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Ultimate Fighter Finale Predictions

Ultimate Fighter 14 Finale predictionsWill Jason "Mayhem" Miller earn his first UFC victory, or will Michael Bisping give Mayhem the beating he's been promising? Will Diego Brandao continue to look like a wrecking machine, or will Dennis Bermudez win the featherweight final? And who takes the Ultimate Fighter bantamweight tournament, T.J. Dillashaw or John Dodson? We try to answer those questions as we look at the Ultimate Fighter Finale below.

What: The Ultimate Fighter 14 Finale

When: Saturday, the Spike televised card begins at 8 PM ET.

Where: Palms Resort Casino, Las Vegas

Predictions on the four televised fights below.

Michael Bisping vs. Jason Miller
Miller, the Bully Beatdown host and former Strikeforce and Dream fighter, finally returns to the cage after more than a year away following his victory over Kazushi Sakuraba at Dream 16. A big question facing Miller is whether he'll come in sharp and in shape, or whether ring rust is an issue.

A victory would put Bisping on a four-fight winning streak, and he has said he thinks he's in the hunt for a middleweight title shot if he gets that fourth win in a row. Realistically, that's not going to happen: Even if he beats Mayhem, he'd need at least one more win before the UFC would give him a shot at Anderson Silva.

But a win would solidify Bisping's place in the middleweight Top 10, and I think this is Bisping's fight. I don't see him finishing Mayhem, but I do think his wrestling and his boxing are good enough that he should control the fight standing or on the ground, and he'll win a decision.
Pick: Bisping

Dennis Bermudez vs. Diego Brandao
If there's anyone from this season of The Ultimate Fighter who has the potential to become a breakout star it's Brandao, who has looked absolutely terrorizing in winning all of his fights this season. Brandao has said Wanderlei Silva is his favorite fighter, and he looks a lot like a young Axe Murderer: Brandao doesn't waste any time in going on the attack and looking for a knockout.

Can Bermudez avoid being Brandao's latest victim? I don't think so. It's true that Bermudez has a background as a college wrestler, and if Brandao has a weakness it's his wrestling. But I don't think Bermudez is going to be able to withstand the barrage of strikes that Brandao is sure to go after him with. I like Brandao to win by TKO.
Pick: Brandao

T.J. Dillashaw vs. John Dodson
In the bantamweight final, we have a couple of good wrestlers who train with a couple of good camps: Dillashaw is part of Team Alpha Male, and Dodson is part of Team Greg Jackson. I think both of these guys have more sophisticated, complete games than we usually see from Ultimate Fighter contestants.

The advantage Dillashaw has is his height, reach, size and strength: He's a good-sized bantamweight, while Dodson is a small 135-pounder and would be fighting at 125 pounds if the UFC had a flyweight class. If Dillashaw can exploit his reach advantage standing up and out-muscle Dodson from the top position if the fight goes to the ground, Dillashaw can win.

But I think Dodson's experience edge is big here: He's been fighting professionally since 2004 and has an 11-5 record. Dillashaw only started fighting in 2010 and has a 4-0 record. Dodson is going to be a lot more confident and at ease in the biggest fight of both their careers, and I think Dodson will execute his game plan well and win a decision.
Pick: Dodson

Tony Ferguson vs. Yves Edwards
Ferguson won the last season of The Ultimate Fighter and then looked outstanding in his first fight after that, brutalizing Aaron Riley at UFC 135. The 35-year-old Edwards, who has fought all over the place in a 15-year career, is 41-17-1 and is a step up in competition for Ferguson. This is not an easy fight for Ferguson at all.

But it's a fight that I think Ferguson should win, because his punching power will test the somewhat suspect chin of Edwards. In fact, I like Ferguson to win this fight in spectacular fashion and add a highlight reel knockout to his growing resume.
Pick: Ferguson