So for my thoughts on Lyoto Machida vs. Shogun Rua, Cain Velasquez vs. Ben Rothwell, and why Yushin Okami vs. Chael Sonnen should be on TV, read our UFC Twitter mailbag below.
DMVSportsTalk: How do you like Cain Velasquez's chances tonight?
I like his chances -- I'm picking him to win -- but Rothwell is not going to be as easy an opponent as I sense a lot of Velasquez fans think. Rothwell is bigger, much more experienced, and probably overall a better striker than Velasquez. I think Velasquez is more athletic and better conditioned than Rothwell, and he's a much better wrestler, so that's why I'm picking Velasquez to win. But don't count out Rothwell.
Also, you didn't ask, but I'm picking Machida to beat Rua, Gleison Tibau to beat Josh Neer, Anthony Johnson to beat Yoshiyuki Yoshida and Spencer Fisher to beat Joe Stevenson.
JeffTheJeff: Amen, brother. The UFC has one of the best MWs in the world on their roster and they refuse to give him a push.
This came in response to my post criticizing the UFC for keeping the Okami-Sonnen fight off television. I really believe that Okami-Sonnen is the second-best fight on the card, and I'm baffled that the UFC doesn't want fans to watch it live. I know some people think Okami is boring (I disagree) and others think Okami has a contract dispute with the UFC (I've seen nothing credible to support that), but the bottom line is this is a fight UFC fans deserve to see.
BeatdownRadio: To be fair the UFC has given Okami a shot before, against a name opponent even. Then we got UFC 72.
That's a fair point. Okami was given a main event slot against Rich Franklin at UFC 72, and he responded by coming out sluggish and losing a unanimous decision. But I still don't like the way the UFC has treated Okami. For starters, don't forget that Okami was only given that spot in the main event because Martin Kampmann pulled out of the fight with Franklin with an injury. So it's not like the UFC was eager to promote Okami even then.
And I think Okami has acquitted himself nicely since the Franklin fight, going 3-0 and dominating all three fights. When you combine his overall record in the UFC with the fact that he was the last person to beat Anderson Silva (albeit by disqualification), I think Okami deserves to at least be in the mix when the UFC talks about middleweight title picture. Instead his fights are buried.
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