The Fight Report: UFC on FOX 8

| July 22, 2013 | 6:17 pm | Reply

UFC on FOX 8It’s about time our cable bill got a break, with UFC bringing a solid card to UFC on Fox this Saturday. Our main event features the intriguing match-up between Mighty Mouse and relative newcomer John Moraga in a Flyweight tilt, with Rory MacDonald and Jake Ellenberger in the Co-main slot to make cases for a shot at GSP. We’ve got plenty of action to cover, so check out my analysis for the night.

Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson vs. John Moraga:

One of the most underrated cerebral fighters in the game today; Mighty Mouse has thus far looked outstanding in her performances, and faces a unique draw in John Moraga. Backed by MMA legend Matt Hume, Mighty Mouse brings blinding speed, undeniable wrestling talent and cardio that will never falter, yet it’s his mind that makes him a true terror. Being able to make snap adjustments during the fight, and massive adjustments between rounds with a bit of face time with Hume, Johnson simply gets better by the round and only in attacking on the opening will fighters have a real chance.

Enter unheralded challenger John Moraga. A wrestler with a team of wrestlers, it isn’t Moraga’s takedowns people have had concern for in his career, but his keen sense of timing and predatory degree of killer instinct. Having excellent range acquisition and picking the right tools to form combinations, Moraga has battered foes on the feet relentlessly, while keeping his wrestling on tap for round stealing takedowns and counter grappling front headlock attacks. With everything to gain and nothing to lose, Moraga looks to spoil Johnson’s title reign on the largest national platform the UFC has.

On paper, Moraga is exactly what the doctor ordered to unravel Mighty Mouse and grab the strap, yet this all counts on Moraga being able to get off early. While Johnson certainly gets better as the fight goes, he doesn’t exactly start off as a joke, and his ability to mix striking and takedowns should serve him well early, as he seeks to knock Moraga out of his rhythm. Without ever getting traction, Moraga is beaten soundly from the beginning, finally falling to a TKO from ground and pound in the 3rd round.

Rory MacDonald vs. Jake Ellenberger:

A wunderkind who has picked up some serious heat for his comments and fight etiquette, Rory MacDonald will look to get the ball rolling again after a bit of a layoff, taking on Jake Ellenberger. By my estimation, MacDonald is the best talent in the sport today, with a supernatural flow to his style that you see once in an era of fighters. Having been tested and re-forged in the crucible of defeat by Carlos Condit, MacDonald is set to lobby for a title shot if he can impressively dispatch Ellenberger here.

Ellenberger is one of the best in a long line of boxer/wrestlers at Welterweight, and stands as a fierce test for MacDonald. Having come off a brutal KO of Nate Marquardt in his last fight, Ellenberger has reestablished his reputation as a crushing puncher; firing from sneaky angles that can take even veteran strikes by surprise. With a great deal of speed and the wrestling to force a striking bout if he chooses, Ellenberger can look to do to MacDonald what Penn was unable to get going.

Ellenberger has a real shot here, particularly early if he can get in MacDonald’s face to put him on his heels or on his back, yet this is a tall task given MacDonald’s footwork and timing. Failing that early volley, Ellenberger appears to be at a severe disadvantage on his ability to close distance once MacDonald is dialed in, and with Ellenberger fading somewhat late in fights, we could see MacDonald run away with it, taking a decisive decision win.

Quick Reports:

Robbie Lawler vs. Bobby Voelker: It’s not the slugfest we really wanted with Lawler vs. Siyar, but it’ll do just fine. Lawler looked phenomenal at Welterweight in his upset over Koscheck, and will find a perfectly willing sparring partner with Volker, who has never slipped a punch in his life. Voelker has plenty of power and more heart than any ten men, yet Lawler has never lost the kind of fight Voelker will wage, and I doubt he’ll start now. A brutal affair where both men land vicious shots, but Lawler’s better mid-flurry game planning and forward pressure give him the edge on the score cards.

