A number of new UFC bouts are shown for upcoming battle cards, and I will present my thoughts on them in today’s MMA odds and ends.
Damir Hadzovic vs. Marco Polo Reyes, UFC Fight Night 145
Lightweights Damir Hadzovic and Marco Polo Reyes are set to fight at UFC Fight Night 145, occurring February 23 in The O2 Arena in Prague, Czech Republic. Hadzovoc (12-2) is currently 2-2 in the UFC and is coming off of a decision win over Nick Hein. Reyes (8-4) is 4-1 in the UFC and is coming from a KO win over Matt Frevola. Another fascinating booking here from the UFC involving two fighters on the upswing. I have a tendency to lean Reyes simply because we’ve seen more variety in his ability to finish a fight, but it is definitely close.
Gian Villante vs. Michal Oleksiejczuk, UFC Fight Night 145
Light heavyweights Gian Villante and Michal Oleksiejczuk will even fulfill at UFC Fight Night 145. Villante (17-10) is 7-7 in the UFC and conquered Ed Herman by split decision in his final fight. Oleksiejczuk (12-2, 1 NC) fought to a No Contest against Khalil Rountree in his UFC debut after being frozen for PEDs. Initially he had won the battle by choice and showed off some good wrestling laps from the fight. In spite of all the PED difficulties, I’d still need to prefer Oleksiejczuk here as I expect most bettors will try and fade Villante.
Alejandro Perez vs. Song Yadong, UFC 235
A fascinating bantamweight bout between prospects Alejandro Perez and Song Yadong is place for UFC 235, taking place March 2 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Perez (21-6-1) is 7-1-1 in the UFC and is now on a seven-fight unbeaten streak that includes a conclusion win over Eddie Wineland in his final outing. Yadong (13-3, 2 NC) is 3-0 thus far in the UFC and in only 21 is among the best young fighters in the branch. This is a great fight, and the two guys have bright futures in the sport. But according to all of the hype I would anticipate Yadong for a slight favorite here at opening.
Maryna Moroz vs. Sabina Mazo, UFC on ESPN 2 Women’s strawweights Maryna Moroz and Sabina Mazo will fulfill at UFC on ESPN, which takes place March 30 in Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Moroz (8-3) is 3-3 in the UFC and lost a decision to Angela Hill in her final bout. Mazo (6-0) is making her UFC introduction and at only 21 is among the youngest fighters in the division. Although Moroz has more experience in the Octagon, Mazo is a superb prospect and I would expect her to be the favorite here.
Paul Craig vs. Kennedy Nzechukwu, UFC on ESPN two And finally, light heavyweights Paul Craig and Kennedy Nzechukwu will fulfill at UFC on ESPN 2. Craig (10-3) is 2-3 in the UFC and was filed by Jim Crute in his last outing. Nzechukwu (6-0) is making his UFC debut following a powerful TKO win over the Contender Series. Anytime you are able to fade Craig you have to take action, and I expect Nzechukwu to be a huge favorite here as a consequence of that.
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