him a promotion into the UFC in late 2011.  Since signing with the top MMA organization in the world, Hioki has won back to back bouts.  He defeated George Roop at UFC 137 and then Bart Palaszewski at UFC 144 this February.

Lamas, 30, is an Illinois based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Top Notch gym in Elmhurst.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt made his professional debut in January 2008 and won his first five fights while fighting in regional organizations.  He signed with the WEC in early-2009 and won four of his six bouts there including wins over Palaszewski and James Krause.  When the WEC closed their doors, Lamas was one of the fighters to transition into the UFC.  So far he has won via TKO over Matt Grice at UFC Live last summer and submitted Cub Swanson at UFC on Fox last November.

Prediction – Hioki Submission

Ross Pearson vs. Cub Swanson

The Ultimate Fighter 9 winner Ross Pearson (13-5) will meet grappling specialist Cub Swanson (16-5) in a UFC on FX 4 main card bout that will be fought at 145 pounds.

Pearson, 27, is an English based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Rough House in his native Great Britain, and also with The Alliance in California.  The Judo based fighter made his professional debut in 2004 and won eight of his first eleven while competing on the British regional circuit.  Pearson earned a position on The Ultimate Fighter 9 Team UK squad and captured the title with a June 2009 decision victory over Andre Winner.  Victories over Aaron Riley and Denis Siver followed his debut win before he lost his first bout inside the octagon.  Over his last four fights, Pearson has alternated wins with losses, however did earn the victory in his most recent fight at UFC 141 over Junior Assuncao.

Swanson, 28, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s Submission Fighting in New Mexico.  Swanson made his professional debut in the summer of 2004 and won nine of his first ten overall while fighting for King of the Cage and Total Combat promotions.  The well rounded fighter made his way into the WEC in early-2007 winning five of his eight bouts from March 2007 – November 2010.  Among the opponents that he claimed victories over in the promotion include Micah Miller, Hiroyuki Takaya and Mackens Semerzier.  Swanson made the move into the UFC when the WEC closed their lighter weight divisions and has since split a pair of bouts.  A loss to Ricardo Lamas last November at the original UFC on Fox was followed by a victory at UFC on Fox 2 via KO over George Roop.

Prediction – Pearson TKO

Brian Ebersole vs. TJ Waldburger

Surging veteran Brian Ebersole (49-14-1, NC) will attempt to keep his perfect octagon record when he welcomes TJ Waldburger (15-6) in a welterweight meeting on the UFC on FX 4’s main card.

Ebersole, 31, is an Indiana born mixed martial artist who fights out of Melbourne, Australia with ESS Performance.  The multi-talented Ebersole made his professional debut in 2000 and won eleven of his first seventeen bouts.  He hit his stride in April 2002 – September 2002 when he rattled off ten straight victories.  He stayed fighting on the regional circuit for over a decade after winning eleven of his final twelve bouts.  He signed with the UFC in early 2011 and has won all three of his fights up to date.  He defeated Chris Lytle at UFC 127 in February 2011, Dennis Hallman at UFC 133 last August, and Claude Patrick at UFC 140 last December.

Waldburger, 24, is a Texas based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Grapplers Lair.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt made his professional debut in 2005 and won twelve of his first seventeen fights while competing for notable organizations such as Shark Fights, HDNet Fights, and IFC.  Waldburger landed in the UFC in 2010 and has since won three of his four fights inside the octagon.  A win in his octagon debut was followed by a March 2011 loss to current number one contender Johnny Hendricks.  After losing to Hendricks however, he has put together back to back victories defeating Mike Stumpf at UFC Fight Night 25 and Jake Hecht at UFC on FX this March.

Prediction – Ebersole TKO

Sam Stout vs. Spencer Fisher

Longtime UFC veterans Sam “Hands of Stone” Stout (17-7-1) and Spencer Fisher (24-8) will meet in a UFC on FX 4 main card brawl that will be contested at 155 pounds.

Stout, 28, is an Ontario, Canada native who fights out of Team Tompkins in his native country.  The kickboxing specialist made his professional debut in June of 2003 and won eight of his first ten overall while fighting mostly in the TKO organization.  “Hands of Stone” won only one of his first three inside the octagon; however his victory came over his current opponent Spencer Fisher at UFC 58 in March of 2006.  Stout bounced around the regional scene for a short time before returning back into the UFC for good.  Fisher won only one of his first three to begin his second stint inside the octagon but followed with four victories over his next five bouts.  Stout lost his most recent fight at UFC 142 this past January via unanimous decision against Thiago Tavares.

Fisher, 36, is a North Carolina born mixed martial artist who has relocated to Iowa where he fights out of Team Evolution.  The boxing based fighter made his professional debut in 2002 and won an impressive fourteen of his first fifteen bouts while on the regional fight circuit competing for organizations like Extreme Challenge, Super Brawl, and Victory FC.  Fisher was brought into the UFC in 2005 and won his first two bouts over opponents Thiago Alves and Aaron Riley.  Since his quick start to his UFC career, Fisher has alternated wins and losses including his career high three fight winning streak in 2008-09.  Recently, Fisher hasn’t seen much success losing four of his last five fights inside the octagon including an August 2011 TKO defeat by Thiago Tavares.

Prediction – Stout TKO

Gray Maynard vs. Clay Guida

Former title challenger Gray “The Bully” Maynard (10-1-1, NC) will try and re-enter his name back into challenger status when he meets fellow 155 pound contender Clay “The Carpenter” Guida (29-12) in a UFC on FX 4 main event.

Maynard, 33, is an Arizona born mixed martial artist who now fights out of American Kickboxing Academy in California.  “The Bully” made his professional debut in April 2006 and won only twice on the regional fight scene before earning a position on The Ultimate Fighter 5.  Part of Team Penn, Maynard advanced into the semifinals before losing via submission against winner Nate Diaz.  The former Michigan State wrestler fought Rob Emerson to a no contest in his official octagon debut in the TUF 5 Finale; however Maynard went on an impressive eight fight winning streak after.  Victories over Frankie Edgar, Kenny Florian, and Jim Miller were among the opponents that Maynard defeated during the streak.  His long streak earned him a chance to fight for the title, which he fought then-Champ Frankie Edgar to a draw at UFC 125.  The result was controversial and UFC officials scheduled a third bout between the two top lightweights; this time Edgar knocked Maynard out at UFC 136 late last year.

Guida, 30, is an Illinois born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Jackson’s Submission Fighting in New Mexico.  “The Carpenter” made his professional debut in July 2003 and won eighteen of his first twenty-two while spending almost three years on the regional circuit fighting in organizations like Xtreme Fighting Organization, King of the Cage, and Extreme Challenge.  Guida won the Strikeforce lightweight title in 2006 and won one bout for the WEC organization in 2006.  The fast paced lightweight made the move into the UFC in 2006 and lost three of his first five under the bright lights.  He rebounded with three straight victories before dropping a pair once again in 2009.  Guida had gotten his career back on track recently but had an impressive four fight winning streak snapped with a November 2011 UFC on Fox loss to current Champion Benson Henderson.

Prediction – Guida Decision

 

Nick Russell
ProFightingFans.com Staff Writer

While Bellator’s Lightweight division may be the promotion’s deepest, Bellator’s Heavyweight division is was likely the thinnest in terms of top-level talent. Not to take anything away from Bellator’s attempts to build a roster of solid heavyweight fighters, but their own lack of tournaments speaks volumes. Bellator’s initial Heavyweight Tournament came during the Fall of 2010 in Season 3 where Cole Conrad emerged and won the Bellator Heavyweight Championship defeating Neil Grove. A year later they returned the Heavyweights to the cage and while exciting finishes were the norm throughout the tournament, an anti-climactic ending when a Thiago Santos kick to Eric Prindle’s groin left Prindle unable to continue resulting in a No Contest. Prindle eventually was rewarded the tournament championship after Santos could not make weight and Conrad defended his title with relative ease submitting Prindle in round one at Bellator 70.

Given the tournament format of Bellator leaving little debate in terms of rankings, it is still important to look at the big picture of recent activity from each fighter as well as their historic results.

