UFC 153: Anderson Silva vs. Stephan Bonnar

When UFC President Dana White put this fight together, he is giving the folks a fight that could have epic proportions. In Anderson ‘The Spider’ Silva, the reigning Middleweight Champion and the best pound for pound fighter in the world today, you have an unparalleled fighter.  Stephan ‘American Psycho’ Bonnar you have a true warrior who can fight with anyone. He does not retreat, he can take a punch and not afraid to get hit to win his objective.

Silva is actually stepping into Bonnar’s world by coming up to fight in the Light Heavyweight category at 205lbs. Bonnar is always in great shape. In his 11 year career he has fought in some wars. The fight that he had with Former champion Forrest Griffin is considered the best fight in UFC history. Both fighters trying to win a six figure contract with the UFC. They fought so hard and were so bloodied and worn out at the end of the fight which was awarded to Griffin. UFC President Dana White was so impressed with Bonnar also, that he extended him a six figure contract also.

What can be said about Silva, he has not lost a fight in six years, and he has defended his title 10 times in the past six years.  He has been the consummate champion by being an ambassador to the sport of MMA and he carries himself in a manner that screams Champion.

Bonnar, the warrior who has lost fights in his career, but he has never been knocked out or submitted.  He is a strong willed competitor who would be carried off on a stretcher before he quit.  He leaves it all in the cage every time that he fights.

Silva is a great stand up fighter and will trade punches with you.  He has an arsenal of punches and kicks. He will also take the fight to the ground where he has a good ground game.  He sometimes has problems with grapplers, shown in his first fight with Chael Sonnen.  Bonnar is a good grappler so Silva will have to be on his guard and not slip up.

Bonnar will stand and throw punches, but he has litany of kicks to his credit. Standing 6”4, he has a slight height and reach advantage over Silva who stands 6”2.  Bonnar will press the action with Silva and make him work for everything that he gets.

The longer that the fight goes on, the more it favors Bonnar who is in his natural element. Silva fights rarely go into later rounds.  Both fighters have their work cut out for them and it is a hard one to predict. Conventional wisdom would say to go with Silva, but not being a conventional kind of guy, I think that Bonnar stands a very good chance to win this fight.

The folks in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and fans around the world will get everything that they asked for tonight.  Brazil is going to be off the chain tonight and I know this journalist would love to be there to partake in the action close up and personal.

Mike Samuels is a Featured Journalist for The Sports Blitz. He can be reached at msamuels@thepenaltyflagblog.com on Twitter @Steeler_Mike and at http://www.facebook.com/TheSportsDude

 

‘Suga’ Rashad Evans Fighter Profile

evans_ortizWinning the second season of the Ultimate Fighter competition is one hell of a way to start a career as a professional MMA fighter. Rashad Evans defeated the much larger 6”7 inch 260lb Brad Imes to win the six figure contract from UFC President Dana White.

Rashad is primarily a wrestler, but he has great hand speed and is developing his skill as a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu stylist as well.  He is quick, so he can take down most opponents at will.  His boxing is very good and he has knockout power evidenced by his KO of Chuck Liddell at UFC 88 in 2008.

He started seriously training as a fighter in 2003 after graduating from the Michigan State University where he was a standout wrestler. He earned a degree in Psychology. Rashad was also a Junior College National Champion Niagara Community College and also an All-American.

Evans got a title shot at UFC 92 against  Light Heavyweight Champion Forrest Griffin. Rashad took full advantage of the opportunity with a third round KO of Griffin to become the  new champion.

In his first defense of the Light Heavyweight title Rashad faced Karate stylist Lyoto Machida at UFC 98 on May 23, 2009.  Evans was KO’ed in the second round. This was defeat of Rashad’s career.

After the crushing defeat at the hands of Machida, he rededicated himself and goes on a four fight win streak beating Thiago Silva, Rampage Jackson, Tito Ortiz, and Phil Davis respectively

Reeling off those four wins would get Evans another shout at the title against his former training partner and friend and current Light Heavyweight Champion Jon “Bones” Jones.  In the time leading up to the fight, there was bad blood between the former partners. They would face each other at UFC 145.  Jones did pretty much whatever he wanted to do in the fight and it would go the complete five rounds and Jones would retain his title.  Rashad could not penetrate the defense of the champ. This would give Rashad his second defeat.

At the age of 32 Rashad is still relatively young and has not taken a lot of punishment so he is always in great shape. I think he can still fight and has a bright future ahead of him.  Will he fight against Jones again?  The fans will want to see this fight again.

Rashad is a quality fighter and has a lot to offer the sport and I see him being in the UFC for a long to come.

Mike Samuels is a Featured Journalist for The Sports Blitz Network and you can email him at msamuels@thepenaltyflagblog.com and reach him on Twitter @Steeler_Mike.