UFC 86 Jackson vs. Griffin Predictions

posted by cradick on July-3-2008, 1:35pm

Corey Hill vs. Justin Buchholz - Time to see if "The Real Deal" can continue his win streak. Corey Hill presents all sorts of matchup issues for his opponents and I don't see this fight being any different. At 6'4", Hill towers above all the fighters in his division. Look for Hill to win this fight by knockout.

Melvin Guillard vs. Dennis Siver - Guess who is back and it isn't the real slim-shady. The question is which Melvin Guillard will show up for the fight? When he wins, he looks like a title contender. When he loses, he looks like he belongs in a backyard brawl. I believe the time away has done him some good and he will have a strong showing for this fight. Another TKO for Guillard.

Jorge Gurgel vs. Cole Miller - This is an interesting matchup for sure. Gurgel strikes me as the type of fighter that is very good, but will probably never reach title contention. This makes him a perfect fighter for gauging the skill level of other fighters. Enter Cole Miller... I am still not sold on his abilities, but he has the potential to be a good fighter. A win for Gurgel means nothing while a win for Miller says a lot about his future in the UFC. Hard for me to pick a winner here, so I am going with the Vegas line and picking Miller by unanimous decision.

Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Justin McCully - How can a fighter look so good in one fight and then so bad in the next? Gabriel Gonzaga looked like the next heavyweight champ when he defeated Mirko Cro Cop, but looked like a chump in his loses to Randy Couture and Fabricio Werdum. Justin McCully is smart fighter that can win fights against better opponents, but I don't see that happening in this fight. Gonzaga wins this fight early by ground and pound.

Tyson Griffin Vs. Marcus Aurelio - This should be a great fight, but I am having a hard time picking a winner. I assume that Tyson Griffin is the odds on favorite so I will believe he will continue his current winning streak. Look for this one to go the distance with Griffin as the victor.

Josh Koscheck vs. Chris Lytle - Ouch, this is a bad matchup for Chris Lytle. Koscheck is an excellent wrestler who will look to get Lytle on the mat early. Lytle's best chance to win this fight is to keep Koscheck on his feet and entice him to exchange punches. If Koscheck sticks to his plan, he wins this fight by TKO.

Joe Stevenson vs. Gleison Tibau - This fight has the potential to be the fight of the night. With both fighters coming off of difficult loses, they both have something to prove. Expect a blood bath with Stevenson as the winner of the fight.

Patrick Cote vs. Ricardo Almeida - Ah yes, the classic matchup of the submission artist versus the slugger. These fights are almost always determined by where the fight takes place. Almeida wants the fight on the ground while Cote prefers to fight on his feet.

Usually, I tend to lean towards the submission guy because I assume the fight will eventually end up on the mat. The x-factor for Cote may very well be his new found confidence. He has been landing precision punches with the power to knockout his opponents. I am going to go against my better judgment and pick Cote to win this fight. You know what that means, knockout baby!

Quinton Jackson vs. Forrest Griffin - Finally, the main event. This soon to be classic represents an important moment in mixed martial arts. Think of this fight as the past meeting the future. Quinton Jackson is favored to win this fight, but don't be surprised if Griffin finds a way to win.

The first time I picked against Griffin was the first time I saw him officially fight. I was sure Stephan Bonnar was going to win the first Ultimate Fighter. The second time I picked against Griffin was when he fought Mauricio Rua... wrong again. So how can I pick against Griffin a third time?

Griffin can win this fight by following the right strategy. He needs this fight to make it into the later rounds where his conditioning is superior to Jackson's. Still, can he make it to the later rounds without being caught by Rampage? Probably not... Jackson wins this fight by technical knockout.

tags: Chris Lytle, Forrest Griffin, Gleison Tibau, Joe Stevenson, Josh Koscheck, Marcus Aurelio, Patrick Cote, Quinton Jackson, Ricardo Almeida, Tyson Griffin, UFC 86

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