Greetings, fight fans! UFC 193 is here, which means it’s time for fight picks. Things are going to be a little different this time around. The entire crew here at UpRousey have decided to make predictions on how the main event goes down. Hopefully, they’ll stick around and make picks for other fights, but for now, here’s everyone’s thoughts on Rousey versus Holm.
Important Standings of Note:
Jessica: 506-352-6 (59 percent)
Burnsy: 505-319-6 (61 percent)
Vince: 228-148-2 (61 percent)
Ryan: 10-5-1 (66 percent)
Danny: 161-77-1 (67 percent)
Spilled: 81-60-2 (57 percent)
Sydnie: 16-12 (57 percent)
Chris: 44-15-2 (74 percent)
NY Ric: 36-26-1 (57 percent)
Ghost: 6-7 (46 percent)
Seth: 32-15 (68 percent)
Biss: 41-39-1 (51 percent)
Jared: 107-56-1 (66 percent)
Melanie: 44-23 (66 percent)
Fake Mike Goldberg: 21-16 (57 percent)
Bantamweight title – “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey vs. Holly “The Preacher’s Daughter” Holm
Jessica: I wrote a few hundred words on how Holm could beat Rousey, and all the things she would need to do to leave Melbourne with a victory and the title. The only method that I really believe is feasible is the Tiger Option, which just means Holly throws a tiger at Ronda. Rousey wins by armbar, inside of 3:45 of the first round.
Chris Rini: Is it enough to pick Rousey? Shouldn’t we have to pick the method and/or round to get credit for picking correctly?
3. Round 2
Isaac: The longer this fight goes, the worse it is for Ronda Rousey. Holly Holm isn’t a great MMA fighter but she’s a solid puncher. And if you go toe-to-toe with a solid puncher for two or three rounds, eventually they’re going to find an opening. Eventually they’re going to pop you.
All that being said, I don’t see this going beyond one round.
Prediction: Ronda Rousey at 1:58 of the first round by arm bar submission. Shocking, I know.
Brian Sharp: In 1980, people said the Americans couldn’t beat the Soviets in hockey. In 1990, people said Buster Douglas couldn’t beat Mike Tyson at boxing. And in 1992, people said the Racine Belles couldn’t beat the Rockford Peaches in baseball. So, what’s my point in mentioning all that? I’m sticking with the people; Ronda Rousey is going to beat the sh*t out of Holly Holm. Literally, even. It’s going to be an ugly, sloppy, mess of unsightly bodily functions.
Burnsy: Because Rousey has done what she has done in the UFC in such spectacular fashion, I find myself thinking more about her future and less about the fights at hand. At some point, she’s going to end her run in the UFC and move on to the WWE and a broader movie career. That’s just the common sense expectation, because she’s basically said that’s how it will go down. But will she check off the dream fights (vs. Cyborg, vs. Carano — both of which Rousey will win) before she leaves, or will it just be this string of fights against women like Holly Holm with Miesha Tate tossed in there because she made it out of the first round once and has a fun personality? Sadly, I think the answer is a little too obvious, but you know what? It’s still awesome watching Rowdy headline sometimes boring, usually “meh” PPVs with one-sided fights that last 10 seconds.
That said, I’ve been thinking more lately about Rousey outside the octagon. As is the Internet Era, in a matter of months she has gone from beloved bad-ass to MMA’s problematic hero. It’s obvious that we mostly adore her, but we also can’t ignore her flaws. And now, as those hyperlinks reveal, the tide is starting to turn. Is Rousey a hypocrite for ripping Floyd Mayweather Jr. so much while admitting that she beat her ex-boyfriend’s ass (for allegedly taking nude pics of her)? Is she an even bigger hypocrite because she’s Travis Browne’s “woman” and he’s accused of beating his wife? Is she transphobic? Does her “not a do nothing b*tch” attitude set a bad example for the kids who worship her? Etc. etc.? This is what I think will ultimately defeat the champ, breaking her down mentally as more and more people turn against her and it harms her celebrity status, and it might come at a time when she’s set to face someone like Holm, who will take advantage and stun the world.
Is that going to happen at UFC 193? Hahahaha, f*ck no, Rousey’s gonna win this by TKO in the first round with half her body out the cage door.
