UFC 200 is possibly the biggest mixed martial arts event of all time. The show could break 1.5 million PPV buys and continue the UFC's march toward mainstream.
For fight fans, however, there doesn't appear to be a lot of surprises circling the actual fights. Although the fights are good, there are clear favorites in most of the main card. The conventional wisdom says the champions and the fighters with more experience win.
But as we all know, the conventional wisdom is almost certainly always wrong. Let's look at three fights at UFC 200 that could turn out upside down, different than how we expected, and have people doing this:
Brock Lesnar Defeats Mark Hunt
Mark Hunt is the favorite, as he should be. He's had more MMA fights, hits like King Kong and has a jaw like Fort Knox. Why wouldn't he win. Well, easy. He's kind of lost a lot in his career. He's sort of one-dimensional. And his cardio ain't that great either.
Let's take a closer look: Mark Hunt is 42 years, has a record of 12-10-1 and has been knocked out or submitted in all 10 of those losses. This is hardly a guy who is unbeatable.
Let's be realistic: Mark Hunt is totally beatable. If Brock Lesnar can avoid the left hook and right hand, and somehow get on top of him, Hunt will become the Hunted. Lesnar is 38 years old and has a record of 5-3. And most of Lesnar is hungry and confident going into the fight. Hunt is laying back like he's fighting some nobody, assuming that Lesnar can't win because he hasn't fought in the UFC in four years. Bet on Brock, KO, Round 1.
Travis Browne TKOs Cain Velasquez
I was a believer in Velasquez (13-2) as much as the next guy who once lived in San Jose, but Velasquez's time as the top guy in the heavyweight division may be up. Velasquez, full of potential, quite simply, rarely fights. He fought once in 2015, didn't fight in 2014, twice in 2013, twice in 2012 and once in 2011. He's injury prone and he's not exactly getting better.
Yes, at his best, Velasquez is a dangerous striker and wrestler, but how often is he at his best? He could have had great crossover mainstream appeal, but it just hasn't happened, and it's not likely to happen again if he doesn't become more active.
Browne, on the other hand, is still getting better as a fighter. He's coming off a knockout victory over Matt Mitrione. With a record of 17-3, Browne has been way more active than Velasquez and arguably has fought better fighters throughout his career. Brown is tall and long and won't be easy for Velasquez to take down and submit. This is a dangerous fight for Velasquez. Bet on Browne, TKO, Round 3.
Daniel Cormier KOs Jon Jones
Yes, Jon Jones is arguably the greatest mixed martial artist of all time, but do you know what happened to the last guy they called the greatest mixed martial artist of all time? Anderson Silva met Chris Weidman.
It happens to all of them. Jose Aldo met Conor McGregor. Fedor Emelianenko met Fabricio Werdum. No one is the greatest forever. With Jones, everything feels ripe for an upset. Jones is extremely confident, yet he didn't look so good against Ovince St-Preux. He has dealt with some extremely difficult circumstances since the last time he fought Cormier: A hit-and-run accident, jail time, a positive cocaine test, and another run-in with a police offer. Jones is great, but that's a lot of rebound from when you are taking on a guy hungry like Cormier.
Although Jones should win the fight, Cormier may have walked into a perfect situation for an upset, particularly if Cormier surprises Jones and comes out strong like Mike Tyson in 1986. Bet on DC, knockout, Round 1.
(Image via MMAWeekly.com)