We are at a point in the calendar where every PPV card for the UFC is just one more card until November when Randy Couture makes his comeback against Brock Lesnar. Even with Chuck Liddell on this card, the buzz really isn’t there. Chuck vs. Rashad isn’t really a money fight and neither is anything else on the undercard. However, UFC 88 has some intrigue. First off, Rich Franklin is back at 205, facing Matt Hamill. Rousimar Palhares is facing a huge test in Dan Henderson. And if Chuck Liddell wins this fight, he more than likely gets a shot at reclaiming his light heavyweight championship with a fight against champ Forrest Griffin.
Your friends at Fight Game Blog have put together a preview of the top three bouts.
Alan posted a great preview of Dan Henderson vs. Rousimar Palhares earlier today if you want an in depth commentary on that fight. Here’s what the rest of the guys think.
Dan Henderson vs. Rousimar Palhares
Big D: Henderson by 1st round TKO
Cactus Jim: Henderson by 1st round TKO
Duan: Henderson by decision
Alan: Palhares by decision
GG: Henderson by third round TKO
Alan says, “As for a prediction, I’m going with Palhares. Although it’s by no means cut and dry. If Dan can keep it standing then he’s got a great shot of knocking out the Brazilian with his heavy hands. But if it goes to the ground, especially with Palhares on top, then Dan may not have any answers. I think the takedowns will come, as Dan leaves himself open for them whenever he throws those big looping punches that he favours. Palhares may play it safe on the ground and grind out a decision, or he may go for the kill like he did with Salaverry.”
Rich Franklin vs. Matt Hamill
Big D: Franklin by 2nd round TKO
Cactus Jim: Franklin by 3rd round TKO
Duan: Franklin by TKO
Alan: Franklin by 2nd round TKO
GG: Franklin by decision
Cactus Jim says, “Franklin, another hard hitting former champ going up against another reality show wrestler. Again, I think Franklin dominates this fight and wins by KO in the 3rd. Hamill has shown that he doesnâ€™t have much defense against a good striker and that although has striking has improved significantly, he is far from an excellent striker himself. He may get a couple takedowns on Franklin, but my prediction is he does minimal damage on top and Franklin will be able to get back to his feet in rather short fashion. In the end, Franklinâ€™s conditioning and striking will make the difference in this fight.”
Chuck Liddell vs. Rashad Evans
Big D: Liddell by 2nd round TKO
Cactus Jim: Liddell by 2nd round TKO
Duan: Liddell by 3rd round TKO
Alan: Liddell by 2nd round TKO
GG: Liddell by 3rd round TKO
Duan says, “This is a good match up for Chuck. Liddell has never had any difficulty dealing with wrestlers in the past â€“ including ones that were far more accomplished than Rashad Evans. I have seen nothing in Rashad’s striking that will concern Liddell. Expect Chuck to easily fend off his takedown attempts and dismantle him in the stand up.”
We will have live play by play of the UFC 88 here tomorrow.