Spilled: I think Rousey is going to show something new in her arsenal this fight… she only needs that one moment for Holm to give her and opportunity and it will all be over. Aside from a really lucky/perfectly executed head kick, I don’t see Holm upsetting Rousey.
Vince: The one thing Holly Holm has that a lot previous Ronda opponents haven’t is good evasion and footwork. Even in her boxing career she was never super aggressive. The downside is that her best weapon is probably the head kick, and throwing kicks is going to leave her susceptible to the takedown. I’ll consider this a victory for Holm if she makes it to the second round. I’m going to say that happens. Ronda via armbar in round two.
As for the rest of the UFC 193 fights…
Flyweight – Ben “Ben 10” Nguyen vs. Ryan “Baby Face” Benoit
Jessica: Wait, what? Why is Nguyen kicking off the prelims? He’s a good fighter and a local guy to boot. Benoit’s solid, too, so they really should be on the TV card at least. Whatever. Expect both dudes to punch each other in the face and head a lot until one man gets too sleepy. Ben Ngyuens with a third round TKO.
Burnsy: This should be a good one to kick the night off. I still wish that Ryan would change his nickname to “Totally Not Related to Chris” but “Baby Face” is sort of a subtle nod to that. Anywho, I’ll take Benoit coming off his March win over Sergio Pettis. Nguyen is due for that second fight slip.
Spilled: Benoit by submission because why not?
Vince: Both these guys are coming off big wins, Benoit over Serge Pettis and Nguyen over Alpteken Ozkilic. Who the hell knows with flyweights, but Benoit seems to be on a tear. Benoit.
Welterweight – Anton “The Professor” Zafir vs. James “Moonwalker” Moontasri
Jessica: I’ve seen Moontasri fight before, but he hasn’t really done much to stick in my mind. I’m pretty sure that Zafir is a fake, made-up dude to fill space, so I’ll go with Moonwalker to win. Moontasri takes a decision here.
Burnsy: We’ve got a debut facing off against a “win one, lose one” guy. Don’t get your hopes up for this one, folks. That said, I’ll take the new guy because someone has to.
Spilled: Moontasri by UD because I haven’t hear of the other guy.
Vince: As Burnsy says, Moontasri is a win one, lose one kind of a fighter. On the other hand, Zafir has fought a bunch of unknowns to get here, and according to Sherdog, fights out of “Whitsunday Boxing Club.” They have MMA in the Whitsundays? I have to go with Moontasri over Crocodile Nobody over here, but I’d be happy to be surprised.
Welterweight – “Filthy” Richard Walsh vs. Steven “The Steamrolla” Kennedy
Jessica: DIRTY DICK! DIRTY DICK! DIRTY DICK! Walsh wins by decision.
Burnsy: Interesting. This is a pink slip match for Walsh, while Kennedy is coming off a pretty lousy UFC debut. Seems like this one is tilted in Walsh’s favor, so I’ll take the Filthy Dick to stick around a little longer.
Spilled: Walsh by TKO because “Filthy” is a better nickname than “The Steamrolla”
Vince: Dirty Dick has never impressed me overmuch, and he seems incredibly serious for an Aussie. On the other hand, Kennedy has had one UFC fight that he lost to Peter Sobotta in the first round. I give the Dirty D the edge here, like I always do.
Middleweight – Dan Kelly vs. Steve “The Creepy Weasel” Montgomery
Jessica: Montgomery has been more Crappy Weasel lately, suffering a seizure during a bad weight cut on TUF, then getting knocked out in his UFC debut. On the flip side, last time Kelly fought, he got knocked out by a goofy dude in Australia. Bad things will happen to the old judoka, as Montgomery gets his weasel sh*t together and TKOs Kelly in the second.
Burnsy: Kelly gets the nod for me because he lost to Sam Alvey in his last fight, which is like a blessing. You can’t be upset about losing to the Smile’N one, you can only embrace his positive energy and move on.
Spilled: my brain says Kelly but I can’t pick against a guy nicknamed “The Creepy Weasle” with a mullet and a molesterstache.
