As most of the GuysNation readers likely know, I make predictions for all the UFC events.  This event shall be no different.

Whether it was on purpose or not, each of the fights is basically Brazil vs United States.

Main card

* Middleweight Championship bout:
Brazil – Anderson Silva (c) vs. United States – Chael Sonnen

Rob’s Thoughts: There is a reason why Anderson Silva has won 11 straight fights, having defended the Middleweight Championship 6 straight times.  It’s also the reason why he was able to dance around against Forrest Griffin and Demian Maia.  It’s because he’s the best in the world at what he does, and he knows how to keep winning.  Chael Sonnen wants to talk a lot of smack about Anderson Silva and how he’s soon to be the new Middleweight Champion?  I don’t think so, and I find it hard to believe that Sonnen is going to be able to put away Anderson Silva, as Sonnen has not won a single fight by any means other than by decision in the past 3 years.  Over that span the only fights which ended prior to the end of the allotted time were fights in which Sonnen tapped out.  Unless Anderson Silva has decided that he intends to leave UFC or move up to a different weight class, I really don’t think he’s losing that belt.  This is definitely Anderson Silva’s fight to lose.
Rob’s Prediction: Anderson Silva

* Welterweight bout:
United States – Jon Fitch vs. Brazil – Thiago Alves

Rob’s Thoughts:  Since joining UFC five years ago, Jon Fitch’s only loss was by decision to Georges St Pierre.  He’s currently riding a four fight win-streak and has already defeated Thiago Alves four years ago.  Since that loss 4 years ago, Thiago Alves rattled off seven straight victories (only two by decision) before losing a year ago to Georges St Pierre by decision.  This fight was supposed to happen on UFC 107, but Alves had a knee injury during training, so it got pushed back.  Alves also was deemed unable to fight in the rescheduling at UFC 111 due to an issue with his brain they found during a pre-fight check-up.  I have to say that the 12+ month hiatus from Alves doesn’t instill confidence, and given that Fitch has fought (and won) twice since then leads me to believe that he has the edge.
Rob’s Prediction: Jon Fitch

* Lightweight bout:
United States – Clay Guida vs. Brazil – Rafael dos Anjos

Rob’s Thoughts:  Regardless of who wins this fight, it’s likely going to be a highly entertaining one.  Both of these guys have a history of putting on great shows, so that’s not in question.  I have to give the edge to Clay Guida for this one, as he showed quite a bit in his Fight Of The Night decision loss to Diego Sanchez and had a good fight against Kenny Florian right after that.  His Submission Of The Night victory over Shannon Gugerty in March got him back on track, and I think he’s well poised to win on Saturday.  Rafael dos Anjos does have three consecutive wins coming into this fight, so I wouldn’t be shocked to see him win, but I’m not counting on it.
Rob’s Prediction: Clay Guida

* Welterweight bout:
United States – Matt Hughes vs. Brazil – Ricardo Almeida

Rob’s Thoughts:  If you wanted to take an interesting situation from the UFC and turn it into a movie, this might be the one to look into.  Matt Hughes defeated Royce Gracie four years ago, and then defeated Renzo Gracie 4 months ago back in April.  Now Ricardo Almeida, a student of Renzo Gracie, steps up to see how he fares against the UFC legend.  Almeida comes into this fight with three consecutive victories, including his last fight in his welterweight debut.  While I didn’t pick him in the past due to how I perceived him from The Ultimate Fighter, I’ve changed my opinion on Matt Hughes and I’ll pick him to put down the challenge from the Renzo Gracie Combat Team.
Rob’s Prediction: Matt Hughes

* Heavyweight bout:
United States – Roy Nelson vs. Brazil – Junior dos Santos

Rob’s Thoughts:  This is a really tough fight for me to predict.  Roy Nelson seems like a very smart fighter, and his record shows that he’s only been knocked out once – two years ago by Andrei Arlovski.  His last two fights weren’t exactly against high profile competitors, but he did what he had to do to win those fights, scoring knockouts both times.  The only loss in Junior dos Santos’ career was 3 years ago when he was made to tap out.  Since then, dos Santos rattled off 6 consecutive wins, including five in the UFC – none of them going to decision and only one of them getting past the first round.  I think the factor which does it for me is the caliber of opponents Junior dos Santos has defeated in those past six fights, a list which includes the man who stopped Fedor Emelianenko – Fabricio Werdum, Mirko Cro Cop and Gabriel Gonzaga.
Rob’s Prediction: Junior dos Santos

Preliminary card

* Welterweight bout:
United States – Dustin Hazelett vs. United States – Rick Story

Rob’s Prediction:  Dustin Hazelett (fight superlatives vs going to decision)

* Light Heavyweight bout:
United States – Phil Davis vs. United States – Rodney Wallace

Rob’s Prediction:  Phil Davis (since joining UFC, it’s 2-0 vs 0-2.  Easy pick)

* Light Heavyweight bout:
United States – Tim Boetsch vs. United States – Todd Brown

Rob’s Prediction:  Todd Brown (legit coin flip)

* Welterweight bout:
United States – Johny Hendricks vs. United States Charlie Brenneman

Rob’s Prediction:  Johny Hendricks (plenty of experience in the spotlight)

* Heavyweight bout:
Netherlands – Stefan Struve vs. United States – Christian Morecraft

Rob’s Prediction:  Christian Morecraft (two tall guys, one with knockout power)

* Welterweight bout:
United States – Ben Saunders vs. United States – Dennis Hallman

Rob’s Prediction:  Dennis Hallman (Break the streak!  Hallman has a history of losing in the UFC but winning almost everywhere else and this is the first time he’s ever received a follow-up booking after a UFC loss)