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Fantasy Breakdown - UFC 100

Stephen Quinn, UFC - It’s the biggest event in UFC history, and the only way to get ready to make your Fantasy picks for UFC 100 is to check out the fantasy breakdown.
By Stephen Quinn

It’s the biggest event in UFC history, and the only way to get ready to make your Fantasy picks for UFC 100 is by checking out the fantasy breakdown.

ALAN BELCHER VS. YOSHIHIRO AKIYAMA
Fighting out of Biloxi, Miss., Alan Belcher has relished the opportunity to start the Pay-Per-View card this Saturday, and at 13-4, Belcher is looking to build on his last two wins and move closer to a title shot.

With a record of 12-1, 2 NC, Akiyama is making his long-awaited UFC debut, and despite his popularity in Japan, he will definitely gain a much larger fan base than he has had in the past, so it will be interesting to see if either fighter crumbles under the pressure of opening up the biggest event in UFC history.

When the Octagon gate closes on Saturday night, we will be watching for the style that Belcher comes out with. Known to be comfortable wherever the fight goes, expect Belcher to keep the fight standing, looking to stay away from the strong Judo Akiyama possesses. If the fight does end up on the mat, look for Akiyama to keep the action going so the fight isn’t stood up. On the other hand, Belcher will look to stall so he can get the fight back to the feet.

Method of Finish? Decision
Likely to go the distance? Yes

DAN HENDERSON VS. MICHAEL BISPING

Both of these fighters are closing in on a shot at UFC gold but the loser knows that he’ll have to get back on line for another shot, making this a pivotal bout for each fighter.

While in PRIDE, Dan Henderson had concurrently held both the 205 and 183 pound titles. It’s hard to argue that he wasn’t the best fighter in the world during that time period. However, the transformation from PRIDE to the UFC has not been so kind to him. After losing his first two fights in the UFC, Henderson has rebounded to show the type of elite fighter he was while in Japan. Henderson knows that with a win on Saturday, he may be only one step away from holding another belt – this time from the UFC.

The pride of Manchester, England and product of season three of The Ultimate Fighter, Bisping is trying to become the first United Kingdom born fighter to become a champion in the UFC. Although this fight is not a championship fight, he will be put at the front of the line for that chance. The ultra-driven Bisping will do anything he can to not make that happen. With the caliber of talent at 185-pounds, there’s no telling how long it would take for another shot. Since being a contestant on season 3 of The Ultimate Fighter, Bisping has amassed an impressive 6-1 record. His only setback, to Rashad Evans, was considered controversial. After that defeat, Bisping came to the conclusion that moving down in weight would be in his best interest. His choice has seemed to work out perfectly.

In this fight, look for Bisping to keep the fight standing. While on his feet, his speed and standup can keep Henderson guessing. Henderson, on the other hand, will look to use his world-class caliber wrestling skills to bring the action down to the mat or try to clock Bisping with his formidable right hand while standing. If the fight does go to the ground, Henderson should be able to control the action rather easily, though Bisping has proven quite difficult to hold down for long.

Method of Finish? TKO
Likely to go the distance? No

JON FITCH VS. PAULO THIAGO

Quite possibly the most underrated fighter in the UFC, Jon Fitch will look to use the platform of being on the biggest stage in the history of the UFC to gain fans from around the world. The last time fans saw Fitch on a big stage was when he gave an extraordinarily gutsy performance during a one-sided loss to current welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre. Prior to his disappointing defeat to St-Pierre, he had won eight consecutive fights in the UFC, and with wins over Josh Burkman, Diego Sanchez, and Thiago Alves, many surmised that his well-rounded skills would keep him atop the welterweight division for a very long time. And although St. Pierre mastered him in every aspect of the fight, the American Kickboxing Academy fighter rebounded quickly with a 15-minute decision win against Akihiro Gono. Although he holds an impressive 22-3-1 record, Fitch knows that a loss on Saturday will send him searching for his place in the 170-pound division.

At a perfect 11-0, Paulo Thiago, like all fighters fighting on Saturday night, knows the importance of putting on a spectacular show when the gate closes comes fight time. Thiago shocked many people when he made quick work of Jon Fitch’s teammate, Josh Koscheck. With that win, people started to take notice of the Brazilian standout.

In this fight, look for Fitch to use his wrestling ability to bring the action to the canvas. On the other hand, Fitch has continued to show a continued improvement in his standup, but although he has shown great improvement, he will likely use his wrestling ability to set up everything else that his arsenal possesses. Thiago's strategy will be more interesting. Will he again be content to stand and trade -- as was the case against Koscheck -- or will the BJJ black belt engage in a ground war with Fitch, who also happens to be a jiu-jitsu black belt under Dave Camarillo?

