The UFC returns to the Queen City of Cincinnati, Ohio for Fight Night 40. The last time I remember UFC being in Cincy, a Brazilian dude named Silva kneed an American dude from Ohio to death in the main event. If you want to know more about the particulars and specifics of the fighters, take a peep at the UFC’s official Fight Night 40 page. Now, let’s get into who’s fighting, who’s winning, and who’s prognosticating. As always, I am the papakha rocka, Jessica “Leg Kick TKO” Hudnall, there’s “Blake BROrtles” Burnsy, the man who kicks like a fighting chicken and fights like a kicking chicken, Vince “Film Drunk” Mancini, former fighter, current beer enthusiast, and future “Florida man” police blotter suspect, Danny “Boy” Downes, there’s the man who’s drunken gropes of Andrew Cuomo are the real reason MMA is banned in the Empire State, Eric
New York Ric” Jackman. Finally, we have a new contributor, a legend beyond compare. The founder of Wallabee Top Team and the don of the Dagestani Knucklegame Cartel, THE GOD, Ghost Face Killah on MMA.
Jessica: 87-35-2 (70%)
Burnsy: 82-39-3 (66%)
Vince: 44-11-1 (79%)
Danny: 51-17-1 (74%)
Eric: 26-13-1 (65%)
Welterweight – Albert “Einstein” Tumenov vs Anthony “The Recipe” Lapsley
Jessica: Tumenov let me down once before, but dang it, I just can’t get mad at a dude nicknamed “Einstein”. Lapsley isn’t anything special, and I’m pretty sure “Einstein” can figure out any “Recipe”. Tumenov wins by unanimous decision.
Danny: With a name like Tumenov, you’d expect him to be a proficient grappler. You’d be wrong. Lapsley has the advantage on the ground, but he doesn’t really have any takedowns from distance in his repertoire. Tumenov lights him up on the feet and takes the unanimous decision.
Vince: “The Recipe?” Is he going to fight me or make me a spice rub? Anyway, Lapsley appears to be mostly a ground fighter on paper, and Tumenov is a Russian who’s never been submitted. Simple racial generalizations will tell you that Russians are hard to take down, so I gotta figure Tumenov.
Burnsy: In a straight up battle of nicknames, I’m giving this one to Einstein, because that just makes Tumenov sound smarter and superior in every way. “The Recipe” could go either way if I was crafting a “clever” headline, such as “The Recipe for Success” or “The Recipe for Disaster.” I just like Einstein better.
Eric: Tumenov was highly touted going into his UFC debut against Ildemar Alcantara, but emptied the gas tank after one round and didn’t put up much of a fight after that. I could see Lapsley implementing a wrestling-heavy gameplan and stealing one from the favorite. I’ll roll the dice on Lapsley and the upset.
Ghost: basically Tumenov let the god down last time out b. but brother starks been on the horn with mad russians tryina discuss how to get son back to good and he finally there younahmean. weak ass nickname and all. he gon take this one via decision
Lightweight – Justin “J-Bomb” Salas vs Ben “Manimal” Wall
Jessica: Wall wasn’t given any favors in his debut, being a late replacement, fighting up in weight against a solid opponent. Now he’s back down to 155, and if he can walk out in whatever weird anime thing again, I’ll figure that should give him enough power to put away Salas. Mostly because “J-Bomb” is a terrible nickname, and I want that gone from the UFC quicker than a dude wearing weird animal costume heads. Wall wins by unanimous decision.
Danny: When I sat down to do this prediction, I mistyped Salas’s name as Justin Salsa. That typo may not have redeemed the fact that his nickname is “J-Bomb,” but I’m really craving a burrito right now. Ben Wall may sound like a cool indie singer, but he doesn’t have enough wrestling to mount a sustained offense. Salas by decision.
Vince: I have no idea. I’m taking J-Bomb because it sounds like one of my frat bros. Bro, remember when J-Bomb took down Buttplug Katie after Anchor Slosh and Dingleberry Dave got tazed by the cops? That was rad. J-Bomb is a legend, obviously he’s going to win. I heard his dad owns a dealership.
