UFC 126: Silva vs Belfort Main Card Breakdown

ANDERSON SILVA vs VITOR BELFORT 300x137 UFC 126: Silva vs Belfort Main Card BreakdownBefore you gather around the living room to watch the Steelers take on the Packers in Superbowl XLV on Sunday, UFC 126 comes to you live on Saturday, February 5th from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, NV.  With five former champions on the main card, UFC 126 is a stacked fight card from top to bottom. If you are going to be attending, make sure you get there early because you are not going to want to miss any of the action on the nights under card.

Let’s take a look at the main card bouts and break them down.

The first fight of the PPV broadcast is a Bantamweight bout between former champion Miguel Angel Torres (38-3) and Antonio Banuelos (18-6). Torres finally got back on the winning path after losing back-to-back fights for the first time in his career. Banuelos is also coming off a win, would greatly raise his stock in the division with a win over the former champion. The interesting thing about this matchup is that Banuelos has only been submitted once, and Torres has picked up twenty-three of his wins by submission. On paper, Torres appears to be the better fighters, but Banuelos’ Pit fighting style could cause some problems for Torres.

Next up is a highly anticipated bout between rising Light Heavyweight prospects Jon “Bones” Jones (11-1) and Ryan “Darth” Bader (12-0).  Many will argue that Jones should also be undefeated rather than have that disqualification loss to Matt Hamill back in December of 2009. Jones has never faced anybody with Bader’s strength and wrestling ability before, so this may be a test of how well he can work off of his back and take damage. Bader, however, has never faced anybody as unorthodox as Jon Jones. Coming into the fight, Jones will have nearly a twelve-inch reach advantage and you can bet he will definitely be looking to make use of his long limbs. Bader’s best chance may be to keep Jones on his back and work his ground and pound.  Jones is dangerous in all facets and will need to use his reach and his ability to strike from awkward angles to pull out a victory.

The third fight of the night is a Welterweight bout between Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger (23-5) and Carlos Eduardo “Ta Danado” Rocha (9-0). After losing in his UFC debut, Ellenberger has picked up back-to-back TKO victories and is out to prove a point after being pulled from his potential fight with Jon Fitch. Submission expert Rocha has won eight of his fights via submission and eight fights within the first round. Ellenberger feels he deserves a top competitor, but will definitely have his hands full with Rocha, who is virtually unknown to fans. Ellenberger is a great wrestler, but he nowhere near Rocha’s level of BJJ and that is something he’s going to have to be wary about.

franklingriffin 300x183 UFC 126: Silva vs Belfort Main Card Breakdown

UFC 126 co-main event: Griffin vs. Franklin

The Co-Main Event of the evening is a Light Heavyweight match up between Forrest Griffin (17-6) and Rich “Ace” Franklin (28-5-1). Both men have the pleasure of being knocked by Main Event fighter Anderson Silva in previous fights; Forrest at Light Heavyweight and Rich at Middleweight twice.  Griffin and Franklin have similar fighting styles and strengths, but also have key differences that set them apart. The key for Griffin is to use his leg kicks and his size advantage to wear down Franklin and tire him out. For Franklin, he’s going to need to use his quickness to move in and out of the pocket and attack Griffin and keep his distance. Another big element that may affect the fight will be the fact that Forrest hasn’t had a fight in nearly fifteen months. It’s been seen in the past that “ring rust” is a real thing and does affect fighters coming off of long periods of absence. Hopefully, for Forrest’s sake, he’ll be able to shake off the ring rust and get comfortable quick; otherwise Franklin will definitely make him pay.

The highly anticipated Main Event of the night is a five-round fight in the Middleweight Division. Champion Anderson “The Spider” Silva (27-4) put his belt and his undefeated UFC record on the line against heavy-handed former Light Heavyweight champion Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort (19-8). This fight was supposed to take place last year, but was put on hold three times due to a Silva injury, a Silva surgery and a Belfort injury. Finally, with both men healthy, these two will meet inside The Octagon for the first time.  Silva is known to start off slow and take some time to feel out his opponent before launching his attack. Vitor, however, is the complete opposite and likes to get things started right away. This strategy has earned him twelve first round knock outs. Both fighters hold Black Belts in BJJ and Judo, Vitor holds a Blue Belt in Shotokan karate and Silva holds an additional Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do and a Yellow Rope in Capoeira. With advanced knowledge in numerous Martial Arts, this fight could be contested in virtually every aspect of MMA. In his fight with Chael Sonnen, everybody, including Silva, expected Sonnen to take him down right away, but instead he surprisingly chose to stand and trade punches. With Vitor, however, everybody knows that his strengths lie within his boxing and his punching power. With his history of cutting it close come weigh-ins, and predictability, Vitor is going to have to come out strong, hurt Silva early and finish the fight. Otherwise, Silva is going to run the fight at his own pace have a field day.

With so many top competition fighters on this card, many futures can be made or broken after this night. This card is stacked from top to bottom and on paper it doesn’t seem as if there is going to be any lulls in the action.

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One Response to UFC 126: Silva vs Belfort Main Card Breakdown

  1. UFC 126: Silva vs Belfort Main Card Breakdown :MMAValor…

    Here at World Spinner we are debating the same thing……

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