UFC 263: Adesanya vs Vettori 2 Predictions

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UFC 263: Adesanya vs Vettori 2 Predictions & Results

Pintsized Background

UFC 263 is a banger of a card, even when considering the random handful of shoehorned prelims. Even a sloppy Heavyweight brawl cannot detract from the excellent Main Card. Droopy tiddy, Israel Adesanya, looks to put to bed the doubts regarding his split decision over Marvin Vettori back in 2018. Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno immediately run back their barn-burner draw at the end of 2020. (Side note: it has been half a year already? God Damn). Paul Craig and Jamahal Hill have a random beef that seems to have ignited some sort of excitement. Belal Muhammad returns against veteran grappler, Demian Maia, with a fresh pair of goggles. Oh yeah, the most slept on Welterweight is taking on the most overrated 170lber.

Unsuccessful last time out against Jorge Masvidal, fan favourite Nate Diaz is searching for his first win in three years | UFC 263 | Pintsized Interests
Unsuccessful last time out against Jorge Masvidal, fan favourite Nate Diaz is searching for his first win in three years | UFC 263

UFC 263 Main Event

Israel Adesanya (20-1) vs Marvin Vettori (17-3-1)

Middleweight (185)

UFC Middleweight Championship

Israel Adesanya

Despite failing to secure double champ status last time out, Adesanya is still very much one of the UFC’s finest athletes. An elite striker, feints have long remained the hallmark of Adesanya’s increasingly aggressive counter-striking. On the outside, Adesanya’s comfort is undeniably clear. With his feet always perfectly balanced beneath himself, Adesanya baits opponents in by leaning his head forward, before utilising his natural length to pull back and counter hard. The Kiwi is one of the only strikers where huge emphasis on head movement is encouraged. Teasing opponents into head-hunting, Adesanya’s clear Achilles heel in his body and legs have rarely been targetted in his ten-fight UFC career.

It is hard to see what changes Vettori has made that will stop Adesanya from winning another decision based on the jab alone. With a six-inch reach advantage against a wrestler with limited head movement, twenty-five minutes of a ram-rod jab will break any opponent from continuing to close the distance. Vettori has sharpened his boxing, especially his jab, but he will still struggle to ever come on top in 50/50 exchanges due to the reach differential. Adesanya is vulnerable when pressed into successive defensive movements, often falling over his feet as he attempts to move his head, body and feet in unison. This reactive defence, however, is seen only in the pocket. While Vettori pressed Adesanya during their first bout, his cage cutting needs to have vastly improved if he wants to suffocate Adesanya’s space.

Marvin Vettori

The Italian Meatball has more than secured his right to a title shot. Putting together a five-win streak over a mixed bag of competition, the problems Vettori caused during his first fight with Adesanya undoubtedly forced the match-makers hand. By underplaying Vettori in the lead-up, many are overlooking his tools are similar to old Polish Power at 205. Grinding wrestling, solid boxing and relentless pressure are the same aspects that Blacho rode on to crush the Middleweight champ’s dreams. Of course, the 25lb weight class jump probably had an equally large role behind the Pole’s success, but stylistic similarities remain a valid factor.

Vettori’s pressure boxing shines when his wrestling remains a potent threat. Against Kevin Holland, Vettori built upon his eleven takedowns to level change into intelligent, extended combinations. Adesanya’s TDD looked amateur against Jan last time out, and similarly poor against Rob Wilkinson during his debut, yet has been otherwise stellar. If, as is expected, Vettori cannot pressure with takedowns, the glaring holes in his striking defence will be exposed. Coupled with Vettori’s short reach and relatively slow hand speed, he will find himself struggling to touch the Kiwi despite stripping him of the centre of the octagon. By kicking the legs out from under Adesanya’s lateral movement, he would root his foe to the mat more effectively, but Vettori has never shown much penchant for kicking. An excellent chin and exhausting pace will keep Vettori active throughout, but he lacks the flush power to trouble Adesanya. This is the Kiwi’s fight to lose.

Predicted Result: Adesanya Decision

Despite failing to secure double champ status last time out, Adesanya is still very much one of the UFC’s finest competitors. It is hard to see what changes Vettori has made that will stop Adesanya from winning another decision based on the jab alone. With a six-inch reach advantage against a wrestler with limited head movement, twenty-five minutes of a ram-rod jab will break any opponent from continuing to close the distance. Vettori has sharpened his boxing, especially his jab, but he will still struggle to ever come on top in 50/50 exchanges due to the reach differential.

