This isn't meant to be some deep thought out technical analysis. I'm bored, and beyond hyped for the card. Most fight cards, there are a lot of fights I'm not sure who to pick. This card is an exception, so I thought I'd write this, kill some time and maybe someone will find it a good read. I got inspired by The Fite Sight! I try my best to talk a about both sides, but sometimes I just really see it for the other fighter and lazy to type more. If you want me to elaborate on a fight and talk more about a certain fighter, I'd be happy to. Ferguson: I've picked Tony in every
UFC fight including his TUF finale fight, so yes I got the MJ/Ferg fight wrong. I will keep picking Ferg. Everyone already knows the two ways this fight most likely plays out, Gaethje KOs him early in the fight or Ferguson gets the finish in the later rounds or wins a decision like against RDA where he never got rocked. I think there's a chance we see Tony fight a lot smarter than usual because he respects the power of Gaethje, as compared to Lando or Pettis (fights where he was in serious dangerous of getting finished).
Only time I won't pick Ferguson is when he fights Khabib. Khabib has been an easy pick in all his fights so far too, besides the Conor fight, which I thought was 50/50 sadly. It's similar to the Gaethje/Ferguson fight in that most people can only see two ways of how it ends. Cejudo: Easy pick.
Cejudo already knew he had a fight upcoming with Aldo, so his preparation is likely more optimal than Dom's. Cruz long layoff, and the striking in the division has moved past him. 2016 and before bantamweights are worse than the current Moraes, Cejudo, Yan, Sandhagen group. Cruz can grapple for extended periods if he chooses to like he did against Mighty Mouse. If he does, the size advantage could be significant, but with such a long lay off again (even longer than the previous 2 layoffs vs. Mizugaki and Dillashaw, and not coming off a loss). Cruz's legendary career is made off of beating overmatched wrestle-boxers (Faber) and flyweights (DJ, Jorgenson, Benavidez all future flyweights that were Dom's bantamweight title defences) Ngannou: Only one person picking Ngannou on the Fight Site
lol "I am going to take a flier here that Rozenstruik can emulate the Derrick Lewis gameplan to hilariously boring effect." Hop on that Rozenstruik underdog line if you believe them. +250 biggest underdog against Ngannou since Arlovski. "I have no faith in Ngannou to beat a fighter who’s durable enough (as he showed against Overeem) to maybe not just get killed early, and who can sit on the outside and peck like Lewis did." Trying to predict this fight based on Ngannou vs Lewis is retarded imo. I could be wrong, but that's my opposing opinion. Uhm Rozenstruik was getting taken down and laid on, not like he was getting outstrike bad and proved his durability like that. Plus that was a 5 round fight. Rozenstruik doesn't even get the chance to land that KO punch on Reem in a 3 rounder. Some echo chamber going on on that site (mostly Sriam and Danny, your friendly neighborhood no training armchair analysts).
I do not think this fight will be as bad as most on the fight site are expecting it to be. Must be that Black Beast PTSD. I take FranCis Kattar: Easy pick.
Matching up known/proven names against other known/proven/unproven names makes for much easier predictions, which doesn't mean I'll be right, just that I'm not on the fence about who to pick for most of the card. Kattar should be able to avoid Stephens' homerun KO attempts and pick him apart from the outside. Quick technical detail: the finish on Burgos, he used the bouncing TKD style foot work to close distance quickly and surprisingly. In that fight he hadn't done that til the round 3 TKO, so Kattar has a few different looks he can give. Burgos gets to be a warrior 10 years ago. I haven't seen Kattar vs Moicano. I also liked that Kattar shoots for takedowns even if he doesn't get them.
Prelims Pettis: Super easy pick.
