UFC 78: Validation Preview - Karo Parisyan versus Ryo Chonan
Karo "The Heat" Parisyan versus Ryo "Piranha" Chonan
Karo Parisyan has been forged in the fire, having fought Sean Sherk (three times), Georges St. Pierre, Shonie Carter, Nick Diaz, Chris Lytle, Matt Serra, Nick Thompson, Diego Sanchez and Josh Burkman. Every fighter in that list, except Thompson, fought at least a fifteen minute match with Parisyan.
The most visible judo player in MMA (on this side of the ocean), Karo has tripped, flipped and tossed the best fighters in the world. Despite his highly entertaining fights and quality wins, Karo finds himself out of the title picture yet again. He was asked to bring the "Heat" to Matt Hughes in 2005, but an injury forced him to withdraw. The UFC wanted him to work his way back up, which Karo agreed to, but since then, the opportunity has been tossed around between George St. Pierre, B.J. Penn, Matt Serra and, of course, Matt Hughes.
DEEP middleweight champion Ryo Chonan is no stranger to danger either, having competed against Hayato Sakurai, Ricardo Almeida, Carlos Newton, Phil Baroni, Dan Henderson, Paulo Filho. The "Piranha"'s most famous win came in the form of his notorious flying scissor heel hook on Anderson Silva, after which Silva left the PRIDE organization for good.
Born in Yamagata, Japan, Chonan now trains with Team Quest and the likes of Dan Henderson, Jason "Mayhem" Miller and Sokoudjou.
Karo Parisyan will bring the heat as always, but he rarely ever gets it hot enough. For all his beautiful throws and his improving striking and his battle-testedt chin, eight of Karo's past nine fights have gone the distance. At his level, he really should have finished his last two opponents, Drew Fickett and Josh Burkman, but Karo just cannot knock anybody out and hasn't subbed anyone in four years.
Meanwhile, Chonan is making his debut in multiple ways: this is his first fight out of Team Quest, his first fight at 170 lbs and his first fight in the States, in a cage and in the UFC. He is preparing to fight in a cage, but I anticipate that the experience will confuse him nonetheless. Karo possesses crazy Armenian Judo strength and should be able to control Chonan, but not finish him.
Karo Parisyan by Unanimous Decision.