UFC 158 Predictions: Projecting Winners at Top of the Card

Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistMarch 15, 2013

NEW YORK - MARCH 24:  Georges St-Pierre of Montreal, Quebec, Canada speaks at a press conference for UFC 111 at Radio City Music Hall on March 24, 2010 in New York City.  St-Pierre will face Dan Hardy of Nottingham UK in the Welterweight title bout. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

While the mainstream buildup for UFC 158 can be credited to Nick Diaz’s antics, the main card is full of quality matchups that will delight the casual fan and MMA geek alike.

Johny Hendricks goes for his 10th win and a shot at the Georges St. Pierre-Diaz winner, while two contenders from “The Ultimate Fighter” square off. Add the main event between St. Pierre and Diaz, and that should make this MMA night one to remember.

As Saturday approaches, it’s prediction time for these top bouts. Scroll down for picks and explanations.

 

Nick Diaz vs. Georges St. Pierre

This bout could get a little sloppy, as Diaz is returning from a 13-month suspension and St. Pierre returned from a yearlong rehab from injury in November, but overall should impress due to the clash of styles and personalities.

The buildup to this main event has echoed a WWE match, but nevertheless many MMA fans are waiting for the moment when St. Pierre puts Diaz down onto the canvas. St. Pierre is the more patient and experienced fighter, which will prove to be the difference. 

Winner: St. Pierre

 

Johny Hendricks vs. Carlos Condit

I’m buying Hendricks’ motivation in this matchup, as he’ll face the winner of Diaz and St. Pierre.

Since Condit has a chance to take Hendricks out of his element with his length, Hendricks would be wise to use his wrestling prowess. Turning the fight into a wrestling match would be to Condit’s disadvantage, as he’s had trouble with dueling on the mat.

In the end, Hendricks has more to fight for and more skills to dispose of Condit.

Winner: Hendricks

 

Jake Ellenberger vs. Nate Marquardt

Marquardt gets a huge opportunity to take out Ellenberger and vault up not only the ranks but also the perception of UFC fans.

There’s a reason that Ellenberger is held in such high esteem though. I’m seeing a standing knockout in my crystal ball.

Winner: Ellenberger

 

Chris Camozzi vs. Nick Ring

This matchup will provide some separation between two middleweights. These “Ultimate Fighters” will provide an entertaining matchup, as both are full of confidence from beating up lesser competition.

I like Ring’s ability to control his opponent on the mat, which is where this fight will conclude.

Winner: Ring

 

Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report. Follow his sports musings and random life observations on Twitter.