Burnsy: “J-BOMB!!! WHAT’S GOING DOWN, J-BOMB!!! J-BOMB IN THE HOUSE!!!” Sorry, that’s how I react when anyone has “-Bomb” as part as their nickname. You have to either be a real badass to make that work or you drink a ton of Jager Bombs. Either way, I like Wall to win this one.
Eric: I don’t know anything about Wall, as I didn’t watch TUF: Smashes and Alex Garcia violently ended his UFC debut in under a minute. Give me Salas.
Ghost: Justin Salas fightfinder photo always reminded the god of some 90’s rock shit. old “amber is the color of your energy” lookin ass motherfucker younahmean. type a shit we hadda whoop a tour bus driver ass for puttin on on more than one occasion back in the day. but then Ben Wall… son went on that valhalla trip last time out when he was fightin Hector Lombard’s nephew and shit. callin for justin salas with the veteran decision here
Featherweight – Manvel “The Anvil” Gamburyan vs Nik “The Carnie” Lentz
Jessica: Two groups of people to be wary around, Armenian judokas and carnies. It’s always fun to see those human powder kegs go off, and I think Lentz is capable of grapple-f*cking his way to that. Of course, there’s an equally likely chance Manny fakes a glove touch and knocks Nik cold, but I’m throwing in with the carnie (That’s how the summer I can’t remember started. Uh oh). Lentz wins by decision.
Danny: Nik Lentz struggles against fighters he can’t outwrestle. In theory, Gaburyan’s judo background would make him a difficult opponent, but the Manvil has gotten away from grappling and adopted a power puncher persona. Lentz grinds his way to a unanimous decision win.
Vince: I feel like my Armenian brother Manvel (a quarter on my mom’s side, inch beses, motherf*ckers) never gets the respect he’s due, especially considering a guy he beat (Cole Miller) is fighting the UFC’s great Irish hope (Conor MacGregor) on a main card while the Anvil is stuck fighting The Carny on an undercard. I’m going Gambo on this one.
Burnsy: I could really go either way on this, and that’s obviously what a good fight matchup should make us think. Both guys are coming off losses, but Anvil got lucky when his loss was turned into a NC thanks to Dennis Siver’s failed drug test. I’ll go with the Carnie to bounce back and try to get his name moving back up the rankings.
Eric: Lentz will spam takedowns, avoid the big punch, and win a decision over Gamburyan. He’s looked great at 145.
Ghost: Nik Lentz a fuckin multiple time college wrestlin champion, at least in the mind of whoever writes the scripts for ufc commentators. the informed among yall know that ain’t accurate but he can still wrestle and he got the type of not givin a fuck bout yall opinion that only come from livin in some arctic temperatures for half the year. decision for Lentz on this one too. yall gon be asleep by this point in the card tho.
Bantamweight – Eddie Wineland vs Johnny Eduardo
Jessica: Wineland is a damn good fighter and former title contender. Eduardo beat up Pat Curran’s dweeby cousin, Jeff. This doesn’t seem that fair at all. Wineland will probably hit Eduardo really hard, right in the face, several times, until Johnny falls down. Wineland wins this by first round knockout.
Danny: My how the mighty have fallen. Shortly removed from a title fight, Wineland is now buried on the prelims on a card in Cincinnati. Did you know that Cincinnati is called the “Paris of America?” I don’t mean that ironically, it’s actually a legit nickname. Cited on Wikipedia and everything. Why does this matter? Because it’s more interesting than this fight. Wineland is going to smash his way to a first round TKO.
Vince: There’s a reason Wineland is the biggest favorite on the card. He’s a badass, and he’s fighting a guy with two first names who sounds like a Uruguayan pop star. Wineland.
Burnsy: I wanted to call this one a sure thing, but since watching Cowboy pop Barboza with a kitten jab to set him up for the easy submission made me think twice about any fights being easy. I still think Wineland should win this one with no problem, but I’ll say it’ll happen in the second round just to be safe.
Eric: It’s been a while since Eduardo last fought in the Octagon, while Wineland has kept his tools sharp, taking out Yves Jabouin back in January. Wineland should be able to end it quickly and impressively.
