UFC 126 Fight Card Preview: Forrest Griffin Vs Rich Franklin

Forrest Griffin vs Rich Franklin

Everyone seems to be talking about this as some kind of 'fun fight' as if these guys aren't really going to be going after it tonight. Ask Chuck Liddell how fun fighting Rich Franklin is. Those thoughts should have been stamped out after yesterday's staredown at the weigh-ins, but rest assured, neither of these guys are looking to cut their opponent any slack. A win here isn't going to propel either fighter into title contention, but it certainly wouldn't hurt.

Forrest Griffin hasn't fought since November of 2009 where he outscored Tito Ortiz in a rematch at UFC 106. That's nearly 14 months spent away from the office. Griffin told MMA Junkie:

"The big thing will just be that first minute, making that adjustment, getting back in there," Griffin said. "This is the longest break I've had from fighting since 2000, so it's weird."

I'm not sure if Griffin is quite ready for someone like a Rich Franklin. Seeing as he isn't exactly in title contention at the moment, why not give him a warm up fight? The UFC certainly didn't throw him into the fire early in his career. Why do it now? Franklin is coming off a layoff of his own but not to the extent of Griffin's. Chuck Liddell managed to break Franklin's arm before being knocked out at UFC 115 back in June.

Both of these guys are tough as all hell. Each have finished and won fights with broken hands, arms and feet so you can bank on them going for broke tonight. Something tells me Rich is just a bit more into it right now. I like his knockout power and Griffin's chin has been on a steady decline ever since his loss Rashad Evans, maybe even Keith Jardine. I foresee a slug fest here and the odds on favorite for fight of the night. Win titles or be exciting. I think these two choose the latter.

My pick: Franklin

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