And now the ranking of the best of othe Bellator Heavyweight Division…

 

Top Bellator Heavyweight Fighter Rankings:

 

1. Cole Conrad – (9-0, 7-0 BFC) – A 2-time NCAA National Championship wrestler from Minnesota, Cole Conrad is undefeated in his first 9 pro MMA bouts and became the promotion’s first Heavyweight Champion at Bellator 32 in October 2010. While Conrad has fought just twice since winning the belt, he was successful in his first title defense to remain atop the Bellator heavyweight division. With several recent signings it appears that Bellator will have yet another heavyweight tournament during Season 7 this Fall.

2. Eric Prindle – (9-2-1, 3-1-1 BFC) – Bellator Season 5 Heavyweight Tournament finalist Eric Prindle edges his Tournament final opponent Thiago Santos on this list based on a more impressive resume of wins. While the two still have yet to fight, Prindle was awarded the tournament championship and title shot after an illness kept Prindle from fighting one week and Santos’ inability to make weight forced Bellator’s hand on the third attempt. Prindle faced TUF 10 vet Abe Wagner at Bellator 52 to advance to the semifinals and knocked out previously unbeaten Ron Sparks at Bellator 56 to make the finals. Expect to see Prindle in the 8-man tournament field this Fall.

3. Thiago Santos – (10-1-1, 2-0-1 BFC) – Thiago, Prindle’s fellow Bellator Season 5 Heavyweight Tournament finalist, was on the giving end of the kick that caused a fair amount of controvery at the conclusion of Bellator’s 5th season. Deemed an inadvertant kick, Santos was to face Prindle once again to decide which fighter will get a shot at Cole Conrad’s Championship belt, but he could not make weight. Santos made his way into the tournament thanks to a win over Josh Burns at Bellator 53 to determine a reserve for the tounament and a subsequent injury to open the door for Santos. He followed the win with a 1st round submission of Neil Grove at Bellator 56 to advance to the final opposite Prindle.

4. Ron Sparks – (8-1, 3-1 BFC) – Ron “The Monster” Sparks entered Bellator’s Season 5 Heavyweight Tournament as one of the more hyped fighters at 7-0 as a pro with 5 KO/TKO wins. After a KO win over Mark Holata at Bellator 52 Sparks got a taste of his own medicine getting knocked out early in the 1st round to end his run at Bellator 56. He was scheduled to fight at Bellator 69 in a probable tournament qualifier, but a medical issue kept Sparks out of the fight.

Possibly the most difficult division to rank within the Bellator MMA promotion is their Light Heavyweight Division. The most inactive division of all, the organization has held just two Light Heavyweight Tournaments coming in Season 4 during the Spring of 2011 and during the 2012 Summer Series. To add to the complexity of ranking these fighters the Bellator Light Heavyweight Champion, Christian M’Pumbu, became the lone Bellator Champ to lose in a non-title fight for the promotion when he dropped a unanimous decision to Travis Wiuff at Bellator 55. On top of M’Pumbu’s unimpressive showing these rankings become even more difficult as Bellator has signed several young 205 lb fighters who have since been unable to take advantage of their opportunities as well as two bigger names in King Mo Lawal and Babalu Sobral.

Given the tournament format of Bellator leaving less debate in terms of rankings, it is still important to look at the big picture of recent activity from each fighter as well as their historic results.

And now the ranking of the best of othe Bellator Light Heavyweight Division…

Top Bellator Light Heavyweight Fighter Rankings:

1. Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal – (9-1-1, 1-0 BFC) – Likely the biggest name on Bellator’s roster across all divisions, the former Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion Lawal has an interesting role with his employer. Because Viacom owns Bellator as well as TNA Wrestling, Lawal is under contract with both and has already made his pro wrestling debut. His Bellator debut came at Bellator 86 in the opening round of the Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament as he tournament favorite scored a 1st round KO to advance.

2. Attila Vegh – (28-4-2, 4-0 BFC) – One of the favorites heading into the Summer Series 2012 Light Heavyweight Tournament, Attila Vegh was highly impressive in his three tournament fights earning the title shot against Christian M’Pumbu. While an injury has delayed the Bellator 84 scheduled fight to 2013, Vegh seems likely to be the favorite to be Bellator’s next 205lb champ. Vegh started his pro MMA career with 9 straight wins and stays active having fought 20 times in 2009 & 2010 combined.

3. Travis Wiuff – (68-16-1, 4-1 BFC) – The only man to defeat Bellator’s Light Heavyweight Champion, Christian M’Pumbu inside the Bellator cage, Wiuff advanced to the finals of the eight-man Summer Series 2012 Light Heavyweight Tournament by defeating Chris Davis and Tim Carpenter. After a surprising TKO loss to Atilla Vegh, Wiuff returned to action in November 2012 and dropped a split decision with an international promotion.

4. Christian M’Pumbu – (18-4-1, 3-1 BFC) – The promotion’s Light Heavyweight Champion, M’Pumbu gets the #3 spot, literally backing his way out of  the top spots based on a thin pool of talent (in comparison to their other divisions) around him after dropping a unanimous decision to Travis Wiuff at Bellator 55 in a non-title fight. M’Pumbu was slated to fight Vegh in his first title defense at Bellator 84 but an injury postponed the fight to 2013.

5. Mikhail Zayats – (20-6, 1-0 BFC) – After defeating one of Bellator’s bigger-name signees in Babalu Sobral, Zayats immediately deserves consideration for the Top 5 given Bellator’s thin roster of high-level 205lb fighters. A winner of 11 of his past 12 fights, Zayats has fought most of his career for the M-1 promotion before signing with Bellator.

 

Honorable Mention:  Tim Carpenter, Chris Davis, Emanuel Newton, Jacob Noe

 

Complete Bellator Rankings:

 

UFC on FX 3 Preview & Predictions

Jake Hecht vs. Sean Pierson

Former University of Missouri wrestler Jake “Hitman” Hecht (11-3) will try and notch his second octagon victory at UFC on FX 3 in a preliminary card bout opposite of Canadian Sean Pierson (11-6), another welterweight trying to climb into divisional relevance.

Hecht, 28, is a St. Louis, MO born mixed martial artist who fights out of Springfield, IL with Fiore MMA.  “Hitman” made his professional debut in 2006 and lost his first career fight, however followed that with ten victories over his next eleven contests.  His only loss in that span came to fellow UFC 170 pounder Che Mills in a 2010 regional bout in England.  In his UFC 140 debut last December, Hecht defeated Rich Attonito via TKO.  His quest for back to back victories was snuffed when TJ Waldburger submitted him 55 seconds into their UFC on FX 2 bout this past March.

Pierson, 36, is a Toronto, Ontario, Canada native who fights with the Grant Brothers MMA team in his home city.  The purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu made his professional debut in 1999 winning only five of his first nine while competing for Canadian regional promotions like TKO, HCF, UCC and IFC.  He found his way into the UFC in December 2010 and won his UFC 124 debut by unanimous decision over Matt Riddle.  Since winning his octagon debut over a year and a half ago, Pierson has dropped back to back bouts losing to Jake Ellenberger last April at UFC 129 and losing to Dong-Hyun Kim at UFC 141 this past December.

Prediction – Pierson TKO

 

Henry Martinez vs. Bernardo Magalhaes

Relative newcomer Henry Martinez (8-2) will attempt to pick up his first win inside the octagon when he meets UFC sophomore Bernardo Magalhaes (11-2) in a UFC on FX 3 preliminary card bout that will be fought at 155 pounds.

Martinez, 28, is a New Mexico based mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts in Albuquerque.  Martinez made his professional debut in 2006 and won his first four bouts while competing on the regional circuit in Hawaii, Colorado, and New Mexico.  His first career loss came at an early Bellator FC bout in 2009.  After suffering that loss, he rebounded to win his next four bouts while fighting mostly in Jackson’s MMA series events and earned a UFC contract.  In his UFC 143 debut this past February; Martinez was outpointed by Matthew Riddle in a split decision loss.

