UFC on FX 6: Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson comes to you later this week from Gold Coast, Australia.
Though the event actually takes place on Dec. 15, it will air in the U.S. on Friday because of time zone differences.
The card's main draws are the coaches' and finalists' battles from The Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes, which pitted Aussie and British fighters against one another. But because this is more than just a TUF event, the event is a little more stacked than your garden-variety season finale.
Here are some predictions for Knockout, Submission and Fight of the Night bonus winners from this fun-filled lineup.
If history and memory serve, the UFC brass tends to weigh the wow factor a little more heavily than degree of difficulty when scratching out the bonus checks. That's why I give the inside track to Chad Mendes.
Mendes scored a crazy gut-punch KO in his last engagement. This time he'll face a total unknown in Yaotzin Meza, who steps in on short notice to replace the injured Hacran Dias.
Meza doesn't appear ready for the deep waters, and Mendes will probably want to end it as quickly as possible.
This one is kind of tough to figure out. Personally, I believe the name-brand submission artists on this card—George Sotiropoulos, Rousimar Palhares, even Seth Baczynski—are going to struggle to ply their craft against their respective opponents.
Time to look outside the box. Colin Fletcher isn't the most powerful dude out there, but he is wily and loves to scramble for submissions once the fight hits the ground.
Against a ground-and-pounder like Norman Parke, it seems the long-limbed Fletcher will get his share of opportunities to go fishing for the tap.
If I was ever to assemble an MMA tag team, this would be it.
Two muscle-bound, middleweight fire hydrants. One (Lombard) can punch through an engine block. The other (Palhares) can wrench phone poles out of the ground.
The phrase "something's gotta give" comes to mind. Will it be a highlight-reel knockout or a highlight-reel submission? No middle ground on this one. My spidey sense tells me Lombard and his judo base will be able to fend off trouble long enough to get his fists on Palhares' face.
But I could be wrong. And either way, it won't be fun. For them, I mean. I'll have a lot of fun.