Ghost: SOMETHIN TO WAKE YALL BACK UP. Eddie Wineland. yall go on to fightfinder and look for more of a grown man photo b. yeah yeah, you gon find some but it ain’t that easy. then yall got Eduardo who good when he hit the ring but might could injure himself at any fuckin moment prior b. assumin he make it to the cage, the god anticipate Wineland to pull some vicious shit in the latter half the fight and come away with that knockout.
Welterweight – Yan Cabral vs Zak Cummings
Jessica: Cummings looks super dad-like, and if I still updated Dadthletics, he would certainly be on there. Cabral’s good at JITZ, but beating up a bunch of fake dudes on crappy shows in Brazil doesn’t impress me. Cummings will dad-punch his way to a decision.
Danny: This is another matchup that lacks a certain sex appeal. In that case, I’ll continue to talk about Cincinnati. I think Skyline chili sucks. Yeah, I said it.
Zak Cummings may be on a winning streak, but I have the feeling that this is a punishment for missing weight by 8 pounds his last time out and forcing the commission to cancel the fight. Cabral wins by submission.
Vince: There aren’t many dudes I’d pick over an undefeated Nova Uniao guy and Zak Cummings certainly isn’t one of them.
Burnsy: Cabral stays undefeated. Damn it, someone I pick needs to stay undefeated for once!
Eric: God help Cummings if he misses weight again and costs Cabral a chance at some bonus money. Cabral via submission.
Ghost: the god whole lack of givin a fuck is prolly unjustified and definitely appalling to be quite honest yall. take Cabral via submission, whatever.
Flyweight – Kyoji Horiguchi vs Darrell “Mongoose” Montague
Jessica: Hori-Guchi Mane! Sorry, anyway, Horiguchi is pretty rad, and all I remember of Montague is him getting knocked silly by teeny Johnny Dodson (No shame in that). I think it will take Horiguchi longer, but I see a similar result – Montague laid out on the canvas, as Horiguchi puts his lights out in the third (BRRR!)
Danny: It’s hard to judge Montague based on his first fight in the UFC. He was pretty much thrown to the wolves and suffered an expected KO at the hands of John Dodson. I’ve been told that Kyoji Horiguchi is a star in Japan, but they say that about every Japanese fighter. It’s like how anyone that does an adult film is a “porn star.”
Despite that, Horiguchi does have a lot of potential, especially after dropping down to flyweight. He takes this one by unanimous decision.
Vince: I don’t really know who these dudes are, but “Mongoose Montague” sounds like a running back from the fifties, which is pretty rad. Doing a little research, I see Horiguchi stopped Dustin Pague in his last fight, and that’s a pretty big win. Krazy Bee over Mongoose, much as it pains me to say.
Burnsy: Horiguchi had that pretty impressive debut TKO over Dustin Pague at UFC 166, so I’ll pick him to beat the guy who lost his debut.
Eric: Montague looked extremely hittable in his UFC debut against John Dodson and Horiguchi can thump. If Montague can avoid a firefight and keep Horiguchi on the mat he will win, but I’m counting on Horiguchi to land a few clean ones en route to a TKO victory.
Ghost: this has all the makings of some shit that gon surpass the battle of the five armies in the books of hobbit lore yall. Horiguchi prolly brutalize yall on principle if you look at him improperly and Montague deserve that elite solid killer typa status. but basically look for this to end up lookin like a fuckin john woo scene god. Horiguchi via knockout.
Middleweight – Ed “Short Fuse” Herman vs Rafael “Sapo” Natal
Jessica: It feels like Joe Silva is testing Ed to figure out which Brazilians can and cannot submit him. I’m pretty sure Natal can get Herman to tap, though it won’t be easy since Herman’s a solid enough fighter. I feel like I should make a tennis joke, since I pretty much always make a tennis joke when Natal’s fighting (Though it’s usually just “watch out for his backhand!), so I wish Natal was fighting clay Court McGee instead, he does really well on that surface (I don’t know tennis things)
Danny: Ed Herman has been around since TUF 3. He’s not the most explosive, but he can do damage when he connects. Natal is coming off a nasty KO at the hands of Tim Kennedy, but I was impressed with his improved striking. Pacing will be the difference here. Herman can be caught off guard with a change of pace and Natal takes this by unanimous decision.
