UFC 169 Predictions with “The King of Rock ‘n Rumble” Elvis Sinosic
By Dave Carpinello
The King of Rock ‘n Rumble, Elvis Sinosic has been involved with mixed martial arts for over 15 years including a fight career that spanned across the globe with 22 professional fights. The co-owner of Sinosic Perosh Martial Arts is back with his predictions and analysis of three of the fights on this weekend’s UFC 169 fight card.
UFC Bantamweight Title Bout
Renan Barao (C) (31-1-1) vs. Urijah Faber (31-6)
This fight is a rematch from UFC 149 when they fought for the interim BW Belt. Renan won the match via unanimous decision in a very dominant performance. Renan showed that he deserved to be the champion. Since then he’s defended the interim belt twice, once winning by submission and the other by TKO. Renan is a dangerous fighter whether the match remains standing or hits the mat. Renan has only lost once and that was his very first match in MMA, an astounding feat in itself. He also has one no-contest on his record. Urijah is one of the top fighters of the division and has only lost to World class competition, in his list of losses is Renan the current interim champion and the previous champion Dominick Cruz (who has had to relinquish the belt due to injury).
Since his loss to Renan he’s gone on a tear winning 4 fights, 3 by submission and 1 by decision. He has seemed to really have turned his game up a notch. As an interesting side note Renan and Faber have both submitted Michael McDonald since their last fight together. Both have also beaten Eddie Wineland, Renan by TKO and Urijah by Dec. (though earlier in his career). So both guys have demonstrated dominance over similar fighters in the division. The question is has Urijah improved enough to take the fight to Renan and beat him. Renan has shown the better footwork and striking, both have demonstrated a strong grappling game as well. I think Renan is too polished and will retain the edge he had from their last fight. I think Faber will be more competitive as his confidence and skills have grown, maybe even taking a couple of rounds from Renan. But in the end I think Renan’s ability to control the fight with his movement and superior striking and the ability to neutralize Faber’s grappling will be enough for him to win another unanimous decision. My prediction is Renan by another dominant decision or even possibly a TKO in the 5th round.
UFC Featherweight Title Bout
Jose Aldo (C) (23-1) vs. Ricardo Lamas (14-2)
This is another Title Fight, this time for the UFC FW Belt. Jose Aldo, one of MMA’s best Pound for Pound fighters is being challenged for his belt by Ricardo Lamas. Jose Aldo won the WEC FW belt in 2009 and defended it 3 times before being absorbed by the UFC (and gaining the UFC FW belt), since being in the UFC he’s defended his UFC belt 5 times. In that time he’s had 9 Championship bouts with 4 or them going the full 5 rounds with the rest of the wins being by T/KO. Though Jose has a loss on his record it was very early in his career. Even though Jose is known as phenomenal striker in the division he’s also no slouch on the mat with a Black Belt in BJJ (and also a BJJ World Championship).
Ricardo comes to challenge with a well rounded game, he’s a talented wrestler (All American NCAA Div III), a BJJ Black Belt (under Daniel Valverde) and he has strong striking with several T/KO’s on his record. Though Ricardo is a talented fighter and brings some great tools to the fight I don’t think he brings enough. The losses on his record are due to T/KO and that’s not a good thing when facing a beast of a striker like Jose. Though he has great wrestling, Jose has shown the ability to defend against world class wrestlers with some of the best takedown defense not only in the division but the sport itself. On top of that, even if he gets the match to the ground Jose is no slouch there and he has shown that over and over again. In my opinion the only reason he doesn’t use his BJJ more is because he doesn’t have to. I am predicting that Jose will win this match, either with a dominating unanimous decision or more likely a T/KO.
UFC Heavyweight Bout
Frank Mir (16-8) vs. Alistair Overeem (36-13-1)
This is the classic Striker vs Grappler match. Frank Mir is the grappler that rips limbs off and Overeem is the striker that pulverizes torsos with his knees. Both have shown great success in the MMA arena, Mir having held the UFC HW belt and Overeem having had the Strikeforce & K-1 HW belts. Though Mir is a grappler he’s also shown power in his striking as he has dropped a few Heavyweights along the way, same with Overeem, even though he’s the striker he’s had his share of submission victories along the way. Mir has lost his last 3 fights, 1 by Dec and 2 by TKO (not good when you’re facing a savvy striker like Overeem). Overeem has not fared much better, known as a Striker (having one the K-1 Belt in 2010) but having lost his last 2 fights by KO in the UFC HW division, showing just how much depth the division has. If Frank Mir manages to get the match to the ground and get his hands one of Alistair’s limbs he has the ability to take it home in a bag.
Frank is always dangerous once the fight hits the mat, even if he’s hurt, he has a great grappling instinct. Alistair has the ability to crush fighters spirits by crushing their bodies. He has devastating knees and kicks which are his strength. The question is can Alistair use his striking to keep Mir off him until an opportunity comes to end the fight or can Mir use his striking to setup a takedown and get Alistair onto the ground and sink in one of his dangerous submissions. Alistair is known for slowing down in the later rounds due to the large muscle mass that he carries, and this has been used against him in previous fights. The problem is Frank is also not known for his stamina when fighting so an unlikely opportunity to be taken, though when you’re tired grappling is harder to defend than striking is. I think Alistair will be too strong for Frank in the early rounds and won’t give him the opportunity to take him down. Even though he’s been stopped recently it’s been by strikers which is not Frank’s forte (though he’s no slouch). Frank on the other hand has been known to falter against strong strikers and even been stopped in a recent fight by knees, which is a strength of Overeem. I’m predicting Overeem by TKO, most likely by his knees of Doom.
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