We’re now only a few days away from Strikeforce’s “Overeem vs. Werdum” event. In the main event, Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Alistair Overeem will step into the cage against Fabricio Werdum. The co-main event will also be an interesting match-up, as former UFC Heavyweight Champion Josh Barnett takes on Brett Rogers. As is customary, here is my official “picks and predictions” post (covering who I think will win and why), now featuring Strikeforce: “Overeem vs. Werdum”.
Valentijn Overeem vs. Chad Griggs: I think this fight is going to be a tough war, and I think it has a good chance of going to a decision. Then again, it has a good chance of ending in the first round, too. I don’t think Overeem can knock Griggs out, Griggs has too tough of a chin. So here’s what I think: if Overeem’s chin holds up and he doesn’t get caught with a vicious counter, he’ll win by Unanimous Decision. But if Griggs starts landing, Griggs will win by TKO in either Round 2 or 3.
Daniel Cormier vs. Jeff Monson: This is a rare moment for me: my heart and my head are in total disagreement. I want Jeff Monson to win very badly, I think he’s sorely under-rated and is long overdue for a big comeback in a major promotion. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that Cormier is the epitome of this recently-emerging new breed of wrestler, with ridiculously good wrestling skills and ridiculously good camps that know how to utilize that skill. And that new breed of wrestler is finding it easier and easier to neutralize anyone on the ground, even really good submission fighters. My heart wants Jeff Monson to win by TKO in Round 2 or Submission in Round 3, my head thinks both situations are far less likely than Daniel Cormier winning by Unanimous Decision. As much as I love being an optimist, I’m a realist first, so I’ll pick Cormier by Unanimous Decision.
KJ Noons vs. Jorge Masvidal: It’d be hard for me to pick against KJ Noons no matter who he was facing, but I’m practically giddy that I get to side with KJ Noons while consequently siding against Jorge Masvidal. Masvidal needs another rude awakening, he needs another “Inverted Triangle Choke” moment, and I think Noons is going to give it to him. Noons has KO power and is fighting in his domain, at Lightweight. KJ Noons wins by KO in Round 1.
Josh Barnett vs. Brett Rogers: In the end, I think experience will win out and Josh Barnett, for all his flaws, will prove that he’s still a Top 10 fighter. In this fight. I think Barnett is going to pick Rogers apart standing, avoiding any major one-hit KO blows before forcing the fight up against the cage. After that, Barnett will then smother Rogers with tight clinch wrestling and some precise, hard-hitting dirty boxing. Eventually Rogers will weaken and Barnett will take him down, and from there, it’s just a matter of transitioning from one submission or another once Rogers throws his hands up, shifts his weight, and attempts to buck off his opponent. Josh Barnett wins by submission in Round 2.
Alistair Overeem vs. Fabricio Werdum: I’m not counting out Fabricio Werdum, I’d like to make that very clear before making this prediction. I just think Overeem is unstoppable and would be supremely shocked if Werdum beat him again. So, can Werdum defy the odds and make us all eat some humble pie once again? Certainly. But I think it’s far, far more likely that the second “Ubereem” starts letting the “Reem Hammers” go, Werdum isn’t going to get stunned and dropped, he’s going to get stone-cold KTFO’d. And unlike the fight against Fedor Emelianenko, Werdum won’t be able to stay conscious long enough to scramble and trap Overeem in a submission. Alistair Overeem wins by KO in Round 1.
And that’s what I think, fans and friends.