I am picking Rich Franklin to defeat Vitor Belfort and Junior dos Santos to defeat Cro Cop. Both fights were tough for me to pick because I haven’t seen much fight video for 3 out of 4 of these guys, the exception being Rich Franklin.
I based my predictions on my assessement of their records and fighting styles. All four seem to prefer stand up to ground game and they like to throw big punches, and in the case of Cro Cop big kicks too. I expect both fights to end with KO’s or TKO’s, one way or another. I feel like I’m putting more guesswork into these picks than I usually do, but I have no choice.
UFC 103 POST FIGHT
Well, I went 1 and 1 on predicted outcomes. Franklin was KO’d fairly easily by Belfort in the first round and dos Santos won a hard fought, brutal battle with Cro Cop in three rounds. Cro Cop had to ask the ref to stop the fight due to catching a punch right in the eye. He simply could not see and defend himself at that stage.
With those defeats the UFC careers of both Cro Cop and Franklin may have come to an end. It definitely looks like Cro Cop is done after that beating. Franklin did not sustain a lot damage in his quick defeat, but one has to wonder where he goes from here. The Middle weight division is dominated by Anderson Silva, who destroyed Franklin twice and the Light Heavy weight division probably has at least 5 or 6 fighters who are superior to Franklin. The road back to the top will be a hard one for him.