The UFC will once again return to Canada to put on UFC 154. Ladies and Gentlemen…get ready for the return of Georges St-Pierre.

After injury and switching around match-ups, welterweight champion GSP will face off against interim champ Carlos Condit to unify the belts and give fans an undisputed king at 170 pounds. With GSP’s knee injury, the question in everyone’s minds is how he will return from such a long layoff. With talks of a superfight with Anderson Silva following a win for GSP, this fight is one people will want to watch closely.

UFC 154 takes place on Nov. 17 with the main card airing live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET. Prelims will precede the main card on Facebook (at 6 p.m. ET) and FX (at 8 p.m. ET). The MMA Corner’s Gregory Chase, Brian McKenna and David Massey will break down UFC 154 in this edition of the The MMA Corner’s Round Table.

FW: Mark Hominick (20-11) vs. Pablo Garza (11-3)

McKenna: Disappointing. That is the one word I can muster up when talking about Mark Hominick in his UFC career. The featherweight made a lot of noise in his WEC tenure, earning his spot near the top of the division as the two promotions merged. He fought well against champion Jose Aldo, but ultimately couldn’t get the job done. He followed it up with an embarrassing seven-second knockout loss to “The Korean Zombie,” Chan-Sung Jung, and then dropped the ball when he lost a decision in a very winnable fight against Eddie Yagin. Simply put, “The Machine” will have his back up against the wall in this fight.

Garza (L) (Paul Thachter/Fight! Magazine)

Also in need of a victory is his opponent, Pablo Garza. “The Scarecrow” is riding a two-fight losing streak, dropping fights to Dustin Poirier and Dennis Bermudez. Garza is known most for his submission skills, having defeated seven of his opponents with them. He has a lot of experience behind him, but nothing of the sort when compared to Hominick. Additionally, the Canadian has the same amount of submission victories as his counterpart, but can boast about seven more victories by knockout.

Even though he has been on a rough go of it lately, Hominick takes this fight by first-round knockout. Hopefully, this will be the victory that puts him back on track.

Massey: Hominick, a longtime Muay Thai and kickboxing practitioner, is known for his superior striking. Garza, as Brian explained, is a grappler, thus making this a classic striker vs. grappler match-up.

It is interesting to note that the UFC shows Garza as having no takedowns in his career for the promotion. His numbers for takedown defense are very low as well. Garza’s wrestling deficiencies will be there for Hominick to exploit at will, but it is unlikely that Hominick will want to spend much time in Garza’s guard in danger of being wrapped up by his long limbs. At UFC 129, Garza masterfully pulled guard on on Yves Jabouin, quickly attaching a flying triangle choke to end the fight. His knockout of Fredson Paixao in 2010 was inspired as well, and these two wins show his ability to end a fight quickly.

Now, the problem is, that both of these guys have been handily defeated by their recent opponents, leaving onlookers to call it a career slope (at least in the case of Hominick). Neither is looking so hot these days, but Hominick has that extra bit of scrappiness and has been through enough rough fights and losses to maintain a stronger will if things go bad.

Hominick (Sherdog)

Given the flashes of brilliance from both in the past and their losses of late, it could be a chaotic fight that could end either way for both sides. However, Hominick has no trouble knocking bigger featherweights out as he did against George Roop. I expect him to land a big right hand to put Garza on queer street and end his hat-trick of losses with a TKO victory before the end of round two.

Chase: This is a significant fight for Hominick, as Brian pointed out. Fluke or not, his loss to the Korean Zombie has put him on a downward hill here, and he needs to come back strong in this one. With such a run in the WEC, and being the first to challenge Jose Aldo’s UFC title, he has fallen from grace to the point where he needs to prove something.

This fight is the ideal situation for Hominick to do just that. Not to write off Garza, but Hominick is a much more experienced fighter and has fought a higher caliber of opponents in his career. This is a fight that I see Hominick winning, and his hands will be the factor here, as David suggested. His striking is much better and tested, and he will want to avoid the ground game.

