And the rounds keep coming! 5 Oz. of Pain’s first-ever Fantasy MMA Mock Draft is rolling on and rounds 5 and 6 are now in the books. You can check it out by clicking the link at the bottom.
To make a long story short, this is not a pound-for-pound top fighter list. What we’re doing is essentially pretending that every fighter in the world is suddenly declared a free agent with six new organizations selecting talent through a draft format.
The idea is to see how six different fans would construct their organization and which fighters they would select to help them execute their vision. Much like real world MMA, every promoter has their different philosophy with each organization establishing its own identity.
To see who the staff drafted in the fifth and sixth round, just click below.
ROUND 5 -
5.1 Adam Morgan: Diego Sanchez
Previous Picks: Georges St. Pierre (round 1), Kimbo Slice (round 2) and Jake Shields (round 3), and Carlos Condit (round 4)
Analysis: Sanchez dropped decision losses to both Josh Koscheck and Jon Fitch last year but has since rebounded and looked like an absolute animal against David Bielkheden. Even if Sanchez will never be at the top of the welterweight heap because of his size disadvantage, he is a name that a lot of fans known and love and he has the talent to give top level competition a run for their money. Every great division needs a great gatekeeper and for me, that fighter is Diego Sanchez. With built in popularity, an aggressive style people love, and legitimate skills, Sanchez is a steal for me in the fifth.
5.2 Mike Huckaby: Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic
Previous Picks: Chuck Liddell (round 1), Forrest Griffin (round 2) and Wanderlei Silva (round 3), and Andrei Arlovski (round 4)
Analysis: Mirko Cro Cop. Arlovski vs Cro Cop. Mmmhmm. You can judge him based on his sad UFC fights or you can remember the times he was clobbering Wanderlei, Josh Barnett, Aleks, and Herring into the hospital. Cro Cop puts on a show and wants a standup fight, plus he matches up well with alot of the other guys I’ve taken. Maybe I’ll have to bribe him to drop to 205 or maybe, just maybe, my LHW class is 210lbs. It’s my league, I’ll do what I want.
5.3 Ram Maramba: Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto
Previous Picks: Quinton Jackson (round 1), Randy Couture (round 2) and Urijah Faber (round 3), and Keith Jardine (round 4)
Analysis: This is more like it, some snap to these picks.
While Huckaby is mining through Eastern Europe for washed up fighters to reform, I’ll go waaay little in the far east: Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto. The dynamo was last seen fighting at bantam but has bulked up as high as the 150’s on a regular basis. Featherweight should be no problem for him, setting up a fight Faber has been vocal about in the past. A bout between the two would pit arguably two of the top-10 P-4-P fighters in the world. Kid may not be a household name in the US, but he’s got skills and the highlight reel to change that in a heartbeat. The nice thing about 145 is the ability for guys at lightweight or bantamweight to move down or up with ease. This flexibility opens up a lot of nice matchups once these fighters are actually consolidated under one banner.
By the way, big props to Morgan for nabbing Condit. I was hoping he’d fall to the 7th or 8th round, but he still represents a nice value in the 5th. Already having TV exposure in the U.S. is a huge plus.
5.4 Matt Cava: Matt Lindland
Previous Picks: B.J. Penn (round 1), Anderson Silva (round 2) and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (round 3), and Jon Fitch (round 4)
Analysis: The Law is another veteran on my roster that won’t back down from a challenge. This pick allows me to build towards a huge middleweight title fight against Spider Silva. And since Lindland is such a gamer, he might even move up in weight to beat up fighters at 205. It’s true that he may have only 3-4 fights left at age 38, but I thats OK. This pick of Lindland serves a dual purpose: a name the hardcore fans can respect and utilizing Team Quest as a “farm system” for my league. His leadership of Team Quest means that the National Chainlink Warrior Alliance will have a strong crop of young talent to build upon. Plus Lindland is prob the ugliest guy anyone could pick, I could spin that a killer marketing campaign.
5.5 Sam Caplan: Brandon Vera
Previous Picks: Brock Lesnar (round 1), Fedor Emelianenko (round 2) and Josh Barnett (round 3), and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (round 4)
Analysis: Man, do I continue to build up my heavyweight division or start to build on top of Shogun and start to establish my light heabyweight division? I know, I’ll help myself in both divisions and draft Brandon Vera.
Much like Shogun, a lot of people have soured on Vera based solely on one performance. How soon we forget about the guy who made headlines after calling out Chuck Liddell following his first UFC win. And how soon we forget about the guy who invited an entire arena to his wedding in Vegas following his second-ever UFC win? What I can’t get over is how many people forget about the guy who ran his record to 8-0 after demolishing former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir in just 1:09 of round 1 at UFC 65.
Vera had so much momentum behind him before his contract dispute and lackluster showing vs. Tim Sylvia at UFC 77. After the win over Mir, he was positioned to become the kind of breakout star that the UFC has had trouble developing. With an impressive win over Fabricio Werdum at UFC 85 in June, he can regain a lot of the steam that he lost.
To me, Vera is the total package; he’s versatile (can compete at heavyweight and light heavyweight); he’s charismatic (c’mon, who calls out Liddell after one fight!?); he’s strong on the ground even though we haven’t had a chance to see it (he has a wrestling background and is a brown belt under Lloyd Irvin); and his Muay Thai is very crowd pleasing.
Wow, did a I just land one of the biggest steals in the draft? Hey guys, thanks for the gift!
5.6 Sam Cupitt: Roger Huerta
Previous Picks: Frank Shamrock (round 1), Tito Ortiz (round 2), and Gesias “JZ Calvan” Calvancante (round 3), and Takanori Gomi (round 4)
Analysis: Kudos for nabbing Vera Caplan but yeah I didn’t need him. I am going to continue to populate my lightweight tournament.
