MMA Forethought: UFC 200
By Edward Carbajal, Martin Foley
UFC 200 is upon fight fans. What is considered to be a monumental card in Mixed Martial Arts finally goes down this weekend. Every single match on the card can be a potential main event from the prelims, right up to the obvious main event for the heavyweight title.
With that mind the MMA analysts of Frontproof Media will attempt to break down the pay-per view portion UFC 200 and give some forethought as to how the card could play out.
Mark Hunt (12-10-1) vs. Brock Lesnar (5-3)
Mark Hunt has knocked out five opponents since the last time Brock Lesnar has participated in mixed martial arts. Come UFC 200, Hunt will almost certainly record his 11th career knockout against the WWE star.
Lesnar certainly showed wrestling ability during his UFC career, however never really showcased any strong striking, which is without a doubt where Hunt thrives the most. I think it could get ugly fast for Lesnar and I predict Hunt will record the “walk-off” KO late in the first round. –Martin Foley
Miesha Tate (18-5) vs. Amanda Nunes (12-4)
This will be Tate’s first title defense since submitting Holly Holm at UFC 196. In that fight Tate showcased a lot of patience and toughness. Fans may not be impressed by her style but she cannot be denied mastery of playing off an opponent’s weaknesses. Nunes has had three straight victories and is a well versed grappler so Tate’s best move could be to keep the fight standing. If the champ can out smart Nunes the way she outsmarted Holm she stands a chance of earning the win by decision or TKO. –Edward Carbajal
Frankie Edgar (20-4-1) vs. Jose Aldo (25-2)
The question many MMA fans have been asking since Conor McGregor’s 13-second, title-clinching knockout is - how is all-time pound-for-pound great Jose Aldo going to respond? Putting up a positive response against top contender Frankie Edgar is a tall task and should set the stage for a featherweight clash filled with fireworks.
The UFC 156 rematch – one of the closest fights the featherweight division has ever seen – showcased an Edgar who grew better when getting into the later rounds. More recently, we’ve seen Edgar send a tough Chad Mendes crumbling to pieces with quick power shots. Outside the ring, with injury rumors and trash talking via social media, these days Aldo does not seem to be the same fighter he was during his long reign as featherweight champ. Which leaves me to believe something could be off psychologically for the Brazilian. I’m predicting Edgar takes the victory via a statement making and dominating unanimous decision. –Martin Foley
Travis Browne (18-3-1) vs. Cain Velasquez (13-2)
Cain Velasquez has been waiting a long time to get a shot at the title he lost to Fabricio Werdum. He was close to a rematch until he was sidelined by injury again and since Werdum lost the title to Stipe Miocic. As Velasquez watches the title move further away from him it seems he is training smarter to avoid injuries as not lose any more time. His fight with Travis Browne could serve as a good warm up fight to get back on track to winning the title. Browne is no easy task but he has made the mistake of trading blows with fighters that can out strike him. Velasquez not only fits that bill but his wrestling pedigree gives Velasquez an edge on the ground too. This is Velasquez’s fight to win so long as he does not get caught in anything if it goes past the first round. -Edward Carbajal
The sport has come a long way since the Ultimate Fighting Championship was formed. It's evolution from no holds barred fights, banned in many states to become the sport we know as mixed martial arts today with unified rules. This year, where the sport won a long fought battle in the state of New York is celebrating its longevity and future with UFC 200.
Edward Carbajal is a contributing writer for MMA at Page2sports.com and Frontproof Media. You can follow Edward on Twitter @Carbazel or at his website TheBlogBoardJungle.com. Check out his podcast on Spreaker.
Martin Foley is a contributing writer for MMA for Frontproof Media. Foley works in public relations while taking classes towards his master's degree in strategic communication. You can follow Martin on Twitter @mart_fo.