MMA Junkie analyst Dan Tom breaks down the UFC’s high bouts. In the present day, we take a look at the primary card for UFC 279.
UFC 279 takes place Saturday at T-Cell Area in Las Vegas. The principle card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPNEWS and early prelims on ESPN+.
Final occasion’s outcomes: 3-3
Total picks for UFC foremost playing cards in 2022: 89-54-1
Welcome to MMAJunkie’s Fast Picks and Prognostications, the place I’ll be giving transient, fight-day breakdowns for UFC foremost playing cards.
With that in thoughts, I hope these write-ups don’t come off as curt or dismissive, as my purpose right here is to supply fast picks and evaluation in a digestible format. All odds listed are offered by Tipico Sportsbook.
For those who’d like extra detailed evaluation from me, then be at liberty to take a look at my weekly present, The Protect Ya’ Neck Podcast.
So, with out additional ado…
Ion Cutelaba (-210) vs. Johnny Walker (+160)
Kicking off the pay-per-view portion of the cardboard is a lightweight heavyweight showdown between [autotag]Ion Cutelaba[/autotag] and [autotag]Johnny Walker[/autotag].
Each males are motion fighters at coronary heart, however Walker has grow to be overly conservative whereas Cutelaba’s wildness can nonetheless value him at instances. That mentioned, Cutelaba has proven some optimistic enhancements since working at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas (a health club that I’ve a long-stated bias with).
Except Walker can discover a hail marry submission in a scramble, then I believe that Cutelaba can detonate the SBG product’s chin throughout the first spherical.
Irene Aldana (-175) vs. Macy Chiasson (+135)
In a slew of catchweight contests, [autotag]Irene Aldana[/autotag] meets [autotag]Macy Chiasson[/autotag] on the primary card.
Though the burden allowance undoubtedly helps Chiasson extra, I nonetheless suspect that the stylistic dynamic of this combat in the end favors Aldana. Except for being a superior striker in boxing vary, Aldana has underrated counter grappling and clinching that would come to gentle on this combat.
Add in the truth that Aldana tends to choose up velocity down the stretch, and I feel that she will be able to drive a stoppage on a flagging Chiasson by the third spherical.
Li Jingliang (+120) vs. Daniel Rodriguez (-155)
Frequently getting the quick finish of the stick whereas sustaining a smile on his face is [autotag]Li Jingliang[/autotag], who finally ends up having to face [autotag]Daniel Rodriguez[/autotag] at 180 kilos – regardless of making 170 kilos for a completely completely different opponent (story here).
Not solely is Rodriguez a harmful fighter with a very completely different type than Tony Ferguson (Li’s preliminary matchup), however the Los Angeles native can even be the primary UFC-level southpaw of Li’s profession.
As a lot as I need to see Li sport his spectacular blue swimsuit within the winner’s circle, I’ll begrudgingly choose Rodriguez to rain on the parade by stinging the Chinese language fighter with impactful counters en path to an enormous win on the scorecards.
Khamzat Chimaev (-550) vs. Kevin Holland (+370)
UFC fighters Khamzat Chimaev left, and Kevin Holland alternate phrases throughout a ceremonial weigh-in for the UFC 279 combined martial arts occasion Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas. UFC president Dana White retains the fighters separated. (Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Solar by way of AP)
The co-main occasion in Las Vegas options an impromptu matchup between [autotag]Khamzat Chimaev[/autotag] and [autotag]Kevin Holland[/autotag].
After grossly lacking the welterweight restrict for his first foremost occasion encounter reverse Nate Diaz, Chimaev now finds himself going through one other acquainted foe in Holland.
Regardless that I’m formally choosing Chimaev to make use of his wrestling prowess to copy the success that Brendan Allen had in opposition to Holland, I ponder what this combat might seem like if the Chechen fighter is unable to supply a end throughout the first seven minutes given his aggression and pacing.
Add in Chimaev’s large weight miss and all of the fight-week craziness, and I don’t blame anybody for taking a small stab on the underdog on the betting window.
Nate Diaz (+105) vs. Tony Ferguson (-135)
Regardless of the chaotic shuffle brought on by Chimaev, the newly-minted foremost occasion between [autotag]Nate Diaz[/autotag] and [autotag]Tony Ferguson[/autotag] makes far more sense from a matchmaking perspective.
Ferguson, who’s formally 3-2 in opposition to UFC-level southpaws, ought to discover some early success because the extra numerous attacker and aggressive starter. That mentioned, I’ve a sneaky suspicion that Diaz’s dimension and underrated clinch acumen might take over this combat if Stockton’s most interesting turns this into extra of a grappling match.
I don’t disagree with the cash that pushed Ferguson to favourite odds, however I’ll reluctantly facet with Diaz (who truly ready for 5 rounds) to out-grapple and outlast the previous light-weight kingpin for a win on the scorecards.
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