UFC 200: CORMIER VS. JONES II PREVIEW

UFC 200 will have the attention of the MMA world on Saturday night.
UFC 200 will have the attention of the MMA world on Saturday night.

By Kyler Kuehler

UFC 200: Cormier vs. Jones II will air on July 9, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

(C) DANIEL “DC” CORMIER (17-1-0) vs. #1 JON “BONES” JONES (22-1-0)
This is a five round main event for the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. In this fight are two blood rivals that want nothing more than to beat their opponent to a bloody pulp and look to make a much bigger statement from their first encounter at UFC 182. Cormier brings kickboxing, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has lead him to a near perfect record and becoming the current Light Heavyweight Champion. Jones brings jiu-jitsu, Muay Thai and wrestling that has lead him to becoming the top pound-for-pound fighter in the sport of MMA as well as a former Light Heavyweight Champion. When these two first met at UFC 182 Jones came out as the victor with a dominating unanimous decision win over Cormier (49-46, 49-46, 49-46) where he retained his belt once more until it he was stripped of the title in May due to his involvement in a hit-and-run incident. Now that Cormier is the champion Jones is out for blood and looks to show everyone why he is the real champion of the light heavyweight division by performing another dominating performance over the current champion and his arch nemesis, Cormier. Though Cormier is not looking to have the fight end the same way and he looks to use his wrestling much more effectively in this fight and be more aggressive in his ground and pound techniques that could seriously put Jones in a big world of trouble and possible lead him to receiving his first true professional loss inside the octagon and set up for a trilogy fight, which fans would love to see. Jones is still considered to be the best pound-for-pound fighter to ever compete in the sport of MMA and though he has not competed for more than a year, he still has his game and looks to show just how sorry Cormier is that he ever crossed paths with him by using his aggressive striking and ground and pound game to put some serious hurt upon Cormier and thus adding another impressive win under his belt and proving to everyone that he is the better fighter and the true king of the UFC. My prediction: Jones wins via knockout in Round 4.

#1 JOSE ALDO (25-2-0) vs. #2 FRANKIE “THE ANSWER” EDGAR (19-4-1)
This is a five round fight in the featherweight division for the Interim UFC Featherweight Championship. This fight will consist of two fighters that have formerly meet before and are now ready to face each other for a second time to earn the next shot against the current Featherweight Champion Conor McGregor. Aldo brings striking, Luta Livre and jiu-jitsu that has given him great knockout power as well as being the former Featherweight Champion. Edgar brings boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has given him great cardio as well as being a former Lightweight champion. With this fight containing former champions and different fighters from the first time they crossed paths against each other it may be difficult to chose on a favorite in this fight. If the fight were to remain on their feet I would give the fight to Aldo due to his aggressive striking to pressure his opponents to where he knocks them out or beats them in decision. If the fight ended up going to the ground then it looks to fall in the favor of Edgar due to his intense wrestling background that has improved dramatically from the first encounter and could prove to be much more than Aldo can handle this time around. Though Aldo I’m sure has been training like a dog since his major upset loss to Conor McGregor at UFC 194 to try and regain the belt back that he desperately labels as a part of him and that could very well motivate him to a much different fighter in this second showdown between these two top gladiators. My prediction: Edgar wins via split decision.

(C) MIESHA “CUPCAKE” TATE (18-5-0) vs. #4 AMANDA “THE LIONESS” NUNES (12-4-0)
This is a five round fight for the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Championship. This fight will be an epic fight between a well-rounded wrestler and dominate striker that are sure to put on a great show and prove why women fights are always worth checking out. Tate brings jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has made her very effective in grappling techniques that has lead her to becoming the current champion. Nunes brings judo and jiu-jitsu that has made her one of the strongest female fighters to ever compete in MMA as well as becoming very deadly with her knockout power. With both of these female athletes containing a different style of techniques heading into the fight, it looks like it will be tough to chose who has the upper hand. Though when looking at all the skill sets each fighter has to offer I say if the fight where to remain on their feet the advantage goes to Nunes as her aggressive striking power is far greater and more dangerous than any other fighter Tate has crossed paths with and could really do some damage to the current champion. However, Tate is very well-rounded in wrestling and if she were to take the fight to the ground she could take complete control of the fight as Nunes is not very effective on the ground as Tate is and I do not believe she will be able to handle the kind of pressure Tate will inflict on her while they fight on the ground. In order for Nunes to avoid the ground at all cost against Tate, she will have to keep pressure on Tate and increase her takedown defense dramatically if she wants to stand a chance. If not then Tate looks to take this fight with ease and wear down Nunes to the point she will no longer be able to defend herself and thus retain the title and go on to her next opponent. My prediction: Tate wins via submission in Round 3.

#1 CAIN VELASQUEZ (13-2-0) vs. #7 TRAVIS “HAPA” BROWNE (18-3-1)
This is a three round fight in the heavyweight division. In this fight are two fighters of different calibers who are looking to prove that their style is more effective than the other. Velasquez brings boxing, kickboxing, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has made him extreme in cardio as well as being a former two time Heavyweight Champion. Browne brings boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu and wrestling giving him great knockout power as well as his size that gives him a big reach advantage over most of his opponents. Since both fighters have great striking power the fight will mostly likely be decided on who shows better ground game, which would sure go in the favor of Velasquez due to his extreme wrestling. With his wrestling style beyond anyone that Browne has ever faced I am not sure he would be able to stand up to Velasquez unless he used his special kicks to try and knockout Velasquez out. The fight really does not look like it will be much of a fight at all, but just a one-sided beat down. Though Browne could surprise everyone and show some good improvement on his ground game that could possibly give Velasquez a run for his money, but in order to do so he will have to find a way around the extreme cardio Velasquez possesses that always proves to be his deadliest weapon in all fights. My prediction: Velasquez wins via knockout in Round 1.

#6 JOHNY “BIG RIGG” HENDRICKS (17-4-0) vs. KELVIN “MINI CAIN” GASTELUM (12-2-0)
This is a three round fight in the welterweight division. This fight contains two fighters that have had some hiccups in their last few fights and are looking to get back on the winning streak and fight their way back into the top spot. Hendricks brings boxing, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has made him well rounded in ground and standing game that has given him eight wins via knockout as well as being a former Welterweight Champion. Gastelum brings boxing, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has given him close to a perfect record as well as having great standing and ground game. Since both fighters contain the same style of fighting the fight will be based on who uses their combinations to the best, which in that case would fall in favor of Hendricks due to his wrestling and hard striking that looks to be greater than any other opponent Gastelum has ever faced before. Though Gastelum is pretty strong at taking hits and that could prove to be a real challenge for Hendricks as he likes to finish his opponents, but when they contain a tough chin it makes his ability to finish them by a knockout that much more difficult and also causes him to slow down later in the fights. Though Hendricks has been training extremely hard since his last fight and we could all very well see a different fighter in Hendricks altogether that we never thought we would see. My prediction: Hendricks wins via unanimous decision.