WEC 39-3/1 In Texas On Versus

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1/14/09 5:28:49PM
WEC 39: March 1, 2009
Venue: American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas
Main card airs live on Versus
TV fights:
WEC Featherweight Champion Mike Thomas Brown (Mike Brown) vs. Leonard Garcia for the title

Rob McCullough vs. Marcus Hicks

Bart Palaszewski vs. Ricardo Lamas (Palaszewski's original opponent, Richard Crunkilton Jr., is off as of 2/25 due to a knee injury)

Johny Hendricks vs. Alex Serdyukov

Mike Budnik vs. John Franchi

Damacio Page vs. Marcos Galvao

Justin Haskins vs. Mike Pierce (Haskins' original opponent, Douglas Lima, is off as of 2/13 due to legal issues)

Alex Karalexis vs. Greg McIntyre

Danny Castillo vs. Phil Cardella

Kenji Osawa vs. Rafael Rebello

Jose Aldo vs. Chris Mickle

Carlos Condit vs. Brock Larson for the WEC Welterweight Title is off as both are being transferred to UFC and the Welterweight division will be merged with UFC's.
1/14/09 5:40:09PM
Wow.. if McCullough does face Hicks and loses he would literally take steps one after another down the ladder. From champ to facing a nobody, to facing the #2, then to facing the #3.

Honestly I hope he beats Hicks. I think if he plays it right he will, too. He's shown some savvy on the ground (enough to last a few seconds, anyway) and even though Hicks is a pro boxer I don't think his boxing is that great at all. He throws a lot of hay, and while it looks like they hurt I think McCullough's defense is good enough to avoid the big shots and land a lot of his own. Especially if he works the legs.

That being said- if it goes to the ground I could see McCullough getting worked quickly. Hicks took down Varner pretty handily, and Varner is anything but easy to take down.
1/14/09 6:49:38PM
Only three confirmed fights and the card already looks awesome. Not really interested in seeing Larson take another beating from Condit, but there really aren't any other credible opponents. Should he beat Larson again, I can't imagine him doing a third sweep of the division, so hopefully he'll be UFC bound.

Rob vs Hicks is the fight I'm most looking forward to. It's tough to envision Hicks going to a decision, but I think he'll be hard pressed to land his "bread and butter" Guillotine, and even more difficult to TKO Razor. Rob was floored by Donald Cerrone several times, but Donald couldn't finish him, and I don't think Hicks has that kind of power.

It will be one of the few times McCullough will actually enjoy a reach advantage. I know he has talked about going to train with Sean Tompkins, so I'll expect to see some crisp 1-2 combinations and less kicks to avoid the takedown.

That said I don't think Razor Rob has the takedown defense to keep Hicks off of him. Hicks was able to take down a much better wrestler (Jamie Varner) and he's twice the wrestler Rob is. Once it hits the mat I think Rob will have a hell of a time getting back up. I'm rolling with Hicks on this one.

A lot of people were really impressed with Leonard Garcia's dismantling of Jens Pulver. He's really not that far removed though from washing out of the UFC, and his loss to Cole Miller weighs real heavy when I think about predicting this fight. I think Mike has beaten better guys at 155, and at 145 he's a monster. I think this will be a bigger mismatch than people expect.
1/14/09 6:59:16PM
WEC is putting on one great card after another, and like Wolfenstein said there are only 3 confirmed fights. i know that i am thankful this is on Versus because i would easily pay to see these fights.
1/14/09 7:01:04PM
And it'll be on Versus. It's starting to sound like May or June will be the earliest WEC tries PPV as the April event probably will be Versus as well. I'll be curious to see how Brown fares in his first defense, he's got some huge expectations to live up to given he's coming off beating Faber, so if he fails he's gonna have that "fluke" tag hanging over him for some time.

There's also a chance that we'll see Flyweights (125 pound limit) debut in WEC here as well, which I'm also excited for.
1/14/09 7:14:53PM

Posted by DCRage

And it'll be on Versus. It's starting to sound like May or June will be the earliest WEC tries PPV as the April event probably will be Versus as well. I'll be curious to see how Brown fares in his first defense, he's got some huge expectations to live up to given he's coming off beating Faber, so if he fails he's gonna have that "fluke" tag hanging over him for some time.

There's also a chance that we'll see Flyweights (125 pound limit) debut in WEC here as well, which I'm also excited for.