Magalhaes, 30, is a Brazilian native who fights out of Australia with the TP Fight Team.  Magalhaes, a submission specialist, made his professional debut in 2007 and won eleven of his first twelve bouts, including the Cage FC Championship, while fighting in Australia.  His successful streak earned him the opportunity to fight on the big stage in the UFC.  In his February UFC on Fuel TV debut, Magalhaes was defeated on the scorecards via unanimous decision against Tim Means.

Prediction – Magalhaes Submission

 

Buddy Roberts vs. Caio Magalhaes

Promotional newcomers Buddy Roberts (11-2) and Brazilian Caio Magalhaes (5-0) will meet in a UFC on FX 3 preliminary card bout that will be fought at 205 pounds.

Roberts, 29, is an Albuquerque, New Mexico based mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s MMA.  The 6’2” Roberts made his professional debut in 2007 and won six of his first eight in regional competition.  After suffering his second career loss, Roberts rebounded and won his next five fights to earn a chance to prove himself in the UFC.  Among the opponents that Roberts defeated over his career include notables BJ Lacy and Tony Lopez.

Magalhaes, 24, is a Brazilian native who fights out of the Dragon Fight and Nova Uniao fight teams.  The grappling specialist made his professional debut in 2009 and he has won all five of his bouts up to this point in his career.  Magalhaes has appeared in Brazilian regional promotions like Shooto Brazil, Amazon Fight and Iron Man Championships.  His most recent action took place this past December at Shoot Brazil where he earned a split decision victory over Ismael de Jesus.

Prediction – Roberts TKO

 

Tim Means vs. Justin Salas

A preliminary bout on the UFC on FX 3 card will take place between successful octagon sophomores Tim “The Dirty Bird” Means (17-3-1) and Justin “J-Bomb” Salas (10-3).  The fight will take place in the always competitive lightweight division.

Means is an Oklahoma born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Albuquerque, New Mexico based Fit NHB.  “The Dirty Bird” made his professional debut in 2004 and won nine of his first thirteen bouts competing primarily in notable organizations like King of the Cage, Ring of Fire and IFC.  Means was victorious over his last seven fights prior to joining the UFC early on in this year.  In his UFC on Fuel TV debut this February, Means earned a unanimous decision victory over fellow rookie Bernardo Magalhaes.

Salas is a Wyoming born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Colorado at the Grudge Training Center.  “J-Bomb” made his professional debut in 2006 and won four of his first seven bouts competing on the Colorado regional circuit.  Salas hasn’t lost since suffering his third career defeat in 2009 winning five in a row before earning a UFC opportunity early in 2012.  In his UFC on Fuel TV debut in early February, Salas picked up a unanimous decision victory over fellow promotional rookie Anton Kuivanen.

Prediction – Salas TKO

 

Dustin Pague vs. Jared Papazian

The Ultimate Fighter 14 semifinalist Dustin Pague (10-5) will be in search of his first official UFC victory at UFC on FX 3 when he meets fellow promotional sophomore Jared Papazian (14-7, NC) in a preliminary card bout in the bantamweight division.

Pague, 24, is a Pennsylvania born mixed martial artist who now splits his training at the Virginia based Disciple MMA and the Tapout Ranch in New Mexico.  “The Disciple” made his professional debut in 2008 and won only five of his first nine contests competing in small events across Pennsylvania and North Carolina.  After struggling early on, Pague got back on track and won five straight fights fighting in regional organizations along the east coast.  His TUF 14 spot was earned after fighting his way into the house through the elimination round.  While on the show, Pague defeated Louis Gaudinot in the quarterfinals before losing to TJ Dillashaw in the semis.  At the events’ Live Finale this past December, Pague lost via TKO against John Albert via 1st round TKO.

Papazian, 24, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of Gracie Barra Encino in Encino, CA.  The Muay-Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist made his professional debut in 2008 and won only half of his first twelve bouts.  He continued to fight on the regional circuit in California and turned his fortunes around winning eight of his next nine including the King of the Cage Flyweight Title in 2011.  His resurgence earned him a chance to fight in the UFC’s octagon, however Papazian lost at his UFC on FX debut this past January via majority decision against Mike Easton.

Prediction – Papazian Decision

 

Leonard Garcia vs. Matt Grice

Former WEC standout Leonard “Bad Boy” Garcia (15-8-1) is attempting to make a name for himself in the UFC at UFC on FX 3 in a preliminary card bout against fellow featherweight Matt Grice (14-4).

Garcia, 32, is a Texas native who fights out of New Mexico with Jackson’s MMA.  “Bad Boy” made his professional debut in 1999 and won nine of his first ten to earn his first opportunity inside the UFC.  After losing two of his first three inside the octagon in 2007, Garcia transitioned into the WEC.  From February 2008 through September 2010 Garcia posted a 4-3-1 mark under the WEC banner.  When the WEC was absorbed into the UFC, Garcia rejoined the organization, however hasn’t had much luck.  He has again lost two of three inside the octagon including back to back bouts.  His most recent loss came at UFC 136 last October losing a decision to journeyman Nam Phan.

Grice, 30, is an Oklahoma based mixed martial artist who fights out of Harrah with Mad Squabbles.  The well rounded Grice made his professional debut in 2005 and won his first nine fights while competing in Oklahoma and Texas in regional events.  The UFC called him up in 2007, but Grice struggled losing three of his four fights from April 2007 through July 2009.  The Oklahoma native quickly got back on track winning four straight following his release from the UFC.  Grice earned a return trip into the UFC last year but was defeated in his UFC Live bout via TKO against Ricardo Lamas.

Prediction – Garcia Submission

 

Mike Pierce vs. Carlos Eduardo Rocha

Hard hitting Mike Pierce (13-5) will attempt to get back his contender status when he meets German based Carlos Eduardo Rocha (9-1) in a UFC on FX preliminary card bout that will be fought at 170 pounds.

Pierce, 31, is an Oregon born mixed martial artist who fights out of Portland at the Sports Lab Fight Team.  The former Portland State University wrestler made his professional MMA debut in 2007 and won eight of his first ten while competing in Northwest based regional promotions as well as one bout in the WEC.  Pierce made his way into the UFC in late 2009 and won four of his first five under the UFC banner defeating opponents like Brock Larson, Amilcar Alves, Kenny Robertson, and Julio Paulino.  Since his successful streak, Pierce has hit a bump in the road losing two of his last three.  His most recent action took place this past February at UFC 143 losing via split decision against perennial contender Josh Koscheck.

Rocha, 30, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Hamburg, Germany with Darcio Lira Jiu-Jitsu.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2008 and won his first eight fights while competing exclusively in Germany.  His seven submission finishes over his first eight bouts was enough to earn him a UFC opportunity in late 2010.  Rocha won his UFC 122 debut with a submission finish of Kris McCray but was defeated at UFC 126 this past February via split decision courtesy of Jake Ellenberger.

Prediction – Pierce Decision

 

Seth Baczynski vs. Lance Benoist

The Ultimate Fighter 11 participant Seth Baczynski (15-6) will look to continue his post-TUF resurgence in a UFC on FX 3 preliminary card bout versus Lance Benoist (6-0) in a welterweight bout.

Baczynski, 30, is a Hawaii born mixed martial artist who fights out of Power MMA and Fitness in Arizona.  The well-rounded Baczynski made his professional debut in 2006 and won eleven of his first sixteen while fighting in multiple regional organizations across the United States.  His first career break came as an injury replacement on The Ultimate Fighter 11, however after connecting on an illegal kick; Baczynski was ousted in his first fight on the show.  UFC officials made the rematch at the TUF 11 finale, but the result was the same, Baczynski lost once again.  He was released after his finale loss, but back to back victories in regional events earned him a return trip in 2011.  Since returning to the UFC in late 2011, Baczynski has won back to back bouts defeating Clay Harvison at UFC Fight Night 25 and then submitting Matt Brown at UFC 139 last November.

