(Randy refuses to look Brock in the eyes! BET LESNAR! BET LESNAR! Photo courtesy of Flex Magazine.)
The UFC’s heavyweight grand prix, pay-per-view buys, Tamdan McCrory’s AFC status — we discuss it all in the latest installment of Ben vs. Ben. FYI, Fowlkes is currently a -170 favorite to win this argument.
How exactly will the main event end, and how will the winner fare in the heavyweight “tournament” as a whole?
Fowlkes: As big and powerful as Brock Lesnar is, his chances to win this fight diminish the longer it goes. He has the classic wrestler-turned-MMA fighter problem. He can get a guy down and hold him there, but aside from some inefficient ground-and-pound, he struggles to put people away.
So you’re all impressed by Lesnar’s win over Heath Herring? Great. You know who else outwrestled Herring for a decision win? Jake O’Brien. My point is, it’s not such an impossible feat. He’s never gone five rounds with someone as savvy and resilient as Couture. While Lesnar’s best hope is a decision, Couture can win several different ways.
Couture might have to take a beating in the first couple rounds. He might get pushed around more than he’s used to. But by the third he’ll turn the tide. He’ll take Lesnar’s back, discover that the man has no discernible neck to choke, then unleash a torrent of punches and satisfy himself with a TKO finish due to ref stoppage at the 4:10 mark. And still…UFC…heavyweight champion…until he’s submitted by Nogueira in the finals of this so-called tournament.
Goldstein: I say Couture takes the UFC 91 main event in a unanimous decision. We’re going to see a very methodical Randy on Saturday night, working his clinch game when he can, and doing his best to stuff takedown attempts and keep out of Brock’s punching range. He’ll go with the low-risk Machida approach, in other words, because one mistake, leading to one unfortunate position, could bring about a painful loss. I’ll agree that Randy will have Brock figured out by round three, but I’m going to give Lesnar the benefit of the doubt and say that Randy won’t be able to finish him — though Lesnar will definitely take more abuse than he ever has in his short real-fighting career.