I was on the FightTicker.com panel again making predictions for UFC 87. Here was my prediction for the Roger Huerta vs. Kenny Florian fight.
Prediction – Kenny Florian – rear naked choke – round
Kenny Florian has really developed and matured into a
well-rounded fighter since the Ultimate Fighter season one. He began his
career as a one-dimensional BJJ fighter who used his intelligence to embrace and
master all facets of the game under the tutelage of Mark DellaGrotte at
Sityodong and become one of the most feared opponents for anyone in the 155lb
lightweight division. He became the first contestant to earn a title shot
but with only seven fights under his belt he was still a little green to fight a
monster like the Muscle Shark.
Roger Huerta’s strengths in
this fight will be his wrestling and his size and strength advantage but he has
also been on the sidelines and has not fought a fight since Clay Guida almost
beat him way back in December. Huerta has however found himself in trouble
against fighters like Alberto Crane and Clay Guida but he always finds a way out
and is able to capitalize. I think Huerta has looked incredibly sloppy in
some of his fights with Doug Evans and Leonard Garcia being examples.
If Huerta makes a mistake or gets sloppy against a BJJ black belt
in Florian, who has great striking and positioning on the ground, he will get
finished. Florian has a better resume of opponents, better striking,
better jitz, and is great in the scrambles. When he told me that he
finishes fights, I started believing him. My prediction is Kenny Florian
by rear naked choke in the third round, set up with strikes from mount, in a
high-energy fight with plenty of scrambles.