Vince: Poor Ed Herman, the UFC’s redheaded grappling dummy for gnarly Brazilians. Still, tough to pick with Natal coming off a nasty KO. Will he be pissed off and hungry, or humbled and chinny? I’ll go with the former, even though my red beard gives me pangs of ginger sympathy.
Burnsy: Herman’s last several fights have been inconsistent at best, so I’ll pick Natal to win so I can make tennis jokes the whole time because I’m clever.
Eric: “Sapo” is one of the more well rounded middleweights in the UFC and when he’s firing on all cylinders, he’s a load to deal with. I think he beats Herman everywhere in this one and avoids the one big mistake that cost him against both Tim Kennedy and Andrew Craig.
Ghost: this gon basically come down to how late in the fight Edward Benson Herman do somethin that cause himself to get submitted. Natal via submission
Flyweight – Chris “Kamikaze” Cariaso vs Louis “Da Last Samurai” Smolka
Jessica: Cariaso only really seems to lose top level dudes, and Smolka’s not there. I’m kind of struggling to remember anything of note about either dude, so I’ll also add that Smolka’s got a terrible nickname, which is another reason I’m predicting Cariaso to win by decision.
Danny: Cariaso may be relegated to gatekeeper status in the flyweight division, but he still has a lot of skills. What he lacks in finishing power, he makes it up with clean combination strikes and level changes. Smolka has power, but he’ll be too slow to score difference making strikes. Cariaso by decision.
Vince: The Vegas odds favor Louis Smolka, but I gotta wonder, what are they Smolkin’! Haha, thanks, you guys, but really, no need for high fives. On the serious, Smolka hasn’t fought anyone, and Cariaso barely lost a split decision to Michael McDonald, who is an absolute beast. I’m taking my fellow San Franciscan, Cariaso, even though his name kind of sounds like “curry asshole” and thus conjures some bad memories for this Indian food lover.
Burnsy: Cariaso is the 10th-ranked flyweight but I think he’s underrated for how good he’s been in his time in the UFC. I think he’ll keep the wins coming with a unanimous decision in this one.
Eric: 5’9”? At flyweight? Psssssssshhhhhhhtttttt. Smolka all day.
Ghost: this will not go down in hobbit lore. like tolkien crumpled the paper and said fuck it b. but Smolka via decision to surprise a few of yall.
Heavyweight – Soa “The Hulk” Palelei vs Ruan “Fangzz” Potts
Jessica: Since Soa killed Pat Barry and then advertised a shoe, I feel duty-bound to become a fan of “the Hulk” until he too loses in terribly embarrassing fashion. My thoughts about his opponent are split thusly: I wonder if Ruan is related to Annie Potts, and dude, “Fangzz”? SHEESH BO-BEESH. Anyway, Palelei gets a takedown and groundily pounds out Potts for a TKO victory in the second.
Danny: Soa “The Hulk” Paleilei’s UFC debut against Nikita Krylov was ugly. He won the fight, but many fans hold it against him. The Hulk is a very capable heavyweight with brutal ground and pound. Ruan Potts has a wide variety of offense, but I don’t care how many extra z’s “Fangzz” adds, he’s unprepared for the step-up in competition. Maybe if he changed his last name to Pottz he might have a chance, but that’s not the case. Paleilei by first round TKO.
Vince: Ruan Potts, more like Whoan the hell is this guy, am I right? Man, I am on a roll today. And no way am I picking the guy who has fought solely in Africa over The Hulk. Palelei.
Burnsy: I hate the nickname Fangzz so much. Why are there two Z’s, damn it? One Z is douchey enough. Please win, Hulk. PLEAZZE!
Eric: There’s no doubt Potts is tough, because he comes from a promotion where only a coroner can stop the fight. No, seriously. Even stranger than EFC Africa’s refereeing is Palelei’s downright decent run in the UFC, getting the call back up after wins over Bob Sapp and Sean McCorckle. Hulk smashes. Get it? Ha. It’s funny because his nickname is the Hulk.
