I'm starting what I hope will be an ongoing series here on the Bleacher Report. The idea is not new. It is certainly not revolutionary. It is, however, quite simple.
I'm going to make predictions about an upcoming card. You can either agree or disagree. Or you can read the article, get sick of reading my tripe and press the back button on your browser. Either way, let's all try and have a good time, shall we?
Junior dos Santos vs. Gilbert Yvel
I've got dos Santos for this one. He's currently on a four-fight win streak with his last victory coming against a not-so-game Mirko CroCop. He has a killer instinct and some beastly stand-up. Yvel—well, Yvel bites people and punches referees. Santos all the way .
Jim Miller vs. Duane Ludwig
Ludwig is a bit of a journeyman. He's also never really beaten anyone of consequence. Miller has simply been facing better competition at a higher level, and he's being doing it consistently. Miller wins this one .
Joe Lauzon vs. Sam Stout
When your only loss in the UFC is to Kenny Florian, you're doing well for yourself. Joe Lauzon is a talented kid with a great ground attack, and I see him submitting Stout. Stout has power in his hands, and I imagine he'll be looking to throw leather, but I don't see it working out for him in the least. Lauzon by whatever submission he chooses .
Dustin Hazelett vs. Paul Daley
Cliche'd "Style vs. Style" match-up. Dustin is a ground wizard who will catch you in submissions from any number of strange angles. Paul Daley likes to turn people's lights out with a pair of balled up fists. I see Hazelett doing his best to get this fight to the ground where he will overwhelm the very standup oriented "Semtex". Submission victory for McLovin' .
And now for the main event...
Rashad Evans vs. Thiago Silva
I have a feeling that even though Evans has a superb wrestling background and Silva holds a black belt in BJJ, these two will be trying to take each other's heads off. Each will be trying to make a statement as to why they deserve the next shot at the Light Heavyweight strap.
Also present in this match are each man's unique backstory: Rashad knows that a fight with Rampage becomes less profitable, less popular and less likely to happen anytime soon if he can't overcome Silva. He probably wouldn't mind a little revenge on Machida, either.
Silva likely wants to get at Machida in a very bad way, too. The Dragon handed him his first loss by devastating KO and it's probably not something he's forgotten.
As you can see from the picture at the top of this article, I'm choosing Silva. He is focused solely on Machida and the belt and is a man I would not want to be in front of right now. Rashad is a former champion and, while he has his sights set on Machida too, his mind is being pulled of course by the man known as Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. I say Silva .