I'd bet they use the Faber vs. Brown rematch for the title (assuming it all lines up that way) as their first PPV card. Faber is their only real PPV seller right now. (Besides maybe Torres)

Sad fact, because WEC shows are often times better than UFC shows IMO. If Varner beats Cerrone then who do you guys think they will try to pit him against? He's ran through competition much the same as Condit. As it stands now I see 145 as the only real competitive division in the WEC. With 155 coming in second.
1/14/09 7:27:53PM
I haven't mentioned it yet but I'm prepared to make this argument on Pulver: If he loses again to Faber I think it's time for him to move back up to Lightweight. Asking him to drop to Bantamweight is probably asking too much of him, but it's pretty clear the cut to FW hasn't quite had the desired effect on his career. No doubt the first Faber fight was awesome and did more for WEC than they could've hoped for, but he just hasn't had in-cage success. If he moves back up give him a borderline top-tier guy and if he wins, title shot. That's assuming he doesn't decide to hang it up, which maybe he shoudl've done already because it's clear he hasn't been the same since J-Lau pulled that huge upset. Otherwise I could see Hicks getting back into contention if he beats McCullough. Surely there are others but I can't think of names right now.
1/14/09 7:48:14PM
Yeah I also see Hicks getting another crack at it should he defeat Razor Rob. There first fight ended pretty quickly but for the first few minutes it was really exciting. That said the 155 division is so thin, there's only so many options before it's the same two guys fighting each other over and over. Has another organization ever had so many rematches?

In the meantime there really isn't anyone else at 155 that they can build up. I think the guy after Hicks, or maybe even Rob, will have to either be from outside the organization, or someone from 145 is going to have to move up, as I don't think anyone at 170 would provide a challenge or be able to make the weight.

Another option and I think it's very likely, is that we'll see a UFC fighter whose has recently struggled. Maybe Joe Stevenson, Rich Clementi, or a possible rematch with Hermes Franca should he lose to Joe Lauzon.

After all there probably will be some roster trimming to make way for some TUF 9 guys.
1/14/09 11:18:31PM
Hermes Franca isn't 100% out of the title shot picture in the UFC IMO, but that being said I'm sure Varner wants a rematch against him to avenge the loss. I could see that happening, so good call.

I'd also love to see Rich Clementi in the WEC. I think he fits quite well there, actually. I'd love to see him go against Marcus Hicks and expose his overall ground game. Don't get me wrong- Hicks has tight guillotines, but I think Clementi would smoke him on the ground and that Hicks' ground game overall is very overrated.

Stevenson could give the entire division a run for their money and a tough loss IMO.
1/16/09 7:57:12PM
Mike Budnik vs. John Franchi has been added. This will be Franchi's WEC debut (4-0).
1/18/09 4:03:37PM
Cerrone/Varner is going to be a war!!!
1/26/09 9:07:23AM
Full confirmed card now up in first post. Apparently it'll be April before we see Flyweights in WEC as none are on this card. Also, a reminder that this once again will be a TV event, the main card will be live on Versus.
1/29/09 12:25:06AM
Awesome. Bartimus is going to be the highlight of that card. He's the next big thing at featherweight. Just no body knows it yet.
2/4/09 11:45:38AM
Looks like a late addition to the card-Jose Aldo vs. Chris Mickle. No word on if it'll be a prelim or TV fight yet.
2/13/09 6:46:27AM
There's been a late change to the card-Douglas Lima, who was to have faced Justin Haskins, is now off. According to Lima, seems to be visa/immigration paperwork issues. Mike Pierce (6-1) is the replacement.

Lima told MMAjunkie.com he was forced to withdraw from the card while waiting on papers to arrive from the U.S. Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. The Brazilian-born fighter said he hopes to make his WEC debut in an upcoming card and was disappointed at being forced to step out on such short notice.
2/20/09 5:25:19PM
Excited to see this card. Lots of the fights could go either way, especially the big fights (Brown-Garcia, Hicks-Razor, Bartimus-Crunkilton). The lighter weights are always great to watch
2/25/09 9:12:04AM
In case you missed it, Rich Crunkilton is now off. Knee injury. Ricardo Lamas is the very-short-notice replacement (roughly 4 days).
3/1/09 4:54:06PM
Looks like SOPCAST is where I will be watching tonight.
TSN will have a week delay, so rather then wait a week, Sopcast is worth it. I really wish, I had some way of watching the undercard fights, seems to me a few of those are worth watching. Mickle/Aldo should be a war. I think Mickle has a solid chance to pull off the upset.
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