Benoist, 23, is a St. Louis, MO based mixed martial artist who fights out of SCMMA/Vaghi.  The BJJ purple belt made his professional debut in January 2010 and won five straight to begin his career while fighting in mid-level events across Missouri, Iowa, and Illinois.  Benoist made his way into the UFC in 2011 picking up his sixth straight victory at UFC Fight Night 25 with a decision over Matt Riddle.

Prediction – Baczynski Submission

 

Eddie Wineland vs. Scott Jorgensen

Longtime WEC standouts Eddie Wineland (18-8-1) and Scott Jorgensen (13-5) will meet in a UFC on FX 3 main card bantamweight bout.

Wineland, 27, is a Texas born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Chicago with New Breed Academy.  Wineland made his professional debut in 2003 and won ten of his first fifteen while competing in regional organizations across Indiana and Illinois.  The knockout specialist fought in the WEC from 2006-2010 posting a 5-2 mark before the organization was absorbed into the UFC.  Since coming into the UFC Wineland has dropped back to back bouts, first losing to Urijah Faber at UFC 128 last March and then most recently against Joseph Benavidez at UFC Live in August 2011.

Jorgensen, 29, is a Utah born mixed martial artist who fights out of Idaho with Combat Fitness.  The former Division I wrestler made his professional MMA debut in 2006 and won four of his first five fighting mostly for Ring of Fire organization.  He joined the WEC in 2008 and stayed with the company until late in 2010.  While with the WEC, Jorgensen won seven of his ten bouts including five of his last six.  He also won his first two in the UFC defeating Ken Stone and Jeff Curran before losing this past February at UFC 143 via decision against Renan Barao.

Prediction – Wineland Decision

 

Mike Pyle vs. Josh Neer

Two of the UFC’s most experienced fighters will go at it in a UFC on FX 3 main card bout when Mike “Quicksand” Pyle (22-8-1) meets Josh “The Dentist” Neer (33-10-1) in a welterweight bout.

Pyle, 36, is a Tennessee born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Las Vegas, NV at Xtreme Couture.  “Quicksand” made his professional debut in 1999 and won seventeen of his first twenty-three bouts while fighting both on the regional events as well as bigger organizations like Strikeforce, IFL, Affliction, WEC, and Elite XC.  Pyle was brought into the UFC in 2009 and lost two of his first three under the Zuffa banner.  Since a bumpy start to his octagon career, Pyle has caught his stride and won four of his last five inside the octagon.  His most recent win came at UFC 142 this past January where he knocked out Ricardo Funch in the 1st round.

Neer, 29, is an Iowa born mixed martial artist who fights out of Miletich Martial Arts in Des Moines.  “The Dentist” made his professional debut in 2003 and won thirteen of his first fifteen while competing mostly on the Iowa regional circuit.  Neer was first brought into the UFC in 2005 but won only twice out of his five appearances.  He was released and had to fight his way back into the organization by winning six of seven bouts on the small regional stage.  Neer was welcomed back in 2008 and again won only twice out of five fights before being released a second time.  Similar to his last release from the organization, Neer had to win six of seven on the regional circuit to earn a third stint in the UFC.  This time he has won back to back fights defeating Keith Wisniewski at UFC Live last October and then submitted Duane Ludwig at UFC on FX in January.

Prediction – Pyle TKO

 

Erick Silva vs. Charlie Brenneman

Brazilian Erick Silva (13-2) will bring his exciting style of fighting to the UFC on FX 3 main card against wrestling based Charlie Brenneman (15-3) in a welterweight clash.

Silva, 27, is a Brazil based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Nogueira.  The Judo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist made his professional debut in 2005 and won 12 of his first 14 while competing on the regional fight circuit in Brazil.  The former Jungle Fight Welterweight Champion made his way into the UFC in 2011 and was victorious at UFC 134 with a KO over Luis Ramos.  He was defeated at UFC 142 via DQ against Carlo Prater after hitting him in the back of the head.

Brenneman is a Pennsylvania born mixed martial artist who fights out of New Jersey with the AMA Fight Club.  The former wrestler made his professional debut in 2007 and won 11 of his first 12 while competing across PA and New Jersey.  Brenneman was brought into the UFC in 2010 winning three of his first four including an upset victory over Rick Story in June 2011.  Brenneman has split his last pair of bouts in the UFC losing against Anthony Johnson last October and defeating Daniel Roberts in January at UFC on FX.

Prediction – Silva TKO

 

Demetrious Johnson vs. Ian McCall

A Flyweight Tournament Semifinal rematch between Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson (14-2-1) and Ian “Uncle Creepy” McCall (11-2-1) will serve as the main event at UFC on FX 3 for a chance to fight for the 125 pound title.

Johnson, 25, is a Kentucky born mixed martial artist who fights out of Washington with AMC Pankration.  “Mighty Mouse” made his professional debut in 2007 and went unbeaten through his first ten bouts while competing in the regional events across Washington.  Johnson was brought into the WEC in 2010 and lost his first bout there before quickly rebounding to win his last two for the organization.  He then made his UFC debut in 2011 and won his first two inside the octagon to earn a UFC title shot.  His title shot was competitive but he lost a decision against Dominick Cruz at UFC Live in October 2011.  His last fight was his majority draw with McCall this past March at UFC on FX.

McCall, 27, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Oyama.  The purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu made his professional debut in 2002 and won his first five competing in California, Hawaii and Mexico.  McCall tried his hand in the WEC but lost two of three from 2007-09 as a bantamweight.  He dropped to Flyweight in 2011 and won three straight fights and became the Tachi Palace Fights Flyweight Champion the same year.  Once the UFC adopted Flyweights, McCall was brought in for the tournament.  At UFC on FX this past March, McCall fought Johnson to a majority draw.

Prediction – Johnson Decision

John Albert vs. Erik Perez

The Ultimate Fighter 14 competitor John “Prince” Albert (7-2) will attempt to get back in the winner’s circle at the TUF Live Finale when he meets promotional rookie Erik Perez (10-4) in a preliminary card bantamweight bout.

Albert, 25, is a Reno, Nevada born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Washington with Victory Athletics.  “Prince” made his professional debut in March 2007 and went on to win his first six bouts before losing his first career contest prior to entering the TUF 14 competition.  After clinching his spot inside the house, Albert was chosen by Team Bisping and was defeated by eventual winner John Dodson in the quarterfinals of the competition.  He was awarded a bout in the December 2011 TUF 14 finale where he took advantage and came up with a TKO victory over fellow housemate Dustin Pague.  In his follow up bout this February at UFC on Fuel TV, Albert was submitted by Ivan Menjivar in the first round of their preliminary card bout.

Perez, 22, is a Mexican born mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts in New Mexico.  “El Goyito” made his professional debut in 2008 and lost back to back bouts to begin his career.  Perez bounced back to win his next five bouts while competing on the regional circuit.  He hit another roadblock in 2010 when he dropped back to back bouts for a second time in his career, but once again bounced back to put together an impressive five fight winning streak.  His most recent win came by unanimous decision at BAMMA 8 this past December defeating Paul McVeigh.

Prediction – Albert TKO

 

Jeremy Larsen vs. Joe Proctor

Team Cruz’s Jeremy Larsen (8-2, NC) will attempt to right his early round loss in the TUF: Live tournament when he meets quarterfinalist Team Faber’s Joe Proctor (7-1) in a Live Finale preliminary card bout that will be contested at 155 pounds.

Larsen is an Arizona based mixed martial artist who has been competing as a professional for over five years.  Larsen made his debut in late 2006 and has won eight of his eleven career fights.  A veteran of Rage in the Cage, Cage Supremacy, and Trilogy FC promotions, Larsen lost his only contest in January 2011 via submission against TUF winner and UFC veteran Efrain Escudero.  Since his loss, the 5’10” Larsen has won back to back bouts in the Trilogy FC organization near Phoenix, AZ.  The 8th pick by Team Cruz lost during the first round following the preliminary contests, falling via decision to finalist Mike Chiesa.

