UFC 172, light heavies, more


Each week, ESPN.com MMA writer Brett Okamoto, ESPN Insider senior editor Mike Huang and a special guest panelist will tackle five questions that are buzzing in the world of mixed martial arts.

This week, top contender Glover Teixeira -- who battles for the UFC light heavyweight title Saturday -- joins the panel to provide his thoughts on UFC 172, the light heavyweight division and more.

1. Is Donald Cerrone primed for another run at a title shot?

Glover Teixeira: Yeah, definitely. That kid showed a lot of talent last week. He's the real deal with his Muay Thai and ground game. Very underrated. But he's ready for another run at a shot.

Brett Okamoto: Cerrone is pretty much always primed for a run at a title shot. He fights seemingly every week and he's no stranger to a highlight reel. Anyone who strings together finishes like Cerrone is a potential title contender in the UFC. His problem has been consistency. He's been known to punt a fight here and there. Cerrone should be on everybody's top-five list of most watchable fighters, but ultimately, I don't think he'll ever win a UFC title.

Mike Huang: I think he's on that run right now. His first-round rear-naked choke of Edson Barboza was a thing of beauty. In a fight between two brutal strikers, he goes for the submission. It appeared that Cerrone was headed down that bad gatekeeper path for a bit there, but he righted the ship and looks crisp and focused.

2. What are the odds upset king Fabricio Werdum topples Cain Velasquez?

Teixeira: That's a tough fight. Werdum showed very good stand-up skills. There, they are evenly matched. Cain is so much better at wrestling, but Werdum has the jiu-jitsu. So you look at the matchup, it's about 50-50 for Werdum to upset Velasquez. I'm very excited for this fight.

Okamoto: If I were to set a betting line on that fight, I'd make Velasquez a 5-to-1 favorite, which basically means I'd give Velasquez an 83.3 percent chance to win. So I guess I don't give Werdum great odds to topple Velasquez, but anything is possible.

Huang: I would say not good, but the last time Velasquez came off a big injury there was a lot of ring rust and he collared his only career loss. Werdum looked extremely good against Travis Brown. His stand-up was as good as it's ever been -- precise, efficient and clean. And he still had some in the tank by the fifth round. Ultimately, Velasquez's brutal, relentless style and seemingly unlimited gas tank should overwhelm Werdum. Odds? 70-30 Velasquez.

3. Who has the most to lose on Saturday at UFC 172?

Teixeira: Well, that question is kind of tricky. I think I have the most to lose, but the guy I most think will lose is Jones! But if you think about it, if I lost it would affect me more than if the other guys on the card lost. I haven't lost in such a long time and it took me a while to get here, so I'll be very disappointed if that happens.

Okamoto: Easily Jon Jones. It's a long fall from the top -- I believe that's how the saying goes. Jones is at the top, make no mistake. There are some who believe he lost his last fight to Alexander Gustafsson, but those people are wrong. Jones has the belt, which means he won that fight regardless of how any individual scored it. Few in the sport have more to lose on any given night than Jones.

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