I choose you… Roger Huerta!
I just lost a lot of man points with that Pokemon reference but anyway, I’m taking Huerta because he’s a recognisable face (the only fighter to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine) and he’s siimply a bad ass exciting fighter. He was victorious in two “fight of the year” candidates last year and he’s not too hard on the eyes if you’re one of the women folk. I’m kinda surprised none of my other writers picked up on Huerta. He has the backing of the UFC’s mighty marketing department and is soon to appear in the Tekken movie meaning he is quickly becoming a superstar in MMA. With the right draw in my lightweight tournament, Huerta could quickly become the face of my organisation.
ROUND 6 -
6.1 Sam Cupitt: Kenny Florian
Previous Picks: Frank Shamrock (round 1), Tito Ortiz (round 2), and Gesias “JZ Calvan” Calvancante (round 3), Takanori Gomi (round 4) , and Roger Huerta (round 5)
Analysis: Florian has the “Ultimate Fighter” notoriety as well as the exciting fighting style. He is also a fan favourite and provides a very good interview, meaning he can help to put my promotion in a good light in outside interviews as well as selling his fights to the public. For the most part though he’s simply a top 10-15 lightweight that provides an exciting fight each and every time he steps in the cage.
Florian is the fourth inclusion into my lightweight tournament. Even in its current state I doubt any MMA fan would pass up on my organization’s first event.
6.2 Sam Caplan: Dan Henderson
Previous Picks: Brock Lesnar (round 1), Fedor Emelianenko (round 2) and Josh Barnett (round 3), Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (round 4) , and Brandon Vera (round 5)
Analysis: What’s the old, annoying NFL Draft cliche’ where a team says, “We wanted this guy in round X so we couldn’t believe when he was there for us in round Y!” It’s such a played out phrase but it really does apply here because I have been considering Henderson for several rounds now. He doesn’t really fit into my heavyweight strategy, but he’s just too good to pass up this late.
I don’t have much of a middleweight division, but that’s quite alright because he’ll fit right in at light heavyweight with Shogun and possibly even Vera. Needless to say, I’m pretty happy with this pick and I have some interesting plans for rounds seven and eight.
6.3 Matt Cava: Sean Sherk
Previous Picks: B.J. Penn (round 1), Anderson Silva (round 2) and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (round 3), Jon Fitch (round 4) , and Matt Lindland (round 5)
Analysis: Steroid allegations or not, there is no reason Sherk should have slipped this far down the draft board. Caplan made a good snag of Vera, and with Cupitt and Morgan loading up on 155ers, they would have surely grabbed Sherk if I passed on him here. Obviously adding Sean Sherk to my roster gives me a built in rivalry with B.J. Penn and another hard-nosed workhorse star in my stable.
6.4 Ram Maramba: Lyoto Machida
Previous Picks: Quinton Jackson (round 1), Randy Couture (round 2) and Urijah Faber (round 3), Keith Jardine (round 4), and Kid Yamamoto (round 5)
Analysis: I’m really kicking myself for overlooking Vera. Leave it to Caplan to find a versatile fighter who can fight in two classes that are quickly thinning out. The obvious focus on the big boys is making me wonder if I could’ve waited on Faber until the later rounds. The lightweights are really moving now, including my sleeper pick Huerta, but there’s a much deeper pool to pick from in the lighter classes.Like pass-rushers in football and true post players in basketball, LHW and HW seem to be getting higher marks because of the position they play. It hurt to pick Jardine in the 4th round, but if he had been taken I wouldn’t have been left with much.
Why is why I’m glad Lyoto Machida made it through to the 6th. I’m taking the uber-skilled LHW who’s unfairly been labeled a boring fighter. Regardless of how he gets there, he’s good at the foundation of any success: he wins, a lot. The fans at Deluxe Fight Fiesta events are of a higher brow, appreciating “The Dragon’s” unpredictable striking and top-notch ground game. Having two quality LHW opponents on the roster is a must with Rampage at the top of the food chain.
6.5 Mike Huckaby: Rashad Evans
Previous Picks: Chuck Liddell (round 1), Forrest Griffin (round 2) and Wanderlei Silva (round 3), Andrei Arlovski (round 4), and Mirko Cro Cop (round 5)
Analysis: REALLY RAM!? REALLY!? Sure this has nothing to do with like eight straight commenters saying they were shocked no one had taken Machida yet? Then you just magically take Machida with the next pick? What am I saying? I think you’re a publicity hound PUPPET. A PUPPET I say. You’re trying to gain personal favor and frankly it disgusts me. Anyway, I’m taking Rashad Evans. Someone with a better name than Machida, a better record than Machida, a better draw than Machida, and a fight with Tito Ortiz on his record. He’s an awesome addition to my LHW division and will be for years to come.
6.6 Adam Morgan: Matt Hughes
Previous Picks: Georges St. Pierre (round 1), Kimbo Slice (round 2) and Jake Shields (round 3), Carlos Condit (round 4), and Diego Sanchez (round 5)
Analysis: Hughes falls to me in round six? You’re kidding, right? I’ll take him at this spot for sure. What a value. Hughes adds even more depth to my already strong welterweight division and provides me with a fighter with an already established name and fanbase. Hughes has dominated the welterweight division in MMA for a long, long time and is arguably the best welterweight to ever step into the cage. The fact that he’s fallen all the way to round six is surprising to me, but I’ll take it. He’s a great fighter, a great name, and love him or hate him, he sells pay-per-views.