April is just about over and the UFC is back. For 6 weeks the worlds largest MMA promotion was running silent their next event not till April 14 in Sweden. It was a long semi boring six weeks. Sure you could watch TUF but its still boring and has the same problems. Bellator failed to capitalize on the lack of the UFC and continue to stagnate in the ratings on MTV2. The UFC did get around to promoting UFC 146 set for May 26 but some surprise testing by the Nevada Athletic Commission had headliner Alistair Overeem coming back with a testosterone to epitestosterone ratio of 14:1!!! WADA (Olympic dug testers) only allows for 4:1 along with most commissions in the US, Nevada allows 6:1….the UFC probably wished that hadn’t come out in the midst of a 6 week break giving the internet little else to talk about. Even though that whole debacle hasn’t fully blown over they can try and distract the conversation away by promoting fights.Overeem is set to appear before the Nevada Commission Tuesday April 24. The UFC finished strong as Jon Jones defended the Light Heavyweight title for the third time defeating former friend Rashad Evans.
May is a packed month with 8 events in 4 weeks. 3 of them will be within a week of another. Its so nice to have fights back on TV.
MAY 04 Bellator Fighting Championships 67
May stars off with Bellator on MTV2. All of the tournament quarter final rounds have finished so now it’s a matter of weeding out who the final two will be. The two welterweight tournament semi-finals are set with Ben Saunders vs Bryan Baker and Karl Amoussou vs David Rickels. I’d expect a Saunders Amoussou final which would be a fun fight between the two strikers. New BFC lightweight champion Michael Chandler is on the “superfight” circuit taking on Japanese veteran Akihiro Gono. This isn’t a superfight at all Gono is shopworn at this point and is nothing more than a keep busy fight for Chandler. Chandler burst on to the scene taking out Eddie Alvarez in only his 9th pro fight he needs to stay busy but not against this type of competition.
MAY 05 UFC on Fox 3 - Miller vs. Diaz
The UFC returns to FOX with a really fun card that while it might not have the names like a Evans,Sonnen or Bisping has fun fights to keep casual fans happy. The winner of Nate Diaz Jim Miller should be poised to challenger of the Edgar Henderson rematch. 5 rounds with top 7 lightweights should be FUN. Also the welterweight world continues to turn as Johny Hendricks takes on Josh Koscheck, this is a fun wrestle boxer fight with Hendricks hitting like a ton of bricks. Rousimar Palhares will try to take Alan Belchers leg home. Heavyweight sluggers Pat Barry and Lavar Johnson will also fight on the FOX portion of the card the odds of this making it to round 3 is really really small.
The undercard on FUEL tv also has some fun fights. Newly minted flyweights are in action with TUF winner John Dodson vs. Tim Elliott and Louis Gaudinot vs. John Lineker. Lineker mainly fought at bantamweight in Brazil and has a fitting nickname, hands of stone. the Danny Castillo John Cholish fight should have some fun scrambles as well.
MAY 11 Bellator Fighting Championships 68
Bellators Season 6 Featherweight final is set for this card. Former Sengoku and all around slugger Marlon Sandro takes on Daniel Straus. Sandro made a name for himself in Japan, sending competitors out on stretchers and we haven’t really seen that in Bellator.He has finished guys in violent fashion but he has also been far more respectful of his opponents. Daniel Straus is one of the great diamonds in the rough Bellator has. He isn’t pretty but he is a scrappy dude who is great at grinding out decision wins with solid wrestling and clinch work complementing an all around good game. DREAM welterweight champion Marius Zaromskis makes his Bellator debut rematching Waachiim Spiritwolf. The pair originally fought on a Strikeforce Challengers card but the fight ended quickly after a eye poke.These two aren’t great mixed martial artists but great they are kickboxers and brawlers and should just make for a fun fight.
