MMA Analysis: UFC 137, BJ Penn vs. Nick Diaz and More

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UFC 137 is finally upon us and although we won’t be getting to see GSP defend his title against Carlos Condit, we will get to watch BJ Penn go toe to toe with MMA’s true Bad Boy; Nick Diaz.

While some might complain about this Saturday’s main event, do not count me as one of the malcontents.  I am more than looking forward to watching these two guys go at it.  The fight is interesting on so many levels.  Both men have serious jiu jitsu skills and both have great hands.  Diaz has the overwhelming advantage in the cardio department, while Penn has the one punch knockout power that could send Nick to the canvas at anytime.  With a win, Nick could jump right back into the title picture and a Penn victory would certainly solidify him as a contender once again.

So how do I see this fight going down?  I’m expecting both men to come out guns blazing and it’s during one of their frantic exchanges that I expect BJ to clip Diaz and win via TKO.

There are plenty of other fights on the card that really interest me but only two those fights are on the PPV card; Cro Cop vs. Big Country and Matt Mitrione vs. Cheick Kongo.

Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic goes into the bout having one of the most mediocre and disappointing runs in UFC history.  It seems like just yesterday that anyone who had ever watched Cro Cop fight was salivating at the thought of Mirko going up against the UFC’s best.  Instead we have had to settle for lackluster wins over Sanchez, Al Turk, Perosh, Barry and painful losses to Gonzaga, Kongo, Dos Santos, Mir, and most recently Schaub.

It’s hard to imagine Cro Cop competing inside the Octagon again unless he can pull off a convincing win over Nelson.  Unfortunately for Mirko, Nelson looks to have slimmed down and seems to be taking things a bit more serious after suffering back to back losses.  In nearly all of his bouts inside the Octagon, Cro Cop has looked tentative and his chin seems to be going down Arlovski Ave.  Expect Big Country to get inside and use his slightly smaller belly to wear down the Croatian and get the ground and pound stoppage.

Matt Mitrione seems to have a lot of buzz going into this fight and it seems as if a win over Cheick Kongo will somehow catapult him into the UFC’s top ten in the heavyweight division.  He’s an exciting guy to watch, he has fun inside the cage, but wins over Joey Beltran, Christian Morecraft, Kimbo Slice, Tim Hague, and Marcus Jones, should not have people buzzing.  The guy tends to drop his hands and against a striker the caliber of Kongo, it will cost him.  There’s no doubt in my mind the Kongo will knock him out.

In addition to this Saturday’s UFC card, Bellator 56 will air live on MTV 2, with Jay Hieron challenging Ben Askren for the welterweight title.

As much as I would love to see Hieron take the title, I have a feeling Askren will “GSP” his way to a decision by laying on Hieron for 5 rounds.

Until next time, Stay Focused and Support the Sport.