Thursday, May 18, 2006

Pride OWGP Next Round

I pretty much agree with Mike's picks for the next round. To me, there are only two brackets that make sense. You have to use Yoshida-Fujita to get a Japanese fighter into the next round. I know Pride seems to be teasing other matchups, but I think sense will take over and they'll make sure one of those two gets through. And it is an interesting matchup anyway. Then you have to go with Werdum-Barnett, because there isn't a "dream" match involving either of them that can be made (Werdum-Cro Cop would be intriguing because of their affiliation, but their affiliation makes that unfeasible). If you separate them, you end up with two matches with less interest rather than just one. And that leaves Cro Cop, Hunt, Nog and Silva. To me, there are two sets of matches there that are more interesting: Cro Cop-Hunt and Nog-Silva or Cro Cop-Silva and Nog-Hunt. Really either of those scenarios would be interesting. Cro Cop-Hunt and Cro Cop-Silva are both dream rematches which should be standing wars. I think the latter is more interesting because we saw the former recently and so much has changed since the first Cro Cop-Silva fight. Then the other side is either Nog-Silva or Nog-Hunt. On that end, I prefer Nog-Silva. Nog-Hunt feels so much like Nog-Sapp or Nog-Schilt. Nog-Silva would have a weird and different feel, as Nog does like to box and might feel his size and chin would be enough to keep it standing for a while. Plus Silva is fast and might be able to avoid the takedowns with his movement in a way Hunt couldn't do. So that makes it a bit of a tossup for the final two matches. Either way the next round should be a lot of fun. The one thing that bugs me about the tournament is I don't see Hunt getting all the way through, and I would have liked to see him maintain his winning streak going into his inevitable fight with Fedor, which will likely be an exciting war.


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