Garza has only been finished via submission, and Hominick could pull one off, but I think a TKO victory goes to Hominick in this one as he puts himself back on the right track.

MW: Nick Ring (13-1) vs. Constantinos Philippou (11-2)

Massey: Constantinos Philippou and Nick Ring are both former professional boxers, though I give the striking advantage to Philippou based on technique and power. If Ring starts losing the stand-up battle, his solid wrestling will come into play, and then it will be on Philippou to fight for an advantage in what will turn into a hard-fought decision for both.

Ring (R) connects with a right hand (James Law/Heavy MMA)

Ring stays very active with his footwork. He’s constantly circling and jumping in and out of range with strikes, which is a hard pace to maintain as the fight goes on. Philippou uses the same lateral movement as a way to keep takedowns at bay, but he is willing to plant his feet and throw combinations, which will end up having a bigger payoff as the fight enters round three.

Philippou does his damage in the short range. We saw him effectively keep Court McGee at bay with strong uppercuts preceded by jabs and left-right combinations. When Ring gets clipped, it usually ends up as a knockdown (though he recovers quickly) and that might have Philippou following up with grappling for a finish, which could turn the momentum back on him.

We should see Ring mostly working from long range like he did against Tim Boetsch, but his aggressive attack will slow down as the fight wears on. Philippou only needs a few combos to connect to have Ring in bad shape. Philippou’s takedown and grappling defense will be tested, but Ring will likely pay the price to initiate, and the accumulated damage should lead to a split decision for Philippou.

Chase: This is an interesting style matchup, but I don’t think Ring has what it takes to pull this one off. If this fight goes to the ground, Ring has a much better shot. He has made his name from his submission game, but he will have to stand with Philippou first.

This is where I see problems for Ring. Philippou has much better hands and has the track record to prove it. I think Ring’s striking has long strides to go, and Philippou’s attack will wear down Ring, if not stop him early.

Philippou (James Law/Heavy MMA)

As David said, it only takes a few shots to land from Philippou to put Ring in a bad spot, and I think you will see him fold under that pressure. I will go with Philippou via TKO.

McKenna: I feel that a lot of people are looking past this fight, which truly is a shame. Costa Philippou has been on an absolute tear lately, winning four straight in impressive fashion. He has proven that he has strong striking, but is also able to grind out a victory if he has to.

As pointed out above, it is no secret that Ring is most comfortable on the ground, having submitted six opponents. But I feel that the Serra-Longo product, Philippou, will be able to outlast Ring on the ground, and be able to return the fight to the feet, which will cause big problems for the Canadian. The frustration will lead to a TKO victory for Philippou, handing him his fourth straight victory.

MW: Francis Carmont (19-7) vs. Tom Lawlor (8-4)

Chase: This is Tom Lawlor’s opportunity to get back on top and put his name back into the upper tiers of his division. His recent years have gone back and forth, but he is coming off a huge win over Jason MacDonald.

Carmont (L) delivers a right hand (Paul Thatcher/Fight! Magazine)

Francis Carmont is coming in on an eight-fight winning streak and certainly takes the momentum edge in this fight. That being said, I don’t think he has fought the caliber of opponent that Lawlor has, and the experience edge actually goes to Lawlor, even though he has less fights.

This is a great fight simply because both men are well-rounded finishers. Both have great chances, but I think Lawlor will stop Carmont’s streak and we will see another big finish from him.

McKenna: Gregory is right, Lawlor’s victory over MacDonald was huge. Maybe even gigantic. A loss would have made it very easy for the promotion to have handed him his walking papers, but it was more than a victory, it was a statement victory. That performance goes to show you just how good Lawlor can be when he is at his best, and if he comes into the cage like that again, then his opponent needs to watch out.