Vettori’s pressure boxing shines when his wrestling remains a potent threat. Against Kevin Holland, Vettori built upon his eleven takedowns to level change into intelligent, extended combinations. Adesanya’s TDD looked amateur against Jan last time out, but the 25lb jump in weight may have played a large factor in hampering an otherwise stellar TDD. If, as is expected, Vettori cannot pressure with takedowns, the glaring holes in his striking defence will be exposed. An excellent chin and exhausting pace will keep Vettori active throughout, but he lacks the flush power to trouble Adesanya. This is the Kiwi’s fight to lose.

Result: Adesanya def. Vettori // Decision (unanimous – 50-45, 50-45, 50-45)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

Battling to a razor thin split decision, Israel Adesanya secured bragging rights over Marvin Vettori back in 2018 | UFC 263 | Pintsized Interests
Battling to a razor thin split decision, Israel Adesanya secured bragging rights over Marvin Vettori back in 2018 | UFC 263

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UFC 263 Co-Main Event

Deiveson Figueiredo (20-1-1) vs Brandon Moreno (18-5-2)

Flyweight (125)

UFC Flyweight Championship

Deiveson Figueiredo

Although declared a draw, the majority of scorers at home had the champion well ahead by the final round. While the docked point played a key role, Figueiredo struggled more so due to questionable decision making rather than meeting his match. Without the rapid turnaround after his first title defence, Figgy should have no issues with his conditioning in what could again prove to be a marathon fight.

With a highlight reel as long as Figueiredo’s, it helps paper over the many cracks in his game. The most obvious hole is Figueiredo’s flawed decision making, choosing to drop his jab that peppered Moreno for the first two rounds, in favour of chasing wild power shots. There is no denying that Figgy Pudding has the rare lights out KO power that is sorely lacking amongst the smaller men. Yet there’s a comes time in a fighter’s career where they fall too far in love with their power. Moreno’s durability, as shown last time, is astounding. Fig could certainly crack Moreno’s chin if given enough chances, but why opt against securing easy rounds behind the jab?

Fig’s chin and rapid recovery time are also often overlooked when discussing the champion. Able to survive a huge scare against Moreno, Fig also showcased a lesser-seen output deep in the fight. Focusing the power shots to the body, and leaving the head-hunting for elbows at range, Fig should have Moreno out-gunned.

Brandon Moreno

After such a huge performance the first time around, it’s lovely to see the new support for one of MMA’s good guys. The Mexican possesses such a ridiculous natural athleticism, he has ridden to the top based on his titanium chin and breathless pace. It is a shame then, that Moreno’s lack of power has plagued his career. Although Moreno was clipping Fig with counters, he didn’t commit early enough. Often Moreno would sting with a counter to the body, but linger at range having not afflicted enough damage to stop Fig from thundering his huge uppercuts.

Relying on his granite chin, and by committing to counters earlier, Moreno can set a pace that only he can match during the championship rounds. While it seems ludicrous to fight fire with fire against such a heavy-handed foe, it is key for Moreno to lead the fight. That doesn’t mean going toe to toe with Fig. Instead, there needs to be a greater focus on the stick and moving with the jab (as Moreno employed during the fourth round). By creating angles through landing first, stemming from confident striking in the face Figgy’s explosive power, Moreno will be able to dictate the pace and range of the fight.

Predicted Result: Figueiredo Decision

With a highlight reel as long as Figueiredo’s, it helps paper over the many cracks in his game. The most obvious hole is Figueiredo’s flawed decision making. Dropping his jab that peppered Moreno for the first two rounds, Fig instead chased wild power shots. There is no denying the Brazilians freak KO power at 125, but it seems foolish to fall away from a game plan that was dominating.

Moreno possesses breathless cardio and a titanium chin, but he was comfortably beaten in the early 50/50 exchanges. Relying on his granite chin, and by committing to counters earlier, Moreno can set a pace that only he can match during the championship rounds. While it seems ludicrous to fight fire with fire against such a heavy-handed foe, it is key for Moreno to lead the fight. Figueiredo should win this fight comfortable if he maintains his composure on the outside, but his propensity for a mental meltdown is always hiding in the shadows.

Result: Moreno def. Figueiredo // Submission (rear-naked choke) Round 3 2:26

Winner ❌ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

Despite landing power shots regularly, Brandon Moreno managed to withstand Figueiredo's freakish knockout power | UFC 263 | Pintsized Interests
Despite landing power shots regularly, Brandon Moreno managed to withstand Figueiredo’s freakish knockout power | UFC 263

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UFC 263 Main Card

Leon Edwards (18-3) vs Nate Diaz (20-12)

Welterweight (170)

Leon Edwards

Across twenty-five minutes, we are all in agreement that an Edward’s elbow is going to slice open Diaz’s scar tissue? After peppering Diaz with low kicks out of his Southpaw stance, Edwards can unleash swift boxing combinations on his immobile foe. While Diaz’s range and awkward jab has given opponents problems before, Edward’s masterful clinch work sees thudding knees and elbows thrown at blinding speed. Diaz, a fighter who thrives when lingering in the pocket, is a prime target for a ridiculous amount of punishment. Edward’s solid lateral movement, and smart decision making to tie up before being caught against the cage, will see the Brit succeed in a similar manner to Jorge Masvidal.

