It’s an absolutely stacked card for UFC 144 in Japan so let’s get right to my predictions…
Frankie Edgar vs. Benson Henderson
I think Henderson is nearly as quick as Edgar but much stronger. I’ll take Henderson by TKO. My bold prediction is that Edgar will drop to 145 to fight Jose Aldo for the featherweight title next.
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson vs. Ryan Bader
Bader will look to take Jackson down and Jackson knows this. I like Jackson to catch Bader with a hook or uppercut. Jackson wins with a knockout.
Cheick Kongo vs. Mark Hunt
This should be a very entertaining heavyweight fight. Hunt will swing for the fences and Kongo will counter with a right cross sending Hunt to the ground. Another fight that doesn’t go the distance. Kongo by TKO.
Jake Shields vs. Yoshihiro Akiyama
Shields will look to take this to the ground and Akiyama wants to stand and strike occasionally using his judo. I think age and the 1st time weight cut to 170lbs. will catch up to Akiyama. I like Shields by submission.
Joe Lauzon vs. Anthony Pettis
Lauzon is a submission specialist but he won’t be able to keep Pettis down long enough. I like Pettis being able to use his standup skills and win by unanimous decision.
Yushin Okami vs. Tim Boestch
In Okami’s last fight he was embarrassed by Anderson Silva in Silva’s home country. This time Okami is fighting in front of his home crowd. Okami’s strong wrestling will ultimately give him the edge in a decision victory over Boestch.