By Brian Beard
Georges “Rush” St-Pierre (22-2-0) vs. Carlos “Natural Born Killer” Condit (28-5-0)
Last year this fight would be a no-brainer. GSP was at the top of his game and appeared to be unbeatable. Much like Anderson Silva is now. Unfortunately, he sustained a bad knee injury and has been out of the cage for a year and a half. I believe that ring rust will undoubtedly be a factor here. Both of these guys are very well rounded with GSP holding a big edge in the wrestling and ground control. I believe Condit is the better striker. Condit will stand in and bang with GSP but I look for GSP to have enough of that early and to look for the takedown. It is all going to depend on GSP’s conditioning and his ring rust. I wish he would have gotten a warm up fight before this one as this is no easy fight for anyone! I have a feeling that we will see GSP a step slow and that he will tire early. I pick Condit by TKO late in the third. This could be the beginning of the end of GSP.
Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann (20-5-0) vs. Johny “Big Rig” Hendricks (13-1-0)
I think this fight is total bullshit. Hendricks should be in the title fight, period. This guy has stepped up and fought many great opponents and has looked phenomenal in his UFC career. Don’t get me wrong, Kampmann is a beast and one of my favorite fighters, but he should not get this fight until Hendricks has a title shot. That said Kampmann has a great shot at winning this. He has the edge in the standup game where Hendricks has a clear advantage in the wrestling. On the ground it should be fairly even. If you have never seen Hendricks fight, he has very mediocre looking stand up but is very deceptive and packs a ton of power. Kampmann is as tough as they come. I look for this to be fight of the night with Hendricks winning a decision by controlling the wrestling and landing at least one knockdown punch.
Francis “Limitless” Carmont (19-7-0) vs. Tom “Filthy” Lawlor (8-4-0)
These two guys are very well rounded and solid fighters. Carmont is undefeated in the UFC and has been on quite a tear. Lawlor has had some very exciting fights and has won submission of the night and fight of the night in the UFC. Being that they can both handle themselves on their feet and on the ground this should be a good one. I give the edge to Carmont in the stand up game and Lawlor in the wrestling and ground game. Carmont is one hell of an athlete and is extremely explosive and I look for him to come out with a very fast pace, looking to overpower Lawlor and end the fight early. Lawlor just happens to be a tough sumbitch and I think he will stop Carmont. My head tells me that Carmont will win, but he is fromFrance, and my heart simply will not let me pick him. Lawlor via decision in a great fight.America!