Here is another edition of MMA Predictions featuring Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier, which is being held in the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. The headlining bout for this event is the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Tournament Final between MMA veteran Josh ‘The Warmaster’ Barnett and top prospect and Olympic wrestler Daniel ‘DC’ Cormier.
Rafael Cavalcante(11-3) vs Mike Kyle(19-8-1(1))
Here is an interesting bout in the Strikeforce light heavyweight division between former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Rafael Cavalcante and powerful striker Mike Kyle, this fight is a rematch to their bout at Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields were Mike Pyle scored an upset KO win in he second round. Cavalcante is entering this fight with a KO victory over freestyle wrestling silver medalist Yoel Romero Palacio at Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov. Kyle is coming into this fight with a decision victory over Marcos Rogerio de Lima at Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov. This fight is set to be an explosive match up also with the added tension of it being rematch will only add to the intensity of the fight. I can see this being a close affair in the first round then Cavalcante will slowly start controlling the fight and end the fight by TKO in the third round.
Winner: Rafael Cavalcante, TKO – Round 3.
Gilbert Melendez(20-2) vs Josh Thomson(19-4(1))
A Strikeforce lightweight championship fight between top 5 lightweight and current Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert ‘El Nino’ Melendez and former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson. Melendez is entering this fight after a lackluster performance against Jorge Masvidal that he won by unanimous decision at Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Masvidal. Thomson is also coming off of a lackluster performance at Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey where he won by unanimous decision against KJ Noons. This is the third fight and rubber match in the Melendez Thomson saga and is the deciding fight with each having a win each over the other. I feel like Melendez is just at an elite level fighter which I’m afraid Thomson is not and El Nino should be able to stop Thomson and end the trilogy and move on; looking for more challenging contenders, in an empty Strikeforce lightweight division, in the process.
Winner: Gilbert Melendez, TKO – Round 4.
Josh Barnett(31-5) vs Daniel Cormier(9-0)
This bout is the Strikefore Heavyweight Grand Prix final between two of Strikeforce best and now only heavyweights in Strikeforce! The final is between MMA veteran and fromer UFC heavyweight champion Josh ‘The Warmaster’ Barnett and top prospect and Olympic wrestler Daniel ‘DC’ Cormier. Barnett is entering this fight after a dominating performance and first round submission victory over Russian stand up specialist Sergei Kharitonov at Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov. Cormier is coming into this fight with a career best first round knock-out victory over highly regarded and top 10 ranked fighter Antonio ‘Big Foot’ Silva also at Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov. It is no surprised what the game plan is for each fighter in this match up. Barnett will be looking to get this fight to the floor as soon as possible and attack with ground and pound that will open Cormier up for submission attempts, although this is not an easy task with Cormier having elite Olympic level wrestling which will help him stay off his back. Cormier will impose his takedown defence to keep this fight standing and use his heavy hands to out box the MMA vet Barnett and work for a TKO or KO victory, although I have a feeling he might shoot on Barnett and look to rough up Barnett while in his guard and prove a point that he is the best heavyweight wrestler in MMA. This fight will defiantly depend on Cormier’s ability to stop the crafty veteran Barnett from getting this fight to the ground. I’m going to go out there and say that Barnett has way too much experience with MMA wrestling and will find a way to get a takedown and then secure a submission, as many wrestlers are not good on their back.
Winner: Barnett, Submission – Round 3.
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