I know I seem to pick against Belcher a lot and recently, he's been proving me wrong a lot of the time. That being said, I haven't learned my lesson yet and I'm picking Belfort to win by knock out.
To Belcher's credit, he's probably the most improved fighter in the UFC. It seems like yesterday that he was losing against guys like Jason Day and Kendall Grove decisively. Now he has improved to the point where he may be getting a title shot soon, even after his near career threatening injury. Even though I'm not a big fan of his, I do consider that impressive and give him props.
I still don't believe the hype completely yet, a lot of the competition he has beat hasn't been that great. The jury is still out on Palhares, many people think he is overrated, but either way, Belcher finished him on the ground with an exclamation point which is really impressive as well. Although wins over a seemingly unmotivated Cote, retired passed his prime Macdonald, and Gouveia, a guy that is no longer in the UFC, leaves more to be desired. I'm not saying he isn't capable of beating better, I'm just saying he hasn't done that yet and needs to before I start stating things like him matching up the best with Anderson Silva. The hype may be real about him, but I've seen way too many promising fighters over the years come in with a lot of fan support, but then crumble before making it to the top. That makes me more cautious about talking up prospects with a lot of potential. The good news for Belcher is, he's obviously ambitious and tough enough to not get discouraged with speed bumps like some have, as shown with the adversity he has overcame with flying colors in his career. That kind of drive can come a long way.
If he beats Belfort, then I'll be sold on him. That would be his big win that he needs which would push him over as a true contender for Silva's belt. This is the biggest test of Belcher's career thus far. I wouldn't be that surprised if he did win, I just don't think his striking defense is the greatest. Gouveia tagged and hurt him multiple times before he got finished himself, and Belcher hasn't shown a tremendous improvement of defense since then so far. (Not saying he hasn't improved) I think if Belcher lets a guy like Belfort tag him that many times, he will be the one getting finished this time around. Belcher hits hard and when he hurts an opponent, he wastes no time and shows off that speed and power in his hands.
This should be fun.
Psalm 30:5 "For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."
Top 3 Favorite Fighters
1. Chuck "The Iceman" Liddell
2. Glover Teixeira
3. Demian Maia
Last edited by Stapler; 07-25-2012 at 05:02 PM.