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5 Great Upcoming MMA Matches: UFC, Titan, Strikeforce, Bellator

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Remember back when you were a kid and is it got closer to Christmas time and the anticipation would build up for the most awesome time of year? Get ready to feel that way again, starting this weekend as MMA is swinging into full tilt season of promising fights and championship bouts that will have fans eagerly watching and cheering until 2012.

Listed below is a breakdown of the top five fights from multiple cards taking place this Friday & Saturday to kick things off.

UFC 135: Jon Jones vs. Quinton Jackson

Trash talk: check. Rivals: check. Old veteran against superman-esque young gun: check. Everything this fight entails has classic written on it and coupled with the fact that these men like to fight and not grind out a decision, the five rounds allotted for a championship bout will probably only make it to the third. Jon Jones is going out to win a new title in his mind, where as Jackson is simply determined to “get my belt back”. Regardless your thoughts on both men, it will be a battle in Denver to set up a future match with Rashad Evans

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UFC 135: Matt Hughes vs. Josh Koscheck

Coming back in his first fight since the destruction by GSP, the AKA fighter (Koscheck) is getting what he wanted in a return fight – a big name that will test him. Considered by many as the most dominant welterweight champion in UFC history, Matt Hughes has done enough in a legacy career to walk away without regrets or criticism. However, with a drive and determination to continue to cement his place in history, the wrestler will look to derail the former Ultimate Fighter star and prove his worth one more round.

Bellator 51: Joe Warren vs. Alexis Vila

After winning the Bellator featherweight tournament last year, 8-1 Joe Warren drops to bantamweight in his quest for another title. Pulling undefeated (9-0) Vilafor a quarter round elimination matches will showcase the skill and heart of a champion. Warren’s sole loss comes from an armbar submission and while Vila holds submission two wins (six by knockout and a decision), it would appear wise to keep this fight on the feet and not allow the Olympic wrestling of his opponent dictate the fight.

Strikeforce Challengers 19: Lorenz Larkin vs. Nick Rossborough

Another undefeated fighter will continue in his path towards the big show this weekend in Las Vegas as Lorenz Larkin will meet the submission savvy, Nick Rossborough. Originally Larkin was scheduled to face Virgil Zwicker, but an injury forced Rossborough in as a late replacement. Both men will look to seize the opportunity to move into the main stage of Strikeforce (Larkin) or place their name on the main stage map (Rossborough).

Titan Fighting Championships 20: Brett Rogers vs. Eddie Sanchez

UFC veteran Eddie Sanchez will go up against a known opponent in Brett Rogers this Friday night in Kansas City,KS and posses the skill and stopping power to finish “Grimm” before the first round. Eight of Sanchez’ wins have come via knockout while three have seen him submit opponents. Given the history of Rogers lately (being submitted once and knocked out twice) things should go well for “The Manic Hispanic” on his path back to the UFC

Honorable mention for those of you with HDNet – do not forget that DREAM 17 will be live from Saitima, Japan Friday night beginning at midnight until 5am into Saturday morning. The card will feature the beginning of their bantamweight grand prix and a main event of lightweights when Shinya Aoki will face off against former champion, “Razor” Rob McCullough.

Get more great MMA news, recaps and analysis over at MMA Valor.