A few months back my brother my told me that UFC 111 is scheduled to be at the Prudential Center in Newark on March 27th. So hey, that could be cool. I've never been to a UFC event before, never been to the Prudential Center even though it's only fifteen minutes away, and it would be nice to see what the arena's like since the Nets might move there next year. (Turns out they are moving there next year).
The end result is that I somehow get talked into dropping 315 dollars on a ticket. 315! Here is a list of things that, had I known it were going to cost me 315 dollars to go, I would likely have bought instead.
- Wrestlemania 1985-2005 Anthology or Royal Rumble Complete Anthology
- Marshawn Buffalo Bills or Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers jersey
- Heavy Rain or God of War III for PS3
- hookers and blow
And to think I could have gotten pretty much one of each of those things instead for the same price.
Nate Diaz (-300) vs. Rory Markham (+240)
Sherdog's bottom line: This is a much tougher matchup for Diaz than most seem to think -- he’s going to get clipped on the feet repeatedly by Markham. The only reason Diaz will win is that his chin seems to be reinforced with adamantium, which will keep him upright long enough to work a takedown and exploit the difference in talent and technique on the floor. A wild fight ends with Markham falling into Diaz’s web of submissions.
If I were a betting man, the fact that Sherdog says this is going to be a tougher fight than most would think would make me want to bet on Markham. You know, if I had an account at Bodog.com or something. If.
Ricardo "Cachorrao" Almeida (-160) vs. Matt "The Immortal" Brown (+130)
Sherdog's bottom line: There really is no telling how the drop in weight will affect Almeida, but it certainly won’t turn him into a double-leg machine. A few stuffed takedowns will leave the New York native desperate, and once Brown gets a whiff of worry, he’ll start pouring on the pressure and pain for the win.
Ricardo Almeida was the head instructor at a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu dojo that my brother attended during his days at Princeton, so I'll be rooting for him. Not knowing much about him otherwise, it seems a little surprising to me to see that Sherdog think he's lose though Vegas has him as the favorite, but the main concern seems to be how Almeida's skills will transition over to the lighter weight class and a reliance on wrestling due to weak striking skills. That and it's hard for me to root for anyone other than Hulk Hogan trying to pull of "The Immortal" as a nickname.
Rodney "Sho Nuff the Master" Wallace (-130) vs. Jared Hamman (EVEN)
Sherdog's bottom line: Every undercard now seems to have a fight designed to help the UFC shed a contract, and this is definitely it. Wallace isn’t going to willingly slug it out, and his takedowns are plenty good enough to get Hamman way outside his comfort zone. Plenty of positional dominance will eventually pave the way for Wallace to notch a late submission at the expense of Hamman’s right arm.
Essentially, both guys suck, so this is a de facto Loser Leaves Town match. I'm a sucker for those. And who comes up with a name like Sho Nuff the Master? Wouldn't most people just pick one or the other instead of concatenating both of them together? I feel like that's enough for me to want him to win and stick around.
Rousimar "Toquinho" Palhares (-160) vs. Tomasz "Gorilla" Drwal (+130)
Sherdog's bottom line: Barring a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it submission in the first few minutes, Drwal is going to best Palhares with superior striking and wrestling. The strength advantage Palhares is accustomed to having won’t exist in this fight, and it will likely end with him on the business end of a ground-and-pound TKO.
Can a brother buy a vowel?
Matt Riddle (-250) vs. Greg Soto (+190)
Sherdog's bottom line: It’s always worrisome to see a young fighter overwhelmed by something as simple as fighting overseas, but Riddle is owning up to his mistakes and trying to fix them. A big part of the fix will be serving up another top-control special at Soto’s expense, and that is exactly what everyone should be expecting. There won’t be much in the way of excitement, but Riddle will take home an undeniably dominant decision.
I hope Riddle comes out in a big suit with a giant question mark on the back. Short of that it's hard for me to get excited about this one.
Jon Fitch (-450) vs. Ben "Killa B" Saunders (+300)
Sherdog's bottom line: It takes a lot more than kicks and knees to beat Fitch, and that’s a lesson Saunders is going to learn. Three frustrating rounds end with Saunders dropping a unanimous decision and questioning the wisdom behind his bravery.
That assessment of Ben Saunders' chances pretty much confirms the underlying belief I've had about the usefulness of my skills as a black belt in taekwondo in a serious fight.
Kurt "Batman" Pellegrino (-250) vs. Fabricio "Morango" Camoes (+190)
Sherdog's bottom line: This just isn’t the right fight for a developing fighter like Camoes. Pellegrino isn’t going to stand and trade with him or give him any openings to work with on the mat. The pressure of constantly defending takedowns is going to wear on Camoes as well, and three rounds of frustration will end with him losing a unanimous decision.
I feel like foreign language nicknames should be translated in situations when that nickname isn't obvious. Situations like Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and Antonio "Minotauro" Noguiera are great, but what am I supposed to do with a nickname like "Morango". Oh. It's Portuguese for strawberry. Why, that's a TERRIBLE nickname.
Jim Miller (-500) vs. Mark Bocek (+325)
Sherdog's bottom line: This just isn’t the kind of matchup Bocek can win, and it’ll show early as Miller scores takedown after takedown while handily winning the striking exchanges. Opportunities will be few and far between for Bocek. Miller will build up an insurmountable lead on the scorecards and maintain control every step of the way en route to a unanimous decision nod.
If this fight turns out the way Sherdog is thinking, I think I'll take my bathroom break during this.
Frank Mir (-170) vs. Shane Carwin (+140)
Sherdog's bottom line: This is one of the most evenly matched heavyweight bouts in some time on paper, but odds are it won’t last terribly long. Carwin’s unproven submission defense and Mir’s obvious distaste for punishment are combustible flaws that will cost one of them dearly come fight time. Bank on Mir’s superior technique on the feet to give Carwin fits before an ill-advised takedown lands Carwin in a fight-ending submission.
I'm a little confused about the line here, given that Brock Lesnar utterly destroyed Mir in their last matchup and Carwin was supposed to be his next legitimate challenger...are there no other legitimate heavyweights? I'm not so sure the world is hankering for another Lesnar/Mir showdown, though I did enjoy Lesnar's heel rant after demolishing him in their last fight. It was nice to see Sable again too.
Georges "Rush" St. Pierre (-625) vs. Dan "The Outlaw" Hardy (+425)It would be far from unbelievable if Hardy starched St. Pierre, though. Opponents suicidal enough to throw down with Hardy are putting their short-term health at risk. However, St. Pierre is becoming a more and more cerebral athlete, which is a terrifying trend for both Hardy and anyone else banking on goading St. Pierre into a low-rent brawl. A dominating performance for St. Pierre reaches its inevitable conclusion with an overdue tapout from Hardy in the third round.
Sherdog's bottom line: Hardy is going to be an entertaining presence in the welterweight division for a long time. A potential bout with his equally truculent rival Josh Koscheck down the road would make for one of the most epic displays of pre-fight vitriol in modern times. With that said, St. Pierre is like refined King Cobra venom to one-dimensional strikers like Hardy.
I feel like GSP really could use a much better nickname, but his last name really doesn't lend itself to such trivialities. You could make a case for him sounding extremely badass like a European assassin, or some prissy waiter in a high-class French restaurant. Not a whole lot of room for a nickname in there. Though I suppose a meaningless nickname like "Rush" gets the job done well enough given the circumstances.