The main event tonight in Columbus, Ohio, features MMA legend Dan Henderson facing Champion Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante in a 5 round affair for the light heavyweight title. The co main event is Marloes Coenen, the current female welterweight champion to face wrestler Liz Carmouche.
The opening bout of the Showtime telecast is a middleweight fight featuring Tim Kennedy facing dutch kickboxing sensation Melvin Manhoef. We preview the card and give our bold predictions.
Tim Kennedy (12-3) vs Melvin Manhoef (24-8-1) – 3 Rounds
This is a must win fight for Manhoef the short built powerhouse has made a career in kickboxing and in MMA as being one of the most feared strikers in the sport. However his weakness has always been his lack of a ground game more specifically his submission defense.
Despite having 32 MMA fights, Manhoef’s game has not evolved. He is still very much one dimensional. In interviews leading up to this fight, he has stated that he has been working on his ground game. Tim Kennedy, in contrast, is one of the best middleweights in the world. His ground game is superb and each and every time out, he is improving.
His last loss to Jacare Souza was a decision loss in which Kennedy managed to not tap out to the submission King Souza. A victory onto itself. Kennedy looks to get back in the title picture with a victory.
I see Kennedy in a easy win over an over matched Manhoef. Kennedy will take him down and into his world as he gets a submission victory over the Dutch import.
Marloes Coenen (18-4) vs Liz Carmouche (5-0) welterweight title
Coenen in her last fight submitted Sarah Kaufman in what was considered an upset for the welterweight title. Carmouche has served seven years in the US Marines and most importantly does not know how to lose. Both are at a disadvantage in that this fight is on only a couple of weeks notice with Miesha Tate being injured. Coenen has a wealth of experience and her true strength is in her Jiujitsu. Carmouche is a wrestler with some power and I see an upset here as Carmouche gets a ground and pound stoppage victory.
Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante (10-2) vs. Dan Henderson (25-7) light heavyweight title
Cavalcante is coming off three straight victories over Antwain Britt and King Mo to capture the title. Feijao has a black belt in Jiujitsu but amazingly has not submitted any opponents in his MMA career. All his victories have been by knockout. Dan Henderson is coming off a vicious KO win over Renato Babalu Sobral and despite the loss at middleweight to Jake shields, in which he looked gaunt and dehydrated. Henderson seems comfortable at 205 and brings the hbomb a legendary overhand right that is highlight reel material KO power. I see Feijao winning this fight by keeping the fight on his feet and winning a decision over Dan Henderson in an upset victory that will propel Feijao as the future of the light heavyweight division.