Wow, I can't believe the TUF 12 finale is finally upon us! Anyways, I'm going to give you guys my predictions so feel free to let me know what you think.
Nam Phan VS Leonard Garcia
Man, this fight is going to be a great fight. Both these guys are going to be willing to stand and bang. What Leonard Garcia lacks in technical prowess he more than makes up for it with his incredible heart and chin. The guy is like the terminator. No matter what you throw at it, it somehow keeps coming back for more. Nam Pham has a great chin as well. Nam should have the edge in technical striking by a mile. He can switch up his hands with his kicking really well. The deciding factor in the fight will be as follows: Will Nam Phan look to utilize his superior ground game? How long can they keep exchanging shots before one of them gives in to the beatings?
Prediction: Nam Phan via Submission in the 2nd Round
Rick Story VS Johnny Hendricks
This is a tough fight to call, both these guys have a background in wrestling. Johnny Hendrick's wrestling is superior to that of Story's so he'll be the fighter that chooses where the fight takes place. The stand up edge has to be given to Rick Story. Rick is probably the more well rounded fighter of the two so he should have no trouble wherever the fight takes place. I can see Rick Story surviving and causing damage throughout the fight because his gas tank is probably going to be better than Johnny's. Johnny Hendricks' last weigh-ins showed just how unprepared he was going into the fight, although I think he learned from that mistake.
Prediction: Johnny Hendricks via Ground & Pound TKO in the 3rd Round
Damien Mia VS Kendall Gove
Damien Mia is like a magician on the ground, he pops out submissions out of nowhere. Kendall Grove is a handful of a striker because his arms and legs seem to stretch out for miles and miles. The winner of this fight will no doubt be put in the mix for top 5 title contenders in the middle weight division. I can see both of these guys having success if they each fight according to their respective game plans. If in the opening round Kendall can get some good shots in and keep the fight on his feet, victory will not be far behind. If Mia can somehow plow past those long limbs and take it to the mat right away then he will have very little trouble securing a win. If neither succeeds at keeping their opponent in their sweet spot for long then the fight will be decided by decision.
Prediction: Kendall Grove via TKO in the 1st Round
Stephan Bonnar VS Igor Prokajac
Let the fireworks begin! While both of these fighters are pretty well rounded, they don't shy away from an occasional slug fest. Igor has some very good grappling in his arsenal should he decide to take it to the ground. Meanwhile, Bonnar is no slouch on the ground either, he trained with the late Carlson Gracie. Both of these fighters will try to feel each other out in the first round. I believe the second round will be when the crazy fists start hitting skin. Both have great strong chins, Bonnar probably having a slight edge though. I don't expect the fight to hit the canvas although Igor can take it there if he feels too overwhelmed by Bonnars onslaught.
Prediction: Stephen Bonnar via Decision