Former Light Heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua takes on Brandon Vera as the headliner to an exciting card on the FOX network on August 4th at the Staples Center. Check out our UFC picks and predictions for this event.
Shogun Rua (20-6, 17 KO’s, 1 Sub) vs.
Brandon Vera (12-5, 7 KO’s, 1 Sub)
escaped getting pink slipped by Dana White after he pulled off a unanimous
decision victory over Eliot Marshall. Vera snapped what would have been a three fight losing streak had Thiago
Silva not falsified his urine sample in their battle on New Year’s Day at UFC
heads when he defeated Frank Mir by TKO at UFC 65, but that was almost 6 years
ago and he has had only one TKO since then while going 4-5 (with one No
Contest) during that span. Despite
having a wrestling background and training with renowned BJJ practitioner Lloyd
Irvin, Vera has made his bones by knocking people out. However, as his competition escalated his
ability to turn the lights out has faced a power outage. Vera will be tasked with fighting a knock out
artist in Shogun and that may be a difficult hill to climb.
a war to Dan Henderson in his last trip to the Octagon. In November of last year at UFC 139 the MMA
world was treated to a masterful match which resulted in one of the greatest
matches ever fought in UFC history. The
epic battle earned Fight of the Year honors and many believed the decision
could have gone either way.
will enjoy a three inch height and two inch reach advantage he doesn’t have the
chops to go toe-to-toe with someone of Rua’s caliber. He won’t gain much traction on the ground
either as Shogun is a black belt in BJJ and has only been submitted twice in
his career. The smart UFC betting pick is on Rua -350 by a knock out.
My Pick: Rua by KO
Lyoto Machida (17-3, 6 KO’s, 2 Subs)
vs. Ryan Bader (14-2, 7 KO’s, 2 Subs)
earned Fight of the Night honors in his last trip to the cage when he staggered
the UFC Light Heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones in their battle at UFC 140
in December of last year. Jones
eventually recovered and submitted Machida by guillotine choke in the 2nd
round. It was the third loss in four
appearances for the former champion and he will be tested by Ryan Bader on
August 4th. Machida has lost
to Shogun Rua by KO, Rampage Jackson by split decision and finally to Jones
with a win wedged in between over a fading star in Randy Couture with a
spectacular jumping front kick only a minute into the 2nd
the first match of his career to Jon Jones at UFC 126 when both were dismantling
their competition as they ascended through the light heavyweight ranks. He was submitted by guillotine choke and many
thought he would rebound over an aging Tito Ortiz in his next bout. But it was not to be as Ortiz replicated
Jones’s move and submitted Bader in the same fashion. Bader’s reputation as a rising star took a
serious hit with the loss but he has rebounded with a 1st round KO
over Jason Brilz and a unanimous decision over Rampage Jackson in his last
This may be
the last chance for Bader to convince the organization that he is a contender
and not simply a gatekeeper in the division. He will enjoy a slight height advantage over Machida and I believe that
his youth and stamina will be the difference. Superior wrestling will wear down the former champ who has a string of
wars going into this one and I believe
Ryan Bader +265 will have his hand raised in a unanimous decision as the UFC odds dog.
My Pick: Ryan Bader
Ben Rothwell (32-8, 18 KO’s, 11 Subs)
vs. Travis Browne (13-0-1, 9 KO’s, 1 Sub)
heavyweights Ben Rothwell and Travis Browne invade the Octagon in what many are
projecting to be the fight of the night. Rothwell has alternated wins and losses over his last six matches and if
the pattern continues he will wind up on the losing end of this one.
made a statement with a 1st round KO over big banger Brendan Schaub
and scored a Knockout of the Night bonus in the process. Though Rothwell is 3 inches shorter than
Browne he will enjoy a two inch reach advantage which may be his biggest weapon
against the undefeated up-and-comer.
Travis Browne has bulldozed his way through the heavyweight division and will
now face a stern test in Ben Rothwell. Perhaps Browne’s biggest victory to date came at UFC 130 with a spectacular
knockout over the nearly seven foot Stefan Struve. This will be a bomb dropping affair and whoever
lands the cleanest shots is sure to come out on top. We
will look for Browne -280 by a knockout.
My Pick: Travis Browne
Joe Lauzon (21-7, 4 KO’s, 17 Subs)
vs. Jamie Varner (20-6, 9 KO’s, 9 Subs)
lightweights take center stage as the former WEC lightweight champ Jamie Varner
puts his three fight win streak on the line against the rugged Joe Lauzon. Varner is a late replacement for Terry Etim
who was scratched due to injury. This
will feature two highly respected submission artists who both have momentum
heading into this clash.
scored a stunning 1st round TKO over the highly skilled Edson
Barboza at UFC 146. But on August 4th
he faces another test in in Joe Lauzon. Lauzon got his lights turned out in his last appearance with a stunning
head kick by Anthony Pettis. If Lauzon
can keep this match on the ground it will bode well for him but Varner has been
in the game a long time and at the top of the heap in the WEC. I will cast my lot with Varner who can stand
and trade with the best of them and has the chops to submit if the fight goes
to the mat.
My Pick: Varner by decision