Both UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz and former UFC fighter, Kenny Florian believe that former light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort (21-9) can defeat current champion Jon "Bones" Jones (16-1).
Dominick Cruz's prediction on Jones vs. Belfort
On the "UFC Weigh-in Show on FUEL TV," Dominick Cruz offered his opinion on what Jon Jones and Vitor Belfort need to do during their five round championship fight to gain an advantage. "Jon Jones needs to keep the fight on his pace. Vitor needs to keep the distance with his lead leg and get inside to deliver strikes... Jones is so good at establishing his range--and he forces you to get impatient. You have to take shots on the inside and get the angles."
Prediction: "I'll go Belfort within three rounds."
Kenny Florian's prediction on Jones vs. Belfort
Kenny Florian believes Vitor can defeat Jones, "We saw that range established in the fight with Lyoto Machida [at UFC 140]. He was patient and he won that first round. You can't be frazzled by Jon Jones. You can't let that take you over and you have to stick to the game plan...Vitor is so explosive. He jumps on you early. He always goes for the head. Jon Jones has to be careful of those head strikes. Vitor has all the skills to beat Jones. He has great boxing skills and he starts very, very fast. Look for a fast start from Vitor Belfort.
Prediction: "Belfort for the upset."
My prediction on Jones vs. Belfort
I checked FightMetric to see what the stats show to help me decide who I think will win.
It's well known that Jon Jones has the longest reach in the UFC: 84.5" for Jones and 74" for Belfort. Even for an experienced boxer like Belfort, that reach advantage will present some problems. The fight metrics show Jones as the busier fighter, landing 3.9 significant strikes per minute compared to 1.4 for Belfort.
Average takedowns: Jones has 2.8 and Belfort has 1.4 takedowns within a 15 minute period.
Kenny and Dom must be waxing nostalgic for the good old days of UFC when Belfort was King. If Vitor does use his southpaw stance to close the distance and fight inside with short shots and dirty boxing, he might have a winning game plan.
Prediction: "Jon Jones to win."
Will fans boo Jon Jones during his walkout at UFC 152?
It will be interesting to see how fans in Toronto respond to Jon Jones as he makes his entrance at UFC 152. I'm getting bored with the feud between him and UFC president Dana White. Whatever fans think of Jones' decision, he made it already and the consequences are playing out.
I believe Jonny "Bones" Jones will get a mixed reaction when he enters the octagon. Some fighters get distracted, other fighters get motivated by the crowd's positive or negative reaction.
Dana White responded to a question about whether Jon Jones' remarks at the press conference helped or hurt the relationship. "It was false that he didn't know that UFC 151 would be cancelled, if he didn't take the fight. I told him it would. I think he's acting like he's taking it all very lightly. There was a lot of collateral damage from the fall out. He needs to take it seriously. There's been a lot of fans turn on him."
UFC 152: Jones vs Belfort on PPV, live from Toronto, Ontario, Canada 7 pm PT / 10 pm ET.
Prelims at 5 pm PT / 8 pm ET on FX.
UFC 152 weigh-in video
Source: show notes from UFC 152: Jones vs Belfort Weigh-in on FUEL TV 9/21/12
More from this contributor:
Cheryl Ragsdale started out boxing and has added kicks and BJJ so she can practice MMA. Currently, she trains with Keith Florian and has trained with UFC Fighter Kenny Florian at Florian Martial Arts - follow @thatgirlisfunny
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