Proctor is a Massachusetts based mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Aggression in Bridgewater.  Proctor made his professional debut in 2008 and won his first four before losing a November 2011 bout in his home state.  Since suffering his only career loss, Proctor has rebounded to win his last three fights.  A veteran of regional organizations Reality Fighting, AFO, and FFP, the 5’10” submission specialist was chosen fourth by Team Faber during the draft.  An impressive submission victory over Chris Tickle in the first round advanced him into the quarterfinals where he lost to James Vick via decision.

Prediction – Proctor Submission

Cristiano Marcello vs. Sam Sicilia

A pair of TUF Live participants will go at it in the live finale when Team Faber’s Cristiano Marcello (12-3) battles with Sam Sicilia (10-1) of Team Cruz in a lightweight scrap on the preliminary card.

Marcello is a Brazilian native who fights out of the legendary Chute Boxe academy where he holds a fourth degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  The 5’9” Marcello won twelve of his first fifteen while competing in Brazil, Japan, Korea and the United States for organizations like MARS, Art of War and PRIDE.  Prior to earning a position on TUF Live, Marcello won his final three bouts.  He was then selected by Team Faber fourth overall.  Marcello fought tough in his preliminary round bout but was ultimately knocked out by Justin Lawrence.

Sicilia is a Spokane, Washington based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Sikjitsu team.  Sicilia made his professional debut in September 2007 and won four bouts before suffering his first career defeat.  Bouncing back from his first career defeat, Sicilia won his final six bouts before earning his way into the TUF Live house.  A veteran of regional promotions like Square Ring Promotions, Conquest of the Cage, and Ringside Ticket was chosen third overall by Team Cruz and was defeated by Chris Saunders in the opening round of the TUF Live tournament.

Prediction – Marcello Submission

Myles Jury vs. Chris Saunders

Undefeated Team Cruz prospect Myles Jury (9-0) will make his first post-TUF Live appearance in the live finale against Team Faber’s Chris Saunders (9-2) in lightweight action on the preliminary card.

Jury, 23, is a Michigan native who fights out of The Arena team.  The 5’11” Jury made his professional MMA debut in 2005 before taking nearly three years off of competition.  He returned in late 2008 and won his next eight bouts.  The Shooto, King of the Cage, and XCC veteran picked up his most recent victory in September 2010 in a KOTC event submitting Sam Oropeza in the 1st round.  Jury earned his way into the TUF Live show and was chosen by Team Cruz with their third pick (5th overall).  He was defeated by Al Iaquinta in the preliminary round via split decision.

Saunders, 26, is a California native who fights out of All in MMA in Buena Park.  The three year professional won nine of his first ten bouts while fighting in regional organizations like Battle in the Ballroom and Long Beach Fight Night.  In his most recent fight, Saunders lost a decision to UFC veteran Chris Horodecki at Bellator 47 in July 2011.  After fighting his way onto TUF Live, Saunders was chosen by Team Faber as the 16th pick overall.  He defeated Sam Sicilia by split decision in the preliminary round before losing to Vinc Pichel in the quarterfinals.

Prediction – Jury Decision

Daron Cruickshank vs. Chris Tickle

Team Faber’s Daron Cruickshank (10-2) will attempt to earn himself a long term UFC contract when he meets Team Cruz’ Chris Tickle (7-4) in a TUF Live Finale lightweight bout that is positioned on the preliminary card.

Cruickshank, 26, is a Michigan native who fights out of Wayne, MI with the MASH Fight Team.  The former division III wrestler made his professional MMA debut in late-2009 and won six of his first eight while fighting mostly for King of the Cage.  Prior to making his way onto TUF Live, Cruickshank won his last four fights.  Once fighting his way past the elimination round on TUF 15, Cruickshank was chosen by Team Faber with the 6th overall pick.  During the preliminary round he was knocked out by James Vick.

Tickle, 30, is an Illinois born mixed martial artist who fights out of One Step Fitness.  The kickboxing specialist made his professional MMA debut in 2008 and won only twice out of his first six bouts.  Tickle remained the course and rebounded with five straight victories, including four via KO, before earning a place on TUF Live.  The Illinois and Iowa regional fighter was chosen thirteenth overall by Team Cruz and lost his fight during the preliminary round via submission against Joe Proctor.

Prediction – Cruickshank TKO

Justin Lawrence vs. John Cofer

TUF Live’s first overall pick Justin Lawrence (3-0) will attempt to secure a UFC contract when he meets Team Faber’s John Cofer (7-1) in a lightweight bout that will be part of the TUF Live Finale main card.

Lawrence, 22, is a Missouri native who fights out of Blackhouse MMA in Los Angeles, CA.  The well rounded Lawrence made his professional debut in 2010 and won all of his first three bouts while competing for regional events in Missouri and Ohio as well as one bout for Strikeforce.  Once fighting his way into the TUF Live house, Lawrence was chosen first overall by Team Cruz and picked up a victory over jiu-jitsu specialist Cristiano Marcello via KO in the preliminary round.  In the quarterfinals however, Lawrence’s momentum was stopped with a TKO loss t Mike Chiesa.

Cofer is an Athens, Georgia native who fights out of the Hardcore Gym.  The 5’9” Cofer made his professional debut in 2008 and won three bouts before losing his first bout via TKO in February 2010.  The submission specialist rebounded by winning his next four bouts and was chosen to appear on TUF Live.  Team Faber made Cofer their sixth pick (12th overall) and lost to Vinc Pichel by submission during the preliminary round.

Prediction – Lawrence Decision

Jonathan Brookins vs. Charles Oliveira

The Ultimate Fighter 12 winner Jonathan Brookins (13-4) will attempt to make it two in a row at 145 pounds when he meets Charles “Da Bronx” Oliveira (15-2, NC) in a TUF Live main card bout.

Brookins, 26, is an Oregon born mixed martial artist who fights out of Orlando, Florida with the Gracie Barra Orlando team.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in 2006 and won eight of his first ten while competing across regional organizations in Florida, Texas, and Hawaii.  After only one WEC bout, which he lost via TKO against Jose Aldo, Brookins rebounded to win his next three bouts before earning a spot on TUF 12.  After being chosen by Team GSP, Brookins went on to eventually win the competition by defeating Michael Johnson by decision.  After the TUF 12 finale, Brookins dropped to featherweight and lost his first bout at UFC Fight Night 25 against Erik Koch.  He rebounded in his most recent fight at UFC on Fuel TV by knocking out Vagner Rocha this past February.

Oliveira, 22, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Houston, Texas with Bronx’s Gold Team USA.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2008 and won his first twelve bouts while competing in regional events in his native Brazil.  In August 2010 Oliveira was brought into the UFC and won his first two inside the octagon by defeating Darren Elkins and Efrain Escudero.  With an undefeated record after fourteen bouts, he went winless over his next three bouts under the UFC banner.  In a must-win situation, Oliveira submitted Eric Wisely at UFC on Fox this past January.

Prediction – Brookins TKO

Max Holloway vs. Pat Schilling

Two of the organizations youngest competitors will be featured in a TUF: Live Finale main card bout as Max Holloway (4-1) meets Pat Schilling (5-1) for a chance to advance in the featherweight division.

Holloway, 20, is a Hawaii born mixed martial artist who fights out of Waianae, HI.  The youngest fighter currently in the UFC began competing as a professional in 2010 and picked up four quick victories while fighting on the regional circuit in his native island.  The X-1 veteran faced top contender Dustin Poirier in his UFC 143 debut in February and was submitted 3:23 into his bout for his first career loss.

Schilling, 23, is a Minnesota based mixed martial artist who fights out of Ambition MMA.  “Thrilling” made his debut in January 2010 and won his first five bouts while fighting mostly in the Midwest United States regional circuit.  Four straight submission finishes were strong enough to earn him a UFC contract this year.  In his UFC on FX debut this January, Schilling was submitted with a rear naked choke at 1:37 of the 1st round of his debut against Daniel Pineda.

Prediction – Holloway Decision

Jonathan Brookins vs. Charles Oliveira

The Ultimate Fighter 12 winner Jonathan Brookins (13-4) will try and build off his recent knockout victory when he meets Charles Oliveira (15-2, NC) in a TUF Live Finale main card bout contested in the featherweight division.