Lawlor (Second from left) (Paul Thatcher/Fight! Magazine)

But his opponent isn’t exactly one who will be walked over. Carmont showed the world that he is the real deal by going 3-0 inside the Octagon. Now, it is time for the TriStar product to truly step up his game while he fights in a city that he calls home. “Limitless” is good, but I have to agree with Gregory and say that Lawlor wins this fight by stoppage, another knockout victory for “Filthy” Tom Lawlor.

Massey: We have two naturals of showmanship facing one another here. Lawlor, of course, has kept himself relevant in the middle of the pack with a funny personality and silly costumes, and Carmont is known to show overconfidence while he is finding success in the cage.

While both have solid games all around, Carmont is currently finding more success with grappling, whereas Lawlor is more dangerous with his hands, at least in the beginning of a fight. I think Carmont will beat Lawlor with his strength in submissions, the same way Chris Weidman and Joe Doerksen did.

Brian and Gregory are stoked about Lawlor’s KO of MacDonald, but I don’t find that to be an impressive feat given MacDonald’s spotty career. Carmont, on the other hand, is yet to find how good he really is in the UFC, and Lawlor, while dangerous, can be easily defeated with the right attack.

The start of the fight is going to be most dangerous for Carmont, and my fellow panelists aren’t wrong for expecting a quick or eventual KO, but I don’t see Carmont falling to that mistake. Lawlor was completely overwhelmed on the ground by Weidman, who, in fairness, is one of UFC’s best middleweights. But the point is that Weidman displayed a blueprint in taking out Lawlor. I see Carmont sticking to Lawlor and smothering him until he finds an opening to end the fight by submission.

WW: Martin Kampmann (20-5) vs. Johny Hendricks (13-1)

Massey: Even though this is a No. 1 contender match, the importance of this fight completely hinges on Carlos Condit winning the championship from Georges St-Pierre. If GSP wins, we will probably see him face Anderson Silva in a superfight, and the UFC’s top welterweights will begin the messy process of rising and falling in the division all over again while the champ is away.

Hendricks (Paul Thatcher/Fight! Magazine)

Martin Kampmann is known for his intangible skill of raising from the dead during fights. He prefers a bloody and dangerous fight and has shown that resiliency by coming back from the brink of defeat to submit Thiago Alves and score a TKO of Jake Ellenberger in his most recent outings. However, we’ve yet to see him win a fight that gives him the right to claim his shot at the title. That pressure could continue to affect his performance when it matters.

Johny Hendricks is riding the momentum of two wins over top welterweights Jon Fitch and Josh Koscheck. We could see him storm out of the gates and get a KO or be in for a night of technical boxing mixed with high-caliber wrestling. Knowing his opponent, the chance of a TKO is probably less of a factor in the first half of the fight. While Hendricks’ wrestling will give the “Hitman” problems, his lack of utilizing jiu-jitsu in fights can play to Kampmann’s advantage.

While the fight is standing, I give the advantage to Hendricks, though we know how dangerous Kampmann can be. I see this fight ending on the ground with Kampmann finding a way to submit the wrestler off of his back, turning in another true underdog performance.

McKenna: I’ve been pretty high on Kampmann for quite some time. He is 5-2 in his last seven fights, but a case can be made for him to be 7-0. He was absolutely robbed when a decision victory was awarded to Diego Sanchez and his fight against Jake Shields was also very close. His two recent victories against Alves and Ellenberger were perfect examples of how dangerous of an opponent that “The Hitman” can be. A lot of fighters lack a killer instinct when they’re clearly behind, yet, in both of those fights, Kampmann rose to the occasion and grabbed the victory. His kickboxing skills are great, and his ground game is also pretty lethal.

But all of it could be null and void if Hendricks is able to use his elite wrestling skills to keep Kampmann pinned to the ground. I was in attendance when Hendricks defeated Koscheck last May, and I saw first hand what “Big Rig” is capable of doing. Even though “Kos” has struggled a little bit in his last couple of fights, he was still a big victory for the southpaw. And people may think that all Hendricks can do is wrestle, but if you sleep on his stand-up game, you will end up like Fitch.

