John Heinis: The only fight on the card the majority of fans want to see has some serious title implications on the line...sort of.
A win for Munoz could put him as high as a top three guy in the division, while a win for Leben probably leaves him two to three fights from another title shot.
However, Munoz is a Black House teammate of middleweight champion Anderson Silva, so who knows if a Silva-Munoz title fight would ever come to fruition (not that anyone was salivating for that match up anyway).
Meanwhile, Leben has won four of his past five, but when the most notable (and most recent) win is over Wanderlei Silva, survey says you're still a ways away from title contention.
Nevertheless, is is impossible to deny both those guys are fun to watch and make for a decent main event on Spike (for our American fans at least).
Munoz is coming off of a very close win over Demian Maia at UFC 131, which needless to say made his stock in the division skyrocket.
The former two-time All-American wrestler has a big advantage on paper, given that Leben is a brawler with a very basic grappling game.
"The Filipino Wrecking Machine" also has some heavy hands and a good chin, which really makes this an uphill battle for "The Crippler."
As always, Leben has a puncher's chance and will be game for a war, but I really don't see Munoz losing this one.
Mark Munoz via unanimous decision (30-27)
Jordy McElroy: “The Crippler” meets “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” in a bout that could decide a future contender for the UFC middleweight title.
As the main event, this fight is set for five rounds, but it’s doubtful these two sluggers go the distance.
Coming off a first round knockout victory over MMA legend Wanderlei Silva at UFC 132, Chris Leben is a hard-nosed striker with an underrated guard game.
He seems to have an appetite for punches, seeing as he’s always willing to take multiple strikes in an attempt to counter with a haymaker.
Despite his above average chin, Leben will have to be careful in the pocket against Mark Munoz, a former NCAA Division I wrestling champion with vicious knockout power in both hands.
Munoz should be the favorite in this fight, but his tendency to engage in ill-advised slugfests on the feet could cost him.
With such a great wrestling pedigree, the sky is the limit for Munoz, but at times, he feels the need to throw his game plan out the window and sit in the pocket winging punches.
Leben has a great chance in stealing this fight if he can draw Munoz into sloppy, unnecessary exchanges, but with a potential title shot in view, the former Oklahoma State Cowboy will show caution on the feet, take advantage of Leben’s lackluster striking defense and mix in takedowns.
Munoz will earn the second round TKO stoppage and continue his march towards the UFC title.
Mark Munoz by Round 2 TKO
Dwight Wakabayashi: In obviously the biggest fight of the night with key implications in the middleweight division, Chris Leben wants to keep his train rolling against an equally game Munoz.
Leben and his stock are on a serious rise, his loss to Brian Stann aside, he has beaten some tough hombres in his last five fights.
We all know the brawlers style and there is a lot on the line in this fight and look for Leben to try and bully and beat Munoz from the top position.
He has the harder head but the inferior wrestling in this one and he better be ready to sprawl.
Mark Munoz is on an impressive roll himself and coming off a razor thin win over Damian Maia at UFC 131 in June. His three fight win streak has seen him use excellent wrestling and top level strength to beat the likes of C.B. Dollaway and Aaron Simpson.
At 11-2 overall Munoz knows his strengths and he plays to them and he will want to take Leben down quickly and dominate him from there and conditioning is never an issue.
Mark Munoz via unanimous decision
Dale De Souza: Mark Munoz believes that this fight will be a battle between two guys that will fight to win every time, and I believe him.
I believe that although Munoz has gone to the judges before and although Leben has lost convincingly before, both men will try and throw bombs, both men will trade shots down the stretch of each frame, and they will try to do enough to win the fight as opposed to "not losing" the fight.
When Mark Munoz says that, I for one believe him, but is it really worth it when a wrestler of his caliber opts to trade bombs with a zombie like Leben, knowing full well that he puts on memorable fights based solely on his ability to take and give punches?
Does Munoz really want to stand with a guy that cut a fight with Wanderlei Silva short by 27 seconds in what was supposed to be a Fight of The Year candidate in the eyes of some?
If he does...well, I don't want to quote Michael Bisping, so I won't, but he might be a little bit off his rocker.
See, there is a difference in this fight that will show, and that difference is this:
Mark Munoz hits guys hard, but Chris Leben hits guys harder, and whether Munoz likes it or not, Leben will hit Munoz harder than Munoz has ever hit anybody before.
Chris Leben by 3rd round KO