clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC 104: Preview and Predictions on Machida vs. Shogun, More



After five weeks off, the UFC is back on Saturday night with UFC 104, featuring a light heavyweight title fight between Lyoto Machida and Mauricio "Shogun" Rua. We've got a full preview and predictions below.

What: UFC 104: Machida vs. Shogun

When: The undercard starts at 7 PM ET Saturday, Spike TV will show an hour of fights beginning at 9 and the pay-per-view begins at 10.

Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles

How: You can buy it for $44.95 on UFC.com or from your cable or satellite provider ($54.95 in HD), or you can just follow along with our live coverage here at FanHouse.

Predictions on the five pay-per-view fights:
Lyoto Machida vs. Shogun Rua
I'm a longtime Shogun fan, and I've been a little annoyed at the way so many UFC fans I hear from are dismissing him as not even a serious challenge to Machida, as if Shogun is just some bum who has no business in the Octagon with a world champion. I don't buy that at all. I think Shogun is a legitimate No. 1 contender and a legitimate threat, and I'm looking forward to this fight. Having said that, I've long believed Machida was the best light heavyweight in the world -- I had him No. 1 in my light heavyweight rankings even before he was the champion -- and I don't see him losing to anyone at 205 pounds. Pick: Machida.

Cain Velasquez vs. Ben Rothwell
This heavyweight fight is a way for the UFC to give some exposure to Velasquez, whom the promotion views as a potential future heavyweight champion. I actually think Rothwell -- who's bigger, better on his feet and much more experienced -- is going to give Velasquez a much tougher time than most people realize, but I do expect Velasquez to take Rothwell down and keep him there enough to come away with a close decision. Pick: Velasquez.

Gleison Tibau vs. Josh Neer
Both of these guys are very good on the ground, but I think Tibau will show that he's bigger, stronger and has better Brazilian jiu jitsu and submit Neer. Pick: Tibau.

Anthony Johnson vs. Yoshiyuki Yoshida
Johnson is a great athlete and a great striker who, at age 25, could be a future welterweight champion of the world -- at least if he can stay at 170 pounds, a weight limit he has trouble making. Yoshida has better submission skills and could get Johnson into trouble on the ground, but I don't think he'll be able to get him there. Pick: Johnson.

Joe Stevenson vs. Spencer Fisher
Stevenson came back from a two-fight losing streak with a big win over Nate Diaz at the UFC Fight Night in June, but I like Fisher, who's on a three-fight winning streak, to keep this fight standing and beat Stevenson on his feet. Pick: Fisher.

We'll have full UFC 104 coverage on Saturday night, and you can follow all the action by following my UFC Twitter updates.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting