UFC on Fuel TV 8: Silva vs. Stann Fight Card, TV Info, Predictions and More

Brian Mazique@@UniqueMaziqueCorrespondent IIIFebruary 28, 2013

image from UFC Facebook
image from UFC Facebook

UFC on Fuel 8 is a huge event for several fighters scheduled to appear, but there are serious implications for the two combatants in the main event. Brian Stann and Wanderlei Silva desperately need a win, but as we know, there can be only one winner.

Silva's legendary career has perhaps gone on too long, and Stann is on the verge of becoming an also-ran. The man that comes out on the short end of the stick in this light heavyweight bout will have some questions to answer about his career.

That's just one of the fights on the card from Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. Here's how you can catch the action, a look at the full fight card and my predictions.

Also, be sure to check out this video from The Ultimate Show and Bleacher Report's UFC lead writer Jeremy Botter.

When: Saturday, March 2, 7 p.m. ET

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Where: Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan

Live Stream: Facebook (Preliminaries at 7 p.m.)

TV: Fuel TV at 10 p.m. ET

Fight Card

Main Event - Wanderlei Silva vs. Brian Stann

Mark Hunt vs. Stefan Struve

Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Dong Hyun Kim

Riki Fukuda vs. Brad Tavares

Bryan Caraway vs. Takeya Mizugaki

Marcelo Guimaraes vs. Hyun Gyu Lim

Alex Caceres vs. Kyung Ho Kang

Cristiano Marcello vs. Kazuki Tokudome

Mizuto Hirota vs. Rani Yahya

Hector Lombard vs. Yushin Okami

Takanori Gomi vs. Diego Sanchez

Predictions for Main Card

Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Dong Hyun Kim

If you simply look at the recent track record of South Korean fighter Hyun Kim, it would appear he is due for a loss. He has been stuck in a win-one, lose-one pattern for the last two years.

The man they call the Stun Gun will be looking to break the trend against the very powerful and dangerous Bahadurzada. 

Bahadurzada made an explosive UFC debut by knocking out Paulo Thiago in April 2012. Despite Bahadurzada's impressive debut, he has been out of action for nearly a year.

That absence has somewhat stamped out any momentum he could have established, and Hyun Kim was reportedly hoping to get a more well-known opponent for the event, per Fighters Only.

Will this cause him to be a little over-confident? I believe so.

Bahadurzada is not one to take lightly, and I predict he will re-establish a bit of his momentum with another KO win at the expense of Hyun Kim.

Prediction: Bahadurzada by KO

Mizuto Hirota vs. Rani Yahya

Hirota hasn't fared well in his last two bouts, but perhaps fighting in front of his fellow countrymen will help him. Facing Yahya is no easy task, though.

I've always liked his style dating back to his days in WEC.

Hirota is the more dangerous striker and he'll have the decided advantage if this fight doesn't go to the ground. Even if it does, in viewing Hirota's past bouts, he has never dealt with submission artists like Yahya well.

This is an intriguing matchup of styles, but I predict the home crowd and Hirota's striking will lead to a victory.

Prediction: Hirota by unanimous decision

Yushin Okami vs. Hector Lombard

There was a time that if you said these two guys were battling, it would have been cause for a ton of excitement. Now, that level of intrigue is reduced to just a cautious interest.

Despite a rather celebrated arrival in the UFC, Lombard has not lived up to the billing as a dynamic striker. Okami has also had his ups and downs.

Both are coming off wins in their last fights (Okami has won his last two) and that helps the prospects of this battle. It could be a candidate for Fight of the Night, or it could be a complete letdown.

If Lombard is the same guy that destroyed Rousimar Palhares in his last fight, Okami must take this fight to the ground. He is generally able to smother and maul his opponents there.

However, Lombard is compact, powerful and explosive at his best, and that could be a difficult task.

Though I'm generally not a fan, I'm going with Okami in this fight. At 35 years old, I think UFC fans may have missed out on the Lombard that was truly exciting, and Okami will out-work him on the ground.

Prediction: Okami by unanimous decision

Takanori Gomi vs. Diego Sanchez

If you're wondering which fighter is likely to get the biggest pop from the crowd at UFC on Fuel 8, I'm betting it's Gomi. The Japanese legend will undoubtedly have the crowd behind him, and that will make him even more dangerous.

His unorthodox striking style is always entertaining to watch, as is his passion and energy in the Octagon.

Sanchez is a former UFC champion, and he has been competing in the promotion since 2005. He has tons of experience, and he is exceptionally tough.

He's only been stopped once in his career, and that was by doctor's decision against the great B.J. Penn at UFC 107 in 2009. His grappling gets the most credit, but he is an underrated striker. 

It's been over a year since he last fought, but Sanchez is solid enough on his feet to compete with Gomi. His true advantage will come once he takes Gomi to the mat, which will happen. 

Gomi has been susceptible to submissions in his career. Five of his eight losses have come by tapout, and I predict Sanchez will add another submission loss to his record.

Prediction: Sanchez by submission

Mark Hunt vs. Stefan Struve

This fight will be a spectacle simply because of the massive height difference. Struve stands 7'0" and Hunt is just 5'10".

Hunt does have tons of power in that compact frame, though. It has been a year since he last fought, but he's won his last three fights. That includes chopping down Cheick Kongo in the first round of their meeting at UFC 144.

But Struve is a much bigger tree.

His size, kickboxing and submission skills make him an exciting fighter to watch, but he has shown vulnerability to the early KO in his career.

Four of his five losses have come by way of first-round KO, and Hunt definitely has the power to add to that total. Yet I don't think that will happen in this fight.

Struve has won his last four bouts, and I see him using his length and stamina advantage to wear down Hunt. If he makes it out of the first round, he should be home free. 

Prediction: Struve by unanimous decision

Wanderlei Silva vs. Brian Stann

In my opinion, Stann is best suited for the announcer's table and Silva should be retiring, but that isn't the case just yet. The fighter that loses this fight will be one step closer to his respective fate, though.

Stann looked like a strong up-and-coming contender at one time, but he was totally out-classed by both Chael Sonnen and Michael Bisping. 

I'm not sure he has what it takes to be an elite fighter, but I love his analyst work for Fox during UFC events. 

Silva's career probably should have ended four years ago. He's lost four of his last six fights, and each of those losses came at the hands of guys who are also past their prime (Rich Franklin twice, Rampage Jackson and Chris Leben).

Though he still has some power, his reflexes and speed have declined to a point that should make him an easy mark for Stann.

Prediction: Stann by KO

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