Chael Sonnen will be facing Anderson Silva in what may well be the bout of the year. The action takes place at UFC 148 this Saturday in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Earlier this week, we previewed the main card fights. Here’s a look at the free preliminary bouts.

American Top Team lightweight Gleison Tibau is riding a three-fight winning streak, with split decision victories over Kurt Pellegrino and Rafael dos Anjos, and a submission victory via rear-naked choke over AMA Fight Club’s Rafaello Oliveira. He is 10-5 in the Octagon, and although he’s weathered losses to more seasoned veterans, he’s definitely a gate keeper. Nurmagomedov has a stellar record, but this is only his second fight in the Octagon. Tibau is larger and has amazing endurance; a good showing by Nurmagomedov will count for a lot…

Melvin Guillard (29-10-2) vs. Fabricio Camoes (14-6-1)

Although submission defense is a weakness, declaring that Guillard’s speed, footwork and striking are impressive would be an understatement. But Camoes is a BJJ black belt whose striking isn’t lacking either. Guillard will obviously be faster, but he’s coming off of back-to-back submission losses. Whether he’s tightened up the holes in his ground game remains to be seen. Camoes, who has won his last three, will look to continue his winning streak.

Representing the Serra-Longo fight team, Philippou has dynamite in his hands. Fukuda’s got some KOs to his name as well, but whether he’ll be able to weather Philippou’s storm of strikes remains to be seen.

John Alessio (34-15) vs Shane Roller (10-6)

Shane Roller is coming off of 3 losses in a row, and Xtreme Couture fighter John Alessio lost to Bocek in his UFC debut. Both fighters are well-rounded and will be looking to secure their position within the promotion, so this could be an exciting match since there is a lot to lose.

Oliveria went 1-2 in his first UFC stint, getting cut by the promotion and not being re-signed until he won four in a row outside the Octagon. Then he lost his first two fights back, though against high caliber opponents. A UFC newcomer, Izquierdo won his first UFC bout and will be looking to get back in the W column.

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