Kampmann (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

This should be a really great fight, and hopefully we don’t end up with a clogged division based on what may or may not happen as a result of the welterweight title fight later in the evening, but I think that Kampmann will hand Hendricks the first knockout defeat of his career in the second round.

Chase: This is a fantastic fight, and one that should be exciting to watch. This fight carries huge significance in the welterweight division and will help clear up some contendership issues.

What you have here is two great strikers, with a grappling advantage going to Kampmann. This is the chance for Hendricks to prove himself and show that his knockout of Fitch wasn’t a fluke.

Kampmann is a tough guy to finish, but he has been knocked out before. Both men who handed him knockouts were big strikers, and if Hendricks can land a left on him, it will be tough for Kampmann to survive. Even though Kampmann is a great striker, it may be his preference to take this to the ground, where he will have a big edge over Hendricks. Hendricks has never been submitted, but he also hasn’t faced a guy with the submission prowess of Kampmann in the recent past.

I think Hendricks is on a huge roll and his momentum will see him to another victory here. I will predict a decision win for Hendricks, but the KO/TKO is certainly possible for either man.

WW Championship: Georges St-Pierre (22-2) vs. Carlos Condit (28-5)

McKenna: On Saturday night, the king of the welterweight division will make his return to the cage after more than a year away from it. Georges St-Pierre is coming back from his ACL injury, and considering he took his time to return to the Octagon rather than rush back as fast as possible tells me that there should be zero negative effects of the injury during his title defense. GSP has been virtually unstoppable and has looked absolutely outstanding his last couple of times out. He outboxed Josh Koscheck and was able to stay away from Koscheck’s strength, which was his wrestling. He was able to keep Dan Hardy on his back for their whole fight, staying away from the Brit’s great striking game. Simply put, “Rush” has been able to outdo everyone at everything.

Condit (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

But the man holding the interim title has proven worthy of his own title strap. Carlos Condit was the king of the WEC welterweight division before the two promotions merged, and he has only lost one fight in his time with the UFC. That fight was a split decision loss to Martin Kampmann, who we know as a legitimate contender, rather than some victory against a relative nobody. Condit has proven that when he wants to, he can be an animal with one-strike knockout power, but if he needs to, he can also stick to a game plan and grind out a tough decision, as was the case in his interim title fight against Nick Diaz.

One huge factor in this fight is that the two combatants share the same coach in Greg Jackson. Jackson decided to stay on the sidelines in this fight and not pick one fighter over the other, which is only fair. It will be interesting to see which side will be able to better adjust to not having him in their corner. Taking the coach out of the equation, GSP has more ways of being able to win the fight than Condit. However, the striking game that “The Natural Born Killer” has could very well be the factor in this fight. If Matt Serra was able to land a miracle shot on the chin of “Rush,” then why shouldn’t Condit be able to do the same?

At the end of the night, I see St-Pierre walking out of the arena with the titles unified. GSP will be able to soften up Condit during the first three rounds, and score a stoppage sometime in the fourth. The stoppage is definitely coming, because people have been critical of the champion due to all of his decision victories, and after such a long absence from the sport, he will come back and make a statement.

Chase: He’s back. But in what shape? GSP has been sidelined with an injury that has changed the paths of many athletes before him for the worst. There are two questions going into this fight. First, how has GSP recovered? We will want to pay attention to his willingness and explosiveness in his takedowns, and see how he fares with overall wrestling. The second is, how will GSP do as far as looking for the finish?

GSP has expressed a desire to finish fights and acknowledges the criticism he has faced for some time now. He doesn’t want to take huge and careless risks, but he wants to be more opportunistic in regards to jumping on the chances that do arise. That killer instinct is something he has said he has worked on, and he will have a chance to prove himself in this one.

