Fight Reviews and Predictions
This is what we've all been waiting for in the light heavyweight division with UFC 66
coming in just 10 days. Tito Ortiz vs Chuck Liddell
is finally here with a long awaited challenge for the Iceman. On top of that its do or die time for alot of guys trying to climb up the ladder to title matches. Big names and guys with alot of promise clashing to see who will get a shot next.
Ortiz vs. Liddell
Alot of people talking aren't giving Tito Ortiz much of a shot at beating Liddell. Reason being is probably that Liddell has been so impressive while Tito hasn't had an impressive fight since before losing to the Iceman over 2 years ago. The only non-decisions he's had were the beatings he layed on a way over the hill Ken Shamrock and anyone knows you don't fight 5 rounds with Chuck Liddell. That being said Tito does seem to want it really bad and hopefully he's improved and is ready to roll. If Chuck Liddell comes in as good as he's been coming then I put him at a pretty big favorite to take this fight. 3 to 1 for the Iceman here.
This fight went like I thought it would with an Iceman Knockout.(3rd) Tito seemed overwhelmed by Chuck and had Chuck not been patient backed off in the first it would've been over. Tito gave it his all and in my opinion he will definitely fight his way back. He needs to pick up some big training partners to push him to that next level and he is really close to being there. Its just a matter of time but I think he will definitely hold that title again in the next 5 years.
On a side note what was with that rigged poll they kept showing that had Tito being voted to a 50/50 shot to beat Chuck? Apparently they want us to believe in 2 hours people voted Tito from a 2 to 1 dog into an even money favorite? Yeah right.
On another side note: The fans in attendance obviously are on the majority idiots when no real interest in fighting other than the Vegas spotlight. Booing a fighter like Ortiz after a hard loss? No class at all. He trains hard, long and puts everything he has into what he does. Anyone booing at any fight on tonights card especially the title fight should be thrown from the building and never be allowed in again. They have no appreciation for what they're privileged to see.
Jason MacDonald vs. Chris Leben
This is a fight I'm very ready to see. Jason MacDonald looked great in his last fight as did Leben. Leben has a decent ground game and MacDonald doesn't have much of a standup. MacDonald is good on the ground but Chris is pretty damn short and good at fighting off the grapplers. You've got to favor Leben in this fight. I go Leben 3 to 2.
Results: MacDonald by tapout in the 2nd. Had I not felt that Ed Herman wasn't very good I would've given MacDonald more credit. Give it all to him now as he went out there and earned it giving me my only wrong prediction on this card. However if he doesn't work on his striking he won't move much further up the ladder.
Michael Bisping vs. Eric Schafer
I'm really interested in this fight because this is going to be a tester for how Bisping is coming along in what should now be a full blown pro fight career. He should've improved alot from his TUF shape and seriously put a very beatable Schafer away. Schafer has fought almost nobody but does has a couple of quality wins. I go Bisping 3 to 1.
Results: Bisping looked really good putting away Schafer. However Schafer was easily able to engage Bisping which doesn't say much for his defense. If he wants to be a serious contender then he has to improve but he is on his way to a very successful career. Jardine vs. Bisping next? Bisping better pick it up because I feel that if they fought today he would lose. However I do feel he has much room to improve and be a contender.
Andrei Arlovski vs. Marcio Cruz
I'm ready for the return of the Pitbull. I think this guy will rise up to once again take down the Heavyweight belt. His last fight was garbage but I think he's had time to think about it and put it back together. The march back to glory starts now for the Pitbull. Cruz isn't much of a fighter so I'm goning 4 to 1 pitbull.
Results: No suprise here with Arlovski putting away Cruz via knockout. I didn't expect it to be a ground knockout though. The pitbull appears to have recovered well from how gun shy he appeared last fight. He was injured and probably really needed the time off. I hope he gets back to the top.
Keith Jardine vs. Forrest Griffin
This should prove to be one of the best fights in a few cards. Jardine is a great fighter with what seems like alot of hunger to put together a string of quality wins. He was seriously robbed in his last loss against Bonnar which may turn into a blessing in disguise since he needed work. Forrest is a quality opponent and always a game fighter. I feel like this fight should be a bloody dog fight and I put it at even money for both guys.
Results: Not what I thought it would be with Forrest getting clipped early. He needs to learn control and defense when fighting. Forrest was rocked and stayed engaged with Jardine resulting in an eventual knockout. I knew this was any mans fight but thought certainly it would go to the 3rd round. Great job Jardine finally earning the respect he deserves.
Of course I'll update this page after the fights.
Jerry Wayne Odom - 12/19/2006
Thought update 12/30/2006
Pretty good fight card overall. It was exciting and fun to watch with all of the big matchups. Every man fighting had the right to be where he was and gave everything they had. I feel that many of the defeated fighters will be back in contention and 2007 will be a huge year. Quinton Jackson and Mirko Cro Cop Filipovic coming to the UFC show just how big this thing is getting and we're sure to see who is truly the best of the best world wide in 2007. Great times!
I was too much of a wuss to pick a winner in the Jardine/Griffin matchup and MacDonald earned his credit and put the final doubters like myself to rest. Other than that I got the other 3 fights on the money. I was happy with the results but must admit that despite being a Liddell fan I felt real pain for Ortiz after the match. He wanted it, he prepared for it and he lost it. HOWEVER, he'll be back. Tito simply has more to learn but mark my words he will be back and will one day hold that title again. He's grown up a ton in the last couple of years and once he realizes that he needs to learn more from other fighters and camps he will push himself to the level of world champion.