The UFC is back after a short two-week hiatus. Chuck Liddell and Rich Franklin will face off in the main even Saturday. Liddell was originally supposed to fight Tito Ortiz III, as the organi-zation was trying to stick with the theme of matching up fighters that coached opposing teams on The Ultimate Fighter show.
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As much as we might wish otherwise, Donald Trump won’t go away. The USFL, the WWE, and a few golf courses weren’t enough involvement in the sports world for him. Now he’s involved with MMA. He’s a financial and promotional partner with Affliction, a clothing company that fancies itself a fight promoter. The first major Affliction event, called Banned, takes place tonight in Anaheim. In typical Trump style the Baned card is big and impressive. Fedor Emelianenko is widely seen as the best heavyweight, and perhaps the best pound-for-pound fighter, in the world. The UFC has tried to land him for years, but they have failed. He’s headlining the Affliction card. Here’s a look at the card for tonight, with odds from Bodog.
Fedor Emelianenko (-350) vs. Tim Sylvia (+275) – Fedor was a menace in PRIDE, but he was done there at the end of 2006, and he has done little since. He has fought just twice, and neither match was even remotely a challenge. His first opponent was a seven foot giant without any skills to match his size, and his second was an undersized middleweight. He needs to prove that he is still as good as his legend, and Sylvia is a good opponent to do so. Sylvia is a two time UFC champ. His last fight in February was for the UFC title, but he lost to Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. He’s not the best fighter out there, but he is a legitimate talent. Sylvia is a good striker, and he is hard to take down. Fedor is much better inside, and the fight is probably over if it gets to the ground, Sylvia could surprise, but Fedor seriously needs this win, so I expect him to be hungry and get the job done. Fedor by a submission.