Originally Posted by Primate
I'm inclined to disagree.
I'd see this similar to Edgar/BJ 2 or Condit/Nick. Frankie is fast enough and active enough to frustrate Diaz standing up, he'd be in and out faster than Diaz could react. Diaz needs a much more stationary target to unload his combos, and if he does start to land Frankie is competent enough to take Diaz down, secure the top position and survive once he's there. I'm not saying this as an absolute, but I think Frankie would take a fairly close decision.
I don't think this is as clear cut as a fight with Hendo, but I'd still be picking Fredgar.
I don't see the speed difference being as decisive as it was between Frankie and a BJ on the downturn, or between Condit and Nick. I think Nate is reasonably fast (faster than Nick), not as fast as Frankie obviously, but I don't see a yawning chasm between them that will decide the fight. Frankie's speed advantage in the standup is negated to a large extent by Diaz's reach and length. If Diaz employs a good, stiff, regular jab it could make him a difficult target for Frankie to land on. This depends on whether Diaz fights smart and fights tall of course, if he just keeps stepping to Frankie with his hands down then you're right, he could get burned for speed by Frankie's in-out movements. But it being a title shot, I think Nate will fight the right way, and work hard to keep Frankie on the end of those long punches.
Something I think you are overlooking is this: IMO, Frankie's standup is (for me) far superior to Gray Maynard's, but because Frankie doesn't have a great chin he was still getting badly hurt whenever he was getting clipped in exchanges (exchanges he was almost always winning when not hurt). I think it's foolish to think that someone Nate's size who punches as often and as aggressively as him isn't going to hurt Frankie at some point. And there is absolutely ZERO chance of Frankie hurting Nate IMO. So this will
be a big factor in the fight as I see it.
I definitely disagree that Frankie will be able to control Diaz after taking him down (which I think you imply by saying he will 'secure' top position and survive). All I can say to this is that I do not believe that will be the case - at all. Edgar will not be 'securing' top position on Diaz, he may get flash takedowns, but he will not be controlling Nate IMO. And even if he somehow does, I bet Nate does more damage with strikes off his back than Edgar does via GnP.
Originally Posted by Primate
I disagree here for the most part as well. While I think you're absolutely right that Ben is a different animal from Rory MacDonald, I still think he takes this comfortably. I'd see it playing out very similar to Hendo/Miller. Ben would out wrestle and control Diaz on the ground for significant portions of the fight, and put some GnP on him to hurt him. Bendo would take a clear UD.
This would be a very interesting fight, that could go either way. I am still backing Diaz because I think he is really "in the zone" at 155 just now, looking so strong and dominant and driven, but Bendo is a special athlete and could very well beat him, I consider this a pick 'em but if I'm betting I go with Diaz.
Weirdly, I can see Frankie winning tonight so I think Nate will get the easier fight for him of these two.