UFC 106 will be taking place from the the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas on November 21, with the main card airing live on pay-per-view, and a portion of the preliminary action airing live on Spike TV just prior to the PPV broadcast.
In this edition of Trading Punches we’ll take an in depth look at the main card, including scheduled pay-per-view scraps of Tito Ortiz vs. Forrest Griffin, Josh Koscheck vs. Anthony Johnson, Luis Arthur Cane vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and more.
CLICK HERE to check out the preliminary portion of Trading Punches. Jacob Volkmann vs. Paulo Thiago, which has been shifted to the main portion due to Karo Parisyan‘s withdraw from his bout with Dustin Hazelett, can be found on the preliminary predictions.
As always feel free to respectively agree or disagree in the comment section below, and don’t talk about it, be about it; post your very own set of picks for the 5 Oz. community to analyze and ridicule.
Forrest Griffin vs. Tito Ortiz
David Andrest: This is an interesting fight for me. I always enjoy Tito, I always enjoy Forrest. For Tito, this fight will decide if he can be a contender, or if he will be relegated to “showcase” fights on the senior circut. For Forrest, it’s going to be the typical ” How will he bounce back” fight. I would mention the previous meeting but that is a stupid way to look at the fight. Both men should be different fighters, as Forrest has gained experience, and Tito has a new spine that allows him to train. What this fight comes down to for me is Ortiz. How good is the back? How good is his cardio? Has he evolved in any way as a fighter. Forrest is the type of fighter that gets hit, and gets hit alot. Honestly I’m never a fan of picking that type of fighter. All the heart in the world doesn’t stop Herb Dean from stepping in if Tito is on top on you dropping elbows on your bloody corpse. I would think Forrest would want to keep this fight on the feet using a mix of leg kicks and punches to out point Tito. ( very similar to the Rampage Jackson fight). This is a very winnable fight for both guys.
Despite my better judgment, I’m going to believe the hype, I think a healthy Tito gets this fight to the floor and stops Forrest. I’ve heard strong rumblings for a while that one of these fighters has a long standing back problem that needs to be repaired, and this time it’s not who you might think.
Winner: Tito Ortiz via TKO
Cory Brady: Such a tough fight to call because there’s really no telling which Tito is going to show up. If he shows up at 100%, which I don’t feel he has been for many years now, there’s no reason he shouldn’t be able to find a way to get this fight to the canvas and play the monster mash all over Forrest’s face with elbows like he did in their previous meeting with tremendous success. At the same time, lets not forget that this is the same Forrest that recently beat Rampage convincingly to claim the UFC’s light heavyweight strap; Something Tito hasn’t manged to pull off since he lost the title to Randy Couture at UFC 44. I basically see this fight being an instant replay of the pair’s first meeting, with the same result. Should be exciting though, no doubt about that.
Winner: Tito Ortiz via decision
Josh Koscheck vs. Anthony Johnson
David Andrest: GREAT MATCH-UP! With that said, this fight is all on Koscheck to win. If Josh Koscheck the boxer shows up, it’s going to be a short night. Koscheck is a better wrestler and should be able to control the ground quite easily. Johnson is the more dynamic puncher, and training with Cung Le I would imagine he’ll bring his kicks to this fight. I just feel Koscheck is the better fighter and not by a little bit. Koscheck has shown the ability to throw the interception, but I don’t think it will happen this time. Koscheck is aware of Anthony Johnson, and is not looking past him, and frankly that is all it should take.
Winner: Josh Koscheck via decision
Cory Brady: My man David is absolutely right: GREAT MATCH-UP! I don’t know if any of you guys remember a little article I wrote in April of this year called “If I Was The UFC Matchmaker” where I called for this fight, but this one has been a long time coming for me. While sending any man or beast to La-La Land is definitely not beyond Johnson’s capability at any point in time, there’s no reason that Koscheck shouldn’t win this fight on paper. Johnson used to wrestle but Koscheck’s level is on an entire different level. If Kos chooses to take advantage of his one key advantage in this fight it should be his fight to lose.
Winner: Josh Koscheck via decision
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Luis Cane
David Andrest: Big fight, good fighters. Welcome to the UFC Rogerio. Cane is a blue chip prospect, and has made a steady climb up a division that is very deep. Nogueira, is a vet, and a very skilled fighter with all the tools to hold a belt in the division. Nogueira will make his debut in the octagon, and I think this fight will be an entertaining slugfest with Nogueira using superior boxing to take out the youngster Cane.
Winner: Antonio Rogerio Nogueira via TKO
Cory Brady: I have a good feeling this is going to turn into a Brazilian boxing match due to Cane’s desire and ability to keep the fight standing. Now on paper one would be quick to give the heavy handed Luis an edge in the striking department, but not so fast. Lil’ Nog is a former South American Games and Brazilian Championship title holder in boxing, along with taking home the bronze in the 2007 Pan American Games super heavyweight division. I see Nogueira edging out Cane with superior technical boxing in what promises to be a complete war with definite fight of the night potential
Winner: Antonio Rogerio Nogueira via decision
Amir Sadollah vs. Phil Baroni
David Andrest: If there is an MMA god , he will grant Baroni a moment in the sun here. I try not to read too much into interviews, but I find myself increasingly depressed watching Baroni talk on camera. He seems a shell of his former self, almost broken. With that said, Baroni brings it everytime, with the question being how much cardio did he pack for the trip. I have no doubt that Baroni has what it takes to take out Sadollah. Amir is going to have to weather a storm like he has never seen, the question is how long will it last. The longer this fight goes, the better it is for our TUF winner. If Amir can hang in longer than Baroni’s cardio, he can pull out the trademark submission victory over a better fighter. Baroni is training out at AKA with some of the best fighters in the world, he should be prepared, and should KO Sadollah.
Winner: Phil Baroni via TKO
Cory Brady: It’s my opinion that C.B. Dollaway’s inexperience over a year ago made Amir look a lot better than he currently is in his still developing career. Sadollah’s stand-up game was exposed in a major was in his first round TKO defeat at the hands of John Hendricks during UFC 101, and it will be exposed again with the C4 fisted “NYBA”. Amir may hold an edge in the submission department but Baroni being the better wrestler should serve to keep the fight on the feet for as long as he chooses, which should be all night long. Bad match-up for Amir, great match-up for Baroni. Like most of Phil’s fights, don’t expect for this one to be anything less than a war for as long as it lasts.
Winner: “The Best Eva’!!!” (Baroni) via knockout