Liddell Vs Franklin: UFC 115 Preview and Prediction
UFC 115 will be held in Vancouver, Canada and will feature some of the following fights:
Undefeated Canadian Rory MacDonald vs Carlos Condit, Paulo Thiago vs Martin Kampmann, and Ben Rothwell vs Gilbert Yvel. Yvel is most known for purposely clockin' a ref (click here to see the video of it) *approx. 1/2 way down page
Chuck Liddell (21-7-0)
Rich Franklin (27-5-0, 1 NC)
Koei-Kan Karate, Kempo Karate, Kickboxing, Wrestling, BJJ
Freestyle, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
|28 matches||21W||7L||33 matches||27W||5L|
|By knockout||13||5||By knockout||15||4|
|By submission||1||1||By submission||9||0|
|By decision||7||1||By decision||3||1|
Rich ‘Ace’ Franklin is a mixed martial arts veteran. But prior to fighting in mixed martial arts, he was a school teacher.
Franklin will look to teach Liddell a thing or two at UFC 115 in Vancouver, Canada.
It seems like Franklin has been in the UFC forever.
He made his debut at UFC 42. But prior to that, he fought in organizations such as Extreme Challenge and World Extreme Fighting, compiling a record of 10-0 (with one no contest).
The UFC signed Franklin and paired him up against Evan Tanner (rest in peace) in Rich's octagon debut. Franklin won the fight, followed by a victory over Edwin Dewers at UFC 44.
Both wins came via TKO (strikes) in the first round.
Franklin stepped away from the octagon, and fought four of his next five fights in other organizations.
He suffered his first loss against Lyoto Machida at Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2003: Inoki Festival.
Franklin's next UFC fight came against Jorge Rivera at UFC 50: The War of 04′.
Rich won the fight, and followed the performance with four consecutive wins. The continued success brought his win streak to seven (other wins came over notables Shamrock, Tanner, Quarry, and Loiseau).
The win over Tanner gave Franklin the Middleweight Championship, which he successfully defended against Quarry and Loiseau.
At 21-1 (one NC) and with a secure belt, the UFC matched Franklin against Anderson Silva. Not only did Silva hand Franklin his second loss, but Anerson’s held the belt ever since.
Franklin bounced back in his next two fights ,against Jason McDonald and Yushin Okami, which gave him the number one contender spot for Silva’s title.
Yet again, Silva dominated.
But in all honesty, "The Spyder" is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. He can make a fool out of his opponent (and himself) by dancing around the octagon.
At the same time, Silva can back it up. He's knocked out the likes of Forest Griffin with a jab while moving backwards.
Who does that?
You can’t expect Franklin to ever beat Silva. He won’t do it, and I don’t think anyone has the ability to beat Silva right now.
Franklin is still a talented fighter and has a good shot at beating Liddell.
After the middleweight title loss, Franklin won back-to-back fights, against Travis Lutter and Matt Hamill (both TKOs). But at UFC 93, Franklin lost the headline fight against Dan Henderson via split decision.
In his most recent action, Rich beat Wanderlei Silva by unanimous decision, followed by a TKO loss to Vitor Belfort. Don’t let the fact he's lost his last four main event fights (two to Silva, Henderson, and Belfort) fool you.
His nickname is "Ace" for a reason (in my opinion, for reasons other than looking like Jim Carrey) and his resume is full of knockouts over talented fighters.
His five losses have come against four of the best fighters ever to grace the Octagon.
Machida, Silva, Henderson, and Belfort? That is a great class of fighters. To say your only losses have come at the hands of those fighters shouldn’t discourage anyone to pick Franklin over Liddell.
As talented as Chuck was, he’s clearly on the downward end of his career. He’s already questioned retirement prior to agreeing to this fight.
Liddell is not one to take lightly, but he is giving up five years to Franklin (35 compared to 40 is a big deal), and he’s lost four of his last five fights.
That doesn’t sit well with me.
Chuck ‘The Iceman’ Liddell has been around the block once or twice, and he's fought on every corner of it.
Liddell is a UFC legend and one of the only fighters who can say his first professional fight took place in the UFC, way back in 1998 (UFC 17).
You can buy the VHS if you want.
His UFC debut came against Noe Hernandez (he won via decision) and afterward, Liddell bounced between other organizations and the UFC for just over a year.
Only six fights in Liddell’s career have come outside the octagon. Three were against nobodies in no-name organizations and three came in PRIDE FC.
He next fought in the UFC against Jeremy Horn and lost. And while many thought Liddell could have never lost to Horn (he beat him later in his career), the sport of mixed martial arts was much different back in the late 90’s.
Following the loss, Liddell ripped off seven wins between UFC 22 and UFC 40 with one more in PRIDE FC, establishing himself as one of the best fighters in the MMA world.
Opponents such as Jeff Monson, Kevin Randleman, Guy Mezger, Vitor Belfor, and Ranato Sobral all feel victim to the up-and-coming star.
Taking a step aside for a moment, this fight was originally supposed to be between "TUF: Season 11" coaches Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell. The reason I mention this is because Ortiz pulled out. It’s not the first time Liddell has had it happen.
At UFC 43, Ortiz held the belt and wouldn’t defend it against Liddell, which forced him to fight Randy Couture for the "interim" Light Heavyweight Belt. Couture completely dominated the ground-game and won via TKO late in the third round.
"The Iceman" next went over to Japan to represent the UFC in the Pride 2003 Middleweight Grand-Prix and in his first fight, he made quick work of Alistair Overeem.
In the second-round of the tournament style championships, Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson got the best of Liddell as his corner was forced to throw in the towel.
After returning back to the UFC, Liddell finally got his chance at Tito and won by knock-out in the second round. Vernon White was next on his resume before Liddell got a rematch at Randy Couture for the Light Heavyweight Championship.
This time, Liddell would have none of Couture’s ground game and knocked him out early in the first round. He’d go on to defend the belt against Jeremy Horn, which would mean the only loss in his career he had yet to cancel out was the loss to Rampage.
After the back-to-back Couture-Horn victories, Liddell once again defended his belt against Couture(UFC 57), then against Renato Sobral (UFC 62) before taking care of Tito Ortiz yet again (UFC 66).
At 20-3 with four consecutive title defences, it was looking as if Liddell was unstoppable and he finally got his chance to redeem himself against Rampage. Unfortunately, Jackson hit him with a right look, which put Liddell on his back before Quintin unleashed a rampage of punches to win the fight.
Since the loss to Jackson, Liddell has lost fights against Keith Jardine (UFC 76), Rashad Evans (UFC 88), and Shogun Rua (UFC 97) with his only victory coming against Wanderlei Silva at UFC 79, in what many considered to be the fight of the year (2007).
If you notice a pattern, you aren’t alone.
Almost all of Chuck’s UFC wins have come earlier in his career, between UFC cards that weren’t far apart (49,52,54 57,62,66, going 6-0).
Those were the early days when MMA wasn’t mainstream and the level of talent was clearly much lower (hence fighting on so many cards so close).
His last six fights came on much more spaced out fight cards (71, 76, 79, 88, 97 and this fight at 115, going 1-4 + ), which is evidence the UFC has a vast amount of skill and talent to display.
It’s also proof that Chuck Liddell is on the back-end of his career and the entire mixed martial arts world has passed him at full spell…that includes Rich ‘Ace’ Franklin.
TheCoach’s Pick: FRANKLIN VIA DECISION
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