The Fight Report: UFC on FUEL TV 10

| June 2, 2013 | 7:02 pm | Reply

UFC ON FUEL TV 10A quick turn-around sees the UFC return to Brazil with the UFC on FUEL TV 10 that will close out TUF Brazil Season 2 with a coach’s fight, as well as the finals of that season. There are many familiar faces on this card, as well as some new cats as well, so let’s dig into the action and see what we have in store.

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Fabricio Werdum: Though I’m fairly sure no one has seen TUF Brazil 2 outside of its country of participation, the main event is one we can all relate to, as Big Nog faces Fabricio Werdum. Big Nog has had a documented decline as a fighter along with a horrific list of injuries in surgeries in the last several years.  What we’re left with is a tough old bastard that still packs dynamite in his punches, still has a world of skill on the mat, but lacks the reflexes to have any of it come easily.

Werdum is on the opposite end of the spectrum in many ways. Coming from his early days of being a BJJ ace, Werdum took to the mits and decided to hone his muay thai game over the last several years, making him a true multi-dimensional threat. With his only blemish coming via odd decision loss to Alistair Overeem, he’s on his way back to the top of the UFC heap, and will look to use Big Nog as a stepping stone, all while avenging his loss to him from Pride, seven years ago.

Every time Big Nog steps into the cage, I feel like I’m watching a potential tragedy unfolding. While his fight with Herman was successful on the surface, it had more to do with Herman being a terrible fighter than any kind of resurgence by Nog. Werdum is a completely different animal here, having the mat skills to survive anything Nog brings to the table, a great deal of speed for a heavyweight, and the same kind of insane chin that Nog used to be famous for. This isn’t going to be pretty, as Werdum crushes Nog with strikes in the opening round.

Quick Reports:

Thiago Silva vs. Rafael Cavalcante: A potential firestorm of violence, Thiago Silva and Rafael Cavalcante both return from their drug suspensions to fight for redemption. This is a real coin-flip of a fight as these two are both very similar, using an explosive muay thai style that leaves themselves wide open for counters.  However, Silva has the lesser chin of the two and seems to be grinding down a bit late in his career, making me favor Cavalcante by a hair. It should be a real battle, but Cavalcante lands flush in one of many exchanges and sends Silva to the canvas for the evening.

Erick Silva vs. Jason High: Having had his meteoric rise halted in his last fight, Erick Silva will look to continue his journey to the top of the division, facing veteran MMA wrestler Jason High. High comes into this fight on a series of wins both domestic and abroad, and will need to stick with his wrestling laurels if he hopes to make it past Silva. I do not like High’s chances here, as he’s simply not the kind of ultra-tight wrestler that Fitch is. Every second he doesn’t have a hand on Silva is a second Silva will strike back, and I can’t see Silva letting too many opportunities go, icing High in the first round with a salvo against the cage.

Raphael Assuncao vs. Vaughan Lee: A fun bantamweight scrap, as Raphael Assuncao fights in Brazil for the first time in his career, taking on UK fighter Vaughan Lee. These two couldn’t be less similar, as Assuncao’s style is based entirely off of heavy control and forward movement, while Lee loves to fade from strikes and counter, or use his wild transitioning game on the mat. The problem with having such a wild style however, is that someone with strong fundamentals can shut down your movement before it even begins, making this a tough one for Lee to win. Expect a workman-like performance by Assuncao as he grinds Lee with clinch work and takedowns, taking a handy decision win.

Ronny Markes vs. Derek Brunson: Take a pizza break, grab a drink or make a phone call, as when Markes and Brunson step into the cage, you’ll always find something better to do. Both men are wrestling specialists that choose safety over excitement, yet I have to say Markes is likely the stronger of the two and has a slightly more polished striking game. Markes takes a decision and no one cares.

Rodrigo Damm vs. Mizuto Hirota: A fighter who has struggled to stay afloat on the world stage, Rodrigo Damm will take on Japanese powerhouse Mizuto Hirota. Damm has a wealth of skill, yet his chinny nature has betrayed him time and again in his career, and I don’t see this fight being much different.  A cardio machine with a ton of power, Hirota should be able to safely avoid the mat and has an easy victory in a shootout on the feet. Try as he might, Damm falters under the pressure of Hirota, as the Japanese fighter takes a 2nd round TKO win.

Caio Magalhaes vs. Karlos Vemola: In a loser-leaves-town type affair, BJJ specialist Caio Magalhaes faces Czech juggarnaut Karlos Vemola. Magalhaes had a bit of a rude awakening in his debut against Buddy Roberts, being stuck standing and using his seldom practiced capoeira and wrestling, ultimately to no avail. Vemola isn’t one to stand and slug it out though, as his game in based entirely on ground and pounding like a shaved gorilla. This is a real coin-toss, as Magalhaes has more than enough grappling skill to tap Vemola, yet I’m not sure I trust his guts in a situation where he has Vemola unloading on top of him. One way or another, this one should be over quick.

Antonio Braga Neto vs. Anthony Smith: An interesting signing by UFC, grappling ace Antonio Braga Neto will make his UFC debut, facing Strikeforce veteran Anthony Smith.  Smith is a vicious fighter with a decent game all-around, but Neto’s modern BJJ game makes him difficult to contend with, considering Smith’s lack of real wrestling skills.  Neto should have no trouble hitting a takedown and finishing this one out, via kimura in the 1st round.

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My brain child is MMAValor, something I had wanted to do for a long time and finally it’s here. Been an MMA fan since TUF season one (play catch up all the time) and the obsession started to grow like a weed and as the sport grows so does the love for the sport. I’m a jack of all trades, a very organized person that rides an emotional roller coaster daily.

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