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Maggie Hendricks

Spike to air UFC 104 preliminary fights, but still no Okami


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As they first did for UFC 103, Spike will air two of the preliminary fights from UFC 104 next Saturday. This plan worked out well for 103, so it makes sense that they would do it again. It's a great thing for fans. What I don't understand is why they chose the fights they did.

It’ll be déjà vu at its best when Spike TV beams in select fights from the undercard at UFC 104, starting with Ryan “Darth” Bader vs. Eric Schafer. In what’s beginning to look like a trend, Spike will bring another one-hour window of undercard fights into your living room live, free and uninterrupted. Also featured will be Antoni Hardonk’s heavyweight matchup with Pat Barry.

Yushin Okami vs. Chael Sonnen, on the other hand, still probably won't be shown.

It's not that Schafer/Bader and Hardonk/Barry won't be good fights, but Okami is a fighter who deserves some air time. His only losses in the past five years are to Rich Franklin and Jake Shields. His win over Anderson Silva via disqualification was hardly a fluke, as Okami managed to take Silva down and control him on the ground before Silva threw an illegal upkick.

He has been sidelined by injury, but there are plenty of fighters who had bad injury luck. That doesn't mean he should always be relegated to the undercard. Hopefully, there will be enough fast fights that Okami/Sonnen will air either on Spike or the pay-per-view.

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