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UFC 170 Preview: Rousey Vs. McMann

UFC 170 preview: Rousey Vs. McMannAs I mentioned, in 2014, we’re going to keep track of our picks for most of the UFC main card fights. In addition to the FGB crew, included in our picks will be John LaRocca, president of Premier Wrestling, Heidi Fang from MMA Fight Corner, and Alex Goff from Online World Of Wrestling.

Here’s how we’re doing so far:

Duan: 8-1
GG: 8-1
Heidi: 7-2
Jim: 6-3
John: 6-3
Alex: 5-4
Alan: 4-5

Here’s our UFC 170 preview:

Robert Whittaker vs. Stephen Thompson

Duan: Stephen Thompson
Alan: Robert Whittaker
John: Robert Whittaker
Heidi: Stephen Thompson
Alex: Robert Whittaker
Jim: Robert Whittaker
GG: Robert Whittaker

Mike Pyle vs. TJ Waldburger

Duan: Mike Pyle
Alan: Mike Pyle
John: Mike Pyle
Heidi: Mike Pyle
Alex: Mike Pyle
Jim: Mike Pyle
GG: Mike Pyle

Rory MacDonald Vs. Demian Maia

Alan: Rory MacDonald by decision
Rory McDonald is intense and zoned in at the best of times but I think following his last fight, he’ll be even more so than usual. Maia is guy who you have to be careful with, and Rory is someone who’s known for being the personification of careful in his fights. I doubt the Canadian takes any chances here. He’ll pick Maia apart and win what will likely be a fairly pedestrian decision.

GG: Rory MacDonald by decision
This is the hardest one to call for me and part of that is because both guys looked terrible in their last fight. After looking really good in his previous several fights, MacDonald laid an egg against Robbie Lawler, losing a title shot in the process. Maia, after beating Jon Fitch and Rick Story, had an awful fight with Jake Shields (and really, what a stylistically non-pleasing match-up that was). So why MacDonald here? Well, I think if they’re both at their best, MacDonald has enough tricks up his sleeve to out-point Maia. He can fight going backward with counter strikes and I think he does just enough to eek out the decision.

Duan: Rory MacDonald
John: Rory MacDonald
Heidi: Demian Maia
Alex: Demian Maia
Jim: Rory MacDonald

Daniel Cormier Vs. Patrick Cummins

Duan: Daniel Cormier by 1st round TKO
Look, lets not mince words: under normal circumstances this fight would have never been booked. It’s a massive mismatch on paper. Training stories are great for selling a fight, but at the end of the day, that’s all they are; stories. They mean nothing under the big show lights. This is a top tier UFC talent against a relative novice. It’s a guy who has fought and beaten some of the best in the world a division up versus someone who has had four bouts in a three year career and all of them at a low level.

Cummins’ last opponent was 5-13. In the time he’s been a pro, Cormier has taken out Bigfoot Silva, Josh Barnett, Frank Mir and Roy Nelson. There is no way Cummins can be ready for what he’s up against Saturday night. I don’t know if Pat Cummins has what it takes to compete in UFC, but I know he can’t do it at this level.

Alex: Daniel Cormier by 2nd round TKO
Daniel Cormier has a lot on his shoulders this Saturday night. This is his debut at 205 pounds. What differences will he feel at the lighter weight? How will the speed of his opponents affect him? He certainly has been gifted going into his debut. Rashad Evans getting injured may have set up the perfect opportunity for Daniel to have a true tune up fight. Patrick Cummins may develop into a well rounded fighter, but not before Saturday. Daniel Cormier has an opportunity to turn in a performance that will allow the fans to demand he get a title shot. I hope he takes it.

Alan: Daniel Cormier
John: Daniel Cormier
Heidi: Daniel Cormier
Jim: Daniel Cormier
GG: Daniel Cormier

Ronda Rousey Vs. Sara McMann

Heidi: Rousey by 2nd round submission
As much as I want to believe McMann will go in and give Rousey the fight of her life, I can’t see this ending any other way than by the champ’s trademark armbar. Of course, McMann was an Olympic silver medalist in wrestling and like Rousey, was the first American woman to ever earn a medal in her sport. While I think her wrestling can challenge Rousey, I don’t see McMann being able to finish Rousey.

John: Rousey by 3rd round submission
Ronda Rousey versus Sara McMann is a very intriguing match up between two former Olympians. It is hard to bet against Ronda Rousey as she has looked fantastic in all of her fights. McMann is a classic grinder by using her wrestling ability and strength to hold her opponents down. I feel she can take Rousey down, but how is her submission defense? We will find out at UFC 170. If McMann can hold Rousey down for three rounds, I am really curious to see Rousey in Round 4. If anyone can take Rousey into deep waters, it is Sara McMann.

Jim: Rousey by 2nd round submission
Sara McMann is tougher than the lips on a woodpecker and has a sympathetic back story as Double G documented in his McMann bio post. In case you have just awoken from a coma, Ronda Rousey is the reigning champion, has finished all her fights via arm bar submission, and is the current poster girl for the organization. Carrying that torch comes with a lot of UFC promotional responsibility. Couple with her own projects to further her career and Rousey has been very busy as of late. Will her grueling schedule take it’s toll and cost her the edge that everyone seems to think she has on McCann? I doubt it. Everything I’ve seen shows that the former Olympian is used to the stress, long hours, and everything else that comes along with her position as face of the company.

Although an Olympic wrestler, in my opinion, McMann’s best chance is to use that wrestling to keep this fight on the feet and hope to out strike Rousey. Although Ronda’s striking has improved, she has yet to really show any true striking power, using it more to get inside and set up a clinch rather than sitting down on her punch and trying to take out her opponent. McMann may be able to out point her if she keeps it standing. That said, I really don’t see this fight playing out much differently than any other Ronda Rousey fight. Eventually Ronda will get inside, use a judo throw or trip to get the takedown and find her way to locking in the arm bar.

Duan: Ronda Rousey
Alan: Ronda Rousey
Alex: Rond Rousey
GG: Ronda Rousey