UFC 168 will come to us live from Las Vegas on Saturday night. What will happen? Check out the predictions from Yahoo Sports columnist Kevin Iole, Cagewriter's Elias Cepeda, and Cagereaders like you. And be sure to put your own picks in the comments section below!
Dustin Poirier vs. Diego Brandao
Kevin Iole: Dustin Poirier SUB3 Diego Brandao – The longer this fight goes, the worse it will be for Brandao. The Brazilian came in an astonishing seven pounds over the featherweight limit. He'll come out strong, as always, but look for him to fade and Poirier to take over.
Elias Cepeda: Dustin Poirier W3 Diego Brandao – Tough fight to call. Brandao is definitely the hotter and more consistent of the two, winning four out of his five UFC bouts. Poirier, on the other hand, has gone just .500 in his last four bouts. That said, I'm going with Poirier. I think the Louisiana native has faced the better competition and should be primed for another climb up the featherweight ladder.
Jim Miller vs. Fabricio Camoes
Kevin Iole: Jim Miller SUB3 Fabricio Camoes – Miller is an all-around better fighter and will catch Camoes in a submission after a scramble in the latter half of the fight.
Elias Cepeda: Jim Miller SUB3 Fabricio Camoes – Jim Miller's rough patch of late does not reflect what an elite fighter he is. Miller has added lethal standup striking to his excellent wrestling and submissions in recent years and he's about tough of an out as there is in the lightweight division. I'll pick Miller to survive the submission attempts of the Royler Gracie-coached Fabricio Camoes and damage the Brazilian enough with strikes on the feet to nab his own submission late.
Josh Barnett vs. Travis Browne
Kevin Iole: Josh Barnett W3 Travis Browne: Barnett has so many ways to win and is so smart in the cage. It’s going to be a close fight and I think Josh’s submission attempts will enable him to pull out a win.
Elias Cepeda: Josh Barnett TKO1 Travis Browne – Just to be contrarian, I picked Travis Browne to beat Josh Barnett in Cagewriter's Celebrity Head-to-Head with UFC fighter Matt Brown, but the smart money is on Josh Barnett. Browne is tough and durable, but Barnett's experience and submission ability will probably be enough to beat the proud Hawaiian. Barnett will want to start fast like he did against Frank Mir though, because Brown's gas tank could cause Barnett problems if the fight drags on.
Cagereader: Josh Barnett...by submission. No way it'll go to decision.
Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate
Kevin Iole: Ronda Rousey SUB1 Miesha Tate – Miesha’s fights against Julie Kedzie and Cat Zingano don’t give me the confidence to believe she’s improved enough to change the result of the first fight with Ronda.
Elias Cepeda: Ronda Rousey SUB1 Miesha Tate – Tate is a live dog in this one but you simply can't bet against the "Rowdy" one right now. She's the more aggressive and ruthless fighter, and the one with the better chance of finishing.
Cagereader: I hope Tate wins and there is a great chance that Ronda gets pushed to a decision here as it is her first rematch, and Tate knows exactly what to expect. That said I still feel Ronda is too strong and too athletic and gets the 'W'. – Brian Zamora
Cagereader: As long as Rousey doesn't get out of control, she's going to overwhelm Tate and beat her mercilessly. THEN she's going to armbar her. – Daniel Whitford
Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva
Kevin Iole: Chris Weidman SUB3 Anderson Silva – Weidman’s jiu-jitsu is vastly underrated and I think he’ll get several submission opportunities following takedowns. This is a very hard fight to pick because Anderson’s striking is so phenomenal and he could catch Chris from anywhere at just about any time, but as I usually do, when in doubt, go with the superior wrestler.
Elias Cepeda: Chris Weidman TKO1 Anderson Silva – Chris Weidman didn't just knock out a clowning Anderson Silva last summer at UFC 162, the New Yorker beat the long-time champ everywhere. Before Weidman knocked Silva out, he slipped most of Silva's punches, took him down with ease, battered him on the ground and nearly submitted "The Spider" with a leg lock. If Weidman aggressively and relentlessly pursues the takedown and doesn't voluntarily give up hard-earned top position (like he did in the first fight), I think he will finish Silva with strikes on the ground or a choke.
Cagereader: I don't think you can bet against Silva even after the last fight. I think he outworks Weidman and eventually gets a KO within the first few rounds. – Gabriel Gonzalez
Cagereader: A motivated Silva is a scary thought. If he comes out aggressive, it very well could be a quick end to Weidman's championship reign. If he plays the same kind of games and doesn't make an effort, Silva might be done for good. –Daniel Whitford
Cagereader: I have Anderson Silva by knockout in the second. He'll feel Weidman out the first round, which maybe Weidman will win, then Anderson 'The Spider' Silva will do what he does: move, punch at strange angles, embarrass Weidman like so many other before him. – Curtis James Ballard