Vince: I vaguely remember Steve Montgomery from The Ultimate Figher, but unfortunately it was as the guy who had a seizure. The upside of seizure-inducing weight cuts is, he’s really big for a welterweight! Daniel Kelly is 9-1, but again, hasn’t exactly looked like a world beater. I’ll give the slight edge to Montgomery, since at least I know he trains at a legit camp.
Flyweight – Richie “Vas” Vaculik vs. Danny “The Gremlin” Martinez
Jessica: Ughh, this makes no sense. Vaculik and Martinez are both decent enough, but it really makes no sense for them to be this high on the card compared to the other flyweight bout between Ngyuen and Benoit. Whatever. I am conflicted here, though. On one hand, Richie Vas got superkicked by Louis Smolka in Australia last time out. On the other, the Gremlin has lost three in a row, and is Scott Jorgensen’s only win since 2013 (he’s the 1 in 1-5 in that span). Both dudes are kinda crappy, but I’m saying Vaculik is less crappy than Martinez. Plus, Vaculik will have a height and reach advantage, otherwise known as the Vas Difference. Vaculik wins by third round TKO.
Burnsy: Wow, who did we piss off to get this fight at all? Vas is 1-2 in the UFC and Gremlin is 0-3 and shouldn’t even be in the UFC at this point. Seriously, they’re cutting fighters left and right and Mr. Lost To Scott Jorgensen gets to stay. That’s lame. Whatever, Vas wins and the Gremlin gets the boot.
Spilled: I dunno. Vaculik via hometown advantage?
Vince: Martinez is coming off a three fight skid, BUT one of those was him going three rounds with Chris Cariaso. That’s worth something, right? …Right? I honestly have no idea with this one. I’ll go with Vas in his home country. I’ve heard he’s called “Vas” as in short for “Vaseline,” because he’s so slippery. (Not really).
Light Heavyweight – Anthony “The Hippo” Perosh vs. Gian Villante
Jessica: Oh cheesy peats, this is going to be a sad fight. Perosh probably should have hung up his gloves after taking a severe 15 minute beating against Ryan Bader. Villante, meanwhile, looks okay sometimes, but he doesn’t seem to put everything together very well. While I’d love for Perosh to use his OLD MAN STRENF to rough house on Villante, I just don’t see it happening. Villante should beat up the Hippo, but I don’t see a finish on the books. Villante wins a decision.
Burnsy: Perosh is not going to like this fight once it starts. Villante is going to hurt his face plenty, if he even has any nerve endings remaining.
Spilled: Neither is a world beater but Villante via being a little more consistent.
Vince: Perosh shocking the world by knocking out Magalaes with his eyes open in 14 seconds one fight removed from himself getting knocked out in 7 seconds is one of the all-time great underdog moments. That said, have you seen him? He’s 43 and looks 57, there’s a reason he’s the underdog. My heart is with Perosh, but my brain isn’t dumb enough to pick against Vilante.
Welterweight – Kyle “KO” Noke vs. Peter Sobotta
Jessica: One guy’s last win was against someone who can’t spell “Jonathan” correctly, while the other beat up a steam roller. Despite that, I still don’t have a ton of confidence in Sobotta. His UFC career has been more down than up, and this brief blip of success makes me think a hard fall is coming. Noke is competent enough to start that, so let’s say Noke gets a second round TKO to kick things off for Sobotta’s second slide.
Burnsy: Noke has been in the UFC since 2010 and I feel like I’ve never heard of him. Meanwhile, Sobotta seems to have fixed whatever his problem was when he went 0-3 in the UFC back in ’09-’10, because he’s 2-0 since returning. I’m glad these guys never fought back then because this would be the worst sequel ever. I’ll take Sobotta to keep the win streak alive.
Spilled: This is gonna be a close one. Noke has a lot of wear and tear but he’s crafty and tough… Sobotta is good with grappling. Should be a scrap though.
Vince: Peter Sobotta has seven wins in a row, all but one of them via first round submission. Trouble is, Noke has been in the game forever and I believe started as a BJJ guy. That said, Sobotta dominated Pawlek on the feet, and Pawlek was 10-0 at the time. Sobotta is traditionally underachieving, but he’s impressed me more during this recent streak than Noke ever has, so I’m going with Sobotta.
