UFC 167: St-Pierre vs. Hendricks will be taking place on November 16th, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. I will be giving a preview as well as my predictions for the winners of each fight. Fellow Sports Unbiased writer, Daniel Clark has also joined in on the picks!
The FOX Sports 1 prelims will be headlined by Donald Cerrone vs. Evan Dunham at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST and the UFC 167 main card will air on pay-per-view beginning at 10 p.m. EST/7 p.m. PST.
Main Event: (C) Georges St-Pierre vs. #1 Johny Hendricks:
This story-line feels eerily similar to UFC 162’s Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman, the up-and-coming contender is finally being given his long awaited shot at the longtime champion. However, in this fight, I see the champion remaining on his throne and we have quite a few reasons to believe St-Pierre’s reign will continue following Saturday night’s main event.
Hendricks looked great in his last bout against Carlos Condit, but we learned a few of his weaknesses, two in particular. In that bout with Condit, Hendricks didn’t show the best gas tank, which is vastly important, especially in a five round title fight with GSP. Secondly, Hendricks was able to take Condit down, but was unable to keep him there, if Hendricks is able to take St-Pierre down, I don’t believe St-Pierre will have much trouble getting back to his feet. Short of Hendricks landing that huge overhand left early, I see St-Pierre’s timing on his takedowns and reach to keep Hendricks at bay being the biggest factors in the fight. It will likely go to the judges, but if Hendricks gasses out in the later rounds I won’t be surprised to see St-Pierre finish.
Favorite: St-Pierre (-250) Underdog: Hendricks (+210)
Chris’ Pick: St-Pierre
Dan’s Pick: St-Pierre
Co-Main Event: #4 Rashad Evans vs. #6 Chael Sonnen:
If the Rashad Evans that lost to Antonio Nogueria aka “Lil Nog” earlier this year, shows up Saturday night, he will undoubtedly lose this fight. In my opinion, that’s what this boils down to, will Rashad Evans show up? While I give Sonnen the grappling advantage, it’s only a slight advantage, so this fight will likely take place on the feet where Evans has the obvious advantage. It’s so tricky to call this one, especially considering that Sonnen hasn’t been competing at Light Heavyweight for very long and has only fallen in championship fights in his last nine. It could honestly go either way and is seemingly too close to call, originally I was going to go with Sonnen, but in the end I believe Evans’ superior striking will get him the nod in a close one.
Favorite: Evans (-190) Underdog: Sonnen (+162)
Chris’ Pick: Evans
Dan’s Pick: Evans
#3 Rory MacDonald vs. #10 Robbie Lawler:
While Robbie Lawler is always a threat on the feet and has the power to finish anyone in the Welterweight division, I give MacDonald the advantage in all aspects. On the feet expect MacDonald to keep the fight at range and use his reach, similar to his last bout against Jake Ellenberger. MacDonald also has the clear advantage on the ground, he will likely take this fight to the mat and I see him coming away with a victory, possibly by submission.
Favorite: MacDonald (-355) Underdog: Lawler (+290)
Chris’ Pick: MacDonald
Dan’s Pick: MacDonald
Tyron Woodley vs. Josh Koscheck:
This is a big fight for both men, the winner will stay relevant in the Welterweight division and the losers’ job could possibly be on the line. Woodley’s power could be the biggest factor in the fight, as the wrestling will probably be nullified. I see an onslaught from Woodley early that could finish the fight, but if Koscheck is able to survive it, the rest of the fight will likely consist of a lot of clinching and go to a decision.
Favorite: Woodley (-130) Underdog: Koscheck (+110)
Chris’ Pick: Woodley
Dan’s Pick: Woodley
#7 Tim Elliot vs. Ali Bagautinov:
I don’t know much about either of these Flyweights, however, based on their last fights, I’m going to go with Elliot here. Elliot looked great in his last fight where he dominated top Flyweight Louis Gaudinot in a unanimous decision victory. In Bagautinov’s last fight, which was his UFC debut, he defeated Marcos Vinicius by TKO in round three, but Vinicius was able to present some problems for him. Elliot should be able to grind out another gritty decision to end Bagautinov’s nine fight win streak.
Favorite: Elliot (-160) Underdog: Bagautinov (+135)
Chris’ Pick: Elliot
Dan’s Pick: Elliot
(My picks will be in bold, Dan’s picks in Italics. Picks we agree on will have both.)
#10 Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone (-110) vs. Evan Dunham (-110)
Thales Leites (-170) vs. Ed Herman (+145)
Rick Story (-205) vs. Brian Ebersole (+175)
Erik Perez (-385) vs. Edwin Figueroa (+310)
Jason High (-310) vs. Anthony Lapsley (+255)
Sergio Pettis (-385) vs. Will Campuzano (+310)
Gian Villante (-340) vs. Cody Donovan (+280)
Chris’ Prediction Results (This Year): 45-22
Dan’s Prediction Results (This Year): 27-16
*Odds courtesy of BetDSI