UFC returns to network television for the third time on Saturday with four bouts on Fox and six on Fuel TV. What questions will be answered when the fights are over?
1. Is Johny Hendricks ready for the big time? Since losing to Rick Story in 2010, Hendricks has been on a tear. He won three straight fights, including a 12-second knockout of Jon Fitch. His last test before being promised a title shot is Josh Koscheck, a one-time welterweight contender who has equally impressive wrestling credentials.
2. Does Nate Diaz deserve a title shot? UFC president Dana White says with a win over Jim Miller, yes. Diaz won his last two fights, but lost the two before that. The lightweight belt is being contested in August and Anthony Pettis is waiting in the wings. Even with a win, Diaz may have some time on his hands before fighting for UFC gold.
3. Is Josh Koscheck over the hill? Koscheck is 34. Hendricks is 28. That age difference means it's easy to look at the fight as old fogie vs. young buck, but Koscheck took offense, calling any media who pointed out the gap between their ages "retards." If he wants to prove he's not an old man, he needs to give a better showing in the cage against Hendricks than he did against Mike Pierce in February, when he barely won a split decision.
4. Will Pat Barry vs. Lavar Johnson last more than a minute? This bout kicks off the month of the heavyweight, and it promises to be the perfect way to start a May that will feature the Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix finals and UFC 146's all heavyweight main card. Barry and Johnson have 20 knockout wins between them. Chances are that number will be 21 by the time the bout is over.
5. How do the latest crop of "The Ultimate Fighter" products stand up? The preliminary card, airing on Fuel TV and Fox Deportes, is full of TUF castmembers from the past few seasons. John Dodson, Louis Gaudinot and Dennis Bermudez are getting their first shots at fights outside of the TUF finale, and this is their chance to show they're more than just good TV.
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