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ARNOLD CLASSIC: ATHLETE PREDICTIONS

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ARNOLD CLASSIC: ATHLETE PREDICTIONS

Top pros and former champs weigh in on the 2009 Arnold

By Team FLEX

March 3, 2009

FLEXONLINE

Our online coverage of the 2009 Arnold Classic continues here with Top 6 predictions from some big-name pros, including a few guys named Dex, Jay, Ronnie and Rich that have won the big show before.

For a comprehensive look at the weekend's events in Columbus, including athlete profiles, reviews of last year's show and a peek at this year's biggest storylines, visit the following links.

>> 2009 ARNOLD CLASSIC COVERAGE ON FLEXONLINE.COM
ARNOLD CLASSIC PREVIEW
CHRIS CORMIER'S AC PREDICTIONS
WOMEN'S PREVIEW: FITNESS, FIGURE AND BODYBUILDING
2008 ARNOLD CLASSIC REVIEW

>> 2009 ARNOLD CLASSIC TRAINING SERIES
MOE ELMOUSSAWI DELTS
TONEY FREEMAN QUADS
SILVIO SAMUEL HAMSTRINGS
DENNIS JAMES CHEST
MARCUS HALEY BICEPS

DEXTER JACKSON, 2008 Mr. Olympia, Three-Time Arnold Classic Champion
1 Victor Martinez
2 Toney Freeman
3 Kai Greene
4 Silvio Samuel
5 Dennis James
6 Branch Warren

DEXTER SAYS: Freeman has to come in looking like he did for the Olympia to beat Greene. It's a toss-up between James and Warren, but I'll go with James because he looked good last year.

PHIL HEATH, 2008 Mr. Olympia, 3rd place
1 Victor Martinez
2 Toney Freeman
3 Kai Greene
4 Branch Warren
5 Silvio Samuel
6 Dennis James

PHIL SAYS: I'm going with Warren over Samuel. They love Warren at the Arnold; they go freaking bananas! He's scary to compete against because he always comes in shape.

JAY CUTLER, 2006-2007 Mr. Olympia, Three-Time Arnold Classic Champion
1 Victor Martinez
2 Branch Warren
3 Toney Freeman
4 Kai Greene
5 Silvio Samuel
6 Dennis James

JAY SAYS: At this level, you need everything: balance, proportion, symmetry and of course conditioning. That being said, this is bodybuilding and in the end, mass still wins.

RONNIE COLEMAN, 1998-2005 Mr. Olympia, 2001 Arnold Classic Champion
1 Victor Martinez
2 Toney Freeman
3 Kai Greene
4 Branch Warren
5 Dennis James
6 Silvio Samuel

RONNIE SAYS: I haven't really heard anything about Victor or seen pictures but I think it's his show to lose [despite his leg injury]. I like Toney because he's a bigger guy and I like that. And with Silvio and Moe - those guys are good bodybuilders, they're good for their size, but when the time comes, they just don't measure up to the bigger guys.

FLEX LEWIS, 2008 Olympia Showdown, 3rd place
1 Branch Warren*
2 Victor Martinez*
3 Kai Greene
4 Toney Freeman
5 Silvio Samuel
6 Ronny Rockel or Dennis James

FLEX SAYS: *It could go either way between the two, I can't decide. Victor's got so much potential but Branch is such an animal and looks the best I've ever seen.

BOB CICHERILLO, IFBB Pro League Athletes Representative
1 Victor Martinez
2 Toney Freeman
3 Silvio Samuel
4 Kai Greene
5 Branch Warren
6 Dennis James

BOB SAYS: If - and that's a big IF - Vic regains his previous best, he should be the best of the best. Toney Freeman will be at his all-time best and push Vic for the title. Don't be surprised if the X-Man comes out as the winner if Vic is anything less than 100%.

RICH GASPARI, 1989 Arnold Classic Champion
1 Victor Martinez
2 Toney Freeman
3 Kai Greene
4 Silvio Samuel
5 Branch Warren
6 Dennis James/Gustavo Badell

GASPARI SAYS: It's all dependent on the shape Kai Greene is in - if he can come in shape he could even crack the top two. Then you got Silvio who's always in condition and could be in that three, four or five spot and Branch who's a freak. Dennis James has certain flaws and so does Gustavo, so that sixth spot could flip flop between those two.

TOMORROW: The FLEX Staff weighs in on who they think will be in the Top 6.

Find out what other fans are saying and offer your own predictions at the FLEX Forums.

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