Strikeforce: Destruction Results

Quick Results:

Scott Smith def. Terry Martin by KO in Round 1

Renato “Babalu” Sobral def. Bobby Southworth at the end of Round 1 Due to Cut

Duane “Bang” Ludwig def. Yves Edwards by Unanimous Decision

Joe ‘Diesel’ Riggs defeats Luke Stewart via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two

Kim Couture defeats Lina Kvokov via TKO (Strikes) in Round One

Notes:

  • Check out my pre-fight picks.  I went 5 for 5 here.  Honestly, non-UFC events have fewer upsets and are easier to pick.   I don’t mean to brag, but I have done fairly well with my picks.  Maybe I should pick up gambling…nah.
  • Scott Smith looked really solid and Terry Martin has a glass jaw
  • I don’t know if the Southworth fight should have been stopped, but Babalu probably had it in the bag anyways
  • It looks like Kim Couture fought a tomato can who was scared to engage and turned away as she was being beaten up
  • Yves Edwards might want to consider retirement
  • The production of this event was second rate at best

Strikeforce: Destruction Predictions

This still turns out to be a fairly solid card, b ut it really took a hit with the injury to Josh Thomson.  However, Strikeforce showed a lot of flexibility by bringing in Duane Ludwig as a replacement and by tapping Scott Smith and Terry Martin to fight, which really helped a card that would have been dead otherwise.  It doesn’t have UFC draw on it, but it has 4 good fights, plus the debut of Kim Couture.  There are a lot of prospects on the undercard and I only know of a few of them so I will refrain from picking out of ignorance. 

Bobby Southworth vs. Renato “Babalu” Sobral

Bobby Southworth may be able to hit hard with that right hand, but I base this pick off of pure skill set.  Babalu may be a punk, but he is a top 20 light heavyweight in the world punk.  He has to hope for a win as he has a tough match up looming in January with Matt Lindland at Affliction’s second card.  Babalu is a great grappler, wrestler and jiu jitsu practitoner.  Southworth may want to watch Chuck Liddell’s fight against Babalu as Babalu may be suseptible to strikes.  However, in the end Babalu is too well rounded.  I saw he gets the take down and chokes out Southworth in round 2 to become the Strikeforce light heavyweight champion.

Yves Edwards vs. Duane “Bang” Ludwig

Edwards has the experience in his corner, however I think Ludwig’s muay thai will prove to be too much.  Edwards has a weak chin which will be tested in this fight.  Ludwig is not on elite level, but this should be a good fight.  Also, do not forget Ludwig will have some size advantage in this fight as well.  I pick Ludwig by TKO in round 1.

Terry Martin vs. Scott Smith

This is a great fight.  I do not know what this means for Smith’s career and the contract status with ProElite, but this is a big fight for Smith.  Scott Smith hung with Lawler in their first fight and then suffered a loss to him.   This fight will show that Scott Smith is not a one hit wonder in MMA.  A loss here would hurt Smith’s career with the fold of ProElite.  A win here and he could find a lot of offers including an offer from Strikeforce, Affliction, DREAM, or even a shot back in the UFC.  A loss would hurt that.  At one time i was on the Terry Martin hype wagon.  He looked good for a while in the UFC, but the loss to Leben hurt him.  Terry martin is a great boxer, but while he can KO people he can also be KO’d himself.  I have to believe that Smith has overall better MMA skills and hope he would utilize kicks and strikes to get the win.  I would expect this fight to stay standing.  If Smith uses his kicks well I expect he can keep his distance and pick up the win.  I pick Scott Smith to win this by decision.

Joe Riggs vs. Luke Stewart

Which Joe Riggs will show up?  Riggs has looked decent lately.  He got a bad deal with the stoppage at the last event against Kazuo Misaki, but he still was going to lose that fight.  Stewart is a relative unknown with good jiu jitsu skills.  Riggs is a solid competitior.  I expect him to win by decision.

