Friday starts two fights in two nights. The first fight takes place in Atlantic City and the second fight takes place on Saturday in Brazil. UFC on FX 4 features a lightweight fight that has potential to cause even more drama at the top of the di
vision. Also on the card, Dan Miller returns after a 10 month layoff. Miller’s son Daniel Jr. suffers from Polycystic kidney disease and is currently under going treatment. You can support Dan and his family here.
Check out our picks below and leave yours in the comments section.
Featherweight Bout: Ross Pearson vs. Cub Swanson
Brian: Both of these guys are T-O-U-G-H….a slugfest ensues and Pearson comes out on top. He may look worse for the wear, but Pearson will win the Split Decision.
Brendan: This should be a great opening to the FX card, these guys love to fight and will quickly get things started when they meet in the center of the Octagon. Should be fairly even in the striking department, but Swanson likely has the superior wrestling/ground-game. I think it stays standing which will favor Pearson and his more technical striking, ultimately I see Pearson taking it via UD in what should be an exciting start to the main card.
Jordan: This is a great fight to start out the main card of the event; both of these fighters can put on a great show. Both of these guys are great strikers, but I give Pearson the edge. Look for Pearson to try to keep this fight standing and controlling the fight. I have Pearson winning via Unanimous Decision.
Mark: After a recent DWI in Las Vegas, it’s good that Ross Pearson can get back to work and look to make headlines for the right reasons. Cub Swanson has had his fair share of injuries and will be looking to impress now that he’s healthy. This tells me both guys will be motivated and the action should be fierce. I give the power edge to Pearson, but the technical advantage to Swanson. I also expect this to play out entirely on the feet and last 3 rounds full of action. But at the end of three, I like Swanson by Split Decision in a minor upset.
Welterweight Bout: Brian Ebersole vs. TJ Waldburger
Brian: Waldburger is fun to watch, and very aggressive, but I think Ebersole will ultimately land a dizzying elbow from the clinch that ends Waldburger’s night. Ebersole by 2nd Round TKO.
Brendan: I like the way Waldburger fights, he strings his attacks together nicely and is always looking for the submission finish – Ebersole has such a well-rounded game, tons of experience and is riding a 10-fight win streak with his last loss back in 2008 to former Bellator MW Champ & recent UFC import Hector Lombard. Ebersole will use his crafty striking to work inside and ultimately land a crushing blow putting Waldburger to sleep in the 2nd round. Ebersole KOTN 2nd rd.
Jordan: Both of these fighters have been very impressive in recent performances. Waldburger only has one loss to Johny Hendricks in his last 7 fights and Ebersole is on a 10-fight win streak. I have been very impressed with Waldburger and his ability to pull off the submission and I have him pulling it off again against Ebersole. Ebersole is a veteran of the sport, but I have Waldburger being more aggressive, taking this fight to the ground and pulling off the sub in the 2nd round via triangle.
Mark: Can chest hair art be an advantage in a fight? I’m not sure, but I’m curious to see Brian Ebersole’s latest manscaping. Let’s face it, it hasn’t hurt him recently so why not? Waldburger is a much younger fighter with a great potential. He’s got great grappling chops and won’t be intimidated by Ebersole trying to power him around. I think he’ll frustrate Ebersole long enough to find an exposed limb or neck and will slap on a submission in short order. Give me TJ Waldburger by 1st round armbar.
Lightweight Bout: Sam Stout vs. Spencer Fisher
Brian: RUBBER MATCH TIME. I love the way Sam Stout fights. He doesn’t tend to finish that often recently, but man…is he fun to watch! Spencer Fisher is no slouch, either, but I will take Stout by UD in the FOTN.
Brendan: 3rd time’s a charm, and these two have yet to disappoint in any of their pugilistic affairs. The first two battles were incredible and I expect nothing less in this one. I’d like to see the old “Hands of Steel” sealing his victory with clean strikes in abundance from the outside, but Team Tompkins has been winless since Shawn’s passing. This will be a long tough fight; I’ll take Stout by UD just because he seems to have less wear on his tires, so far.
Jordan: Both of these fighters are coming off a loss to Thiago Tavares and this will be the rubber match between the two. This will probably be Spencer Fisher’s final fight in the Octagon and unfortunately I see him going out the loser. Both of these guys are tough, but I see Stout controlling this fight on his feet and catching him in the second and getting the KO victory.
