UFC on Fuel TV 8 Staff Predictions: Is this Wanderlei Silva’s last stand?

UFC on Fuel TV 8 will take place this Saturday from the Saitama Super Arena in Japan. For a cable television card, this event has great bouts from tops to bottom. Japanese MMA has always been known for its action-packed bouts, and this night should provide the same. Bryan and I put our picks together for the main and co-main events:

Brian Stann vs. Wanderlei Silva:

Mike Drahota: Brian Stann versus Wanderlei Silva may not be the high-profile main event we’ve seen from the UFC in recent months, but it does have the potential for fireworks. Silva is obviously in the twilight of his illustrious career, but that hasn’t stopped him from predicting a third round knockout of the heavy-hitting Stann. I don’t doubt that Silva has a lot of fight left in him. Still, I see Stann utilizing the age and power difference to his advantage. Brian Stann via 1st round (T)KO.

Bryan Fontez: What does Wanderlei Silva have left to prove? That’s a question only he could answer for you. But to be honest, after slowly declining in speed, skill and his former ability to take punishment, I have no interest finding out. In his prime, Silva would eat guys like Stann for breakfast based on sheer aggression coupled with an iron chin. But that time has passed and now every time I see Wanderlei fight I pray he doesn’t get hit. With that said, Brian Stann will hit him in the face, Wanderlei will fall down and Bruce Buffer will declare Stann the winner via an absolutely brutal 2nd round KO.

Mark Hunt vs. Stefan Struve:

Mike Drahota: I’ve been quite impressed with the recent performances of both Stefan Struve and Mark Hunt. Struve has the tools and size to most definitely challenge for the Heavyweight title one day. It could be soon, but Mark Hunt is quite the large roadblock. His trademark power has been on display in a big way. Come Saturday, though, I think that Struve’s extensive jiujitsu background will be the X-factor here, as Hunt’s submission defense has never been world-class. Stefan Struve with a 1st round submission is the pick.

Bryan Fontez: This is an interesting match up with yet a gain an insane height discrepancy. Mark Hunt is a proven MMA veteran whom has very strong striking skills and possibly the best chin in combat history. Although, his ground game is, and always has been suspect. Struve on the other hand is the largest Heavyweight in MMA history in terms of frame and height and yet oddly enough, Jon Jones reach is still longer (figure that one out). Struve however has never properly used his size the way that he should, the day that he does he’ll be truly unstoppable. I wanna say Mark Hunt via KO, but something tells me Struve has game planned to get this into the later rounds. And if that happens I think we’ll see him get a submission in the 3rd.



16 Comments

  1. Profile photo of Brian Cox

    Brian Cox

    March 1, 2013 at 10:47 am

    Oh, man. No love on staff for the old-school PRIDE veterans?

    I'm picking Silva and Hunt, both by KO. Silva in the second and Hunt in the first.

    War Team PRIDE!

  2. Profile photo of Mike Drahota

    Mike Drahota

    March 1, 2013 at 10:51 am

    I love Pride, especially Wand in his old days. But I just gotta hand it to the new guys in this one. Struve is a beast right now.

    • Profile photo of Brian Cox

      Brian Cox

      March 1, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      @ Mike

      I agree 100% on Struve. I love the guy, but I love Hunt more and given that he's younger and Hunt taking one, long beautiful run at doing something that, surely, at one point he must have either thought a pipe dream or something that just wasn't meant to be for him.

      This is the injured, war torn torn vet of days gone buy, who chose to fight and not be paid-out for his contract. He said "put me in coach", rather than fade off into MMA history.

      Struve is most certainly a beast now, but this has to be Hunt's time, now. If he is ever going to get a title shot, win or lose, he has to keep the three fight win streak going and do so, probably, one more time after. At age 38, he cannot afford to be booted down the Heavy Weight ladder. For this reason, I want Mark to win.

      As to Wand, I just flat out think he can and will beat Stann. He has more tools than Stann, that's for sure. ICP put it best…."Wandy could be one of the five best fighters at MW if he would just rein himself in. Wanderlei Silva is his own worst enemy these days."

      If Silva can take ICP's advice, he'll win.

      Picks-are-picks, though. It's all just a roll of the dice.

  3. Profile photo of IChokePeople

    IChokePeople

    March 1, 2013 at 11:17 am

    I don't disagree with any of these predictions. That said and although I do have Stann in the picks I think Wandy could be one of the five best fighters at MW if he would just rein himself in. Wanderlei Silva is his own worst enemy these days. His chin is no where near where it used to be and he should know this yet he still seems to be fighting in order to put on a show. If he would fight every fight the way he fought Bisping the only guy I would pick to beat him 10 out of 10 would be Anderson Silva. Unfortunately he has tried to fight every fight since Bisping as if his jaw was still made of granite.
    On the Struve V Hunt predictions, I agree with every word…but I still picked Hunt via KO. I think that if it does hit the ground Hunt will get subbed in under 10 seconds. Hunt has however been showing improved TDD as of late and Struve has a very suspect chin. Not only that but Hunt's low center of gravity is going to compound Struve's difficulties and his height will mean that Struve will have to drop much lower for take downs and will telegraph them more. I think that there is a very good chance that this fight goes down along very similar lines to the Struve V Nellson fight.

  4. Profile photo of terra2805

    terra2805

    March 1, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Same picks i made pretty much……as usual……i'm pretty sure Wanderlei will give the fans what they want to see….sadly, i also think it will end with him getting KO'd…..the Leben vs Wandy fight springs to mind…..Stann has a granite chin as well as KO power, i just think it's a bad match up for Wanderlei…..as much as i love the guy…..(Stann KO RD 1)……I also like Mark Hunt….but let's be honest here…..he's not exactly a "well rounded" fighter by any stretch of the imagination…..like any fighter in the UFC he has a punchers chance……but with his height and reach i honestly don't think he'll get anywhere near Struves chin with those big power shots…..his best chance will be to push Struve against the cage and unload…..but i doubt Struve will let that happen…..Even if Hunt decides to go for a takedown….which will be a rare event in itself….i doubt he will be able to take Struve down and if he does manage it he'll be in worse trouble there than on his feet…..(Struve submission or stoppage due to strikes on the ground RD 1)

  5. Profile photo of GoldenBibi

    GoldenBibi

    March 1, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    2 easy calls…… Stann and Hunt…. Both First round K.O wins….. Okami vs Lombard, and Gomi vs Sanchez are the 2 fights I'm most looking forward on watching….

  6. Profile photo of Evan Holober

    Evan Holober

    March 2, 2013 at 3:56 am

    I look forward to seeing how Struve has continued to add muscle.

  7. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    March 2, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Struve should pick Hunt apart from distance. If Struve plays it smart Hunt should not be able to close the gap to trouble him.

    I think Stann is overrated. albeit a decent fighter. If Silva doesn't go in all guns firing and fights technical – which he has shown he is able to – he could surprise quite a few and dominate Stann. If he doesn't though he will get KO'd as Stann has good power.

  8. Profile photo of HotMixed

    HotMixed

    March 3, 2013 at 1:08 am

    Nope! Wanderlei is just too much. His heart is something else.

  9. Profile photo of 51JD51

    51JD51

    March 3, 2013 at 1:13 am

    And the curse of Anton lives on!

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