Ghost: ayo son the god just gon take coconut knuckles Soa via some first round haka death hands activity. knockout
Welterweight – Neil Magny vs Tim “The Dirty Bird” Means
Jessica: AWWW, MAAAAWM, NEIL MAGNY, AGAIN?! I don’t know how this dude still has a job, since Neil Magny isn’t even a real person, let alone an actual fighter with any sort of combative skills. I know Means was defeated by a sauna a few years ago, but damn it, a sauna is ten times the competitor Neil Magny is! Means should punch Magny in the face until Neil gets fired. Means wins by second round KO.
Danny: Luckily for both of these fighters, neither guy has any real wrestling ability. Magny is a TUF 16 alum who has the longest range in the division. He often fails to use it to it’s full ability, though and crowds to throw knees. He normally gets away with it, but he’ll go to the well too many times and pay for it. Even moving up a division Means has KO power and he takes this one with a second round TKO.
Vince: I’m fascinated by Magny’s pterodactyl-like range, but he has been fairly unimpressive so far. Meanwhile, the Dirty Bird has taken both Danny Castillo and Jorge Masvidal to a decision, no small achievement (also my penis’s nickname). I’m thinking Tim Means business this time out. (*dodges tomato*)
Burnsy: I’ll take Means on his return to the UFC for no reason other than I’m a gusty pick-maker who doesn’t care what those stupid percentages say up there.
Eric: I wasn’t even aware that Means got cut from the UFC, but I’m glad he’s back. Magny looked great in his last fight, but Means is a step up I’m not sure he’s ready for yet. Taking Means in what should be a fun scrap.
Ghost: fuck a fight these two should pair up for a buddy cop show yall. the names alone could get yall more viewership than that j.j. abrams shit that fox just cancelled younahmean. but whatever tho they gotta fight first and the god predict Means return to his violent self and score a late stoppage victory. Dirty Bird via knockout, word to Jamal Anderson younahmean
Lightweight – Erik “New Breed” Koch vs Daron “Detroit Superstar” Cruickshank
Jessica: Now we’re talking! This should be one hell of a kick-fight between “Heckler and” Koch and Hermione’s Cat (Also, another chapter in the Michigan vs Wisconsin feud). I wonder if it will be weird for Koch to fight a guy who’s not bald and at various stages of being covered in tattoos, like his previous doppelganger opponents. I think Koch is a better kick-puncher, so he’ll get the win by third round TKO in a strong candidate for Fight of the Night.
Danny: Another matchup between strikers with very disparate styles. I’m glad to see that Erik finally moved up to lightweight. A former training partner of mine, there were certain training camps where he was north of 190 when he started. The weight cuts to 145 took way too much out of him.
Cruickshank has a lot of kick techniques, but he often falls out of place after striking. Koch may not have the same output level as the “Detroit Superstar,” but he has a far greater finishing potential. Cruickshank may take the first round, but Koch will eventually get his timing down. “Newbreed” takes this one via second round TKO.
Vince: Oh big shock there, Danny picking the RoufusSport guy. It just so happens that he’s 100 percent right on this one. Koch.
Burnsy: I want to pick Cruikshank based on his last win, because wheel kicks are awesome and I would like him to do that again, please. But I’m taking Koch because I hate spelling Cruikshank, and Koch’s TKO win at UFC 170 was way more impressive.
Eric: Koch can hang on the feet with Cruickshank, who is powerful, explosive, and unpredictable, but suffers from bouts of inactivity when countering. That said, Koch’s greatest advantage is on the ground here and he should look to exploit that rather than trading on the feet. Koch via submission.
Ghost: the god predict stand up exchanges. one of these two train with the god Duke Roufus, meanwhile the other call himself the Detroit Superstar. which kinda like bein Miss Arkansas or rushin for 2,000 yards in pop warner younahmean. whatever tho, eventually this shit go to the mat and Koch lock up his first submission in a few years
Middleweight – Lorenz “The Monsoon” Larkin vs Costantinos “Costas” Philippou
Jessica: Apparently Costas is on the StrikeForce tour portion of his contract, having been body kicked into oblivion by Luke “Surfin’ USA” Rockhold the last time out. Since I write my predictions before the weigh-ins, I won’t see what kind of runes and symbols Lorenz has shaved into his hair this time, but I think his follicle power ups will lead him to victory over Phil Poo. Larkin wins by second round TKO.