Condit, though, is hungry. He has been thrown around and waited long enough, and he has become focused on this fight. He has had vast amounts of time to mentally and physically prepare, and now has his shot to take down one of the greatest of all time.

St-Pierre (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

Both GSP and Condit stick to game plans and both are intelligent fighters. That being said, if one man can come back from such an injury just as good, if not better than before, it is GSP. I see Condit giving him a good challenge and not being timid, but GSP will walk out of the Octagon the undisputed champion. The camera will pan to Anderson Silva, and the media frenzy will begin.

Massey: I’m not sold that either man will actually produce a finish unless their back is put against the wall. GSP has played it safe because he knows how easy it is to lose the title from anybody that can connect with a punch. Condit has stormed through some of the world’s best and will go down in history as an elite welterweight, but he’ll probably want to play it just as safe. Condit was heavily criticized for that approach in his winning bid for the title shot against MMA’s number-one bad boy, Nick Diaz.

If Condit does bring the fireworks, then GSP has his world-class wrestling, which he can use to cruise past Condit as he has done with most of his opponents since 2008. The desire for a statement after a long layoff and many decisions on his record is a big factor, as both my fellow panelists pointed out, and the amount of time off prior to GSP’s return might influence the fight as well. However, that remains to be seen and I’m sticking with GSP due to the history of his domination over the competition.

Condit is dangerous and never to be counted out for a second, but GSP is the king of welterweight MMA and “The Natural Born Killer” will need to come and take that title from him. Surprises are what make watching this sport so great, but I can only envision a GSP of old using strong jabs and wrestling to keep a desired pace. Be ready for anything, but I’ll reasonably stay in the comfort zone and make it three for GSP. I’ll even call it a decision.

Preliminary Card
FW: Steven Siler (21-9) vs. Darren Elkins (14-2)

Chase: This is a fight I see going to Steven Siler. His ground game will be the deciding factor here, and he will pull off yet another submission victory against Darren Elkins. Elkins has a shot on the feet, but Siler takes this one sometime before the third round.

Massey: Now this should be a fight, as both are hard-nosed competitors proving themselves in the UFC. Elkins made a name for himself by resisting the aggression of Diego Brandao and turned it into a decision for himself. Siler took a decision from the well-known Cole Miller and is coming off a dominant submission victory. I like Siler here because he comes forward and backs it up with nasty combo’s and grappling while looking for the finish. Elkins can handle the pressure, but Siler will keep pouring it on towards a victory.

McKenna: Considering that these two fighters are a combined 7-1 inside the Octagon, it is a little bit shocking that this fight will kick off the night. This fight truly should be fairly even on the feet, but Siler has the clear advantage when the fight hits the mat. Because of this, Siler will either score the submission or ride out a clear decision victory. One way or another, it should be an exciting way to kick off the night.

BW: Ivan Menjivar (24-9) vs. Azamat Gashimov (7-1)

McKenna: Ivan Menjivar will welcome Azamat Gashimov into the UFC this Saturday. While fighting in the Ukraine and Russia, “Tough Guy” has shown his value, being able to both submit and knock out his opponents. In the case of Gashimov, we don’t know how good his competition was, and therefore don’t know how good he really is. I have to go with the Zuffa veteran, Menjivar, in this fight by first-round knockout.

Massey: As Brian pointed out, it is hard to say how good of competition Gashimov has really tasted. It will be a big leap from fighting in tiny venues in Russia to the biggest stage in MMA. Look at Menjivar’s past opponents and you will see he’s faced some of the best names in MMA. Gashimov must be something special, or not, either way I can’t give him the benefit of the doubt making his American and UFC debut against a veteran. Menjivar all day.

Chase: This should be a breeze for Menjivar. His experience and overall skill will dominate Gashimov early and hard. Gashimov is a finisher, but he is making his debut in the UFC, and I think he will fold under the big lights.