MAY 15 UFC on Fuel - Korean Zombie vs. Poirier
The Korean Zombie Chan Sung Jung made a lot of fans with his 7 second KO of Mark Hominick. The Zombie is among the UFCs more popular featherweights and a win over Poirier would make a title fight with Jose Aldo at UFC 149 in Canada would be extremely likely. Dustin Poirier could also find himself across the cage from Aldo if he wins.The co-main event is a fun fight between Donald Cerrone and Jeremy Stephens.
MAY 18 Bellator Fighting Championships 69
No tournament fights or superfights are announced for this card yet. The former #1 P4P female fighter Megumi Fujii returns to Bellator and will take on Jessica Aguilar. There appears to be a Light Heavyweight tournament qualifier between Richard Hale and Josh Burns..groan. It also appears they want to do another Heavyweight tournament…even though they have gone so well since Ron Sparks is taking on Kevin Asplund…super groan.
MAY 19 Strikeforce - Barnett vs. Cormier
I remember when Strikeforce annouced that it was doing a Heavyweight Grand Prix. I was so excited the 8 heavyweights were respectable and all good…ok Brett Rogers wasn’t good but 7 out of 8 isn’t bad.Now Strikeforce is a zombie owned by its biggest competitor, a shell of its formerself. Still the final between Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier is a great heavyweight fight.It is co headlined by a third fight between Gilbert Melendez and Josh Thompson which isn’t so great. Melendez is clearly better than Thompson and lacks competition within Striekforce. Also on the main card light heavyweights Fejiao Calvacante and Mike Kyle collide again,the pair previously fought at Strikeforce Lawler vs Shields
MAY 25 Bellator Fighting Championships 70
Bellator 70 will be the end of the sixth season of Bellator. Over the summer they will do another “Summer Series” featuring a light heavyweight tournament *groan*. BFC 70 will be headlined by a heavyweight title fight between Cole Konrad and Eric Prindel. Yep that’s a Bellator heavyweight fight for you Konrad will most likely kimura Prndel in under 4 minutes and go back to law school with a big check. The lightweight tournament final between Rick Hawn and Brent Weedman should be more entertaining.
MAY 26 UFC 146 - Dos Santos vs. Mir
Kind of like Strikeforces Heavyweight Grand Prix UFC 146 seemed poised for a interesting bit of UFC trivia. An all heavyweight main card with interesting match ups and everyone being ranked in the top 15 of the division. Than they had the random piss test after a press conference and Overeem came back with a 14:1 ration (facepalm). Overeem has rightly been pulled from the card and replaced with Frank Mir who was going to fight Cain Velasquez but now finds himself in a title fight. Velasquez will now fight Antonio Bigfoot Silva which should push AKA to 2-1 against Bigfoot. A replacement for Roy Nelson to fight has yet to be announced. The other Heavyweight fights on the main card include Mark Hunt vs Stefan Struve and Gabriel Gonzaga vs Shane Del Rosario.
The undercard has a pair interesting lightweight fights. Evan Dunham and Edson Barboza go at it and the winner would be at the lower end of the top of the division. Jacob Volkman will attempt to continue his nice run by taking on Paul Sass. Featherweight Ultimate Fighter winner Diego Brandao returns from buying his mother a house and saving his brother from druggers in Brazil and fights Darren Elkins. Dan Hardy will try to stop a 4 fight losing streak by taking on Duane Ludwig if he loses well Lorenzo Ferittia likes guys who “WAR”. Jason Mayhem Miller will try to make a better impression on the MMA public after a pitiful performance against Michael Bisping by fighting CB Dollaway.
5 Fights to Watch
1.) Nate Diaz vs Jim Miller – UFC on FOX 3
2.) Josh Barnett vs Daniel Cormier –Strikeforce: Barnett Cormier
3.) Junior Dos Santos vs Frank Mir – UFC 146
4.) Korean Zombie vs. Poirier – UFC on Fuel 3
5.) Gilbert Melendez vs Johsn Thompson – Strikeforce: Barnett Cormier