With Strikeforce: Houston staring us directly in the face, it seems like a good time to make some badly informed predictions and look at some other funbits before tomorrow night:
Fight of the Night: KJ Noons vs. Jorge Gurgel. If you read my first thoughts on this event, I think you know that BJJ ace, Jorge Gurgel, likes to leave his BJJ in the locker room and morph into a striker on his way to the cage. This bodes well for Noons whose strength is his stand up game and usually looks for the knockout. Don't be surprised if you have to pick your mouth up off the floor after this fight because it was a three round non-stop war.
Knockout of the Night: Winner of King Mo vs. Rafael Cavalcante. None of Cavalcante's fights have gone the distance. He either knocks his opponent out or gets knocked out and I just don't see this fight going any differently for the Brazilian.
Submission of the Night: Ronaldo Souza. Again, I refer you to the video below and dare that you disagree with me.
Non Combat Related Story of the Night: Strikeforce's second half of 2010. Strikeforce's troubles in the first part of 2010 have been well documented so going in depth about them seems tedious. Here is a quick rundown of some problems they have faced to save us all some time: Low ratings for events on Showtime, Middleweight champ Jake Shields leaving for the UFC, newly signed free agent Dan Henderson getting dominated in his debut, brawl-gate 2010, M-1 renegotiating Fedor's contract after one fight, Fedor losing, CBS potentially walking away from their deal due to low ratings, fights being canceled the night of the event, etc. I think you get the picture. If Strikeforce wants to salvage 2010, they need to have a great second half the year and it needs to start with Strikeforce: Houston. Will Strikeforce right the ship or will it continue to sink?
More funbits and predictions after the jump...
Fighter in danger of getting cut: I am not sure if Strikeforce actually cuts fighters due to their lack of roster depth, but I am going to go with Chad Griggs. He is being brought in to fight former WWE superstar Bobby Lashley and may never fight again for the San Jose based MMA promotion if he gets chewed up and spit out by the Missouri Valley College wrestling stand out.
Hot Strikeforce Prospect: Adam Schindler. The West Virginia native has a career record of 7-1 and is currently riding four fight winning streak heading into Strikeforce: Houston. Not only does he have a solid wrestling base (on an AAU National Championship at the age of 14, followed by two West Virginia state championship titles) but recently just came back from Tiger Muay Thai and MMA Training Camp, Phuket, Thailand. Talk about well rounded. Fun Fact: Schindler is fighting Kier Gooch who is a career 1-6.
Most interesting match-up in terms of style: Andre Galvao vs. Jorge Patino. Both guys are high level BJJ practitioners so think fight could turn into a straight BJJ grappling match. Patino has the better striking (he's a chute box guy) which could give him the edge if both fighter's BJJ cancels each other out and the fight turns into a stand up fight.
Don't blink fight: Bobby Lashley vs. Chad Griggs. Given Lashley's wrestling style, you figure he wouldn't be a good choice for don't blink moment, but here is my reasoning. If Lashley wins, he is probably going to be put on the fast track for a title shot which could happen sometime in 2011. If Lashley loses, he is going to have to take the long road to the top. Once this fight ends, we are going to know in a blink of an eye how the rest of Lashley's MMA future is going to play out. Either going rising fast or quickly fading.
Do you think I am off with any of my picks? Let me know below.