Danny: It’s amazing to me how far Costas Philippou has come in the UFC with a limited skill set. He’s a boxer with above average takedown defense. That’s it. Lorenz Larkin has a lot more weapons at his disposal, but he’s not especially adept at any one thing. Despite being one dimensional offensively, Philippou’s hand speed will be the difference maker. Coupled with his superior footwork, he takes this one by decision.
Vince: Danny, you ignorant slut. If Costas Philippou can’t handle Luke Rockhold’s kicks I can’t imagine he can handle Lorenz Larkin’s. And if Larkin can handle Robby Lawler standing I have to think he can handle Costas Philippou. The X-factor is wrestling, but I imagine Lorenz Larkin has been training almost nothing but takedown defense for the past five years, and I don’t remember Philippou taking a lot of dudes to the mat. That’s the main difference between him and your mom. Larkin.
Burnsy: Philippou’s KO loss at Fight Night in January still haunts my dreams. For some reason, a KO caused by a kick to the body is just so much scarier to me than a kick to the head, because please don’t kick me in the body, people. I’ll take Larkin for the win and Philippou for his third straight loss and pink slip watch.
Eric: This is one of those fights where it’s set-up on paper to be a stand-up brawl, so one of these two will almost assuredly try to turn it into a sloppy wrestling match. Let’s hope it doesn’t happen, since both are pretty mediocre in that department. On the feet, Larkin is more diverse and can use kicks to keep Philippou on the outside where his technical boxing attack is neutralized. I like Larkin here.
Ghost: the forecast suggest a high chance of concussive activity in this one son. the god been coppin gyros off Costas’ uncle on Staten Island since the mid-90’s tho. this gon end up goin to decision somehow, Philippou takes it and some of yall won’t be happy
Welterweight – Matt “The Immortal” Brown vs Erick “Indio” Silva
Jessica: I honestly don’t know how good these two guys are. Brown’s been on an impressive winning streak, but other than Jordan Mein (And he’s semi-questionable due to how young he is), who’s the best guy he’s beaten? Same with Silva (And I’m counting the Prater fight as a victory), are we comparing beating Jason High to beating Mike Pyle (I love you and your mullet dearly, Mike, no hard feelings)? Honestly, who cares how good these guys are, I’m just interested in how much violence these dudes can generate, and damn, it’s a whole hell of a lot. I don’t think Silva packs as much of a wallop as heroin, so I’m taking Brown to survive and win by third round knockout.
Danny: Much like the way I tackle post-Easter candy, Erick Silva is a feast or famine fighter. He either finishes you in a minute, or limps along and loses. Could the real Erick Silva please stand up (that’s still a hip reference, right)? Silva could get the early submission, but I think that Brown will stall him in the clinch. From there, Silva will gas out and Brown takes the 3rd round TKO.
Vince: Matt Brown always reminds me of Keanu Reeve’s hard-ass hillbilly from The Gift. Remember that movie? It was the one with Katie Holmes’ boobs in it. Anyway, this is a classic battle of the guy with pretty skills vs. the hardass grinder. Matt Brown’s zombie muay thai always seems too slow to get it done, but then he goes out there and beats Jordan Mein and Stephen Thompson. I see Silva as a Brazilian incarnation of those two guys, so I gotta go with Keanu Circle Beard in this one.
Burnsy: Brown is riding a red hot six-fight winning streak, so I have no reason to pick against him. Now go ahead and prove me wrong like the rest of them, Matt.
Eric: I’m still waiting to be amazed by Erick Silva. Until then, I believe in Matt Brown. Community was canceled today, so Matt Brown’s win streak just became the most important American underdog story.
Ghost: the meteoric rise of Matt Brown is some shit that they would be makin movies bout if Dana would stop shittin on transgenders and soundin off on what the fuck ever when the media around. meanwhile the women of the southern hemisphere still prayin for Erick Silva to ease they worries from that time Stun Gun turnt him into a fuckin lawn chair. Silva gon stay on that path and we all gon be sad that the suburban Ohio bar brawler left to return home to his Godsmack memorabilia. Silva via submission in the second.