UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Bader will air on January 30, 2016 in Newark, New Jersey.
#2 ANTHONY “RUMBLE” JOHNSON (20-5-0) vs. #4 RYAN “DARTH” BADER
This is a five round main event title eliminator in the light heavyweight division. In this fight are two fighters looking to make a statement and show the world why they deserve the next shot at the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. Johnson brings kickboxing, knockout power and wrestling that has helped him have a successful career and finish most of his fights within a few minutes of the First Round. Bader brings jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has also helped him make a successful career and now looks to earn his first title shot since entering the UFC in 2008. With both fighters being skilled in wrestling it looks like the fight will be more of a grappling fight than anything. If the fight stays in a grapple game then it looks to favor Bader since he possesses more wrestling techniques than Johnson so he could possibly use it to submit him or turn the fight into a cardio battle and make Johnson gas. However, if Johnson keeps the fight on their feet it looks as if he will take this fight in the bag with his impressive knockout power. I really do not think Bader can take it and will have to try to avoid the punches as much as possible or end up falling back down the leader board after coming so close yet again to another title shot. My prediction: Johnson wins via knockout in Round 2.
#8 JOSH “THE WARMASTER” BARNETT (34-7-0) vs. #7 “BIG” BEN ROTHWELL (35-9-0)
This is a three round fight in the heavyweight division. In this bout are two fighters looking to make their way into a future title shot by putting on a great performance and letting their voice be heard throughout the UFC. Barnett brings kickboxing, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has given him knockout power as well as a well developed style of submission techniques making him deadly on the ground as well as a former UFC Heavyweight Champion. Rothwell brings boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu and wrestling that has given him a career of impressive victories and now looks to continue his title pursuit in the UFC. Since both fighters have good feet and ground game it looks like this fight will be pretty much even, but what will set the score is who has the better ground game and striking. That would probably favor Barnett. With his striking and well-rounded wrestling he looks to take this fight in the bag, but if Rothwell can keep the distance close on Barnett and not give him any room to set up any takedowns then he could possibly turn the fight into a boxing match and maybe able to sneak a knockout punch in there without Barnett ever knowing. Though Barnett will keep the pressure on Rothwell, I do not know how well Rothwell will be able to hold up to Barnett’s aggressiveness, which is another reason why Barnett looks to take this fight with ease. My prediction: Barnett wins via knockout in Round 3.
#11 TAREC “SPONGE” SAFFIEDINE (15-4-0) vs. JAKE “THE JUGGERNAUT” ELLENBERGER (30-10-0)
This is a three round fight in the welterweight division. In this fight are two fighters that are not far from each other on the leader board and look to move up the ladder even more by adding another win to their belt. Saffiedine brings karate, kickboxing, jiu-jitsu, taekwondo and judo that has made him excellent in submissions and cardio. Ellenberger brings jiu-jitsu, striking and wrestling that has given him great knockout power and some unique submission styles. This fight looks to be a fight of who can finish the other first before their opponent gases out. If the fight looks to be finished then Ellenberger seems to have the advantage with his knockout power that he has used to defeat many of his opponents with, which is power that Saffiedine has never faced before. Though if Saffiedine keeps pressure on Ellenberger then he could score some serious points on him and wear him down to where he would no longer have any power left or possibly not able to defend himself anymore. My prediction: Saffiedine wins via unanimous decision.