I voted for Rafa to win in three. I think he will fight through and Youzhny will not play great, just a hunch.
However, the Dubai court is playing a lot faster than last year, it was evident in the Andreev match. I have no doubts that if Youzhny plays top notch tennis for two sets he will simply blow Nadal off court. If you disagree, say why? Why should it be any different to when Nadal faces other HC'ers with weapons? It's the same, he hasn't the weapons to stop it. That said, I still think Nadal will take it.
I think that when comes down to comparing apples to apples- Misha is a better hard court player at this speed than Nadal. He is strong enough off of both wings and has good court sense.
Still- Rafa can at times be a bigger "big match" player. That stated, Misha has beat Rafa in their last hc match and in the last few months he has shown more maturity and less choking.
Yes, I am on the Misha bandwagon replete with a trombone and a funny hat. I just have thought for a good while that he is a real talent and am happy to see him stepping up to it in a more consistant basis.
I acutally think that Youzhny will take it in three. Everyone says he is tired, but a rustier Nadal had the harder and later match.