To understand what a truly devastating opponent Matt Brown is, simply read the love note by the mighty Chuck Mindenhall to Matt Brown. Go ahead. I’ll wait.
It’s odd that after the mini-welterweight tournament that was UFC 171 had concluded, two names were missing from the list of next possible contenders to Johny Hendricks—Matt Brown and Dong Hyun Kim. The Stun Gun has long since been forgotten, but Brown was simply a victim of an injury preventing him from one of the most anticipated match-ups in Matt Brown versus Carlos Condit.
Brown is on a 6-fight win streak finishing all but one of his last 6 opponents. Despite the ranking of those 6 opponents, 5 finishes in the UFC is nothing to sneeze at. What makes Brown successful is that he is not afraid to let his fists go. In Silva, he meets a man who will gladly oblige in a brawl.
Much has been made of Browns status as an underdog considering Silva’s recent losses. On paper, this matchup should be tighter especially considering Brown has been on the injury shelf and Silva is coming off a violent (if not controversial) KO the hands of Dong Hyun Kim. At the end of the day, while not the exceptional quality matchup of the original Matt Brown/Carlos Condit fight, Brown/Silva should be very entertaining.
As far as “of-the-night” performances, I imagine that the main event of Brown/Silva will likely see competition from Erik Koch & Daron Cruickshank. The smart money is on Koch, the Roufus Sport stand out from Milwaukie, considering his level of competition and his veteran status with stints in the UFC and WEC. I expect fireworks, and I’m sure the majority is right in picking Koch, but I’ve got Cruickshank by upset
As always, feel free to come back to ridicule my picks as I am proven wrong.