Top MMA News Breaks Down Strikeforce: Fedor vs Hendo
Strikeforce’s upcoming event will be live July 30th at the Sears Centre in Chicago, Illinois. The featured bout will be a battle of MMA legends Fedor ‘The Last Emperor’ Emelianenko and Dan Henderson. The event will be live on Superchannel in Canada and Showtime in the U.S.
Now for the breakdown:
Fedor Emelianenko (31-3) -270 vs. Dan Henderson (27-8) +185
A fight of epic proportions that Dan Henderson suggested, the second he signed with Strikeforce, should showcase where these two legends are at this stage of their careers. While we have witnessed the downfall of the Last Emperor, after dropping consecutive bouts to Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Silva, respectively, Dan Henderson is moving in the other direction as he has won two straight, including becoming the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion. The obvious issue of this Heavyweight bout is that Dan Henderson will likely be coming in just over 206 pounds while Fedor will likely enter at his regular 230 pound frame. Fedor, for one of the few times in a fight, will not be at a size disadvantage. This fight will be more similar to a fight against Matt Lindland or Mark Coleman rather than a Tim Sylvia or Antonio Silva. This should give Fedor fanatics some hope that he will not just be mounted and dismantled as he was in his most recent fight. Dan Henderson, however, has the ability to rock any fighter on any given night with his dangerous right hook that put Michael Bisping on highlight reels for the rest of his career. That being said, it is tough to see Henderson putting Fedor to sleep considering all of the other heavy hitters could not. This should be a close and entertaining battle with two seasoned veterans swinging for the fences but the second the fight gets to the ground, it will be tough to think Fedor will not be able to submit the former Pride Middleweight champion despite his strong wrestling credentials.
Prediction: Fedor Emelianenko via Kimura in Round 2
Women’s Welterweight Champion Marloes Coenen (19-4) -147 vs. Miesha Tate (11-2) +105
The first ever Women’s Championship fight in Zuffa history between two of the more respected female fighters in the world should be an evenly fought battle. This fight was originally scheduled for March 5th, but Tate came down with an injury which forced Coenen to defend her title against Liz Carmouche, a relative no name that dominated the fight until Coenen showed her toughness and versatility by pulling off an Anderson Silva like triangle choke to defend her title. Coenen is a threat on the feet with fantastic Muay Thai and she can take a punch as she did against the very dangerous Cyborg Santos. Tate poses a threat similar to that of Sarah Kaufman. A strong wrestling background should allow Tate to be a game opponent against the champion. However, in Coenen’s last two bouts, she showed that she is not afraid to fight off of her back or take damage. This could very well be the same situation as Coenen proves to be far too much on the feet, forcing ‘Takedown’ Tate to take the fight to the ground, leading to the impressive Jiu-Jitsu of the Welterweight Champion, in a fight that should put a smile on the face of the Zuffa owners.
Prediction: Marloes Coenen via Armbar Round 3
Robbie Lawler (19-7) vs. Tim Kennedy (13-3)
Two veterans of the Strikeforce Middleweight division, both recently are coming off of disappointing losses to the current Middleweight champion, Ronaldo Souza. Lawler can be going through a disaster of a fight and still manage to come up with a stunning knockout, as we witnessed when he fought Melvin Manhoef. He has some of the best knockout power in the Middleweight division and has shown it in his past couple of victories. That one punch KO power is about the only hope he will have against Tim Kennedy, who is a spectacular all around fighter and has shown improvement in every fight he has had in Strikeforce. Robbie Lawler is one of the better fighters in the organization’s division but Tim Kennedy is arguably top two, especially after Jake Shields and Jason Miller have fled for the UFC. There is a good chance that Tim Kennedy gets another opportunity to fight for the title if he beats Lawler and I think he will get that chance as he uses his strong grappling to outwork ‘Ruthless’ Robbie Lawler.
Prediction: Tim Kennedy via Rear Naked Choke Round 2
Paul Daley (27-10-2) vs. Tyron Woodley (8-0)
Probably the Welterweight division’s hardest hitter, Paul Daley is back after suffering a first round TKO loss to future UFC title contender, Nick Diaz, in what was considered by many as the best round of all time. Tyron Woodley is one of the better young prospects in the division and is becoming an all-around mixed martial artist. He has a strong wrestling background but he has shown improvement in his striking; however, his striking is not fully developed as we witnessed against Tarec Saffiedine. Considering Woodley’s credentials as a wrestler and the fact that he is going up against the best striker of his career by far, you can expect Woodley to immediately take this fight to the ground. There are fights where Woodley can test out his striking, as he did against Andre Galvao, but this is definitely not one of them. Daley has shown consistently why fighters do not like to stand with him, and unless you are Nick Diaz, you generally get knocked out if you do. Of his 27 victories in MMA, 20 of them came by KO or TKO. Daley does not have the worst takedown defence in the world, but that does not mean it should be considered good. Similar to the Kennedy/Lawler fight, unless Daley has time to really work his striking, it should be a grappling match with the advantage going to the undefeated up and comer, Tyron Woodley.
Prediction: Tyron Woodley via Unanimous Decision
Scott Smith (17-8) vs. Tarec Saffiedine (10-3)
Scott Smith is going into his second fight at 170 pounds after getting knocked out cold by Paul Daley last December. He is attempting to avoid a three fight losing streak as he faces exciting young prospect, Tarec Saffiedine, who is coming off of a decision loss to Tyron Woodley. He showed some strong Muay Thai and takedown defence against a Division I wrestler. He throws powerful kicks with good quickness and fights at a great pace in addition to his impressive grappling. Against Smith, however, there will likely not be very much wrestling. Known as kind of a brawler, Scott Smith is always prepared to take a lot of damage as long as he gets an opportunity to give some back. As we seen in his first fight against Cung Le, he was being outclassed on the feet for 2 and a half rounds until he came back with a couple minutes remaining and scored a knockout against one of the top strikers in the division. Tarec Saffiedine will definitely look like the much better striker and mixed martial artists in this fight, but Scott Smith always gives himself a chance. It is just far too tough to believe that is what we will see in this fight. Expect Saffiedine to keep his distance with strong leg kicks while mixing in technical Muay Thai against a seasoned veteran that has seen better days.
Prediction: Tarec Saffiedine via TKO Round 2