Ladies and gentlemen, we're winding down the hours towards WEC 52, but fans of the more mainstream scene in MMA can get amped up for what promises to be an electric event in Oberhausen, Germany as the Ultimate Fighting Championship presents its 122th event in the promotion's history.
You know with a WEC card, you can expect a few explosions here and there, but you can definitely expect a card that delivers from top to bottom, even if the card isn't really stacked from top to bottom, but what can you expect out of the UFC's return to Deutschland?
That's my cue to enter, cats and kittens.
Sir back, relax, crack open a bottle or a can of beer, cozy up with your wife, girlfriend or lover -- do whatever keeps you comfortable, because there's a few things you might want to keep your eyes open for come Saturday night...
A little F-Y-Informaccion, Kyle Noke and TUF 11 runner-up Kris "Savage" McCray are on the prelims of this card, but there's always a possibility of the fights showing in some capacity.
The Aussie will have his hands full with "The Rosedale Reaper" Rob Kimmons, while the Schweinfurt-born prospect out of the Renzo Gracie Combat Team will face off against Carlos Eduardo Rocha in McCray's debut at Welterweight.
It'll be interesting to see how Savage does when he drops down to 170 -- a weight class that could prove to be more natural of a weight class compared to the 185-pound limit at which he participated on the show -- and seemed to gas out at a few times during the show.
If you saw TUF 11, you know what to expect.
If you missed TUF 11, you're in for a treat.
The last time a Silverback invaded a company, he showed a good effort but was submitted.
The time before that, he was on a leash.
The time before the time before that, that Silverback single-handedly wrecked an entire promotion from the inside out.
The next time he's in the cage, he'll be across the cage from a Czech-born fighter looking to break both of his feet off in his ass.
De Souza to Karlos Vemola, who faces Seth Petruzelli on Saturday: you better check yourself, before you wreck yourself.
Even though three is the magic number that unlocks the pink slips, two could prompt Dana White to say "peace the f**k out, Silverback!"
In other words, Petruzelli doesn't have that much to lose in this fight, and that sometimes makes for a extremely dangerous fighter and an extremely exciting fight.
Have you ever seen or heard this name before?
Well you will once UFC 122 is out.
The 9-0 prospect will face Mark Scnalon in front of his home crowd, and Scanlon's a prospect too, but there's only one little thing:
Seven of those nine guys who Krauss has spanked in the cage all tapped out and four of those seven fell to a Rear Naked Choke.
Others have fallen to a Kimura, a Keylock, and one guy got Groved (or in other terms, submitted by a D'arce Choke).
Only two people have ever been stopped by strikes against "Panzer, and none have submitted to the strikes.
Scanlon isn't a big name, but he could be Krauss' ticket to finally beating a big name and becoming a big star in the UFC.
The Janitor saw a two-fight hot streak stopped by Jon "Bones" Jones at the last UFC On Versus, but all is not lost with him.
All he needs to do is beat Alexandre Ferreira in Germany and he may somehow prove to still be relevant in the Light Heavyweight title picture.
To the unknown's credit, though, we don't know much about him as a fighter aside from what Sherdog might have on him... and to the credit of Vlady's detractors. it is a pain in the neck to try and bounce back from a loss to Bones.
Even if the fight doesn't air, we can just keep one eye on this fight and see how Vlady does against some fresh young talent.
If the name Peter Sobotta doesn't ring a bell, then chances are you didn't see UFC 99 or UFC 115 in person..
Don't worry, I'm not rubbing it in. I didn't see either in person either.
What I will say is that he will have a tough test ahead of him in the form of Amir Sadollah, who doesn't hold the experience that he does but does carry a very unique style of fighting to the cage.
It got him past CB Dollaway, Brad Blackburn and Phil Baroni thus far, and it'll look to pass by Sobotta this Saturday.
Be warned, and take it from someone who saw UFC 103 in person, though:
Just because you don't know anything about the fighter doesn't mean they're a terrible fighter.
If you've watched the full trailer for UFC 122, you know how big of a deal Andre Winner and Dennis Siver are being made out to look.
Siver, a tough-as-nails and always-exciting Lightweight star coming off of a win over Spencer Fisher, will make his way back home for a bout with Andre Winner, who is coming off of a loss to Nik Lentz.
The way this fight is being built up, Winner's power punches are definitely getting recognition, while Siver is being referred to as the most dangerous kickboxer in the division.
Winner may be coming off of a loss, but he's still not an easy guy to put away, even for the "most dangerous kickboxer in the division".
We'll definitely see how dangerous Siver really is come Saturday night.
UFC 122 will go head-to-head with a WBC Super Welterweight title fight between the honorable Emmanuel D. Pacquiao from Freddie Roach's "Knock-That-F**ker-Out" Foundation, and promising Weltterweight-turned-pariah Antonio Margarito.
How do you beat that type of card when all you have is a Spike TV card co-headlined by two Middleweight MMA fights?
Simple: get Alessio Sakara and Jorge Rivera as the co-headliner.
These two have been around for the longest time, and the one thing that sticks out about them is that they both are noted for the Boxing clinics they put on for the crowds.
The great thing about this is that we get to see a standup war between two very talented sluggers in the sport, and there's really no incentive to watch the fight aside from the fact that both men really only go to the ground after they send their opponent to the ground.
With what Sakara and Rivera can do, I think you might as well get comfortable in your chair, enjoy the free fights on Spike, and if you still want to see Pacquiao-Margarito that badly, bring your laptop around you if you have one.
How do you watch any MMA event and not find yourself wondering how the main event will turn out?
I mean, let's just get this down so you all fully comprehend: A TITLE SHOT is on the line for Nate Marquardt or Yushin Okami.
They're either getting arematch with Anderson Silva or an MMA fan's possibly-unfulfillable dream fight with Vitor Belfort.
I say "unfulfillable" because as good as Belfort is, we all know what's likely to happen if he dethrones Silva on Super Bowl Weekend.
He blasted through Rich Franklin, and if he blasts through Anderson Silva, he's likely going to blast through the winner of this one.
Hence, there's that part of me that hopes my UFC 126 prediction is wrong, and that hopes that Anderson Silva beats Vitor Belfort.
As for the winner of this one, I think we're going to see the same Nate Marquardt we've seen in the UFC, except hopefully with better defense on the takedowns, and we may see the best Yushin Okami we've ever seen since the man debuted in the UFC.
If you miss this one, all I will say is "Go to MMA TKO, dude."
Yeah, it's that type of fight.
It's a little tough to say out loud abut Sobotta, since we haven't really seen him in action on the main card of any previous UFC event, but Ludwig, Reljic, and Osipczak we can say have definitely dropped a couple of fights recently.
Regardless of the situation, these four guys are running the risk of being cut from the UFC if they should lose, and we know for sure that either Ludwig or Osipczak will be the one to run that risk because they face each other on Saturday.
Whatever they need to do to turn it around and get a win,they need to do at UFC 122, or else it's off to the proverbial "chopping block" with them.
The basic question here is the matter of how much the German population has warmed up to the UFC and more importantly the sport of MMA since UFC 99.
Remember, the key demographic for the UFC is the 18-34-year-old male, and the people at the Lanxess Arena actually agreed to ban 18-year-olds from attending the event in Cologne.
Hopefully, that will not be the case with this action-packed card in Oberhausen, which features some of the best that the UFC has to offer.