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Fighter vs. Writer: UFC 125 Predictions With Sean McCorkle

In the last edition of Fighter vs. Writer, Matt Mitrione and I came to a bittersweet tie. Considering my dismal record in this series, I'll gladly take it.

But since both Mitrione and I picked Sean McCorkle to win, and since his defeat made us both look like suckers, I thought it only fitting to invite "Big Sexy" McCorkle on for the UFC 125 edition of Fighter vs. Writer.

When told of the way things played out last time, he expressed surprise that I wasn't able to beat Mitrione, since, as McCorkle put it, "he knows nothing about MMA. You really should have been able to do better against him."

Clearly, McCorkle hasn't been following my past performances, otherwise he'd know to keep his expectations low. On to the picks.

Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard

McCorkle: Edgar via TKO. He explained, "I'm going to say Frankie Edgar, just because basically I've got to go with anyone who can beat B.J. Penn twice. I think either he'll put Maynard to sleep, or Maynard will put the audience to sleep."
Fowlkes: Maynard via decision. I don't like it any more than you do, but I foresee a long, slow grind. After 25 mind-numbing minutes, Maynard is getting his hand raised.

Chris Leben vs. Brian Stann

McCorkle: Leben via KO. "I'm picking Leben, just because I like anyone who is not a natural redhead and yet has the balls to go red. I'll say knockout standing up."
Fowlkes: Leben via TKO. Even though he knows he shouldn't, I think Stann will eventually get sucked into a brawl with the last guy you want to brawl against in the UFC.

Brandon Vera vs. Thiago Silva

McCorkle: Vera by decision. " I think he's had a little bad luck lately, but I feel like he's still one of the best in the world at 205 [pounds]. I know people who have trained with him who say he's phenomenal. I think he got robbed against Couture and he's just run into some bad luck."
Fowlkes: Vera by decsion. I agree that Vera is better than he's looked lately, but it's just a question of whether he can put it together against an aggressive opponent like Silva. I still feel uneasy about it, but I'm going to say yes.

Nathan Diaz vs. Dong Hyun Kim

McCorkle: Diaz via submission. "Definitely Nate Diaz, because I'm afraid he'll stab me if I pick Kim."
Fowlkes: Kim via decision. I have similar fears about being stabbed, but I still think Kim's style is the exact kind of approach that can give Diaz trouble. Please don't stab me, homey.

Clay Guida vs. Takanori Gomi

McCorkle: Gomi via Jason Guida being in Clay's corner. Here's where McCorkle launched into a long story about his beef with Jason Guida, Clay's bigger brother, who he tried to fight years ago on the small circuit. Jason would never take the fight, so McCorkle did what he does best and berated him on the internet, which led to Jason trying to "attack" McCorkle on the concourse at UFC 123. Somehow, that all equals a pick for Gomi.
Fowlkes: Guida via decision. Having no such history with Jason Guida, I'm forced to pick based only on the merits of the two fighters who are going to actually be in the cage. I think Gomi will land some punches, but Guida will wade through them and keep the pressure on. Afterwards maybe Jason and McCorkle can hug it out or something.

Marcus Davis vs. Jeremy Stephens

McCorkle: Marcus Davis via Irishness. "He's my fellow Irishman," McCorkle explained. "Or at least, I'll claim to be Irish if I ever fight in Ireland. I like to be whatever suits me at the present moment. I'm always half or a quarter of everything. And I couldn't pick Jeremy Stephens out of a lineup."
Fowlkes: Stephens via decision. Irishness aside, I haven't seen Davis do anything more impressive than absorb a tremendous beating lately. That is a kind of talent, but not the kind you really want.

Josh Grispi vs. Dustin Poirer

McCorkle: Grispi via...something. McCorkle admitted that he wasn't too familiar with either guy, probably because he "never really watched the WEC unless Miguel Torres was fighting. But," he added, "I will go with Grispi because it sounds like 'crispy.'"
Fowlkes: Grispi via TKO. While I share McCorkle's affinity for Miguel Torres fights, I've also seen enough of Grispi to know he's not to be taken lightly.

Phil Baroni vs. Brad Tavares

McCorkle: Baroni via KO. "I really hope Baroni wins. I've got to go with my heart, because I think he's due to catch a break. I'll go with knockout standing up because he's the best eva!"
Fowlkes: Baroni via KO. God help me, I just can't pick against Baroni here, even though I know I probably should. I'm telling myself it's because of Tavares' inexperience, but really it's because Baroni is the best eva.

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