Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix: Predicting it Without Alistair Overeem

Sal DeRoseCorrespondent IJuly 18, 2011

Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix: Predicting it Without Alistair Overeem

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    With Alistair Overeem dropping out of the Strikeforce heavyweight tournament, it leaves a good handful of people now wrong on their original predictions for the tournament—myself included.

    Filling in for Overeem now is Daniel Cormier, who will face Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva in September. Silva is coming off of a big victory over heavyweight great Fedor Emelianenko in the quarterfinals of this tournament.

    So without Overeem in the tournament now, who will be the victor and crowned the winner of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix?

    Would love to hear your predictions for the rest of the tournament in the comments section!

    For unfunny jokes, MMA news and reaction from events, you can follow me on Twitter: @SalDeRoseMMA.

Josh Barnett vs. Sergei Kharitonov

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    Sergei Kharitonov (18-4 MMA, 1-0 Strikeforce)

    Nine wins by knockout, eight by submission, one by decision

    Two losses by knockout, one by submission, one by decision

     

    Josh Barnett (30-5 MMA, 1-0 Strikeforce)

    18 wins by submission, seven by knockout, four by decision, one by disqualification

    Two losses by submission, two by decision, one by knockout

     

    Breakdown: This fight boils down to a classic striker vs. grappler matchup, with Kharitonov being the striker and Barnett being the grappler. Kharitonov is now facing his second former UFC heavyweight champion. In Kharitonov's last fight against Andrei Arlovski, Kharitonov finished off the former champ by KO in round one.

    Barnett is coming off of a big submission victory over Brett Rogers.

    Looking at this fight, one thing sticks out to me, and that is Kharitonov's loss to Jeff Monson, who is a top notch grappler. You bring in someone like Barnett who has really good submission skills and will bring this fight to the ground.

     

    Prediction: Barnett by submission in round two

Antonio Silva vs. Daniel Cormier

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    Daniel Cormier (8-0 MMA, 5-0 Strikeforce)

    Three wins by knockout, three by submission, two by decision

    No losses

     

    Antonio Silva (16-2 MMA, 3-1 Strikeforce)

    11 wins by knockout, three by submission, two by decision

    One loss by knockout, one by decision

     

    Breakdown: Honestly, I think this is where the road ends for Cormier. He does have some good wrestling, but his size is much like Fedor Emelianenko's, and we all saw how Silva dominated Fedor.

    I see Silva being able to take down Cormier—even with that wrestling background—and just pounding out Cormier much like his fight against Fedor.

     

    Prediction: Silva by TKO in round two

Antonio Silva vs. Josh Barnett

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    Antonio Silva (16-2 MMA, 3-1 Strikeforce)

    11 wins by knockout, three by submission, two by decision

    One loss by knockout, one by decision

     

    Josh Barnett (30-5 MMA, 1-0 Strikeforce)

    18 wins by submission, seven by knockout, four by decision, one by disqualification

    Two losses by submission, two by decision, one by knockout

     

    Breakdown: This is a perfect matchup for both fighters. Silva is a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and Barnett is another well accomplished grappler bringing some nice catch wrestling to this fight.

    I think personally, Barnett holds the upper hand here. Silva isn't going to be able to pummel him on the ground, and Barnett is going to be tough as nails to submit. 

    Barnett has the superior wrestling and should be able to hold down and attack Silva.

     

    Prediction: Barnett by unanimous decision