We’re back with another UFC pay-per-view. It’s the Trevor Wittman show once again with Rose Namajunas and Justin Gaethje looking to retain and gain gold. We’ve also got a classic in the making with Michael Chandler and Tony Ferguson going head-to-head in what will for sure be a firecracker. Let’s get started!
Donald Cerrone vs Joe Lauzon – Lightweight Division
Two MMA legends and two men I’d never bet on start the main card. Donald hasn’t won a fight since 2019 and Joe hasn’t fought since 2019, so I don’t expect the quality of action to be too special. I don’t expect anything new from both men as well. At this stage of their career you wouldn’t expect an old dog to learn new tricks. If Joe releases his ground and pound he’ll need to watch out for Donald’s submissions. I have no clue who to pick so I’ll just say Donald so hopefully he can get this final win and retire.
Prediction: Donald Cerrone by TKO in round 2
Mauricio Rua vs Ovince Saint Preux – Light Heavyweight Division
Another two veterans of the game for the second fight of the night. Going into this one I expect OSP to do OSP things and use the low kicks to establish distance and make it seem like he wants to stand up for the fight to then shoot and look for his patented Von Flue choke. Shogun will want to keep it standing. Looking for the right KO shot to finish the fight. I’m backing OSP by decision. Another coin toss to be honest.
Prediction: Ovince Saint Preux by decision
Michael Chandler vs Tony Ferguson – Lightweight Division
This is when things start to heat up! I don’t really know how to break this down but I expect fireworks. Both men are crazy and extremely talented. Over the last few fights we’ve seen Tony Ferguson slow down a lot but you can never count out the Boogyman of the UFC. Chandler is extremely well rounded, terrific wrestler and explosive with heavy hands and can knockout anyone if he connects right. Although I want this to be a firecracker, I think this could be another systematic beat down on Tony. I’m taking Chandler by decision.
Prediction: Michael Chandler by decision
Rose Namajunas (c) vs Carla Esparza 2 – Strawweight Championship
I can’t wait for this one! Can Rose Namajunas defend her title against the woman who gave her her first UFC loss? It will be a tough one for sure. Carla is an incredible wrestler and I expect nothing more than her trying to close the distance and look to assert her dominance early. She’ll need to be weary of Rose’s jiu-jitsu as it’s a part of her game that people have forgotten about due to her expert level striking. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Carla win but I’ve got to back Rose. She gets better and better with each fight. I think she would’ve worked heavily on wrestling defence in this training camp.
Prediction: Rose Namajunas by TKO in round 3
Charles Oliveira (c) vs Justin Gaethje – Lightweight Championship
Probably my favourite main event matchup of the year so far. I like both of these guys so seeing one of them lose sucks. With Oliveira we know what to expect, out of this planet BJJ and good quality offensive striking. Gaethje, always brings the low calf kicks and high level striking with a decent wrestling background if he needs it. I’m still not over the takedown reversal he pulled on Michael Chandler last year. Incredible. I expect Charles to get rocked in round one but if he can implement his jiu-jitsu, Justin is in for a long night. If Charles did laser eye surgery I’d back him no doubt but I just worry about his striking defence every time. The man is literally half blind. I’m going to take Gaethje by finish.
Prediction: Justin Gaethje by KO round 2