Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith
This should be fight of the night for as long as it lasts. Its definitely not going the distance though.
Both these guys are very aggressive and really want to get in your face. Oezdemir has strange crazy power in his hands and Smith is very dangerous with elbows and knees especially if he gets his opponents back to the fence. What swings it for me though is that Smith doesn’t have the best defense and it could cost him here. That said though after the first round, and the more the fight goes on the less Oezdemir’s power will be effective where Smith can tend fre get into a fight more as it goes on.
Basically what I’m saying is that Volkan gets the knockout in the first or second round or he loses it late. I’m going to go with Volkan though, he’s beaten better men than Smith.
Prediction : Oezdemir by TKO
Result : Smith by submission
Artem Lobov vs Zabaira Tukhugov – CANCELLED
I’m not even going to bullshit about this being competitive really. I think Artem will get picked apart here. Tukhugov is a good wrestler with really sharp hands and good movement. He hits fast, punches in twos and threes from off the centre line and I think he will be too much for Artem.
Artem is tough though so expect him to come forward throwing but I don’t think he has the speed or reach to do much here and this should move his record to 13 wins and 15 losses which is pretty crazy for what is considered the elite organisation. He’s Conor’s boy though so he doesn’t have to worry about it.
Prediction : Tukhugov by decision
Due to issues arising from the fallout of the Khabib vs Conor situation Zabaira has been pulled from the fight and his status with the company is unknown. So it will now be…..
Artem Lobov vs Michael Johnson
On paper this should be a harder fight for Artem than Tukhugov would have been. Johnson is very quick with good movement and sharp striking. My only issue with Johnson is that he maybe doesn’t seem like he is title caliber mentally. I guess what I’m saying is he can be broke but hey so can almost anyone. Problem comes possibly at the third round when he’s throws everything he has at Artem and the Russian Hammer is still coming forward?
To be honest though I’m just trying to look for a way that Lobov could have success. I don’t think he will handle the speed of Johnson and Johnson gets the finish in the second round.
Prediction : Johnson by TKO
Result : Johnson by decision
Misha Cirkunov vs Patrick Cummins
Love how Cummins is going for the Tom Hardy look but not the Tommy Riordan version, oh no he’s going for super cool Charlie Bronson. Looks like Bronson but fights like Locke.
Cummins is a top class wrestler but he doesn’t rely on it too much, he also has passable basic striking and he has good punches but his striking defence can be dodgy at times and he’s not the quickest guy. Cirkunov is a good grappler as well but he’s a submission guy.
I think this fight will be contested by striking and clinch work. Cirkunov will want to take it to the ground but Cummins is good enough to mostly prevent that, and standing I can see Cummins giving Misha problems in the first round. Second round Cirkunov changes strategy and gets more into the groove and hurts Cummins as the round goes on and I think gets the stoppage late in the second
Prediction : Cirkunov by TKO
Result : Cirkunov by submission
Jonathan Martinez vs Andre Soukhamthath
This should be a close fight between two guys who have kinda similar styles.
Although Soukhamthath is 1-3 in the UFC, two of the losses were by split decision but what everyone remembers is the loss to Sean O’Malley where he could have snatched victory from Jaws of defeat if he had only he had used his brain and asked the injured O’Malley to stand up. .
He needs a good showing here and I can see him getting one. I think Martinez is more explosive but Soukhamthath is just as quick and defensively sound and more experienced at top level. I see him putting it all together here and getting the decision.
Prediction : Soukhamthath by decision
Result : Soukhamthath by decision
Gian Villante vs Ed Herman
Who knows with these two. Both sort of win some lose some characters. This comes down to who fights better on the night. Villante is a big guy who is pretty slow but methodical with his striking and it can be effective sometimes and then you have Ed Herman who has a bit more fluid striking than Villante, just a bit. Herman does have a few submission wins as well but I don’t think this fight will go there. I see a standing and clinch battle and I think, think, Villante has a slight edge unless Herman cracks him on the chin. Toss a coin though, I’m saying Villante probably by decision.
Prediction : Villante by decision
Result : Villante by split decision
Alex Garcia vs Court McGee
I think what I’d say about Court McGee mostly is that he’s a tough guy. I mean he ok wherever the fight goes in that he can strike a bit and grapple but what I’d mostly say is, he’s tough and has heart. Problem is that these days in the UFC being tough is not really enough.
I see Garcia having the advantage wherever the fight takes place. He’s quicker and stronger and I think more athletic with decent wresting. Clear decision for Gracia with him winning the stand up and grappling.