Brookins, 26, is an Oregon born mixed martial artist who fights out of Gracie Barra in Orlando, Florida.  The submission specialist made his professional debut in July of 2006 and won eight of his first ten while earning experience on the Florida regional fight circuit.  His impressive start earned him a WEC bout opposite Jose Aldo in November of 2008.  At WEC 36, Brookins was defeated by TKO and soon left the organization.  He followed his WEC loss with three straight victories including one for Bellator before earning a position on TUF 12.  After fighting his way into the house, Brookins was chosen by Team GSP and completed his sweep with a TUF 12 Finale victory over Michael Johnson.  Brookins left the lightweight division after losing to Eric Koch at UFC Fight Night 25 last September.  In his return to 145, Brookins looked refreshed and earned a KO victory over Vagner Rocha at UFC on Fuel TV this February.

Oliveira, 22, is a Brazilian born mixed martial artist who now fights out of Houston, TX with Bronx’s Gold Team USA.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in March of 2008 and went 12-0 while spending two years fighting in his native country.  Oliveira was brought into the UFC in August 2010 and won his first two bouts inside the octagon submitting both Darren Elkins and Efrain Escudero.  Oliveira went winless over his next three fights that included losses to Jim Miller and Donald Cerrone and a no contest against Nik Lentz.  After his 0-2, NC run, Oliveira dropped to 145 and picked up a submission win over Eric Wisely at UFC on Fox 2 this past January.

Prediction – Oliveira Decision

Mike Chiesa vs. Al Iaquinta

Team Faber’s fifth choice Mike Chiesa (7-0) will try and become the TUF Live lightweight winner, however he will have to defeat hard hitting and fellow Team Faber teammate Al Iaquinta (5-1-1) in a TUF Live Finale co-main event.

Chiesa, 24, is a Washington born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Fancy Pants Fight Team in Spokane.  The undefeated submission specialist made his professional debut in 2008 and won all seven of his bouts while competing in regional events in Idaho, Washington, Canada with organizations like Cage Sport and Lords of the Cage.  Chiesa was chosen by Team Faber with their fifth choice and defeated Jeremy Larsen, Justin Lawrence, and James Vick to land in the tournament final.

Iaquinta, 25, is a New York born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Serra Longo Fight Team.  The purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu made his professional debut in 2009 and went undefeated through his first six fights while competing for Ring of Combat.  Iaquinta was defeated in his last bout before earning his way into TUF Live.  On the show, he was chosen as the 1st pick by Team Faber and defeated Myles Jury, Andy Ogle, Vinc Pichel to punch his ticket into the final.

Prediction – Chiesa Decision

Jake Ellenberger vs. Martin Kampmann

Welterweight contenders Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger (27-5) and Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann (19-5) will meet in The Ultimate Fighter: Live Finale main event in search of a potential title opportunity.

Ellenberger, 27, is a Nebraska born mixed martial artist who fights out of Reign Training Center as well as Kings MMA.  The former division II wrestler made his MMA professional debut in 2005 and won 21 of his first 25 during his first four plus years in the business.  Stints with the IFL, Bodog Fight, M-1, Bellator and other mid-level organizations earned him the chance to fight for the UFC in 2009.  “The Juggernaut” dropped his UFC Fight Night 19 debut against Carlos Condit by tight split decision, however has won his last six that followed.  Among the opponents that he defeated during his current six fight winning streak include Mike Pyle, Jake Shields, and Diego Sanchez in his most recent at UFC on Fuel TV this past February.

Kampmann, 30, is a Denmark native who fights out of Las Vegas, Nevada with Xtreme Couture.  “The Hitman” made his professional debut in 2003 and won 9 of his first 10 while competing overseas in England, Russia, Wales, Sweden and Denmark.  The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt earned his way into the UFC in 2006 and won his first four inside the octagon before losing to Nate Marquardt at UFC 88.  Overall, Kampmann was 4-1 as a middleweight before he moved to welterweight division in January 2009.  As a welterweight, Kampmann won four of his first five before falling in back to back contests against Jake Shields and Diego Sanchez.  Since losing two in a row, Kampmann has picked up wins in his last two fights defeating Rick Story at UFC 139 and Thiago Alves at UFC on FX in March.

Prediction – Ellenberger Decision

Nick Russell
ProFightingFans Staff Writer

UFC 146 will take place on May 26, 2012 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada and   will be a Pay Per View televised event. The UFC 146 fight card rumors are listed below where we will continue to update these as announcements are made. Also be sure to check back for the official UFC 146 results here at ProFighting-fans.com after the fights are complete.

Stipe Miocic UFC
UFC Heavyweight Stipe Miocic

Results for UFC 146 Fight Card:

> View more UFC results online listed here by Pro Fighting Fans and check out the UFC 146 Preview and future UFC event fight cards!

Pay Per View Televised UFC 146 Fight Card Results:

  • Junior dos Santos def. Frank Mir by TKO at 3:04, R2
  • Cain Velasquez def. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva by TKO at 3:36, R1
  • Roy Nelson def. Dave Herman by KO at :51 , R1
  • Stipe Miocic def. Shane Del Rosario by TKO at 3:14, R2
  • Stefan Struve def. Lavar Johnson by submission (arm bar) at 1:05, R1

     

UFC 146 Preliminary Fight Card Results:

  • Darren Elkins def. Diego Brandao by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Jamie Varner def. Edson Barboza by TKO at 3:23, R1
  • C.B. Dollaway def. Jason “Mayhem” Miller by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-26, 29-28)
  • Dan Hardy def. Duane “Bang” Ludwig by KO at 3:51, R1
  • Paul Sass def. Jacob Volkmann by submission (triangle/arm bar) at 1:54, R1
  • Glover Teixeira def. Kyle Kingsbury by submission (arm triangle choke) at 1:53, R1
  • Mike Brown def. Daniel Pineda by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

The atmosphere at Titan 22 in Kansas City, Kansas was unbelievable and the night was full of exciting fights. The undercard was stacked with local talent and Tony Cardello won the Amateur TFC Middleweight Championship. He plans on defending the title once or twice and then think about making his pro debut because he is 33 years old and is 5-0 and knows his game time is running out.

The first fight on the main card featured top prospect Mirsad Bektic. Mirsad is making a name for himself in Titan as one of the rising stars. He is now 4-0 and has finished every one of his opponents. He took out Willie Mack in the 2nd round by KO which was a late stoppage by the referee and the Kansas Athletic Commission pulled the ref for the rest of the night since the safety of fighters is the most important thing. After the fight Mirsad said he is looking to fight “whoever has a good name”.

One thing I really enjoyed from Titan 22 was Rudy Bears entrance. He told his kids class “If they work hard he will let them walk out with him”. Rudy told me “ To be honest that was a little more pressure on me cause 2 of them are my kids and I can’t let them see daddy get hurt.” Luckily for Rudy he fought like a beast and put all the pressure on Nolte and pounded on him until he made him tap from strikes. Rudy Bears has had his ups and downs in the sport and really needed that win. One thing I can say about Rudy Bears is that he always takes tough fights and I respect that.

In my opinion Andrew Whitney Vs. Jose Vega should have been for the Bantamweight Title. These 2 guys are the top Bantamweights in this area and had a lot of respect for each other coming into the fight. Andrew Whitney showed that he is top talent and that he can take out tough opponents and moves his record to 8-1 with a Knockout victory over Jose Vega 2:55 seconds into the very first round. Andrew Whitney told me after the fight “Jose Vega is one of the best guys in the Midwest and I made short work of him.” With this win Andrew Whitney proves he is one of the top Bantamweight fighters outside of the UFC.

LC Davis was one of the casualties of the WEC/UFC merger and was on a 3 fight losing streak coming into this fight at Titan 22. Davis felt like this fight with Bill Kamery was a must win for him. LC came out strong and beat Kamery in every aspect of the game and had a spectacular Bantamweight debut. Davis is back in the winning column and is looking to stay there. I talked with LC Davis after the fight and he told me “I just want to keep winning.” It was great to see LC Davis get the win because I have been following his career since his IFL days.

