Tuesday, March 15, 2011

UFC 128: Shogun/Jones Main Event

With a "UFC presents: Jon Jones" special scheduled to air before this Saturday night's UFC PPV and non-stop talk about him on anything MMA related, it's finally time to see whether it really is Jon Jones' time and all the hype was justified or if he's just another shark for the tank at 205.
Monsters collide this Saturday for the Main Event as Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua sets out to defend the UFC Light Heavyweight belt he so violently stripped from Machida by taking on wrestling powerhouse and supposed next big thing Jon Jones. Jon Jones has dominated everyone he's faced but his biggest win is Bader, a solid fighter but quite untested himself. He has faced some of the best wrestlers in the division and thoroughly handled all of them but there's not much diversity amongst his past opponents. He hasn't faced anyone who's that good off their back and the best striker he has faced is Vera, who has a cool style but is alright at best. Shogun has been fighting against the elite of his division for a while now, throwing perfectly placed punches, kicks, elbows, and knees to the top of both Pride and the UFC. He has faced wrestlers, judokas, jiu jitsu aces and strikers, legends, champs, and seemingly unstoppable foes. Unlike Matyushenko and the others, experience isn't all that Shogun brings. His ground game is slick and his Muy Thai is second to none. Jon Jones already made it to the top of the heap where he rightfully belongs but he's young and the lack of experience will be evident. He's never faced anyone anywhere near the level of Shogun and though in a couple of years he'll probably be the force people make him out to be, it's too early for him right now. Unlike everyone else, Shogun won't hesitate on the outside wary of how dangerous Jones is and is going to show Jones some things he's never felt, nasty kicks to the body, punches to the face that'll scatter his brains and wobble his legs. Shogun takes it by early aggression and his usual accurate, powerful striking. He'll inevitably get taken down but he's been there before, is good at not taking damage off his back, andshould be able to sweep out from bottom unless he catches a limb and hyper extends it before he gets back to his feet. It's Jones' biggest test to date and one he's going to need to retake because Shogun is just too much for just about anyone right now.
We got to talk to Jon Jones and ask him his opinion on his upcoming fight. He was nice, had a great attitude, and came off as very humble considering the position he's in and how young he is. Still, being cool and charming has no effect on the outcome of a fight and the Shogun that had a 5 round technical battle and then landed the big right hand on untouchable Machida in 6th round of their encounters eats undefeated fighters for breakfast, possibly making them better in the process and I don't think that's just wishful thinking.

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