UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
MMA

SI.com's UFC 128 predictions

SI.com's UFC 128 Predictions
MMA analysts Ben Fowlkes, Tim Marchman, Steven Marrocco, Jeff Wagenheim and Jon Wertheim, along with SI.com's readers, provide their predictions for UFC 128 on Saturday in Newark, N.J.
Mauricio Rua (19-4-0) vs. Jon Jones (12-1-0)
 
Fowlkes
Jones' size, reach and wrestling skills combine to make him a nightmare opponent for Rua. Add in Rua's injury layoff, and you've got a recipe for a beatdown. Jones by TKO.
Marchman
Shogun has advantages in striking and experience, but it's not as if he has had a lot of opponents with this kind of speed, strength and wrestling. Jones by TKO.
Marrocco
Jones has never met his mirror image in intensity, but he's about to. The champ will be ready for Jones' wrestling and will greet him with a hail of fists and kicks. Rua by TKO.
Wagenheim
Rua's résumé lists conquests of Machida and Liddell, "Rampage" and "Little Nog," Overeem and Overeem again. That's in the past; "Bones" is the future. Jones by TKO.
Wertheim
Shogun is a beast. But Jones is younger, more athletic and not coming off knee surgery. A big occasion for Jones. Says here he rises to it. Jones by TKO.
Readers
In an SI.com poll, 54 percent of our readers said Jones will beat Rua.
 
Urijah Faber (24-4-0) vs. Eddie Wineland (18-6-1)
 
Fowlkes
Faber isn't the monster he used to be, but he's still a well-rounded fighter who can overpower and out-maneuver most at 135, Wineland included. Faber by decision.
Marchman
No real mystery who UFC wants to win, but Faber has a 3-3 record in his last six and is out of practice at 135 lbs., and Wineland is no joke. I smell upset. Wineland by KO.
Marrocco
Faber just has more ways to win than Wineland. Better boxing, better wrestling and better poise now that he's muted the wild style of his early days. Faber by decision.
Wagenheim
Faber is on a collision course with featherweight belt holder Dominick Cruz, and if he has to flatten an ex-champ along the route, so be it. Faber by submission.
Wertheim
Faber ought to get past another WEC mainstay (from Indiana). It'll be interesting to see how he handles his UFC debut, but he should win regardless. Faber by TKO.
Readers
In an SI.com poll, 85 percent of our readers said Faber will beat Wineland.
 
Jim Miller (19-2-0) vs. Kamal Shalorus (7-0-2)
 
Fowlkes
Shalorus is a heck of a wrestler, but takedowns alone won't save him. He's been on a tear lately, and I don't see that changing here. Miller by submission.
Marchman
This should be terrific fun if you like grappling, but the only men to beat Miller happen to be the two with a claim on the lightweight title. Miller by submission.
Marrocco
Miller is fighting a tank with Olympic-level wrestling. To win, he's got to stay outside and kickbox, or put Shalorus on his back. I'm betting on the latter. Miller by decision.
Wagenheim
Shalorus never lost a fight in the WEC (or before), while Miller has been beaten twice. I'll take the guy without the "0" but with a better pedigree. Miller by decision.
Wertheim
It'll be interesting to see if Shalorous, the rare unbeaten main-card fighter, can keep winning vs. good competition. Fine wrestler, but can he close? Shalorous by decision.
Readers
In an SI.com poll, 77 percent of our readers said Miller will beat Shalorus.
 
Nate Marquardt (33-10-2) vs. Dan Miller (13-4-0, 1 NC)
 
Fowlkes
This is all about what's going on between Marquardt's ears. If his mental game is in order, he should win this one every time. If not, then not. Marquardt by decision.
Marchman
Miller the elder is game and tough, but hasn't done much to make you think he can beat someone at the level of the former King of Pancrase. Marquardt by decision.
Marrocco
As with the bantamweight co-main event, one competitor is simply better than the other in all disciplines. Marquardt should be able to finish this one. Marquardt by TKO.
Wagenheim
This is the kind of bout -- no title implications, a late replacement as his opponent -- in which the up-and-down Marquardt should be able to shine. Marquardt by submission.
Wertheim
Though Miller is a fill-in, this is a deceptively good fight, two vets with no huge weapons but no real weaknesses. Marquardt takes it in a tough one. Marquardt by decision.
Readers
In an SI.com poll, 69 percent of our readers said Marquardt will beat Miller.
 
Mirko Filipovic (27-8-2, 1 NC) vs. Brendan Schaub (8-1-0)
 
Fowlkes
Schaub is too big, too young and too athletic for "Cro Cop." As a heavyweight climbing up the ladder, he also wants it more than a contented legend. Schaub by TKO.
Marchman
No disrespect meant to "Cro Cop" -- the opposite, actually -- but I don't want to see this and will be happy if I never see him fight again. Schaub by TKO.
Marrocco
"Cro Cop" isn't the guy he once was. If Schaub gave him some space, he wouldn't need to be. But the up-and-comer is a smart guy and won't. Schaub by decision.
Wagenheim
If this were 2005, "Cro Cop" would be the pick here. And not just because Schaub was still playing college football. But this is Brendan's game now. Schaub by TKO.
Wertheim
This is "Cro Cop"'s son, right? The original isn't still fighting, is he? Schaub, by contrast, is a fighter on the rise who should be able to get by a once-great. Schaub by submission.
Readers
In an SI.com poll, 52 percent of our readers said Schaub will beat Filipovic.
 
Click here for more MMA coverage

More MMA