Sunday, February 26, 2006

UFC 58 USA vs Canada

Far from being a 'who's better' type of scenario the adversarial nature of this pay-per-view just adds a little flavor to what looks like a pretty nice lineup. My predictions follow.

Ace is just too well rounded, too smart and in too good of shape to lose unless Loiseau pulls one of his kicks and knocks the champ out. Personally though I don't see it happening. Kicking a guy with some of, if not the, best footwork in MMA is going to difficult.

This is a tough one. GSP is tough everywhere but Penn is one of the best on the ground in MMA. GSP should have plenty of motivation because if he loses this one he'll have a loss to Hughes and Penn which would put him behind the eightball in terms of being a contender. He'll need to punish Penn with his striking and keep it there as long as possible. Both have won over some tough competition but Penn has more big names. Still I am going GSP but damn it's hard.

A fight between two veteran guys so this ought to be a good one and can go either way. If I were a betting man my money would be on Marquardt. I think he'll be the next big contender for the middleweight belt.

I am looking foward to seeing the quick one in action again. I'd like to see his ground game but these are two strikers so I won't hold my breath. Swick has a deadly combination of fast hands (think Belfort) and KO power. I'm picking Swick but to be honest I know nothing about his competitor.

Return of the lightweights. I have never seen either so I cannot pick one, sorry guys.

Florian has a better all around game so I have to chose him but Stout can end it quick so the American will have to watch out.

As much as I hated listening to MacDonald cry when he was on TUF he did look pretty decent. Good quickness. I'm taking him but somewhat reluctantly.


Diego by GnP.


With UFC bringing back the lighweight division I thought I would give a quick breakdown of who the players are, or could be, at this weight. The welterweight is one of the deepest but will lose some of that depth to the lighweight division but in the long run I think it will be good as both will have experienced contenders and this will let some of the second or third tier guys get some action.

Jens Pulver - Lil Evil was the reigning champ so it will be interesting to see if he comes back to reclaim the title.

Yves Edwards - Edwards looks like the top dog here unless Pulver decides to come back and what a fight that would be!

Mark Hominick - I don't know much about this guy but the fact he's fighting Edwards would indicate some ability.

Spencer Fisher - Another Militech guy but he looks great. A striker with a varied array of submissions and great strike defense from the bottom. He has a bright future ahead of him.

Kenny Florian - KenFlo actually getting to fight at his natural weight? Sweet. The kid is tough and determined unfortunately so far those are the only strengths he has shown on his feet but I think he'll improve.

Joe Stevenson - I think Joe will drop down to here and could be a monster at this weight. A great groundgame and excellent takedowns. His TUF fame puts him higher than some people who might be better or at the least more experienced.

Duane Ludwig - He needs more of a groundgame but he's working with Bas Rutten so he should get there and just ask Goulet if he can really "Bang".

Sam Stout - I don't know much about the Canadian but after he fights KenFlo we'll have a good idea where he stands.

Luke Cummo - I want to see Cummo fighting and soon! Him and Ludwig would be a nice fight or maybe Fisher.

Hermes Franca - A Jiu-Jitsu wiz who hopefully we'll see in UFC again.

Josh Thomson - Another guy we could see back in the UFC.

Marcus Davis - Another TUF guy who could get a call. He would be good against Cummo. That would be a nice standup battle.

Melvin Guilliard - Not sure if this is do-able or not but it could allow him some breathing room for away from the welterweights but then again with so many people coming down here maybe he'd be better at 170.

BJ Penn - If he loses to GSP could Penn come down to lightweight? Hmmm. If so he would be much higher than this believe me.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Power Rankings 2/6/06

Okay here are the Following the Flow Power Rankings. The fighters in each class are listed in a rough ranking with comments on the side. This isn't a pure talent level ranking system as that is not the only factor in determining who gets a title shot. Drawing ability is an important part of the decision making process on who fights who.


Arlovski - I read where someone in Sherdog's forums where someone said 'Arlovski is a lion amongst retards.' Endquote. I'm not saying that is dead-on...but it's close enough.