Lightweight – Jake “The Celtic Kid” Matthews vs. Akbarh “El Caballero Arreola
Jessica: Heh, his name means nipples. That being said, he doesn’t go by the solid tie-in nickname of “Admiral” Akbarh Arreola, so I’m not picking him. Matthews wins by punching crazy-stupid hard and also having really good grappling. That formula adds up to Arreola getting TKO’d in the second round.
Burnsy: Matthews admits that he lost to James Vick out of cockiness last time out, so I’m glad that we share a belief. I have to think that, cocky or not, he’s a better fighter on the way up than the inconsistent Arreola is now, so I’ll pick Matthews for the rebound.
Spilled: Arreola via titty twister. I’m 12. But seriously folks, I’m going Akbarh by sub.
Vince: As bad a whiff as not nicknaming yourself “Admiral” Akbarh is, it’s nowhere near as lame as being nicknamed “The Celtic Kid.” Bro, do you even Druid? Okay, but seriously, Matthews looked pretty good until that James Vick fight, and James Vick got mad squabbles. I don’t remember any of Arreola’s fights, and they don’t sound interesting enough to rewatch. Matthews.
Heavyweight – Stefan “Sky Scraper” Struve vs. Jared “Big Show” Rosholt
Jessica: I’ve probably written some variation on the following sentence at least 10 times: Struve can win this fight if he uses his length and keeps his jab in his opponent’s face. Struve, of course, won’t do that, and instead will get backed up against the cage and swarmed by Rosholt. Jared has power in his hands, like pretty much every heavyweight, but I do see Struve managing to withstand the initial flurry. Stefan might get beat up a bit, but I see him making a comeback, like he used to do. Struve wins by second round submission.
Chris Rini: Very curious about this matchup. While there is much hand wringing when it comes to Struve’s health issues and the number of times he’s been knocked out, he still gets my pick. Rosholt has proven himself a serviceable heavyweight, but a grinder through and through. I love Struve’s guard, and don’t know that Rosholt is dangerous enough on the feet to put together three rounds of striking into the clinch AND remaining safe on the ground. In short, too many things have to go right for Rosholt for 15 minutes to make him a safe bet. Struve for all his shortcomings (refusing to develop a jab being the most glaring) is still a veteran with finishes of quality opponents.
Burnsy: Struve always sends me into a daydream, as I lean back in my chair, sip my hipster small batch bourbon, and remember a time when he was supposed to make the Heavyweight division better. He’d show so much promise and then — BAM! — loses to Roy Nelson. BAM! Loses to Travis Browne. BAM! Loses to Mark Hunt. BAM! Alistair Overeem. And yet he still only has seven losses in his career at age 27. Struve is now 1-0 in 2015, but it’s more notable that he’s fighting for a second time in a year. The last time he did that was 2012, when he built up a four-win streak before — BAM! Hunt and Overeem. Normally, I’d say that Rosholt is going to win by picking on Struve’s glaring weaknesses, but I’m taking Struve. He wins and then fights Browne again on the next Rousey PPV. That’ll be a lousy storyline for sure.
Spilled: Struve via winning.
Vince: Holy sh*t, is there a more boring fighter to watch than Jared Rosholt? Who the hell ever knows with Stefan Struve, but I’m picking him because I like the idea of not watching Rosholt chest hump him for three rounds. Please, please, please, Struve, do it for the fans.
Middleweight – Uriah “Prime Time” Hall vs. Robert Whittaker
Jessica: With his fun finishes and willingness to step up repeatedly, Uriah Hall is edging back towards Cool Guy Fighter status, which isn’t something he was since he lost to Gastelum on The Ultimate Fighter finale. Whittaker has been looking very solid, too, rebounding from a loss to Stephen Thompson, to rattle off several wins in a row. Hall’s knockout of Mousasi is the best win either man has, but it would be very fitting for Uriah to return to “headcase” status by losing a tepid decision to Whittaker. Which is what I’m predicting to happen. Robert edges out Hall on the score cards.
Chris Rini: Another fascinating fight. Both guys seem to be each others’ kryptonite. Whittaker will push forward and show Hall the kind of fight that has been known to stifle his ability to pull the trigger. Hall on the other hand has that pure dynamism that Stephen Thompson used to TKO Whittaker back at 170 pounds. I was leaning Whittaker but decided to flip a coin and it came up Hall so I’m picking Hall.