The Main Event of the evening ended up being more of a cat and mouse game with Dave Branch playing the smart game and trying to stay away from the power of Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson. I feel like Anthony Johnson chased him the whole fight and never cut off the cage. You would think with all the drama behind Johnson that he would come out to finish the fight but it was the opposite. Not only did Anthony Johnson have to make the fight a catchweight of 195 lbs. but he didn’t even seem to come to fight. If there is a health issue with Johnson from trying to cut too much weight then he just needs to fight at 205. If you can’t make 185 then you need to sign for a catchweight fight. Any promoter that gives ‘Rumble’ a chance has to know that missing weight is a possibility.

 

By Chris Gregory – @ChrisGregoryMMA
ProFightingFans.com Guest MMA Writer

UFC 146 Preliminary Card Predictions:

Mike Brown vs. Daniel Pineda

Longtime Zuffa employee Mike Brown (25-8) will attempt to win his second in a row inside the octagon when he meets Daniel “The Pit” Pineda (17-7) in a UFC 146 preliminary card bout that will be shown on Facebook.

Brown, 36, is a Maine born mixed martial artist who is a longtime member of the American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2001 and won 9 of his first 10 while fighting on the east coast in a series of regional organizations to earn his first UFC bout. He was submitted by Genki Sudo at UFC 47 in April of 2004 while competing as a lightweight. After losing inside the octagon, Brown won 9 of his next 11 for promotions like DEEP and Bodog Fight to earn a WEC opportunity. During his two plus years in the WEC, Brown won 6 of his 8 fights and was the organizations’ Featherweight Champion. After defending the belt twice, Brown lost his title but transitioned into the UFC anyway. He has lost 2 of his 3 bouts for the UFC so far, although he did come out on top at UFC 133 last summer defeating Nam Phan by decision.

Pineda, 26, is a Dallas, Texas born mixed martial artist who fights out of the 4 oz. Fight Club in Houston. “The Pit” made his professional debut in 2007 and won 8 of his first 10 bouts. Climbing up the minor league ranks, Pineda hit a rough patch and dropped 5 of his next 7. Eventually he would find his place with Legacy FC and won five straight bouts to earn a chance inside the UFC. Since joining the UFC earlier this year, Pineda has won back to back bouts defeating Pat Schilling and Mackens Semerzier in January and March respectively. Pineda has also fought in Bellator and Elite XC.

Prediction – Brown Submission

 

Kyle Kingsbury vs. Glover Teixeira

The Ultimate Fighter 8 veteran Kyle Kingsbury (11-3, NC) will try and get back in the winner’s circle at UFC 146 in a Facebook streamed preliminary card bout versus promotional newcomer Glover Teixeira (17-2).

Kingsbury, 30, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of San Jose with the American Top Team. Kingsbury made his professional debut in 2006 and won 7 of his first 9 while fighting for King of the Cage and Rage in the Cage organizations. The wrestling based Kingsbury was an injury replacement on TUF 8 and competed as part of Team Nogueira. He didn’t win the competition or his official octagon debut at the TUF 8 Finale but kept his place with the organization after winning his next four bouts. Among his four straight victories included two “Fight of the Night” bonuses after wins over Razak Al-Hassan and Fabio Maldonado. His four fight win streak was stopped last November at UFC 139 when he lost a unanimous decision bout against Stephan Bonnar.

Teixeira, 32, is a Brazil born mixed martial artist who fights out of The Pit in California. The hard hitting Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2002 and split his first four bouts. After a 2-2 start, Teixeira won three in a row for the WEC organization in 2006. After the organization cut its heavier weight classes, Teixeira returned to Brazil and continued to win and build his winning streak to its current position at 15 in a row. The Bitetti Combat, Impact FC, and Shooto Brazil veteran has defeated opponents like Antonio Mendes, Marvin Eastman, and Ricco Rodriguez during his current winning streak.

Prediction – Teixeira TKO

 

Dan Hardy vs. Duane Ludwig

Former title challenger Dan “The Outlaw” Hardy (23-10, NC) will meet longtime MMA veteran Duane “Bang” Ludwig (21-12) in an FX streamed preliminary card bout at UFC 146.

Hardy, 29, is a British born mixed martial artist who fights out of Nottingham, England. “The Outlaw” made his professional debut in 2004 and posted a 19-6, NC mark after fighting for almost four years with promotions across Japan, England, and the United States. The taekwondo based fighter made his UFC debut in 2008 and won his first four bouts inside the octagon to earn a 170 pound title fight. In March 2010 at UFC 111, Hardy was outpointed by current Champion George St. Pierre in his title appearance. The loss set off a string of bad luck, Hardy hasn’t won since before his title fight losing four in a row including his most recent fight last summer at UFC on VS 6 where he was submitted by Chris Lytle.

Ludwig, 33, is a Colorado based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Grudge Training Center near Denver. “Bang” made his professional debut in 2000 and won 9 of his first 11 to earn his first opportunity inside the octagon. At UFC 42 in April 2003, Ludwig defeated Japanese fighter Genki Sudo by decision. He won his second bout inside the octagon almost three years later at UFC Fight Night 3 where he knocked out Jonathan Goulet. After his knockout victory over Goulet, Ludwig fought for Strikeforce, Ring of Fire, and Sengoku for almost three full years before returning to the UFC in early 2010. Since his return over two years ago, Ludwig has posted wins in just two of his five appearances. He has his two fight winning streak snapped in his most recent fight this past January at UFC on FX where he was submitted by Josh Neer.

Prediction – Ludwig Decision

 

Jacob Volkmann vs. Paul Sass

Rising lightweight Jacob “Christmas” Volkmann (14-2) will go for his sixth straight win inside the octagon at UFC 146 in a Facebook streamed preliminary card bout against undefeated lightweight Paul Sass (12-0).

Volkmann, 31, is a Minnesota based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy. The former NCAA Division I wrestler made his professional debut in 2007 and won his first 9 bouts on the regional circuit. He joined the UFC in late 2009 and lost back to back welterweight bouts to begin his octagon career. With his job on the line, Volkmann dropped to 155 pounds and has won five in a row. In his most recent action, “Christmas” defeated Efrain Escudero at this past December’s UFC 141.

Sass, 23, is a British based mixed martial artist who fights out of Liverpool with Team Kaobon. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt made his professional debut in 2007 and won his first 10 bouts while fighting in regional organizations across England. Sass made the move into the UFC in late 2010 and has won both of his bouts in the octagon since. He first submitted Mark Holst at UFC 120 in October 2010 and then submitted Michael Johnson at UFC on VS 5 this past October.

Prediction – Sass Decision

 

Jason Miller vs. CB Dollaway

Popular mixed martial arts veteran Jason “Mayhem” Miller (23-8, NC) will try and post his first win for the organization at UFC 146 in a FX televised middleweight bout that is positioned on the preliminary card against TUF 7 runner-up CB Dollaway (11-4).

Miller, 31, is a Georgia born mixed martial artist who fights out of Las Vegas with the Reign Training Center. “Mayhem” made his professional debut in 2001 and won 11 of his first 14 competing in local events like Extreme Challenge and Super Brawl. He earned a bout at UFC 52 against George St. Pierre but came up short losing via decision at the April 2005 event. Miller spent the next six plus years winning 12 of his first 16 in organizations like the WEC, Strikeforce, Dream, HD Net Fights and Icon Sport. After a successful coaching stint on The Ultimate Fighter 14, Miller was dominated at the December 2011 TUF 14 Finale losing via TKO against opposite Coach Michael Bisping.

Dollaway, 28, is an Ohio born mixed martial artist who fights out of Arizona at Power MMA and Fitness. “The Doberman” made his professional debut in 2006 and won his first six bouts fighting in a variety of regional promotions. He then earned a position on TUF 7 and represented Team Rampage in the Finale where he lost and finished as runner up to Amir Sadollah. After losing his June 2008 debut, Dollaway won five of his next six inside the octagon posting victories over opponents like Goran Reljic and Joe Doerksen. Dollaway has come up short though over his last two fights, losing bouts to Mark Munoz at UFC on VS 3 and losing to Jared Hamman at the August 2011 UFC on VS 6.

