UFC 136. Are we there yet? Rant and Predictions

UFC 136 starts in a matter of moments and I’ve got to be honest with you: I’m not looking forward to it. From my perspective, this card resembles the long drives my family used to take to visit far-flung relatives or amusement parks when I was a kid. It seems like something to endure to get to something either marginally or extremely better on the other end. Are we there, yet?

Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard. III.
For the third time, these two guys step into the Octagon™ to see if one of them can actually win this fight. The last time they fought, as you probably know, it ended in a draw. A DRAW!

Sure, it’d be easy for me to characterize Frankie Edgar as a quick guy with solid skills but not enough power to do any real damage striking, and Gray Maynard as a guy with wrestling skills and power in his hands who squandered his opportunity last time when he had Edgar rocked in the first round and then lost (tied) the rest of the fight.

I’m already tired of this bout. Here’s what I want: Maynard to come out, walk through Edgar’s punches and knock him out. First round. If it gets into the second round, I’ll be looking for my keys. Maynard by KO, first round.

Jose Aldo vs. Kenny Florian
This fight seems like a test of my patience. What the hell is Kenny Florian thinking, taking this fight? Look, in spite of what I just said I wanted to see (Maynard knocking Edgar out), what I do not like to see is one guy getting his ass kicked for an extended period of time, all over the Octagon™. If Florian can’t get this to the ground, where Aldo may still have an advantage, Aldo will be doing that to Florian, and I’m gonna be going on a beer run or something. Aldo by TKO after a long, tough-to-watch couple of rounds. Welcome, Kenny, to the next phase of your career as a commentator.

Chael Sonnen vs. Brian Stann
I don’t want to live in a universe where these two guys fight. Brian Stann looks like a dragon when he has his gameface star on, and Chael needs parts of his face to do all that wonderful trash talking. These guys even like each other. Any chance that they’ll enter the Octagon™ tap gloves and turn to the camera and say “psyche!”? I don’t want this to happen. I think I’ll go get a plate of food during this match. Stann by KO. Me by tri-tip. Are we there, yet?

Joe Lauzon vs. Melvin Guillard
This might as well be a preview to Aldo/Florian. I like Lauzon, which is why I’m really concerned that he doesn’t have a nice career commentating lined up after his mouthpiece goes flying into the crowd… Guillard by KO, second round.

Leonard Garcia vs. Nam Phan
Is there anyone more reminiscent of “The Karate Kid” than Leonard Garcia? He seems to get beat up in every bout and still is right there at the end. Nam Phan caught my attention on The Ultimate Fighter, and I like him, but to be honest, I’d be more interested in this bout if it were Dat Phan, winner of Last Comic Standing. If I have to make a prediction, I’ll take Leonard Garcia by Decision. I may hit the restroom during this fight.

Spike TV Preliminary Card
Damian Maia vs. Jorge Santiago
Two Brazillians fighting, and I’m rooting for both of them. I like Damian Maia: the man is a master of Jiu Jitsu. He is fascinating to watch. In a grappling tournament. Santiago by TKO.

Jeremy Stephens vs. Anthony Pettis
Anthony Pettis has knockout power, if he can first use the momentum of springing off the cage to kick, kinda like how NASA uses the orbit of the planet to fling rockets into space.  Jeremy Stephens by TKO. I just got here, I think I’ll have a look around…

Facebook Prelims
Joey Beltran vs. Stipe Miocic
I like Joey Beltran. There’s just something about the guy that has me rooting for him. It’s like he just throws himself into fights, wading in through the punches looking to land bombs. Plus, he’s got a hell of a chin. I admire that in a heavyweight. Miocic by KO.

As little as I care for this card, I care less about the rest of the facebook prelims. Here they are, sans my predictions:

Zhang Tie Quan vs. Darren Elkins
Aaron Simpson vs. Eric Schafer
Steve Cantwell vs. Mike Massenzio

For a more informed look at the card, check out Anthony’s predictions.

Meanwhile, take another look at the graphic above. Does anyone there look even remotely interested in this card? It sure doesn’t appear that way to me.

/rant… I’ve got to get to the party…