Vanderlei Silva vs. Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson
Vanderlei’s career is like a Friday the 13th movie except for one thing; instead of the axe-murderer springing back to life again and again, it’s his victims. Sakuraba led the charge and took three of the most savage beat-downs ever. Now Jackson takes over the ‘we, the dead’ campaign and hopes he’ll get better results this time around, which is very likely since their last fight ended with 22 unanswered knees and kicks to the face of Jackson. What kind of a dude takes a beating like that and thinks “Oh, I almost had him”!? Silva will beat him to death this time, unless he makes the same mistake Ricardo Arona did and ends up under the pile-driver ...
Josh Barnett vs. Mirko 'Cro Cop' Filipovic
Barnett has three choices:
1) He can trade strikes and get kicked in the head 2) He can shoot and get kicked in the head 3) He can try to punch his way into an upper-body clinch and get punched in the head and then kicked in the head once he falls down.
Regardless, after this fight he’ll be joining Ron Waterman and Alexander Emelienko in the “Thought I could tackle Cro Cop” lounge and intensive care unit for ice-packs and morphine martinis.
Dan Henderson vs. Kazuhiro Nakamura
Bustamante is a better boxer than Nakamura and would’ve won their fight if he’d just stood and traded punches. Instead he kept trying spectacularly fancy half-guard sweeps while Nakamura dropped bombs Iraq-style. Not only is Henderson a better boxer than Nakamura, he’s also much better at takedowns so unless he comes into the fight wearing a judo gi, Nak is getting smashed.
Mark Hunt vs. Dan Bobish
Bobish weighs about as much as a refrigerator and moves about as fast. He’s built for wrestling and judo and I wouldn’t want to grapple with him but (news flash) in MMA you don’t have to! Instead you can take advantage of the fact that his arms are about a foot long and stand just out of range, swatting him around the ring like a huge, drunken pre-schooler. Igor Vovchanchyn and Gary Goodridge figured it out, so imagine what a K1 Champ like Hunt will do.
Alistair Overeem vs. Hiromitsu Kanehara
Kanehara has a head like a bowling ball. He KO’d Valentin Overeem in Rings Holland in 2000, but has since made a career of getting mercilessly thrashed by all the top-level guys, and would be dead if he weren't so damn tough. Overeem had Liddell on the ropes until he got overconfident and paid the gods of Karma for showboating with a brutal KO. Kanehara seems to subscribe to the style of banzai-jitsu, so he’ll probably be dumb enough to trade strikes with Overeem and pay the gods of karma himself …
Alexander Emelianenko vs. James Thompson
Thompson is 6’5” and 264lbs, but he’s still not half as scary as the tattoos on Emelianenko’s back. The Grim Reaper holding a baby? That’s just weird. Even weirder, Emelianenko is actually the bigger guy, standing 6’6” and weight 275lbs and most weird of all, Pride signed them to fight each other instead of in mismatches against much smaller Japanese guys like Tamura and Yamamoto, who are probably still having nightmares about fighting Bob Sapp.
Ricardo Arona vs. Sergei Ignachov
Acai vs. Turnips. Beaches vs. Tundra. Sunshine vs. Snow. The Brazilan Top Team vs. Russian Top Team battle continues. That spells disaster for Ignachov considering the record so far, which includes Minotaru beating both Volk Han and Sergei Kharitonov, and Mario Sperry kicking out the teeth of Andrei Kopylov. Now the Russians send their ‘new guy’ to fight one of BTT’s best guys? That Russian vodka must be more powerful than I thought.