MY UFC 76 Pedictions…

Rich Clementi vs. Anthony Johnson

I think Anthony Johnson will beat Clementi, but it won’t be easy as Clementi is not a push over of a fighter.

Christian Wellisch vs. Scott Junk

To be honest I don’t know much about these guys, but have heard good things about Scott Junk.  He is coming into this fight with very little notice, but people say he is tough.  I even saw he was a super-heavyweight.  I say Junk wins, but I am just guessing here since I have never seen him.

Diego Saraiva vs. Jeremy Stephens

Jeremy Stephens lost to Din Thomas in UFC 71.  I don;t expect him to loose to this guy.  Stephens is too good and Saraiva hasn’t given me one reason to pick him, since he has lost his 2 UFC appearances. 

Matt Wiman vs. Michihiro Omigawa

I like Matt Wiman for some reason.  I rooted for him somewhat in TUF 5.  He sometimes comes across as slightly timid.  I am taking Wiman to win by submission.

Tyson Griffin vs. Thiago Tavares

I’d say this will be a great fight and will be very technical.  Barring a submission I look for this fight to go the distance.  I am honestly torn between who to pick.  I’ll go with Tavares.  He is undefeated and I expect it to stay that way.  Griffin is good, and will move up the rankings, but he has only fought two notable guys and one he lost to (Edgar) and the other I believe he lost and got the decision (Guida).   I pick Tavares to go 14-0.

Ryoto Machida vs. Kazuhiro Nakamura

Wow. I just looked up Nakamura’s fights on Sherdog and he has fought some great fighters.  He hasn’t beaten them, but he has fought solid competiton (Wanderlai, Henderson, Shogun, Barnett, and Nogueira), he even beat Kevin Randleman.  Kaz hasn’t fought yet in 2007, which will hurt him.  Machida is good, real good.  He has beaten some quality guys such as B.J. Penn, David Heath, Rich Franklin, and Stephan Bonnar.  (B.J. was giving up a great deal of weight fighting a 205 guy).    I would say Machida will win and win big, and move quickly up into the very stacked light heavyweight division.

Diego Sanchez  vs. Jon Fitch

Between this fight and the Griffin/Rua fight I cannot decide which I am more excited about.  I have to tell you I am not the biggest Diego fan.  He will be fired up after a loss to Koscheck which will go in his favor and he is a great competitor.  My instinct tells me to pick Diego, but I am going to go with Fitch anyways.  I would say he wins by unanimous decision. 

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Forrest Griffin shogun.jpg

I understand that Forrest Griffin is one of the more popular guys in the UFC, but this is a tough match-up for him.  Shogun is in many circles ranked the best in the light heavyweight division even above Rampage.  This is probably the fight I am most confident in my pick.  Forrest is improving and is moving up the ranks, but if he couldn’t beat Jardine he won’t beat Rua.  I look for Rua to make a statement and eventually take the title, if he doesn’t I will be shocked.  Regardless, the winner of this fight may get a title shot or may get the Liddell/Jardine winner.

Chuck Liddell vs. Keith Jardine

Can anyone honestly pick Keith Jardine for this fight?  I would say Chuck is coming back fired up after a loss.  I know Jardine has knockout power and one hit and Chuck could get knocked out, but I have to go with the experience in this fight.  I expect a first round knockout with Liddell pouncing on Jardine and the fight being stopped.

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