UFC on Fox 22: Lightning Picks

In less than 12 hours, Urijah Faber will make the walk once final time. An absolute pioneer in mixed martial arts, his story will beautifully wrap up in front of his closest friends, fans, and family. UFC on Fox 22 will take place from the brand-new Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. To be perfectly honest, I'm excited about the event. The card includes a bunch of fun matchups that don't particularly move the company's divisions forward. I wouldn't call them inconsequential, but they're certainly not must-watch bouts. That said, there is a lot to like. You guys seemed to enjoy the 'Lightning Picks' for UFC 206, so I decided to bring it back. Without further ado, let's get to it:

Alan Jouban vs. Mike Perry

To kick off the Fox Main Card, undefeated Mike Perry (9-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) takes on Alan Jouban (14-4 MMA, 5-2 UFC) in a welterweight bout. Without a shadow of a doubt, a bonus is going to be given here. Both men like to put on a reckless striking show, with a combined thirteen first-round finishes. Their clash of styles can only result in an amazing fight or a vicious knockout. Now, Jouban is coming off an impressive win over Belal Muhammad, but I believe Muhammad had a severe case of the UFC jitters. Perry has shown himself to be anything but shy, and his chin was definitely tested against Danny Roberts at UFC 204. On the other side, Jouban has been severely damaged in several of his performances. I believe Platinum is going to successfully throw Alan's technique out of the window, making it a dogfight that he will ultimately come out on top off.

Prediction: Mike Perry

Urijah Faber vs. Brad Pickett

In the people's main event, Urijah Faber (33-10 MMA, 9-6 UFC) fights for the final time when he meets Brad Pickett (25-12 MMA, 5-7 UFC) in the bantamweight division. This shouldn't come as a surprise, but I'm going with Faber. I just don't think Pickett has the defensive knowledge, wrestling credentials, or creative movement to spoil The California Kid's farewell party. Going with Urijah, either by decision or TKO.

Prediction: Urijah Faber

Mickey Gall vs. Sage Northcutt

The evening's co-main event will have up-and-coming prospects Sage Northcutt (8-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) and Mickey Gall (3-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) battle it out in the 170-pound division. As much as I like Gall, I think it's fairly weird to have him beating Sage. Now, after a handful of fights, not a lot about Northcutt has impressed me other than his God-like body, resiliency, and apple crushing abilities. He's still a project in the works. That said, he's a renowned black belt in Taekwondo and Kajukenbo with a couple of UFC appearances under his belt. Mickey Gall has only made the walk twice, and while he was victorious on both occasions, he fought a 0-0 rookie and a Pro-Wrestler with a 0-0 record. I'm not saying the kid can't or won't be a star, but I have to see him face tougher opposition before fully jumping on the bandwagon. Although Mickey has the size and grappling advantage, I'm going with Super Sage.

Prediction: Sage Northcutt

Paige Vanzant vs. Michelle Waterson

In the main event, Sacramento-based Paige VanZant (7-2 MMA, 4-1 UFC) welcomes the returning Michelle Waterson (13-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC) back to the female Strawweight division. I really like this fight. Cutting off all the BS, I think Waterson has the advantage. VanZant's tough loss against Rose Namajunas showed me that she has trouble battling highly-technical opponents, and that's exactly what Michelle's game is based around off: technique. She's incredibly accurate and patient. I believe those are the necessary skills to defeat Paige. The only thing that concerns me is the fact that Waterson has been out of competition for 523 days, while PVZ just recently knocked Bec Rawlings head off her body. Still, I'm picking The Karate Hottie.

Prediction: Michelle Waterson

December 2016 Accuracy Thus Far: 80% (4/5)
- UFC 206: Lighting Picks

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