MMABlog’s Middleweight MMA Rankings

The middleweights were hard to rank down towards the last 10.  Sorry if I left some good guys out.

Rank

Name

Organization

Next Fight

1

Anderson Silva

UFC

 Cote (#12), 9/25

2

Paulo Filho

UFC

Sonnen (#16) 11/3

3

Rich Franklin

UFC

Next Fight at LHW

4

Dan Henderson

UFC

Next Fight at LHW

5

Robbie Lawler

EliteXC?

 

6

Kazuo Misaki

Strikeforce

1/4

7

Nate Marquardt

UFC

 

8

Matt Lindland

Affliction

Sobral (LHW) ) 1/24

9

Yushin Okami

UFC

Lister (NR), 12/27

10

Gegard Mousasi

DREAM

Belfort (#25,) 1/24

11

Thales Leites

UFC

McFedries (NR), 9/25

12

Patrick Cote

UFC

A. Silva (#1), 9/25

13

Michael Bisping

UFC

 

14

Yoshihiro Akiyama

 

 

15

Ronaldo “Jacare” de Sousa

DREAM

 

16

Chael Sonnen

UFC

Filho (#2) 11/3

17

Demian Maia

UFC

Quarry (#18), 11/15

18

Nate Quarry

UFC

Maia (#17), 11/15

19

Joey Villasenor

EliteXC?

 

20

Cung Le

Strikeforce

 

21

Jorge Santiago

 

 

22

Chris Leben

UFC

 

23

Jason Macdonald

UFC

 

24

Martin Kampman

UFC

 

25

Vitor Belfort

Affliction

Mousasi (#10) 1/24

 

Others Considered: Ricardo Almeida, Rousimar Palhares, Dean Lister, Jason “Mayhem” Miller, Frank Trigg

What to expect in MMA in ’08

  • I expect to see new title holders in every division but one and that is the middleweight.  All though Anderson could be challenged by Dan Henderson.  My picks for the title holders: Nogueira, Not sure about lightheavyweight, Anderson Silva, St. Pierre, and B.J. Penn.
  • I expect to see a few more fighters signed to UFC contracts.  Highlighting the list: Matt Lindland, Gilbert Melendez, Jake Shields, and some other big name surprise
  • I expect TUF to be a disappointment with Rampage Jackson getting a lot of camera time saying his crazy off the wall things
  • I expect the middleweight division to get tougher
  • I expect a few UFC stars to retire (Matt Hughes and Rich Franklin)
  • I expect Sean Sherk to get another title shot, but B.J. Penn to beat him badly
  • I expect the light heavyweight division to get crazier with guys like Machdia, Thiago Silva, Rashad Evans, and Shogun in the title mix.
  • I expect Chuck Liddell to avenge his loss to Keith Jardine by summer
  • I expect that Shogun is still only one fight away from a title shot, I think that my top ten in the lightheavyweight at the top ten at light heavyweight, perhaps not in that order.
  • I expect Dan Henderson to try Anderson Silva like he hasn’t been tried in a while
  • I expect Jon Fitch, Kenny Florian, Sean Sherk, Roger Huerta, Matt Lindland, and either Arlovski or Cro Cop to get a title shot. 
  • I expect the former PRIDE guys to turn it around in the octagon
  • I expect another solid fight from Wanderlai Silva, can you say rematch?
  • I expect the Fedor vs. Randy fight to happen
  • I expect other organizations to become more of a competition to the UFC
  • I expect Dana White to say many more expletives on national television
  • I expect TUF alums to suceed this year even more
  • I expect Diego Sanchez to drop to lightweight
  • I expect Brock Lesnar to be a middle of the road fighter
  • I expect Brandon Vera to drop to lightheavyweight
  • I expect Bisping to cry when he gets beat in middleweight
  • I expect Tito to loose in the Apprentice

UFC Fighter Rankings

Where do fighters rank in the UFC?  I’ve seen all sorts of thoughts on rankings, so I will chime in and give my rankings, which of course are the best and most accurate.  I am using a few guidelines.