Tim Sylvia - For lack of any other legit contenders in this division a rematch between Sylvia and Arlovski looks inescapable unless some new talent is brought in.

Paul Buentello - I think we'll see the Headhunter against Sylvia or Mir pretty soon. Personally I think Sylvia would be the better fight. Lots of hands.

Frank Mir - A crushing loss to an fellow grappler will knock Mir down a peg or two. Both in ego and in these rankings.

Jeff Monson - Hell he might get a title shot if the UFC doesn't come up with some better talent.

Assuerio Silva - A poor debut puts this guy below any other legit contenders but he is still better than 90% of the other heavyweights that the UFC can muster.

Brandon Vera - He's more suited for LHW but with the dearth of talent in this division he's a player. Mir or Sylvia would be a big jump up in competition so maybe he gets a shot at Ass. Silva or Monson. Silva would be best for Vera, if he gets in trouble he can try and take it to the ground. Monson would probably maul him because of the strength disparity.

Assuerio Silva- He would be fun to watch against Buentello or maybe Monson. He might benefit from fighting someone he can roll through though to get his feet under him.

Brad Imes - He'll see action in the Octagon at some point. Cabbage would be a good first test or maybe Vera.

Wesley Correira - I want to see more Cabbage. He's not on par with the division heavies but the next tier would be fine. Buentello, Vera...

Light heavyweight

Chuck Liddell - ....and still Champion! Congrats to the Iceman. Okay who's next? I'm sure Chuck would say, "whoever." His last fight saw him possibly in his best form so it doesn't look like it matters all that much. Ortiz probably down the road. Sobral before that.

Randy Couture - Randy has officially retired but out of massive amounts of respect I am leaving him on here for the time being and besides I think he'd beat the next guy, Babalu, anyway. A true warrior and champion I sincerely hope the UFC finds something for the Natural to do. He has been the face of the league for a while lets keep him in the spotlight Dana, please!

Renato Sobral - Babalu deserves the next title shot and i'd like to see that rematch. Sobral isn't the same kid he was when he lost the first time.

Tito Ortiz - I hope Ortiz doesn't turn UFC into WWE. His next fight is Griffin one that he should win.

Ken Shamrock - I don't think he's going to beat Tito so look for him to face someone like Babalu or one of the TUF guys, if he doesn't retire like Randy.

Forrest Griffin - I think Griffin has a shot at beating Tito. Forrest has the better standup and if he can keep Tito up with good sprawl or good knees he can pick him apart. If not then he has an outside shot at a submission. I don't see a knockout happening at all. Another thing to consider is that Griffin has been training with some of the heavies in the UFC so there is no telling where he is ability-wise right now. Maybe geographically too but that's another discussion.

Stephan Bonnar - He's too good all around and too smart not to take Irvin to the mat and submit him. ( damn can I pick them or what) Next fight? Babalu or maybe Shamrock, assuming they lose their next fights. And there's always Forrest that would bring in some people but I think it's too soon.

Rashad Evans - Still waiting to see who is first test will be. Hoger would be a good choice. Booya! I nailed that one. Evans hasn't beaten anybody who looked decent so this could be a stiff test for him. Evans has great grappling, he's quick and strong and shows potential with his boxing. If he loses does he bulk up to HW?

Sam Hoger - I think this guy could very well be a title contender one day. Set to fight Rashad Evans and that could be an interesting fight. If Hoger wins it will push him into the lower upper half of the division. If he loses he could be gone for a looong time.

James Irvin - Sam Hoger would be a decent fight but then again Hoger would just do the same thing Bonnar did. How about TUF fighter Keith Jardine in a standup battle or maybe throw Irvin to Evans and see if Irvin has gotten the point that you can't live in the UFC without a groundgame.

Travis Wiuff - Might want to think about going up to heavyweight where there is more room to breathe. Evans would be a good matchup.

Keith Jardine - Nice win over Whitehead who continues to disappoint. I like Jardine I hope he's got a groundgame now.


Rich Franklin - I CAN'T WAIT FOR FRANKLIN/LOISEAU. There's a chance we'll have a new champ, honest. Not a big chance mind you but a chance. Personally I think Franklin will pick the Canadian apart with his footwork and we all know if you leave one opening against Ace you wake up a few minutes later and have to watch the replay.

