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“Top of the Food Chain Series” Volume 2: Best Pure Striking Power

Derek Bowe

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When speaking about striking power, there are many fighters which possess the ability and have displayed such skill. However, when discussing the fighters with the propensity to completely separate other fighters from consciousness, there is a select few that have the danger in their strikes to end a fight at any time, and from any angle. Below we rank the top five of the most powerful strikers in mixed martial arts.

#5 Roy Nelson, Heavyweight, UFC

Much has always been made of Roy Nelson’s physique, or lack thereof, as Nelson has carried a large midsection reminiscent to that of “the average guy”. One thing which cannot be ignored is Roy Nelson’s power, specifically in his right hand which he has ended multiple fights via the overhand punch. From his inaugural fight under the promotional banner to now, Nelson has shown immense power in that right hand, and even though competitors know it is coming, some have not been able to avoid it, and in turn wake up asking the referee what happened. The man they refer to as Big Country was an easy selection for this coveted list of slobber knockers.

#4 Anthony Johnson, Light Heavyweight, UFC

Rumble, as he is more commonly known is a fighter who has knocked opponents out at every weight class he has competed, impressive for a man who was a contender at welterweight, now challenging for the light heavyweight title at UFC 187. Looking at Johnson, it is hard to imagine the man competed at anything lower than 205 pounds as he has seemed to find his natural fit. Johnson is a versatile striker who has knocked out opponents with vicious head kicks and punches alike, his high pressure style is a trait fighters opposite of Johnson have both respected and feared, throughout his career. Power in both hands and feet, Johnson is one frightening adversary.

#3 Sam Alvey, Middleweight, UFC

For the fighter is the least decorated on the list, that title would go to Sam Alvey. Alvey’s nickname is Smile’n, in description of the toothy grin he wears frequently. Whether his opponents take the good natured Alvey’s demeanor serious, is debatable. One thing which has must be taken seriously is Alvey’s unbelievable one-punch power. Smile’n Sam has landed shots on opponents that leave those scratching their heads, “did he really knock that guy out with that?” Short shots which seem like they simply land for other fighters, yet for Alvey, they end opponent’s nights. Alvey has not knocked out the elite of the middleweight division, yet it would be hard to argue that if one of those punches finds home, the lights will be turned off.

#2 Vitor Belfort, Middleweight, UFC

The ever-evolving Belfort, a fighter known from his early days to have the fastest hands in the game, Belfort has evolved into a patient, yet ferocious striker, like a coiled snake, snapping into action to deliver a fight ending blow. Vitor has now added a array of head kicks to his arsenal seen over his fights the past two years. As if he was not already dangerous enough on the feet. Apparent in an uppercut which lifted Dan Henderson off his feet, and a spinning heel kick that put down Luke Rockhold, or a roundhouse Michael Bisping fell victim to, the power and accuracy The Phenom owns is as dangerous as they come. Belfort will look to rattle the Champion Chris Weidman’s cage at UFC 187.

#1 Mark Hunt, Heavyweight, UFC

King of the walk-off knockout. The Super Samoan, former K-1 Grand Prix champion, has enjoyed a long career of knocking opponents senseless, both in his kickboxing, and mixed martial arts appearances. Hunt has amazing power, the sound created when this man makes contact is the shattering of bones, just ask Stephen Struve. All 265 pounds are behind the earth shattering strikes which have sent fighters to the canvas numerous instances over his twenty fight mixed martial arts career. Possibly the most dangerous aspect of Hunt’s power is it does not seem to fade, despite his look of exhaustion later in fights. Hunt was a overwhelming pick amongst those who submitted, making him and easy choice for the top spot. When the Super Samoan lands what he wants, he knows he can just walk away, as a follow up shot is not needed.

Honorable Mentions: Junior Dos Santos, Conor McGregor, Dan Henderson, Quinton Jackson, Johny Hendricks, Robbie Lawler

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Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217

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UFC 217 just got even more interesting. Earlier this week, Patrick Cummins pulled out of his light heavyweight matchup with Corey Anderson due to a Staph infection. Corey “Overtime” Anderson was not happy with his opponents decision, even calling out his opponent on Instagram asking how Cummins could, “call it quits so far from fight night”.

The UFC left Anderson on the card, and he found an opponent through the magic of Twitter. Ovince Saint Preux tweeted out directly to Anderson stating:

It didn’t take long for Anderson to respond agreeing to the fight, tagging Mick Maynard and Dana White in his response.

Only a few short hours later, the fight announcement came from the official UFC twitter account.

 

This top 10 Light Heavyweight matchup should add to an already amazing card coming in November at Madison Square Garden. Saint Preux is coming off of back to back wins both due to the very rare von flue choke, he finds himself ranked #7th in the latest edition of the 205-pound rankings. Corey “Overtime” Anderson is 4-2 in his last 6 fights, but is coming off a brutal first round knockout loss to Jimi Manuwa in March.

With such a exciting fight added to this card, what do you see happening November 4th?  Will Corey Anderson bounce back and look to jump into the top 5 of the rankings, or will Ovince Saint Preux go for a third straight von flue choke? Let us know.

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*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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Bellator 185 Fight to Watch: Heather Hardy vs. Kristina Williams

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Heather Hardy will compete in MMA for the second time at Bellator 185 on Friday night, as she faces Kristina Williams in a strawweight contest. The fight takes place on the main card at the Mohican Sun Arena in Connecticut.

Potentially, what Bellator have in Heather ‘The Heat’ Hardy is a major draw that they can build their 125 pound division around. While relatively new to the organisation she is fast becoming one of the more popular names on the roster. Her career is in the early stages, but many have already started to draw comparisons with former boxer turned MMA star, Holly Holm. Holm’s UFC success partly inspired the native New Yorker to make the switch from boxing.

Hardy is already an established world champion in the land of the ‘sweet science’, holding a 21 fight undefeated professional record. She made her MMA debut in June this year with a victory over Alice Yauger, at Bellator 180. At 35, Hardy is a late starter in the sport, but proved at Madison Square Garden against the credible Yauger that she has a bright future.

Hardy’s first outing in the cage was disciplined and composed. Despite a slow start in round one, Hardy grew in confidence as the fight progressed and her cardio never faltered. She mixed in plenty of kicks that complimented her boxing and looked at ease in the clinch, even defending a couple of takedown attempts in the process.

Despite looking on course for a decision win, Hardy forced the TKO stoppage with just thirteen seconds remaining in round three. Even a large cut that required seven stitches from an accidental head clash could not deny her victory.

Hardy was fighting an experienced professional, competing for the tenth time in MMA, which makes the win over Yauger more impressive. However, her upcoming opponent Kristina Williams will be making her professional debut.

There is little known about Williams except that she is 3-0 at amateur level. One of those wins came by way of submission so there may well be a threat to Hardy if the fight goes to the ground. More importantly for Williams is how she copes on the big stage against a popular opponent, who is more familiar competing in high pressure combat situations. If Williams can produce an upset it will be a huge boost in her young career.

But in all honesty, this fight is about Hardy. It’s about getting the win and gaining valuable experience. The boxing career is on hold while MMA takes centre stage. Beating Williams will mean she likely continues fighting inside a cage rather than a boxing ring.

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