The Fight Report: UFC 163

| July 29, 2013 | 6:27 pm | Reply

UFC 163 LongBrazil cards are a nitch market it seems, and how UFC 163 is a PPV, I can’t tell you. The main event is undeniably awesome, as Jose Aldo looks to lock up the division, taking on replacement fighter Chan Sung Jung. We’ve also got an interesting co-main, as former champion Lyoto Machida takes on rising fighter Phil Davis.  Below you’ll see what fights I could sift out of the rubble of the card, so let’s take a look at the slim pickings.

145 lbs. Title Fight – Jose Aldo vs. Chan Sung Jung:

Jon Jones might be the pound-for-pound best today, but with all things being equal, Aldo would light him up. A savage striker with equal parts technique and power, Aldo has chewed through all comes for the last several years, never having lost in the WEC or UFC. With his last win being a convincing shutout of elite fighter Frankie Edgar, the division is close to being cleared out, and Chan Sung Jung stands as one of only two men Aldo hasn’t dispatched already.

Jung finds his way into this fight due to some shuffling of the cards, with his name being among four title hopefuls looking to battle against Aldo. A man known for a chin like granite, Jung is far more than a loveable punching bag, using a judo/BJJ grappling game and long power punches to great effect.  Having dismantled Dustin Poirier over the course of four rounds in their last outing, Jung makes a decent case for a title bid, although the ring rust before such a fight makes for an interesting X-factor.

I like this match because it appears Aldo has settled into a rhythm of sorts in his fight career, having traded off some of his killer instinct for precision on both the offensive and defensive fronts.  Conversely, Jung has trained himself away from the slower paced JMMA style he’s used most of his career and really found several high gears as of late, surprising Poirier with his deft hands and pressure fighting.  What I don’t like about Jung is his stiff stance-work that will make Aldo’s leg kicks cut to the bone and a lack of higher level functionality in his striking. Jung is good, but Aldo is that much better and I’m seeing few spots for Jung to make an impact here. Short of a wild shot landing or Jung eating volleys to get into clinch, Aldo should walk away with this fight, taking a fairly lopsided decision win.

Lyoto Machida vs. Phil Davis:

A fight to iron out the top of the division, former champ Lyoto Machida will take on Phil Davis.  Machida comes in off of a less-than-exciting showing against Dan Henderson, yet showed he is still capable in the cage, using his vintage style to out-point his foe. With his chances against Jones being questionable in a rematch and the possibility of a hop down to 185lbs, a win opens some doors, though which one to take remains unclear.

Davis enters this fight off an easy outing against Vinny Magalhaes, and looks better every time we see him. Though he possesses a sharp wrestling game and a growing love of kickboxing, Davis greatest asset is his mind; working varied attacks and learning as he goes in the cage. This kind of comfort within the fire of conflict is rare, and against a simple but effective fighter like Machida, could be instrumental in victory.

I’m a big fan of both guys, yet I see this fight as a better opportunity for Davis than Machida.  Machida’s technique and tactics are all simple but expertly timed, which seems to play into Davis game plan of learning his opponents and poking the defense.  The way Evans got around this was to be the aggressor at all times against Davis, yet that doesn’t fit Machida’s style whatsoever, making this one a matter of Davis being able to unravel Machida and do enough to win.  It’ll be close, but I think Davis can hit the takedowns and keep the striking exchanges reasonably close with his fast entry and unusual angles, taking a close decision over the former champ.

Quick Reports:

Tom Watson vs. Thales Leites: Long out of the UFC picture, Thales Leites makes his return to match skills in today’s market, taking on UK slugger Tom Watson. Leites is a mid-level grappler and fairly unremarkable in today’s MMA world, though Watson isn’t a well-fleshed out grappler himself and could find himself in a dire situation in this fight. Considering Watson’s strength, general athletics and power punching however, I don’t see Leites having too many chances at victory here. A tense first round turns into a route in the second as Watson pour on the strikes, finishing Leites in the second half of the fight.

Vinny Magalhaes vs. Anthony Perosh: Two world champion BJJ competitors will face off here, though the nature of their respective accolades couldn’t be further apart. Perosh is a throwback BJJ fighter, using a methodical approach that works better with a gi and focuses on strength moves rather than real finesse, while Magalhaes is one of the greatest finesse grapplers of all time, thought his lack of takedowns make him less dangerous in certain situations. This is a case of Perosh really having no way to win unless he hits takedowns and somehow shuts down Magalhaes, which is highly unlikely given the simplicity of his game and Magalhaes own BJJ knowledge. On the feet, Magalhaes takes this easily with his power striking, all which set up counter takedown submissions or his own takedowns. It’s all up to how Perosh wants to play this, but don’t expect him to make it out of the second round against Magalhaes.

Sheila Gaff vs. Amanda Nunes: An interesting fight in the women’s division, Gaff will look to rebound from her first UFC loss, taking on newcomer Amanda Nunes. Nunes is a fighter whom had a serious upside a couple of years ago, but didn’t seem to switch gears from can crusher to elite opponent, paying the price against the savage battlers of the division. She’ll need to have made this change to win here, as Gaff is one of the strongest fighters at 135lbs and any weakness in cardio or wrestling will make for a tough fight for the Brazilian. This one is a coin flip, as Gaff can crush Nunes in the pocket if she’s not fighting smart, while Gaff can’t survive the mat against a motivated Nunes.

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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.

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