David Loiseau - The standup portion of Loiseau/Franklin will be beautiful. Does the Crow have a ground game to match the champ though? Can he kick someone as light on their feet as Franklin?

Jeremy Horn - Horn has been on the skids lately but he's got ability so I say either the loser of Franklin/Loiseau or Marquardt if Nate wins he gets next title shot.

Nate Marquardt - I think this guy will be champ one day. I think he deserves a shot at anyone above him on this list as long as its confirmed that he fights clean, no doping.

Evan Tanner - Have Evan and Jeremy ever fought? Two cagey veterans with UFC Good stuff right?

Joe Doerksen- A seasoned vet who has to beat a tough Marquardt if he wants to be a player in the middleweights.

Chris Leben - Leben is ready for a stiffer test. Horn? Tanner you say? Hmm interesting.

Nate Quarry - This guy has skill despite the fact that he was so thoroughly owned by Rich Franklin. I doubt he'd fight Leben, though I could be wrong, so maybe Tanner or Horn.

Robbie Lawler - I'd like to see Ruthless back fighting. He's so damn quick. Lawler vs

Mike Swick - Has a torn MCL so will be out a while but man I can't wait to see him fight again. Talk about fast hands.


Matt Hughes - Are you kidding me? Royce Gracie?? Wow. I'll take Hughes but damn I hate going against an underdog like Royce.

Karo Parisyan - Will Karo get the title shot again, he got injured before the fight last time and GSP is so popular. Regardless Karo needs better striking. He swings wild and lets his aggression carry him on the feet and that kind of glaring weakness will get you beat down one day. Realistically GSP is better than Parisyan at this point in their careers but Karo was due for a shot and Hughes already beat St. Pierre once so he goes higher in my ranking.

George St. Pierre - GSP is so good everywhere. If Karo does fight Hughes then GSP should fight Penn. (damn did i call that or what! i'm taking GSP over Penn but it's hard.)

BJ Penn - Okay so if Penn loses to GSP and Gracie loses then maybe, just maybe we get Penn vs Gracie? Yeah baby!! Should Penn be higher than GSP and Karo? Maybe but until he fights in the Octagon again he goes right about here.

Diego Sanchez - Diego needs a fight against a bigger name guy too. Josh Burkman called him out but that would be in effect a step backward for Diego. Maybe he gets Parisyan who seems to be out in the cold right now. Sherk is another possibility.

Sean Sherk - I took some flak from some Sherdoggers on having Sherk too low but they were right for the most part. He's got a ton of experience but no name victories other than two wins over Karo back in 2000 & 2001. Karo must have been like 19 or something. Still Sherk is a legit fighter. Koscheck would be a good matchup, maybe Diaz or Stevenson too.

Joe Riggs - Just keeps losing. Someone throw this guy a can! Damn they threw him a Diaz and he won, nice job.

Joe Stevenson - I still want Stevenson/Sanchez but i'll take Stevenson/Burkman

Josh Koscheck - Koscheck/Stevenson would be fun to watch.

Spencer Fisher - I'm somewhat impressed with this guy. He wants to stand and strike with you but if it goes to the ground he has very good defense to wait it out until he can get a submission.

Kenny Florian - I'd like to see KenFlo against Diaz.

Josh Burkman - He's looked real impressive in his wins but then again so did Quarry.

Nick Diaz - He's lost two in a row but to decent fighters, even though Riggs was on a big skid. Not to mention he apparently knocked out Riggs in the E/R after their fight so who knows what happens. I love Diaz's ability but I hate his attitude and that is a common feeling as far as I can tell.

Drew Fickett - I flat out don't like this guy. Good job Burkman!

Luke Cummo - I want Cummo versus Florian. Wouldn't mind seeing him whip up on Fickett either.

Duane Ludwig - Dude knocked Goulet the f*** out! Him against Cummo would be a great fight.

Kit Cope - Work on that ground game man. Cope vs Cummo could be something to see.

Melvin Guillard - I hope he sticks around the UFC until he can improve, he's got amazing potential.