Daniel Cormier vs. Tim Sylvia: Head-to-Toe Breakdown

Tim McTiernanCorrespondent IJuly 20, 2012

Daniel Cormier vs. Tim Sylvia: Head-to-Toe Breakdown

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    Well, it appears that Tim Sylvia will get what he asked for, in a return to a major MMA organization. Sylvia has been tapped to face Daniel Cormier in the final heavyweight fight in Strikeforce.

    Cormier last fought Josh Barnett, over whom he earned a unanimous decision, winning all five rounds on two of the judges' scorecards. Overall, he is 10-0 with seven finishes.

    Sylvia has been around MMA significantly longer than Cormier, as he has a 31-7 record, and has won seven of his last eight fights, with six finishes.

    This seemed to be one of the only viable fights for Cormier, and it looks like Sylvia could be in over his head, but let's take a look at the matchup in a head-to-toe breakdown of the fight.

Striking

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    True, Tim Sylvia has been knocking out people with relative ease lately, but without cheating I challenge any of you to name any of the last three opponents he has stopped with strikes.

    Couldn't think of anyone? Okay.

    Meanwhile, Cormier recently knocked out Antonio Silva—arguably a top 10 heavyweight—in the first round.

    Edge: Cormier

Grappling

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    Daniel Cormier was an Olympian in wrestling, and a NCAA D-I wrestler.

    Tim Sylvia was not.

    Edge: Cormier

Submissions

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    Sylvia's last submission—due to a submission hold—was in 2001, in his fifth pro fight. He has two total submissions due to submission holds.

    Cormier's last submission to a submission hold was in 2010.

    Neither really look for submissions, but if someone were to get one, it'd be Cormier. Not to mention, Cormier's wrestling gives him an edge in submissions as well.

    Edge: Cormier

Strength and Conditioning

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    That is Daniel Cormier lifting up and tossing Josh Barnett in the midst of their five-round fight for the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix title.

    Cormier is one of the strongest heavyweights around and has shown the ability to go five rounds.

    Sylvia hasn't gone five rounds since 2007 against Randy Couture, not to mention he was also fighting at super heavyweight for some time, and was presumably not doing a whole lot of cardio work.

    Edge: Cormier

Experience

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    I had to throw him a bone.

    Edge: Sylvia

Variables

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    Cormier

    Cormier has everything to lose and very little to gain in this fight. On paper, he has every important advantage that one can possess in a fight. He should dominate Sylvia quickly and make his move to the UFC—but should he lose, he will drop from relevance in the heavyweight division.

     

    Sylvia

    Sylvia was hoping for a return to the UFC, even going as far as to say he would fight on the undercard for minimum pay. I think a shot in Strikeforce as the main event would be just as good. Sylvia is the exact opposite of Cormier, having everything to gain and nothing to lose. He may even get his return to the UFC after this fight, but who knows.

Winner

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    This one can't be a surprise to anyone.

    Cormier has an advantage standing, on the ground, in strength and in cardio. Sylvia has a puncher's chance and that's about it.

    Expect Cormier to finish Sylvia within the first five minutes and then move to the UFC as an—arguably—top-five heavyweight.

     

    Tim McTiernan is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. For the latest news on everything MMA, follow him on Twitter @TimMcTiernan.