Mark: In terms of lightweight rankings, this fight won’t make too many waves, but the matchup should have fans cheering in their seats. Both of the previous fights have been action packed and full of momentum swings. Fisher is more of a brawler who likes to mix it up, while Stout is extremely proficient with his striking, yet won’t back down an inch. I tend to favor technique and will do so again in this matchup. Sam Stout doesn’t have the same mileage as Fisher and his high volume of strikes will do enough damage to earn the W. Sam Stout by Unanimous Decision.
Lightweight Bout: Gray Maynard vs. Clay Guida
Brian: This is a fight of strength vs. strength in the view of Maynard’s corner, and strength vs. weakness when you are looking at it from Guida’s perspective. Maynard loves his power punches, but Clay Guida is extremely elusive, and ultra-tough. He also seems to get better as a fight goes on….covered in blood and bouncing around (granted, his hair will be braided back after some whining from Maynard’s camp that his mane will be a “distraction”). The same cannot be said for Gray Maynard. With all of that power, there tends to be exhaustion and fatigue at the end of a fight. I’ll take Guida by UD.
Brendan: Guida’s a handful for any opponent with his high energy bouncing attack style and the ferocious pace he can maintain for what seems like an eternity. On the other hand “the Bully” prefers to stifle opponent’s attacks, slam them down and grind them through the mat – and this one comes down to who can implement their game plan better. Since taking his first career loss (being TKO’d by Champ Frankie Edgar in the 4th round of a fight he was arguably winning to that point), Gray has left Vegas in search of some new training partners and a fresh start. He landed with the Marinovich brothers (see BJPenn vs. KFlo/DSanchez) who no doubt will have him rearing to go Friday night. Give me Maynard to win via majority decision.
Jordan: It is great to see two top 10 fighters get in the cage to determine who is closer to a title shot and who will be waiting on the fringe. The winner could be a few fights away while the loser would be a great fit in Strikeforce against Gilbert Melendez. Maynard is tough, hence his nickname is “The Bully”, and he keeps coming at you, out wrestles you and grinds out a victory. Guida has tons of energy and is all over the cage, (that energy was displayed throughout his fight with Benson Henderson as he rolled all over.) This will be an entertaining fight but I see Maynard being the stronger of the two and taking this fight to the ground and grinding out another victory via Unanimous Decision.
Mark: Trying to sort out who the most deserving fighers are to contend for the Lightweight belt is an exhausting exercise, so I’ll skip straight to the fight at hand. Maynard vs. Guida is a great matchup of former #1 contenders who’d very much like to get back in the title mix. Maynard likely has a power edge, but as Frankie Edgar proved, can be vulnerable against opponents with great movement. Clay Guida coincidentally can’t stop moving. I’ll be interested to see if Maynard’s departure from Xtreme Couture has helped him fight a more disciplined, patient fight. If not, I see Guida taking some heavy shots, but firing back in the later rounds and stealing the momentum from a frustrated Maynard. I see Maynard as the favorite here, but I’ll go out on a limb and say Guida steals this one to further muddy the waters at 155. Guida by Unanimous Decision.
Submission of the Night
Brian: Dan Miller
Brendan: Luis Ramos
Jordan: TJ Waldburger
Mark: TJ Waldburger
Knockout of the Night
Brian: Rick Story
Brendan: Brian Ebersole
Jordan: Sam Stout
Mark: Rick Story
Fight of the Night
Brian: Stout vs. Fisher
Brendan: Stout vs. Fisher
Jordan: Pearson vs. Swanson
Mark: Maynard vs. Guida
Brian (82-66) – Co-host of the MMANonstop Podcast and author of the series “The Book On…” exclusively at MMANonstop.com, follow him at twitter.com/bchurchin
Brendan (80-68) – Examines the Top 5 fighters in each weight class and is featured exclusively on MMANonstop.com. Follow him at twitter.com/bchurchin48
Mark (85-58) – Chief Editor and lead contributor to the MMANonstop Podcast, follow him at twitter.com/mmanonstopmark
Jordan (91-57) – Runs the MMANonstop twitter feed and co-host of the MMANonstop Podcast, follow him at twitter.com/nonstopmma