Are you looking forward to UFC 162? Of course you are.
With a card jammed full of competitive matchups, one of the best main events of 2013 and the potential for a historic changing of the guard at middleweight, what's not to like?
There is certainly much to be excited about.
As we prepare for the UFC's summer offering, let's take a final look ahead at what we can expect from tonight's action.
For UFC 162, Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman is really just the tip of the iceberg when talking about the card's impact on the middleweight division. There will be four 185-pound clashes this Saturday, all with some measure of impact.
Two Strikeforce imports, Tim Kennedy and Roger Gracie, will try to assert themselves near the front of the line by beating the other. A battle between Mark Munoz and Tim Boetsch could prove a tipping point for either man, as both are clinging to contention by their fingernails.
Chris Leben will try to stay relevant by shutting down Andrew Craig. Craig will attempt to regain some momentum after suffering his first UFC defeat to Ronny Markes last time out.
And, of course, there is the main event, Silva vs. Weidman. It's a bout that could see a new king crowned or an already weighty legacy further cemented.
I touched on the importance of UFC 162 to the middleweight division more in depth earlier this week. Check it out right here.
Chris Leben will take on Andrew Craig on FX
The UFC's last pay-per-view, UFC 161, was void of intrigue or excitement, but this weekend's card is looking pretty strong.
The main card features a bevy of competitive pairings with the potential to excite. It is topped off with a headliner between the best fighter to ever grace the Octagon and a legitimately dangerous challenger.
The FX prelims include four matches, any of which have the potential to steal the show, while getting both Seth Baczynski and Mike Pierce on Facebook only sweetens the deal.
From top to bottom, this card is about as deep as they come.
Gabriel Gonzaga knocks out Mirko Cro Cop
UFC 162 features a bunch of competitors who like to settle their business without getting the judges involved.
The subsequent list shows just how regularly each fighter competing at UFC 162 finishes, and is finished. The list functions as follows: (percentage of wins that have been finish, percentage of losses that have not made the final bell). There are collectively two disqualifications that have been counted as finishes.
- Mike Pierce (50%, 0%) vs. David Mitchell (75%, 0%)
- Brian Melancon (67%, 0%) vs. Seth Baczynski (94%, 67%)
- Rafaello Oliveira (60%, 60%) vs. Edson Barboza (82%, 100%)
- Gabriel Gonzaga (100%, 86%) vs. Dave Herman (95%, 100%)
- Norman Parke (88%, 100%) vs. Kazuki Tokudome (67%, 100%)
- Andrew Craig (50%, 0%) vs. Chris Leben (77%, 56%)
- Cub Swanson (74%, 80%) vs. Dennis Siver (67%, 75%)
- Mark Munoz (58%, 67%) vs. Tim Boetsch (75%, 60%)
- Roger Gracie (83%, 100%) vs. Tim Kennedy (87%, 25%)
- Frankie Edgar (47%, 0%) vs. Charles Oliveira (94%, 100%)
- Anderson Silva (79%, 75%) vs. Chris Weidman (67%, N/A)
As you can see, there is some real potential for a high number of finishes at UFC 162.
On most UFC cards there may be two or three bouts in which there is no clear favorite, or at least have what you'd call a live underdog. At UFC 162, however, the majority of the bouts could go either way.
The certainty of the event's main card is exemplified by our Bleacher Report predictions, where my colleagues and I found little consensus outside Frankie Edgar vs. Charles Oliveira.
The undercard has a good mix of matches that seem a little one-sided and others that are pretty tough to call.
Since joining the UFC back in 2006, Anderson Silva has been perfect. He's won the middleweight title, established himself as the best fighter currently competing and made a convincing bid to be recognized as the best mixed martial artist of all time.
Still, there are those out there who will tell you that Silva is going to lose at UFC 162. Of course, that's pure lunacy, right? If so, count me a lunatic, because I buy it.
My conviction for picking Weidman is not particularly strong—I could definitely see Silva winning—but it does exist, and I see him pulling it out.
His style is well-suited for Silva, his confidence is an asset and his overall ability is through the roof, even if he hasn't had the time to convince everyone of that just yet.
The American could very well pull off the upset at UFC 162. Brace yourself.