Prediction : Garcia by decision
Result :McGee by decision
Rest of the Card
Nordine Taleb vs Sean Strickland
Went into this thinking 100% Taleb wins but you know what, I think Strickland takes him. I think Taleb has better skills but I just have a feeling that Strickland will out point him here.
Prediction : Strickland by decision
Result : Strickland by TKO
Thibault Gouti vs Nasrat Haqparast
Gouti has lost four of his last five and although he seems better than that, there are no easy fights and I would say he will be disappointed again in this one. Although Gouti is a decent striker with hard punches and kicks I think he will struggle with the quickness of Haqparast and I don’t know if he is really the sort of fighter who will be able to adapt and change what’s not working. In my opinion all Haqparast has to do is stay off his back and not walk into any clean strike.
I’m sure Tristar will give Nasrat a game plan and if he sticks with it he wins, probably a decision but he could get a knockdown and finish with a sub.
Prediction : Haqparast by decision
Result : Haqparast by decision
Calvin Kattar vs Chris Fishgold
Former Cage Warriors lightweight champion Fishgold making his UFC debut here and its well deserved. Seventeen wins and one loss, he definitely has the credentials now he just has to show it on the biggest stage.
Calvin Kattar is definitely not an easy first opponent. He’s a good fighter and he’s tactically aware. He’ll use his size and distance to stay out of a brawl and look for him to be savvy and push forward at the end of each round to look good for the judges. Honestly I hope that it goes well for Fishgold but I think I’m going for Kattar in this one, likely by decision.
Prediction : Kattar by decision
Result : Kattar by TKO
Sarah Moras vs Talita Bernardo
Don’t think any of these two girls are really any good, at all. I’ll go with Moras I think just because she has better stand up. Bernardo’s striking is awful, low output and not really all that effective. On the ground Bernardo is half decent but Moras can hang there as well.
Nothing would surprise me but I think Moras gets the W.
Prediction : Moras by decision
Result : Bernardo by decision
Te’Jovan Edwards vs Don Madge
An intriguing match up. You have the college wrestler with big power in his punches and likes to brawl versus the South African Muay Thai champion who has got a pretty decent top game on the ground.
I think both guys will have their moments in this fight but if Edwards wants to keep it standing, Madge has the length and skills to make him pay. I do think this will be a well contested fight but what may swing it for me is that Edwards can get a bit wild at times, especially when his confidence is up, and he leaves openings and I feel that a guy with the experience of Madge can take advantage and get the late finish.
Prediction : Madge by TKO
Result : Madge by KO
Arjan Bhullar vs Marcelo Golm
Both of these dude came to the UFC with a lot of apparent potential. Bhullar had a very good wrestling pedigree and represented Canada at the Pan Am Games, Commonwealth Games and the Olympics. He was successful as well picking up medals. Golm came in at 5-0 with all finishes and could have been the next heavyweight Brazilian talent.
Both won their first fights in the UFC with Bhullar getting a decision over Luis Henrique and Golm beating possibly the worst heavyweight in the company, Christian Colombo. Next fights weren’t so easy with Bhullar getting caught in a sub by Wieczorek. Golm though got pretty much dominated by average heavyweight Tim Johnson and he didn’t look good. Seemed like first time he met someone who offered resistance, first person who didn’t fall down, and he didn’t know what to do. It’s easy to build a record on regional shows.
Overall Bhullar has the skill set to neutralise and frustrate Golm and he also has a decent right hand while Golm is watching out for the wrestling.
Prediction : Bhullar by decision
Result : Bhullar by decision
Stevie Ray vs Jessin Ayari
I understand that Stevie Ray almost never got a new contract but he changed management, over to the Dominance dark side if you will, and everything was OK.
Stevie’s biggest weakness since he got to the UFC has always been wrestling, of course, its completely foreign to Brits until you take up MMA. He won’t have to worry about wrestling here but Jess Ayari brings a different set of problems. He’s not flashy or really special in any was but he has a style that could cause Ray problems. He’s not going to be shooting fast takedowns or doesn’t have a great grappling top game but he also won’t be the aggressor much to begin with. He will wait for Stevie to come to him. This means he won’t be as open for counter punches and when he throws back its usually single shots or twos again not opening up.
Stevie is coming off of two losses so he could really use a win where Ayari has slightly less pressure on him.
I see a slowish tentative first round and after that it depends. Ayari is pretty good at spotting holes to exploit but Ray is pretty switch on as well and I think Ray has better all round skill, its a case of having a chance to utilise them. I think this is probably a split decision which I hope goes Stevie ‘Fuckin’ Ray’s way but my head is saying Ayari but you know what, I got to back my countryman.
Prediction : Ray by decision
Result : Ray by decision
Correct Picks 10/13