WW: Matthew Riddle (6-3) vs. John Maguire (18-4)

Massey: John Maguire is a journeyman with his own personal style of jiu-jitsu, and Matthew Riddle will need to stay mindful of the Englishman’s quick transitions into submissions. However, Maguire isn’t a large welterweight and Riddle will have a size advantage that will play into his wrestling. It will be a hazardous fight on the floor for Riddle, but if we look at his stats, he is much more active on the ground with strikes. Maguire’s recent performances haven’t been inspiring and I like Riddle’s tenacity to leave the gypsy jiu-jitsu practitioner’s chances up in smoke.

Chase: This is a fight I think Maguire will win if it goes to the ground. Riddle will put up a great fight to keep it standing, but I think Maguire will get him to the mat. If he doesn’t finish him there, he will at least grapple enough to win a decision.

McKenna: Maguire’s recent UFC defeat in England had to be frustrating, but more than anything else, it had to have been good for him. He had a great record before heading into the promotion and won two fights before hitting that speed bump. Maguire will come back better than ever after returning to training more motivated than ever. Second-round submission victory by the man who claims to have a pink belt in gypsy jiu-jitsu.

FW: Antonio Carvalho (14-5) vs. Rodrigo Damm (10-5)

Chase: Both men have had a rough couple of years, but both are finishers. This is a fight I can see getting an “of the Night” bonus. If it ends with a sub, it goes to Rodrigo Damm. If by KO, then it goes to Antonio Carvalho. I will predict Carvalho wins via TKO early on.

McKenna: It should be interesting to see if these fighters are going to want to roll with one another, or if they are going to try to bang. Both fighters have black belts in jiu-jitsu, but Carvalho definitely has better striking. I’m on board with Greg and will take Carvalho by TKO.

Massey: The pressure is on Damm to take this fight. Damm tends to be overwhelmed in a fight, and Carvalho brings heavy hands that will give him trouble. Carvalho won’t want to rush it, but I’m with my colleagues here—Carvalho by TKO.

LW: Sam Stout (18-7-1) vs. John Makdessi (9-2)

Massey: While John Makdessi comes from a successful kickboxing background, his MMA game as of late hasn’t shown the same promise. He’s 2-2 in the UFC against decent opponents, but after dropping his last two, a match with a veteran like Sam Stout seems way out of his league. Stout is known for an iron chin and has won and lost to many quality lightweights in his six-year tenure with the UFC. Makdessi will rely heavily on his striking, but I don’t see him overwhelming or surprising the veteran. I pick Stout.

McKenna: In the only battle of two Canadian fighters on the night, Stout will emerge victorious. Makdessi came into the UFC as a solid prospect with a 7-0 record, but when he earned the chance to face steeper competition, he has struggled. I don’t see any reason why this fight would be any different, as Stout has proven to be a fighter who has been near the top of the division for a while, but is unable to get over the hump. Stout will hand Makdessi his third consecutive loss, this time by TKO.

Chase: Stout, hands down. This should be a great win for Stout, and one he can certainly end with a big KO or TKO, as Brian suggested. Even though Makdessi has some striking, Stout will have the upper hand and put himself back into a better spot in the division.

LW: Mark Bocek (11-4) vs. Rafael dos Anjos (17-6)

McKenna: Both fighters have had a pretty good career so far, but neither fighter has been able to get a statement victory. Mark Bocek and Rafael dos Anjos normally perform the best while they are on the ground, as they both have a high number of submission victories in their careers, but I have a feeling that the ground games will cancel out in this fight. This fight will be close, and I’m going to take Canada’s own Bocek in this fight.

Chase: This fight is hard to pick, and as Brian said, it will be close. I think the submissions of dos Anjos might take this fight though. Bocek is great on the ground, but it’s hard to bet against the Brazilian when it comes to BJJ. Dos Anjos takes this one by decision or via a late submission.