I wanna believe in Cerrone making a comeback fighting like 6 times this year on Fight Island, but that's a pipe dream of sorts. Both guys have only been losing to top competition. Carlos Diego Ferreira wasn't ranked, but he is a motherfucker. Cerrone's beat Matt Brown at welterweight without needing to use the Body Shot Cheatcode, beating Hernandez and Iaquinta at LW. Pettis has the Wonderboy win at welterweight, he beat Chiesa at LW, almost finished Ferguson. Cerrone letting Pettis stay at range and get picked apart if not TKO'd again seems likely. That would be 4 straight TKO losses for Cowboy very sad or 3 straight for Pettis. Pettis showed me enough against CDF, that I think he still has Cowboy's number on the feet. I doubt Cerrone will wrestle much, or make that a focal part of his game plan we all know he like to bang. Even if he does, he's gonna let Pettis back up. Jacare: First risky pick
of the night in my opinion. The momentum is on Uriah Hall's side coming off a win over excellent grappler Shoeface, where Hall had to battle out of bad position a few times to get the 2 rounds to 1 win. Jacare is on a 2-3 run, but against Jan Blachowicz at LHW, super close toss up round fight with Gastelum, KO Weidman (in a fight Jacare was losing to be fair), killed Brunson again and losing as the favorite to Hermansson in a fairly grueling 5 round war. I like Jacare to avoid the KO shot, get the takedown and return to the MW top 10. Uriah has looked improved, but Shoeface still got his back multiple times and all of round 3. I think Jacare can get it done. He's old, but his performances aren't really showing it even in defeats. The level of competition is much higher for Jacare. Esparza: Pretty easy pick
. I expect Carla to take Michelle down throughout the fight and get a 29-28 type decision win. Michelle probably stands back up and gets taken down again or isn't able to do enough the rest of the round to win it. Werdum: Easy pick
. Can't pick Oleinik in this whatsoever. All the things he does well, Werdum does better. Long lay off for Werdum, but he was scheduled for a grappling match with champion of champions (for grappling) Gordon Ryan, so I don't think he will experience significant ring rust. But with also the 'Rona goin roun, who the fuck knows. HW MMA. Can't not take Werdum in a pick em though.
Early Prelims Mitchell: I like Bryce Thug Nasty here
. He impressed me a lot in his last fight, and not just with the twister. His transitions and fluidity on the ground before the Twister was beautiful. His opponent, Matt Sayles is no joke either, training under Dominick Cruz. Charles Rosa has an awkward, unconventional stand up game, but his grappling is his stronger suit. I honestly don't know for sure how they're jiu jitsu matches up. However, I like that Bryce is more of a top player than Rosa and can wrestle. Rosa has fallen short to some higher ranked future proven guys like Yair Rodriguez and Shane Burgos. We shall see if Bryce is on that level. Burgos and Yair both beat Rosa in their 2nd UFC fight. I think it is worth noting Rosa took 30 months off due to a serious neck injury (cries in Tatiana Suarez) before coming back and subbing Manny Bermudez in round 1. Bermudez who missed weight at featherweight, coming up from bantamweight. Bermudez got cut and moved up to lightweight. He missed weight for that lightweight fight too.
If Rosa wants to play on the bottom, I think Bryce will avoid the subs and win by decision. Rosa has had a Fight of the Night bonus in his 3 UFC defeats. He won a Performance bonus last time. Low key exciting fighter. BOSTON STRONG word life this is thuganomics. I also like that Bryce has been putting on more weight and working with collegiate wrestlers. Luque: Yet another easy pick
. Rematch stats also favor the previous winner. Niko Price fought patiently in the first fight before getting hurt with punches, then subbed. I think Price can do better than he did in the first fight, and the chaos/randomness he has brought against Neal, Means, Brown, Vick makes me a bit worried. Luque is coming off two very tough fights. But he doesn't strike me as someone that will be have a hard time coming off a loss.
Luque is the pick, but prop bet of "fight ends inside the distance" in a parlay I would feel a lot more comfortable with. Spann: I don't love Spann here not at those odds. Pick em obvious choice.
After what looked like a future journeyman career, Spann has rattled off 7 consecutive wins including two finishes in the UFC over Lil Nog and Devin Clark. Sam Alvey will most likely never be a top or even semi-top LHW but there was a time he had 3 consecutive TKOs in the UFC and another time he had 4 consecutive wins also in the UFC. He's on a 3 fight losing streak, lost to Lil Nog, who Spann beat, but I wouldn't be surprised if Spann looks terrible against Alvey. Though, Spann's defeats have aged well.
Alvey was the underdog in UFC wins over Marcin Prachnio (-280), Cezar Ferreira (-385) and Dylan Andrews (-192). This is the biggest favorite Alvey has fought in his UFC career so far. And finally the one fight I didn't pick Hardy/de Castro:
This is the only fight I feel tossing a coin would be about the same as my own pick. Both guys are above average strikers by HW MMA standards. Hardy shot in a couple of times against Volkov, and has gotten top position against others. Hardy was able to land a jab on Volkov of all people multiple times. I think De Castro is the more technical striker overall, likely been training way longer than Hardy. The sloppy slow strikes Hardy attempted vs. Crowder were non-existent vs. Volkov. He looks much improved and comfortable in there. If I knew Hardy would shoot for a takedown, I would pick him easily. Not enough info for me to make a pick here/I don't wanna watch De Castro's regional fights. Obligatory Anything can happen disclaimer, I'm ready to be surprised
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