Who I’m Looking Forward To Watching at UFC 159 This Weekend
April 22, 2013
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I have a number of friends who enjoy watching MMA. Any time I ask them which fighters they’re looking forward to watching, they respond with names that you might expect. For this weekend’s card, they might say they’re looking forward to watching Jon Jones and Roy Nelson – or they might say they’re looking forward to watching Chael Sonnen lose. When they ask me the same question, my answer usually just prompts more questions, since I often name some obscure fighter buried on the prelims. Here’s who I’m looking forward to watching at UFC 159 this Saturday:
Jon Jones – One thing I will always appreciate is true greatness in mixed martial arts. I think it’s safe to say that Jones deserves to be mentioned alongside names like Anderson Silva, Georges St-Pierre, and Fedor Emelianenko as fighters who have been truly dominant in the sport. I don’t have the same seething hatred for Chael Sonnen that a lot of people have, but I am looking forward to seeing how Jones will handle the challenge that Sonnen brings to the table. There are a lot of ways Jones can win this fight.
Phil Davis – Davis will be battling Vinny Magalhaes on the main card. While Magalhaes has improved greatly since his run on TUF 8, he’s run into the wrong opponent here in my opinion. Not only is Davis a fantastic wrestler/grappler type, he’s a fighter who is excellent at minimizing his opponent’s offense. I think Davis has top three talent in the light-heavyweight division, and I look forward to seeing him display that talent once again.
Johnny Bedford – A fighter who just mauled both of his first two UFC opponents, scoring TKO wins over Louis Gaudinot and Marcos Vinicius. Bedford is stepping up in competition this time to face Bryan Caraway, and on paper, it’s a very challenging fight for Bedford. Caraway is a very good grappler, a fighter who is excellent at getting his opponent’s back and going for submissions. Since Bedford is 19-9 with eight losses by submission, he’ll have to prove that he’s improved his submission defense. A very interesting fight in my opinion.
Yancy Medeiros – This is the one that would get everybody I know to ask “Who?” When I attended the Strikeforce event featuring Fedor Emelianenko vs. Fabricio Werdum, I didn’t know who anybody on the prelims was. The one fighter who stood out there was Medeiros, who displayed very good Muay Thai and takedown defense in a KO win over Gareth Joseph. Since then, I’ve been waiting for Medeiros to fight again, but presumably due to injuries, he never did. Now, almost three years later, Medeiros is in the UFC to take on Rustam Khabilov, who has gained a lot of hype after suplexing Vinc Pichel to oblivion. While I’m sure most hardcore fans are looking forward to watching Khabilov, I’m looking forward to watching the undefeated Medeiros.