Power Ranking the Main Card Fights on the UFC 160 Fight Card
UFC 160: Velasquez vs. Bigfoot 2 takes place this Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. The main card features a rematch between Cain Velasquez and Antonio Silva, which took place one year ago.
Also fighting on the main card are Junior dos Santos vs. Mark Hunt, Glover Teixeira vs. James Te Huna, Gray Maynard vs. TJ Grant, and Donald Cerrone vs. KJ Noons.
For whatever reason, it seems as of late that the more excited we get for big names on a card, the harder the card falls. Rarely do we get each matchup on the main card to perform in the way we had anticipated.
I have a gut feeling this card is going to be different, and for the first time in a long time, we are going to see every single fight on the main card meet our expectations.
With five exciting fights lined up, let's take a look at which ones I believe will steal the show.
Continue on for the main card power rankings.
5. Gray Maynard vs. TJ Grant
If you are excited by a decent fight that spends most of the time on the ground, then Gray Maynard vs. TJ Grant may be higher up on your list.
That's not to say that Maynard or Grant can't knock each other out, because they are both capable of doing so.
Maynard needs to be involved in another great fight. Sure, we can't expect him to be involved in another epic battle as he was with Frankie Edgar in early 2011. I'm still trying to escape the memory of Maynard's last fight in which he took on a bicycling Clay Guida.
I fully expect this matchup to end in a grinding, razor-thin split decision.
4. Donald Cerrone vs. KJ Noons
Donald Cerrone is fighting to regain his reputation, and KJ Noons is simply fighting for a job. Throw the two together and you have the recipe for an explosive fight.
Cerrone is coming off a painful loss to Anthony Pettis and has now dropped two of his last four. Prior to this stumble, Cerrone had rattled off six consecutive victories.
Noons is starting his UFC career on the cusp of being cut, make no mistake about it. The 30-year-old San Diego resident has lost four of his last five fights and knows his stint with the UFC is going to be a short one if he can't secure a win over the "Cowboy."
I'd be surprised if this fight got out of the first round. Noons is going to go for broke and try to unleash those heavy hands of his in an attempt for an exciting knockout.
Cerrone will most likely capitalize on one of Noons's errant haymakers and take him to the ground for a submission win.
Cerrone always shows up to fight, and he knows how important it is to put on a show while securing the victory.
3. Glover Teixeira vs. James Te Huna
This is the fight that makes me the most nervous. It could either be one of the best fights of the year, or completely flop and kill the momentum of the entire card.
We've seen nothing but good things so far from Glover Teixeira. Being paired up with James Te Huna has many fans expecting to see an all-out war. There also lies the slight possibility that we might see another version of Brendan Schaub vs. Lavar Johnson.
I don't expect to see Teixeira stand and trade with Te Huna. I believe he is going to utilize his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and swarm Te Huna on the ground.
Teixeira is on the cusp of being involved in a title eliminator bout. He knows that one slip-up will send the 33-year-old down the light heavyweight ranks.
Te Huna has aspirations of his own and has won his last four fights, two by first-round knockout. Teixeira is a big step up in competition for Te Huna and I believe Teixeira will impress once again.
2. Cain Velasquez vs. Antonio Silva
Cain Velasquez is coming off one of the best fights in UFC heavyweight history. At UFC 155, Velasquez landed 210 total strikes and 11 takedowns in an impressive win over then-champion Junior dos Santos.
That fight showed us a lot about the durability of Velasquez. Seeing as he has already beaten Antonio Silva nearly one year ago to the day, it would be hard to fathom a scenario in which he would lose.
The only loss Velasquez has sustained was in his first matchup with dos Santos in 2011, although much has been made since then of the condition of his knee playing a large rule in his uncharacteristic performance that night.
"Bigfoot" is one of the most emotional guys you'll ever see fight in the Octagon. You can't help but admire someone who appears to be so thankful to be where he is today.
While many aren't giving Silva a chance to win, nobody gave him a chance against Alistair Overeem, either. His best shot is to utilize his five-inch reach advantage to get Velasquez in close for an uppercut and subsequent takedown.
While this fight is the main event and will be exciting from start to finish, it pales in comparison to the fireworks you'll see in our No. 1 fight of the night.
1. Junior dos Santos vs. Mark Hunt
If there was ever a time to gather a bunch of casual fans around the TV for a fight, this would be the time to do it.
Junior dos Santos and Mark Hunt will collide on Saturday night in what guarantees to be a showcase of two of the greatest punchers in the history of the UFC.
Dos Santos and Hunt have combined for 24 career wins. Eighteen of those wins have come by knockout, which is good for a 75 percent rate. I have to believe this is one of the highest percentages for two fighters who combine for over 20 wins.
It seems like a very long time ago that Mark Hunt had a losing record and was considered a novelty in the sport. To some, perhaps he still is, but there is no denying what he can do inside the Octagon given the right opponent.
Stylistically, he matches up well with the top heavyweights, but I'm not sure many are giving him a chance against dos Santos.
Will we still hear the chants of "War Hunt!" after Saturday night? That remains to be seen.
This fight, however, will earn Fight of the Night.