Massey: As both Brian and Gregory pointed out, this is a close fight to call. I give the edge to dos Anjos, as he can deliver a solid offering of strikes. His most recent victory was over Anthony Njokuani, a well-respected stand-up fighter, and dos Anjos stood with him. Bocek is content to grind an opponent out, and if dos Anjos’ ground game can keep him from being controlled on the floor, then he has the advantage on the feet, where Bocek will become uncomfortable. I have dos Anjos winning.

LHW: Cyrille Diabate (18-8-1) vs. Chad Griggs (11-2)

Chase: Cyrille Diabate was on a roll for a while, but he didn’t live up to the hype once he got it. He is a well-rounded guy, but I think Chad Griggs is going to give him another setback. Griggs is coming off a loss, but he is a finisher. He will use his hands to put pressure on Diabate, to the point where he will be overwhelmed. Griggs takes this one via TKO/KO in the first.

Massey: Diabate will never fight for a UFC title, but he shows up, has some fun while performing, punches the clock and gets his check. Griggs is the newly acquired stepchild of Strikeforce looking for approval in his new weight class. I’d love to agree with Gregory, but Diabate will stylistically be a tough match-up for Griggs after another lanky fighter in Travis Browne showed some of his defensive holes. Griggs was on a sensational roll in Strikeforce, but beating the back end of the Strikeforce roster is much different than the UFC’s. We’re going to see Diabate put his Muay Thai to good use with knees up the middle en route to a stoppage if Griggs wants to walk him down with boxing, and he’ll earn a fatter paycheck while Griggs is left to re-evaluate his spot in the UFC.

McKenna: I think that David’s description of Diabate’s career is dead on. Never the guy to fight for the title, but the guy who will go all out while he is in the cage. You have to respect that one way or another, and it will be that attitude that will drive him to being able to win back-to-back fights in the Octagon for the first time. It is not that Griggs is a bad fighter, but the fact that he is moving down to light heavyweight will screw up all of his timing while he opposes a quick striking light heavyweight. Diabate by second-round TKO.

MW: Patrick Cote (17-8) vs. Alessio Sakara (15-9)

McKenna: This is one of those fights where both fighters are in need of a victory. Patrick Cote has been in and out of the UFC multiple times—in the combat sports world, you’re only as good as your last fight. In his last fight, Cote looked sluggish against Cung Le, which may have been a direct result of taking the fight on short notice. His opponent, Alessio Sakara, has also had a rough go of it lately, dropping two straight to Chris Weidman and Brian Stann. Losing to those two is nothing to complain about, but he needs to make a statement and earn a victory. That being said, Saturday night will be Cote’s night as he gets back on track with a second-round knockout.

Massey: Sakara is a journeyman that will give fans what they want—a “stand and wang” affair. Unfortunately, he is winning only about half of those battles and things aren’t going get any better for his chin or career with the approach. Cote has been a shadow of the past and he’s not exactly changing his approach either. However, Cote is still yet to be put down by KO/TKO outside of Anderson Silva, and even that one was due to Cote suffering a leg injury. If they stand and wang it, Sakara will fall—Cote by KO.

Chase: Both men need this one, as Brian said. Sakara needs it a little more, though, and I think he will actually pull off the win here. David is right in the fact that if they stand and trade, Cote will get the better of the exchange, but I think Sakara has the power edge, whereas Cote will have the speed. I see a TKO victory going to one of them, but I will lean toward Sakara.

Top Photo: Carlos Condit (Esther Lin/MMA Fighting)

About The Author

Gregory Chase
Staff Writer

Gregory Chase is an MMA enthusiast and aficionado. He is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report (MMA), a Featured Columnist at Sports-at-Work, a Contributor for The MMA Corner, and is the Connecticut MMA Examiner for Chase also trains in MMA, focusing on a mixture of striking disciplines, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He writes to promote thought, give perspective and provide a coherent analysis on topics, while maintaining a smooth read and educating/entertaining. He lives by his motto of “MMA: Live it. Breathe it.”