  • This is strictly UFC, not including fighters not yet signed in UFC from Pride.  For example, Fedor would be on or near the top of the Heavyweight rankings, but he is yet to sign so he is not included
  • This is based not on popularity or even record, but purely on who I perceive to be the best fighters
  • I am putting the title holders at number one in each weight class, even though they might not be the best in that class, for example, I would not have Matt Serra as the best fighter in his class, but he is the belt holder.
  • Some fighters are rising quickly and others are falling quickly (i.e. Tito and Cro Cop)

HEAVYWEIGHTS

1. Randy “The Natural” Couture

2. Andrei “The Pitbull” Arlovski

3. Gabriel Gonzaga

4. Cheick Kongo

5. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

6. Tim Sylvia

7. Mirko “Cro Cop”

8. Brandon Vera

9. Frank Mir

10. Jeff Monson 

11. Heath Herring

12. Fabricio Werdum

13. Assuerio Silva

(Note: Fedor, Josh Barnett, and even Aleksander Emelianko may have made the list had they signed. )

LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHTS

1. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson

2. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

3. Dan Henderson

4. Chuck “The Iceman” Liddell

5. Wandelai Silva

6. Rashad Evans

7. Houston Alexander

8. Tito Ortiz

9. Keith “The Dean of Mean” Jardine

10. Forrest Griffin

11. Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira

12. Matt “The Hammer” Hamill

13. Micael Bisping

14. Ryoto Machida

15. Jason Lambert

16. Stephan Bonnar

17. Renato “Babalu” Sorbal

18. Wilson Gouveia

19. Marvin Eastman

(Note: I put Hamill above Bisping because I believe he beat Bisping in their fight.  Even though Bisping got the win, Hammil looked better.)

MIDDLEWEIGHT:

1. Anderson Silva

2. Rich Franklin

3. Yushim Okami

4. Terry Martin

5. Nate Marquardt

6. Dan Henderson

7. Jason MacDonald

8. Patrick Cote 

9. Kalib Starnes

10. Chris Leben

11. Martin Kampmann

12. Thales Leites

13. Ivan Salaverry

14. Nate “Rock” Quarry

15. Evan Tanner

16. Kendall Grove

17. Ed Herman

18. Travis Lutter

19. Dean Lister

20. Alessio Sakara

WELTERWEIGHT:

1. Matt Serra

2. Georges St. Pierre

3. Matt Hughes

4. Diego Sanchez

5. Karo Parisyan

6. Josh Koschek

7. Jon Fitch

8. B.J. Penn

9. Marcus Davis

10. Mike Swick

11. Thiago Alves

12. Josh Burkman

13. Luigi Fioravanti

14. Nick Diaz

15. Chris Lytle

16. Edilberto “Crocota” de Oliveira

17. Jonathan Goulet

LIGHTWEIGHT:

1.  Sean Sherk

2. B.J. Penn

3. Joe “Daddy” Stevenson

4. Roger Huerta

5. Kenny Florian

6. Hermes Franca

7. Nick Diaz

8. Joe Lauzon

9.  Din Thomas

10. Marcus Davis

11. Clay Guida

12. Spencer Fisher

13. Frank Edgar

14. Melvin Guillard

15. Drew Fickett

16. Kurt Pellegrino

17. Terry Etim

18. Tyson Griffin

19. Marcus Aurelio

20. Sam Stout

21. Tiago Tavares

22. Nate Diaz

(Note: I listed to 22 because there are so many quality fighters and the last 12-15 of these guys are not far from one another in ranking,  Some rankings have my number 19 Marcus Aurelio much higher, but come on, whose he gonna bump down?)

 Let the disputing begin.  I’d love to hear comments.  Perhaps I left someone off included someone I shouldn’t have.  Perhaps I have someone overrated or another underrated.  Let me know what you think.