UFC on Fox 3 Preview

The UFC will return to network television this weekend when Nate Diaz takes on Jim Miller on UFC on Fox 3. Diaz and Miller represent one of the most competitive divisions in the UFC as it stands right now. With the rest of the divisions either in flux or dominated by one fighter, the Lightweight division is wide open. It was cracked wide open when Ben Henderson beat Frankie Edgar for the lightweight championship. With the win Henderson became the new champion and Frankie Edgar became the #1 contender in the sense that he will earn his rematch. With the rematch a sure thing the top two in the division have been figured out for now but the rest of the division is battling to be the next man up. There is former WEC champion Anthony Pettis who has been waiting since for his shot at the title since he first came in to the UFC. Then there is Strikeforce champion Gilbert Melendes who will get his shot eventually in the UFC. Even BJ Penn has been thrown into the mix as many say his retirement is not final especially if he has a chance at the title. That is not the end of the challengers though as Jim Miller and Nate Diaz are both on the outside looking in to the title fight. When they face off this weekend live on Fox both fighters will be looking for one thing. Both fighters are not automatically guaranteed a chance at the title if they win as they are caught in the log jam. The one hope for them is if they can make an impact on national TV by winning the fight in dramatic fashion. That may not be a problem for these two lightweights though as they are known for their dramatic finishes and tough wars. Jim Miller and Nate Diaz are of the same breed and have been brought up in similar situations and fight for similar reasons. Both fighters are a part of a fighting family with their brothers being UFC fighters, and good opens at that. They are also both born of a less than kind upbringing with Miller coming out of the workman’s state of New Jersey and Diaz coming out of the rough streets of California. They are also two fighters who simply love to fight and would do it for free if they could. Their bases surround the ground game with Diaz earning his black belt in Jiu Jitsu and Miller coming from a wrestling background. That doesn’t mean that both these fighters don’t like a stand up brawl with Miller and Diaz loving to get in to wars rather than the calculated fights of some fighters in the UFC. Of course they do have their differences and the most glaring differences coming out in their attitudes. Jim Miller has a quiet confidence in the octagon and out of it as he likes to keep his head down and go to work. Diaz is quite the opposite though as he can regularly be seen in the octagon chirping and trying to get in his opponent’s head. He also does not shy away from talking outside of the octagon as he is cocky and brash. Both of these types of attitudes have worked for the fighters as they have both made a name for themselves in the UFC. Diaz is currently on a 2 fight win streak while Jim Miller has only lost 2 fights in his UFC career, a total of 12 fights. This matchup will be a war as neither fighter will want to take the other down as both are very good on the ground. Their ground game will cancel each other out as the fight will likely stay standing with some flashes of ground game. In a stand up war anything can happen but the wild style of Diaz will succumb to the more calculated style of Miller. Expect an all out war to last all five rounds in the main event and to see Jim Miller take the win by unanimous decision.

The rest of the card is full of great fights to get everyone ready for the great main event on Fox. The undercard is highlighted by the match-up of two welterweights that are ready to make their impact in the division. Josh Koshcheck has been to the top twice in the welterweight division and twice has gone down to Georges St. Pierre. He has made some changes since his last title run as he changed his camp leaving AKA and moving to his own personal gym in order to prepare for another title run. It may take Kos a little longer than usual though as he will not earn another title fight against the champion for a while after losing twice to GSP. His opponent Johnny Hendricks is in a different spot though as “Bigg Rigg” could be on his way to a title shot if he can get by Koshcheck. It would a meteoric rise for Hendricks as he went from middle of the road fighter to the elite after knocking out John Fitch, the consensus #2 fighter in the division, in his last fight. If Hendricks can pull off the win he may be able to get the title shot he wants with only Carlos Condit in a position to fight the for the championship right now.  It won’t be easy though as Koshcheck has been one of the best welterweights in the UFC for years and has beaten almost everyone in the division aside from the champion. Hendricks will look to come out of nowhere again and surprise everyone with another win to earn his shot while Koshcheck will look to keep his spot as the best welterweight not to have a title.

 

Fight Card:

Main Event:

Nate Diaz vs. Jim Miller (Sportsnet)

 

Main Card:

Josh “Kos” Koscheck vs. Johnny “Bigg Rigg” Hendricks (Sportsnet)

 

Rousimar “Toquinho” Palhares vs. Alan “The Talent” Belcher (Sportsnet)

 

Pat “HD” Barry vs. “Big” Lavar Johnson (Sportsnet)

 

Undercard:

Tony “El Cucuy” Ferguson vs. Michael “The Menace” Johnson (Sportsnet ONE)

 

John “The Magician” Dodson vs. Tim Elliott (Sportsnet ONE)

 

John “The Hitman” Hathaway vs. Pascal “Panzer” Kauss (Sportsnet ONE)

 

Louis “Goodnight” Gaudinot vs. John “Hands of Stone” Lineker (Sportsnet ONE)

 

Danny “Last Call” Castillo vs. John Cholish (Sportsnet ONE)

 

Dennis “The Menace” Bermudez vs. Pablo “The Scarecrow” Garza (Sportsnet ONE)

 

Johnny “Brutal” Bedford vs. Nick “The Ninja of Love” Denis (Sportsnet ONE)

 

Mike “The Master of Disaster” Massenzio vs. Karlos Vemola (Sportsnet ONE)

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