Prediction – Miller Submission

 

Diego Brandao vs. Darren Elkins

The Ultimate Fighter winner Diego Brandao (14-7) will make his first appearance since winning the fourteenth edition of the show against Darren Elkins (13-2) in a featherweight bout that will be part of the FX televised preliminary card at UFC 146.

Brandao, 24, is a Brazil born mixed martial artist who fights out of Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts in New Mexico. The muay-thai specialist made his professional debut in 2005 and won six of his first nine while in his native country fighting in regional organizations. After making the move to the United States and winning seven of his next eleven in the regional fight circuit, Brandao signed on to fight for The Ultimate Fighter 14. The Team Bisping competitor easily ripped through the competition on the show and finished it with a submission victory over Dennis Bermudez at the December Finale. Brandao won both “Fight of the Night” and “Submission of the Night” bonuses for his performance.

Elkins, 27, is an Indiana born mixed martial artist who fights out of the Duneland Vale Tudo. Elkins made his professional debut in 2007 and won ten of his first eleven while fighting on the Indiana and Illinois regional circuits. Elkins then won his UFC on VS debut with a TKO victory over Duane Ludwig in March of 2010. He followed up with a submission defeat to Charles Oliveira at another UFC on VS event in August of 2010. After his first loss inside the octagon, Elkins made the move to the 145 pound division and has since posted back to back unanimous decision victories. He defeated Michihiro Omigawa at UFC 131 last June and then picked up the victory over Zhang Tiequan at UFC 136 last August.

Prediction – Brandao TKO

 

UFC 146 PPV Predeictions

 

Shane Del Rosario vs. Stipe Miocic

Stipe Miocic UFC
UFC Heavyweight Stipe Miocic

Strikeforce import Shane Del Rosario (11-0) will try and keep his undefeated record as he meets another undefeated prospect in Stipe Miocic (8-0) in a UFC 146 main card heavyweight bout.

Del Rosario, 28, is a California born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Oyama in his home state. The muay-thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist made his professional debut in 2006 and won his first 8 bouts while competing mostly for M-1 Challenge and Elite XC. His last three wins have come while fighting for Strikeforce including his most recent last February at “Fedor vs. Silva” where he submitted current UFC fighter Lavar Johnson.

Miocic, 29, is an Ohio based mixed martial artist who fights out of the Strong Style Fight Team in Cleveland. The former Cleveland State wrestler made his professional MMA debut in February 2010 and won his first six bouts competing mostly for NAAFS in his home state. His NAAFS 7 Heavyweight Championship victory over Bobby Brents last June earned him the opportunity to fight inside the octagon. Also a Golden Gloves Boxer, Miocic won his October 2011 UFC 136 debut with a unanimous decision victory over Joey Beltran. In his follow up bout this February at UFC on Fuel TV, Miocic earned his second straight octagon victory knocking out Phil De Fries in 43 seconds.

Prediction – Del Rosario Decision

 

Roy Nelson vs. Dave Herman

The always durable Roy “Big Country” Nelson (16-7) is trying to win just his second fight in over two years at UFC 146 when he welcomes journeyman Dave “Pee-Wee” Herman (21-3) in a main card heavyweight match up.

Nelson, 35, is a Nevada born mixed martial artist who remains in his home city and fights out of his own County Club. “Big Country” made his professional debut in 2004 and won 13 of his first 15 including a stint as the IFL Heavyweight Champion. Nelson was signed to compete on the tenth season of The Ultimate Fighter despite losing his final two bouts prior. It turned out to be a good choice for both parties as Nelson ripped right through the competition and won TUF 10 with a KO victory over Brendan Schaub at the live Finale. Also defeated Stefan Struve via TKO at March 2010 UFC Fight Night 21, but lost back to back bouts following his good start. Losses to Frank Mir and Junior dos Santos were followed with a 1 st round TKO victory over Mirko Cro Cop Filipovic at UFC 137 last October, however Nelson was defeated in his most recent appearance this February losing to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 143.

Herman, 27, is an Indiana-born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Quest in California. “Pee-Wee” made his professional debut in December 2006 and won his first eleven fights competing in regional events across the Midwest United States. In 2008 Herman began competing for larger organizations like Elite XC, Sengoku, Bellator, and Shark Fights winning 9 of his next 11 including victories over notables Don Frye and Yoshihiro “Kiss” Nakao. The UFC wait was well worth it after Herman won “Fight of the Night” in his UFC 131 debut with a TKO finish against Jon-Olav Einemo. He had a small setback in his follow-up bout at UFC on Fuel TV where he was knocked out by Stefan Struve this past February.

Prediction – Nelson TKO

 

Cain Velasquez vs. Antonio Silva

Former Champion Cain Velasquez (9-1) will try and remain in the title picture at UFC 146 when he fights former Cage Rage and Elite XC Heavyweight Champ Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (16-3) in the night’s co-main event.

Velasquez, 29, is a California based mixed martial artist who fights out of the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose. The former Arizona State wrestler made his professional debut in 2006 and won just twice on the regional circuit before signing with the UFC in 2008. He won six straight inside the octagon including a UFC 110 bout in February 2010 over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira to earn a chance to fight for the title. In his first title fight at UFC 121 in October 2010, Velasquez defeated Brock Lesnar via 1 st round TKO to become the Heavyweight Champion. In his first title defense at UFC on Fox this past November, Velasquez was knocked out in 1:04 by current Champion Junior dos Santos.

Silva, 32, is a Brazil born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Nogueira. “Bigfoot” made his professional debut in March 2005 and won his first seven fights including the Cage Rage HW Title before suffering his first career defeat in late 2006. The BJJ, Judo, and karate black belt made the move to Elite XC in 2007 and won all four of his bouts for the organization including the Heavyweight Championship in July 2008. After Elite XC folded, Silva competed for both World Victory Road and Strikeforce winning five of his last seven bouts. After Silva upset Fedor Emelianenko in the quarterfinals, Silva himself was upset by Daniel Cormier at the September semifinals in the Strikeforce Heavyweight Tournament.

Prediction – Velasquez TKO

 

UFC 146 Main Event – Junior dos Santos vs. Frank Mir

Current UFC Heavyweight Champion Junior dos Santos (14-1) will defend his belt for the first time against former two-time UFC Champ Frank Mir (16-5) in the UFC 146 main event.

Dos Santos, 27, is a Brazil born mixed martial artist who fights out of Team Nogueira. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu brown belt made his professional debut in 2006 and won six of his first seven fights while competing in small organizations across his native country. Dos Santos joined the UFC in late 2008 and stopped his first five opponents inside the octagon; four by TKO and one via submission. He then had to grind out back to back unanimous decision victories over Roy Nelson at UFC 117 and Shane Carwin at UFC 131. In his most recent fight last November at UFC on Fox, dos Santos earned a 1 st round KO victory over then-Champ Cain Velasquez to become the new Champion.

Mir, 32, is a Las Vegas based mixed martial artist who fights out of The University of Grappling. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt made his professional debut in 2001 and won only twice on the regional circuit before joining the UFC heavyweights in late 2001. He won the UFC Heavyweight Title in just his seventh bout at UFC 48 in June of 2004 over Tim Sylvia. Mir had to vacate the belt and take almost two years off of competition after suffering injuries after a motorcycle accident. Upon his return, Mir lost two of his first three but did rebound to win three in a row to become the Interim Heavyweight Champion at UFC 92. He lost to Brock Lesnar at UFC 100 and to Shane Carwin at UFC 111 in title fights. Since his loss to Carwin over two years ago, Mir has piled up three more victories including his most recent at UFC 140 last December where he submitted Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

Prediction – Dos Santos TKO

 

By Nick Russell
ProFighting-fans.com Senior MMA Staff Writer

 

UFC logo & fighter pictures used with permission from the Ultimate Fighting Championship