Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone (18-4-0-1) vs. Melvin “The Young Assassin” Guillard (30-10-2-1)

Donald Cerrone and Melvin Guillard are the epitome of fighters. Despite being prior training partners and current friends they are willing to throw it down for glory in the octagon and a possible chance at a number one contenders fight again. Both men have been contenders to the title in the past, but unfortunately both suffered recent losses. With a win here, either man has a chance to shoot them self back in to the mix.

Cerrone was on a four fight winning streak in the octagon, with three of them being finishes while capturing three fight night bonuses. The hot streak looked to be paying off in a title shot as Cowboy signed on for a fifth fight in 2011. The fifth fight however drew Nate Diaz in a contender bout, which did not end well for Cerrone, taking the abuse of Diaz’s record breaking landed strikes. He has now recently rebounded with a decent win over Jeremy Stephens. Cerrone’s strength lies in his all around game. He has great striking, good wrestling, and a solid submission game. His problem comes when he is outclassed in a discipline, he can be stubborn in changing his gameplan, as seen against Diaz.

Melvin Guillard has always had a ton of potential, but his mistakes in life have held him back from greatness. Getting popped for cocaine in 2007 may have been the best thing to happen to the New Orleans native. Guillard decided to change his life for the better, moving out to Greg Jackson’s training center in New Mexico where he sparred daily with Cerrone. That change made him a contender at 155 as he was able to get on a five fight win streak. Then the losses came. He should have never taken Joe Lauzon lightly, as he was finished in the first round, via rear-naked choke. The loss was followed by a second defeat to Jim Miller, dropping him further down the ladder. Following a win over Fabricio Comoes, he will try to continue to regain his status as a contender with a win over Cerrone. Harder said then done though.

The Bottom Line: Cerrone has this fight as long as he does not allow Guillard to get in his groove and land his heavy hands. Melvin coming in overweight is not a good sign. A second round submission for Cerrone is what can be expected.