Mike Chiesa TUF Live Finale 004

Michael Chiesa

Michael Chiesa vs. Jorge Masvidal: A rapidly improving fighter, Chiesa will look to take a major leap in competition, taking on Jorge Masvidal. Chiesa is both highly technical and ridiculously powerful in grappling exchanges, yet his striking is below the bell curve for the UFC.  This is unfortunate, as Masvidal is one of the best pure strikers in the division, and with his fleet feet and takedown defense, we may see Chiesa handed his first career loss. This all hinges on Chiesa getting this to the mat, whether by his own accord on even on bottom when Masvidal hits a token takedown, as he stands on chance of victory outside of the grappling realm.

Danny Castillo vs. Tim Means: A fun fight that should surprise a few people, Danny Castillo will carry the Team Alpha Male banner, taking on vicious striker Tim Means. Considering this is a short notice bout for Means, many folks will write him off immediately, yet I think Means has the perfect style to upset Castillo here before he can start working his takedowns and grinding style. With long punches and a well placed kick or two, Means should shut Castillo’s lights off within the first minute of the fight.

Mac Danzig vs. Melvin Guillard: Odd to think that in a combined 77 pro fights, while active at the same time, these guys have never faced each other, yet here we are. Danzig is coming into this one-off of a close decision loss to Gomi and should have some fire in his belly to get a win inside the cage this time out. Guillard comes into this off of his own set-backs, though his mostly took place outside of the sport, but with his legal and camp problems behind him, we should see an honest effort out of him on Saturday. Guillard is built for speed and power, yet his technique and contempt for opponents has cost him greatly in past outings. Danzig isn’t the greatest fighter, yet he’s been in some brutal scraps and always been game enough to fight back under pressure, making this one a short fight that I see Danzig getting the better off. A rapid assault by Guillard yields a near finish, but Danzig guts it out and finds the submission before the end of the first round.

Yves Edwards vs. Daron Cruickshank: A fun striking bout on the FX card, Edwards and Cruickshank will look to prove their karate is superior by fighting it out, old school dojo style. Edwards comes in off of a questionable loss to Vallie-Flagg in his last fight, and I don’t think he’ll be allowed the judges to get involved in this one is he can help it. An aggressive Edwards is a sloppy Edwards however, and this is something that Cruickshank can take advantage of as Edwards walks forward and tries to angle punches at his foe. Look for a few takedowns and a sharp counter or two to take this fight out of Edwards hands, ending by decision or late KO in favor of Cruickshank.

Ed Herman vs. Trevor Smith: A bout between two hard-style grapplers, and with both likely fighting for their jobs.  Herman is tough-as-nails with a subtle grappling game filled with grinding takedowns and BJJ hooks, yet Smith is a monster of a wrestler and comes into this fight having dropped from Heavyweight over the course of years. I’d call this one a coin flip, as Smith’s strength will give Herman fits, where he’ll need to find submissions against the bruiser to pull out the win before the bell.

Julie Kedzie vs. Germaine De Randamie: An outstanding female bout between one of the legends of the sport in Julie Kedzie, facing kickboxing lioness Germaine De Randamie. Power is rare in WMMA, and while Randamie is a clear favorite in the striking department, she doesn’t have enough heat on anything she throws to put a veteran like Kedzie down. With no outs other than a decision and with an underdeveloped grappling game, I can’t see GDR pulling this off, as Kedzie eventually put her down and locks up a submission for the win.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Category: Featured, MMA, UFC

About the Author ()

I'm a 20+ year veteran of martial arts and a fan of MMA since UFC 1, when my world was thrown on its head by the budding sport. I'm obsessive in the pursuit of martial abilities and have competed across the country in everything from Vale Tudo to archery to Scottish broadsword. Once my body broke down, I picked up a pen and went in the direction of writing. I specialize in betting advice, predictions, and I'm a walking encyclopedia of MMA trivia. I own a cafe in Exeter, NH called Hammersmith Sandwich Company and write out of my office between customers.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.