Roy Sanders typically handles the predictions here at MMA-Insider, but he's sitting this one out as he finishes preparation to make his pro debut against Josh Cate at this very show.
So, yours truly is pinch hitting as the prognosticator for 3FC 13, which goes down this Saturday in Gatlinburg.
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Let's get to some picks.
Coty Morris vs. Timmy Eisenbraun
I admittedly don't know much about Morris. I saw Eisenbraun's first fight, and he looked tough against Dustin Long for one round before getting submitted in the second round. That's good enough for me,
Eisenbraun wins in Round 1 by submission.
Randy Oller vs. Kep Baucom
Baucom's only defeat came against Adam Townsend in their fight for the ISKA 145-pound title back in January. Oller's been a busy guy since making his debut in February of 2010, but he's stuck in a six-fight losing streak.
Baucom wins in Round 1 by submission.
Jason Gaddy vs. Rowan Sharp
Sharp stepped in on short notice to take this fight after Gaddy's originally scheduled opponent pulled. Gaddy's team, Overdrive MMA, is on a real roll right now. MMA is an individual sport, but when a team starts winning fights, it becomes contagious. Gaddy keeps the hot streak going for Shane Hill's crew.
Gaddy wins in Round 1 by TKO.
Jordan Reynolds vs. Brandon Metcalf
Another fighter making his debut for Overdrive in Reynolds. Metcalf and the Knox Independent crew aren't afraid to take tough fights, but they've struggled once the cage door shuts. I foresee a successful debut for Reynolds.
Reynolds wins in Round 2 by submission.
Alex Broyles vs. Nick Baker
Broyles has been on the shelf for almost a full calendar year after breaking his arm in a fight last year. I think he comes out fired up and swinging after that long out of action, and gets a quick victory against the winless independent, Baker.
Broyles wins in Round 1 by TKO.
Chris Aguilar vs. Ronnie Troutt
Usually, a fighter with an established team is the favorite when he goes against an independent. Aguilar, however, trains with current state welterweight champ Bradley Colbaugh and is a former state champion wrestler at Bradley Central High School.
Aguilar wins by decision.
Keith Williams vs. Michael Snapp
The cage had better be reinforced to hold these two super heavyweights. Williams already has another fight or two lined up, and builds some positive momentum with a win here.
Williams wins in Round 1 by TKO.
Mike Thomas vs. Jarrett Slaughter
Thomas is an experienced boxer, but this is just his second MMA fight. He's got a definite advantage on the feet, and while Slaughter's North Georgia Hayastan team is known for being good on the ground, taking down Thomas is no easy feat. If Thomas is able to throw his hands, this fight won't last long.
Thomas wins in Round 1 by TKO.
Bill Edwards vs. Mark Nunn
Edwards is trying to snap a two-fight losing streak. Nunn fights out of Elite Martial Arts, and those guys always come out ready to go. I like the experienced wrestler Edwards in this matchup.
Edwards wins by decision.
Ashley Bishop vs. Jessica Watts
Bishop's fairly new to the sport, but she's already an ace at promoting herself, her fights and the promotions she represents. She's no slouch when the cage door shuts either. She improves her record to 2-0 against the debuting Watts.
Bishop wins in Round 1 by submission.
Jamie Norton vs. Sean Stanley
I'm calling it out. This bout between undefeated bantamweights wins Fight of the Night. Norton's defeated two of his three opponents thus far on head kicks, and the video of one of those went viral. Stanley's got fewer fights, but he represents a quality gym in Team FAST. Either guy's got the striking to score a knockout at any time, but I see this one being a war.
Stanley wins by decision.
3FC Bantamweight Title: Chase Wender vs. Matt Scott
Wender lost a fight for this same belt at 3FC 11 back in July in a decision to Ivan Grijalva that many people thought was controversial. Moore's got the better record but he's had fewer fights and Wender is his toughest opponent yet. Wender's team, KAOS, is also on a roll after two fighters out of that gym were in the two most exciting fights at XFC 20 last Friday.
Wender wins in Round 2 by submission.
3FC Featherweight Title: Steven New vs. Luke Morgan
New tries to win this belt for the second time this year. He claimed the 145 title back in January, had to vacate it due to an injury and now goes against Morgan, who's put together a nice little winning streak in 2012. Both guys know their jiu-jitsu, but New has more experience. I'm going with the veteran in this one.
New wins by decision.
PRO FIGHT: Josh Cate vs. Roy Sanders
These two have been talking back and forth for months now. Cate runs one of the better teams in East Tennessee, KAOS, and he's a black belt in jiu-jitsu. Sanders, who is a contributor here at MMA-Insider and usually writes these predictions columns, is making his pro debut after a ton of amateur fights, most of them losses. It's been a long time since Cate took an MMA fight, while Sanders has fought five times this year. He's never been in the cage with someone like Cate, though. Sanders has a significant height and reach advantage, but Cate's got the advantage just about everywhere else.
Cate wins in Round 1 by submission.
PRO FIGHT: Tanner McCowan vs. Billy Mullins
Neither guy really can afford to lose this fight. Mullins is off to an 0-2 start as a pro and definitely doesn't want to go 0-3. McCowan is making his pro debut, and doesn't want his first fight to be a loss to a winless pro. Both guys come out of good teams, with McCowan representing Team FAST and Mullins out of Fit Factory. This could be one of the more action-packed fights on the card, but I see Mullins scoring his first pro win.
Mullins wins in Round 2 by submission.
3FC/ISKA Welterweight Titles: Ben Brewer vs. Bradley Colbaugh
Colbaugh already has scored one upset this year, beating Logan Griffin at 3FC 11 to win the 3FC 170-pound strap. He's going to be the underdog again. Brewer's got almost 20 amateur fights, and one of his two losses came against Craig Johnson, the former ISKA 170-pound champ. Colbaugh is tough but I've got to go with the more experienced guy in this one. Colbaugh holds his own for all five rounds, though.
Brewer wins by decision.
MAIN EVENT: Dustin Long vs. Daniel Crockett
Here we go. Tuco O Tapa and Absolute Jiu-Jitsu go head to head for the second straight 3FC Gatlinburg show. This matchup doesn't have near the heat as July's main event between Adam Townsend and Travis Shelton, but it could end up being a superior fight. Long and Crockett are both big and strong. They've both got good ground games. Crockett is undefeated as a pro and has never been finished in an MMA fight, be it as a professional or an amateur. Long won titles in two divisions, the light heavyweight and middleweight ranks, and he's undefeated in 2012. The thing is, I don't see either fighter finishing the other in this matchup and the longer it goes, the more I give Crockett the edge. The one X factor in this bout is Long's striking. He's never really let his hands go in an MMA fight. If he does, he's got the capability to knock out Crockett. This is a tough call, but I'm going with the more experienced man.
Crockett wins by decision.
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