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UFC on Fox 7: Biggest Locks to Earn Wins in San Jose

SACRAMENTO, CA - JUNE 26:  Chad Mendes points to his t-shirt before he starts working out for the media during the Team Alpha Male Media Open Workout at Ultimate Fitness Gym on June 26, 2012 in Sacramento, California.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Alex BallentineFeatured ColumnistApril 20, 2013

UFC on Fox 7 is set to go down Saturday, April 20, at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. with a card chock full of intriguing fights.

Heading into fight night, everyone wants a guaranteed pick. While true guarantees are virtually impossible to find in mixed martial arts, there are some heavy favorites that you can say will pick up a win with near-certainty.

UFC matchmaker Joe Silva has a great track record of putting together evenly-matched fights. However, even he is known for putting together the occasional squash match.

Here are the most likely candidates to beat their opponents in San Jose.

 

Joseph Benavidez vs. Darren Uyenoyama

Joe B-Wan Kenobi is one of the most underrated fighters in all of the UFC. He's 17-3 in his MMA career but all three of his losses came to two UFC champions. He lost two fights to Dominick Cruz and lost a split decision to flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson.

Uyenoyama is a respectable opponent, but he doesn't have the track record that Benavidez claims. He is 2-0 since joining the UFC and earned an impressive submission victory over Phil Harris in his flyweight debut.

However, that doesn't mean that he's ready to make the step up to a bona fide contender like Benavidez. Uyenoyama is a solid submission artist, but Benavidez is much too well-rounded to fall victim to a one-dimensional fighter.

 

Chad Mendes vs. Darren Elkins

Elkins has quietly made a great run lately. He's on a five-fight win streak since his submission loss to Charles Oliveira in 2010. There's no denying that he deserves to step in against a high-profile opponent.

He might be biting off a bit more than he can chew in this case, though.

Mendes is one of the truly elite fighters in the UFC featherweight division. He always brings All-American wrestling credentials to the table, but since his knockout loss at the hands of Jose Aldo, he's shown improvement in his striking.

With two knockout wins in less than two and a half minutes of total time in the Octagon since that loss, Mendes is a man on a mission for another crack at the strap. Don't plan on Elkins ruining that party.

 

Daniel Cormier vs. Frank Mir

Fans that have yet to see the former Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix champion fight yet will be pleasantly surprised when Cormier fights UFC veteran Frank Mir.

Mir is one of the most well-known heavyweights in the history of the organization, but Cormier is a matchup nightmare for him. Mir is coming off of a TKO loss against Junior dos Santos. He was floored in his last win by Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira before finding a way to submit him.

With a knockout loss to dos Santos and a knockown at the hands of Nogueira, Mir's time as a contender in the heavyweight division may be up.

Cormier is a real contender with an international wrestling background and knockout power in his fists. Unless Mir has another miracle submission up his sleeve, Cormier is the prohibitive favorite in this one.

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