Saturday, October 13th UFC 153 takes place in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Below, I take a look at the main card fights and determine who has the advantage of having less pressure heading into the cage.
Anderson Silva vs. Stephan Bonnar - It’s the understatement of the year to say that Stephan Bonnar has nothing to lose and everything to gain in coming out of retirement to fight the greatest fighter on the planet in front of his friends and family. Anderson Silva, on the other hand, has his win streak and possibly his dominant legacy at stake. This ones a no brainer. Advantage: Bonnar.
Big Nog vs. Dave Herman - Another loss for Big Nog and the retirement alarm is going to begin to be prematurely sounded by every non-Brazilian blogger on the Internet. A loss for Dave Herman probably puts him on the chopping block and he’ll be seeing his worth to World Series of Fighting, Bellator, or OneFC. While he certainly has some marketability to those leagues, that's not exactly the best situation to be in. Advantage: Big Nog.
Glover Teixeira vs. Fabio Maldonaldo - Maldonaldo is stepping up to fight the guy that no one else wanted to fight, and on short notice nonetheless. A loss here probably doesn’t hurt his reputation as a fighter, however coming off of two straight losses he’s likely to be unemployed if he doesn’t impress his bosses. Teixeira, has a ton of hype heading into this bout and an impressive win will put him in the proverbial "mix" while a loss will leave him to rebuild the reputation and mystique he’s built. Advantage: Teixeira.
Jon Fitch vs. Erick Silva - Fitch is coming into this bout after a draw, a knockout loss, and a layoff. He’s eager for a win and wanting to do it impressively. While a perennial top contender, Fitch has never been on great terms with the UFC and it’d be interesting to see what happens after a loss. Erick Silva is looking to establish himself as a top tier fighter and a win over Fitch would certainly do that. A loss, would show that he’s not quite ready for top competition, but shouldn’t derail him too much. Advantage: Silva.
Wagner Prado vs. Phil Davis - Phil Davis was one fight away from a title shot before losing to Rashad Evans and certainly he wants to prove that his status as a contender wasn’t premature. A loss here would set him back significantly, but wouldn’t put his job in danger. Wagner Prado is a UFC newcomer who needs an impressive performance to show that he belongs in the big show. Advantage: Davis.
Demian Maia vs. Rick Story - After a horrible performance led to a loss against Chris Weidman and a freak injury win over Dong Hyun Kim, Demian Maia is still trying to get his first win as a welterweight. A loss probably doesn’t put his job in jeopardy, but could relegate him to gatekeeper status. Rick Story is 1-2 in his last three fights and although a loss might not get him a pink slip, he needs a win if he wants to gain traction towards a future title shot. Advantage: Draw.
Nick Higgins is a freelance MMA writer, musician, and all around doer of cool things. Follow him on Twitter @UndercardNick