Burnsy: I predict that Whittaker will frustrate the hell out of Hall, who will constantly be looking for a non-existent open window for a highlight reel kick. Eventually, Whittaker will have his open window for a left hook and drop Hall for the TKO.
Spilled: Tough one to pick but I’ll go with Hall since he’s looked great lately.
Vince: Whittaker is coming off of wins over Brad Tavares and Clint Hester, which are both supremely impressive. But Uriah looked like he found his killer instinct in the last two fights, and a Uriah Hall who actually wants to hurt people is a terrifying prospect. Properly motivated, no one should beat that guy. Which is not to say he is, but after Mousasi I’ll give him the b of the d. Hall.
Heavyweight – Mark “Super Samoan” Hunt vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva
Jessica: Oh boy. Hunt should have won the first fight, and not just because Silva failed his drug test. It was a super awesome brawl, and I really want Hunt to win this one. Hunt knocks Silva’s giant dome off in the second round.
Chris Rini: Wow, look at the combined last 10 fights of these two guys and all of a sudden I’m feeling queasy. They’ve been KO’d for a combined six times. With that knowledge I’ll do some brutal math: Hunt has needed to be pummeled for multiple rounds to get stopped, but Bigfoot has been one and done’d twice recently. I guess Hunt has this one.
Burnsy: I almost don’t want to watch this one, because this is how it will go: 1) A very slow first round as the two fighters circle each other and try to land a few big shots (but miss); 2) With their gas tanks already running low, they’ll drop their guards and start swinging away, and maybe one of them will land the money punch, but most likely they’ll be busted open and exhausted while the crowd cheers and we cringe; 3) Completely exhausted, the two guys will lean on each other and tenderize each other’s faces a little more with lazy jabs, then as the round ticks away, they’ll go into “Aw, f*ck it” mode and unleash, with Hunt scoring the TKO. In the aftermath, we’ll all feel a little dirty about it, because these guys’ brains are pudding at this point and neither of them is even remotely close to a title shot.
Spilled: Unless he’s fighting Stipe and even then, begrudgingly, I will never pick against THE MFing SUPER SAMOAN, Mark Hunt!
Vince: In all honesty, Bigfoot seems like a wonderful human being, but his chin hasn’t looked great since the Cain fight. Hunt just needs to land one, which seems highly probable. Hunt.
Strawweight title – Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs.Valerie “Trouble” Letourneau
Jessica: It’s finally here, you guys. Joanna Champion, aka Joanna Velociraptor, aka Joanna Copy-Paste, aka Joanna Arts-N-Crafts is fighting again. She’s basically the best female fighter, and I’m glad she’s on a Ronda PPV so that casual fans will get a chance to see her unleash violence. Letourneau is in deep Trouble. Joanna will have Valerie bloody by the end of the first and finish the fight early in the third because she likes to play with her food before destroying. Jedrzejczyk wins by third round TKO.
Chris Rini: Joanna Champion vs Le Tourn of Events – Joanna, all day. The curious selection of her opponent says more about her chances than anything.
Burnsy: Yes, Rousey fans who only tune in for the social media reactions and hilarity of the Female Tyson, pay close attention. Joanna is the real champion, the People’s Champion, because from the moment she won her belt and our hearts with her wonderful victory speech, this woman has been a certified bad-ass. She keeps it going in a fury of tiny fists with a solid defense over Mary Kay.
Spilled: Jonanna is too fast, accurate and violent. And Still…..
Vince: Letourneau got here after three decision victories over middling opponents. Ya-jay-check (yeah, I go phonetic) fights like someone owes her money. She’s the female McGregor. She’s angry, wiry, and terrifying, I don’t see anyone beating her.
Performance of the Night
Jessica: Jedrzejczyk, HUNTO
Burnsy: Whittaker, Matthews
Vince: Ronda (duh), Struve, because if he wins it’s probably not going to be by decision.
Fight of the Night
Jessica: Nguyen vs. Benoit
Burnsy: Noke vs. Sobotta (just drew it from a hat, because this is a weird card)
Vince: Hall vs Whittaker, because Whittaker has a chin.