Method of Finish? TKO
Likely to go the distance? No

GEORGES ST-PIERRE VS. THIAGO ALVES

In what could be the Fight of the Year, let alone Fight of the Night, expect both of these fighters to take their game to an even higher level than they usually do inside of the Octagon. With Alves trying to gain respect and St-Pierre trying to pad his legacy, that’s not a hard thing to do.

Wanting to be known as the greatest fighter in the history of the UFC, GSP will be making his 11th appearance in MMA's marquee show. This fight, however, is what St-Pierre is calling the toughest fight in his stellar career. The native of Montreal, Canada knows that his performance on Saturday night will go a long way towards getting him to where he wants to ultimately be. Having already beaten the likes of Matt Hughes (twice), BJ Penn (twice), and Jon Fitch, adding Thiago Alves will only strengthen his case and perhaps push him above Anderson Silva on some pound-for-pound rankings. After suffering quite possibly the most devastating loss of his career, against Matt Serra, people began to question the mental toughness of St-Pierre. The charismatic Canadian quickly proved he is still a major force, rattling off five straight victories over formable opposition. St-Pierre is the consummate mixed martial artist, on and off the mat, and he believes that people still haven’t seen everything that he has to offer.

With an impressive 22-4 overall record and having won seven straight, Thiago Alves believes that he, not St-Pierre is the best the 170-pound division has to offer. During his current winning streak, Alves has crushed the likes of Karo Parisyan, Josh Koscheck, and former UFC champion Matt Hughes. But a win over St-Pierre would make the Brazilian an instant star.

Both of these fighters match up extremely well and with their strength and cardio, and athleticism, we could see a non-stop action fight for 25 minutes. Although Alves has increasingly improved his ground game, expect him to stay on his feet for as long as possible. St-Pierre doesn’t believe he will have a problem off the canvas, but still expect him to use his wrestling skills to bring the fight to the mat. St-Pierre knows that he will face the least amount of risk if Alves is on his back.
Method of Finish? TKO
Likely to go the distance? No

BROCK LESNAR VS. FRANK MIR

This is a fight that both fighters have wanted since the last time they fought. With both holding a portion of the UFC heavyweight belt, we will finally get to see who is the true champion in the division.

Mir has had a rollercoaster career in and out of the Octagon. After becoming one of the rising stars in the UFC, Mir suffered a serious motorcycle accident that forced him to relinquish his UFC belt. After months of dealing with personal issues, Mir decided that it was time for him to get back doing what he does best – fighting. But Mir’s plan to get back into the thick of the heavyweight division didn’t go quite as he had hoped. He didn’t look like the fighter that many fans had grown to love as he suffered devastating losses to Marcio Cruz and Brandon Vera. After that, however, Mir weathered the storm in his fight against Lesnar – showing the heart to come from behind for a 90-second submission victory. The most impressive win of his career came at UFC 92 by beating Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. In that fight, Mir showed that he could not only beat one of the best fighters in the world but dominate them as well. In the main event of this Saturday’s fight card, Mir has two goals: regain his UFC title and prove to people that his victory over Lesnar was no fluke.

With only a 2-1 UFC record, Brock Lesnar has accomplished practically everything you can in that short of time span. The massive Minnesotan has won the heavyweight title and now is hours away from headlining the most anticipated card in UFC history. It was in his first fight in the UFC that he ran into submission specialist Frank Mir. When the fight started, it didn’t take long for people to see that Lesnar was going to be a force. After immediately taking Mir to the ground, it seemed Mir was going to be beaten fairly quickly but because referee Steve Mazzagatti penalized Lesnar a point for hitting behind the head and stood the action back up -- quite controversially, it should be noted -- Mir was able to regain his wits. In what many called a simple mistake, Lesnar was stopped by a kneebar. If anything can be looked at as a positive when losing, this is one of those cases. People didn’t expect to see Lesnar look so dominating versus the former world champion. Lesnar then trounced Heath Herring over three rounds, and once again proved people wrong by stopping Randy Couture to win the heavyweight title. On Saturday, he’ll get his shot at showing people he is as good as the hype that has surrounded him.

Look for this fight to be quite different then the first one. Lesnar knows that being over-aggressive like he was in their first bout could lead to making another simple mistake. For Mir, who is the more experienced fighter, we may see him be the aggressor – keeping Lesnar on his toes. Mir will need to watch out when trying to close the distance due to the strength that Lesnar possesses. If the fight goes into the later rounds, Lesnar's strength and cardio seem to give him a significant advantage over Mir, who has a history of gassing if he doesn't finish his opponents in the first round.

Method of Finish? TKO
Likely to go the distance? No
일요일, 10월 26
11AM
KST
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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