Edward’s gas tank is a real issue, though. Edward’s is a superb leader in the octagon during the early rounds, setting a strong pace and wearing down opponents at range and in the clinch. There always seems to be a sharp decline in the output by the final rounds, however. Whether that is a mental boom or conditioning trouble, there is a clean loss of initiative. Still, Edwards always has the option to out-wrestle Diaz. Even if the Brit cannot piece his striking together on the night, perhaps Diaz size proves too awkward, then Edwards can easily put Diaz on his arse.

Nate Diaz

What is there left to write about the Stockton boy? If it wasn’t clear before the Masvidal fight, it is clear that Nate is sticking around the UFC as long as they offer him big money for seemingly hopeless fights. This is no more clear than the rumours that Nate will be next in line for a title shot if he is to be victorious on Saturday.

Diaz’s best chances of success are based on his deep gas tank and submission skills. While Edward’s isn’t about to put on a wrestling clinic ala Rory MacDonald, the Brit has never been submitted in his career and has sharpened his top game immensely over the years. Although five rounds certainly favours Diaz, he thrives in attritional warfare that requires himself to pull ahead around the mid-rounds.

Predicted Result: Edwards TKO Round 4

Stylistically, Edwards should wipe the floor with Diaz. As a Southpaw, the channel is wide open for Edwards to destroy Diaz’s legs. On the outside, Edwards can box up Diaz as the Brit’s angles will continue to frustrate Diaz’s ugly pressure. Edward’s gas tank is a real issue, though. There always seems to be a sharp decline in the output by the final rounds, however. Whether that is a mental boom or conditioning trouble, there is a clean loss of initiative. Despite Diaz’s deep gas tank, he thrives in attritional warfare that requires himself to pull ahead around the mid-rounds. Moreover, Edward’s always has the emergency back-up wrestling plan if he fails to piece together his striking on the night.

Result: Edwards def. Diaz // Decision (unanimous – 49-46, 49-46, 49-46)

Winner ✔️ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

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Demian Maia (28-10) vs Belal Muhammad (18-3)

Welterweight (170)

Demian Maia

At forty-three years old, and with a chin that has faded over the years, it is a miracle we still get to see Maia in the octagon. The simple truth is: Maia’s cardio doesn’t hold up anymore. While Maia’s striking isn’t as horrendous as reputed, he now lacks the hand speed or gas tank to rely on it long enough for the fight to end up on the mat.

If Maia is to be victorious at UFC 263, the Brazilian will have to find it in the first round when he is capable of explosive bursts. There is always a chance of the submission, especially if he latches onto Muhammad’s back. Unfortunately, the threat of sub is muted in 2021 when considering the leaps made to Muhammad’s submission defence and Maia’s physical decline.

Belal Muhammad

Thankfully recovered from the horrendous injury sustained against Leon Edwards, Muhammad returns to the octagon for the first time. A wonderful wrestler, Muhammad has made strides in the striking department as well. Muhammad’s swarming boxing combinations prevent fighters from moving off of the cage, while regular posturing for takedowns keep an opponent’s hands low. Eventually, after wearing down an opponent’s guard, Muhammad’s crisp left hook usually has a free route to the chin.

An excellent game-planner, there is little reason to believe that Muhammad would commit hard to his wrestling, however. With the deeper gas tank, crisper hands, and solid chin, Muhammad should be able to ride an early wave of pressure before breaking the old man down during the later rounds.

Predicted Result: Muhammad TKO Round 3

At forty-three years old, and with a chin that has faded over the years, it is a miracle we still get to see Maia in the octagon. The simple truth is: Maia’s cardio doesn’t hold up anymore. If Maia is to be victorious at UFC 263, the Brazilian will have to find it in the first round when he is capable of explosive bursts. An excellent game-planner, there is little reason to believe that Muhammad will commit to his stellar wrestling. Rather, Muhammad should ride on his deep gas tank, crisp boxing and solid chin to ride an early wave of pressure before breaking the old man down during the later rounds.

Result: Muhammad def. Maia // Decision (unanimous – 29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

Winner ✔️ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

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Paul Craig (14-4-1) vs Jamahal Hill (8-0)

Light Heavyweight (205)

Paul Craig

In the rarest of circumstances, a big lump of a Scotsman possesses the most incredible off the back submissions arsenal. Scarier yet for fellow 205-ers, Craig has tightened his striking over the past couple of years. Obviously, Craig’s striking is nowhere near a level that he can simply ride on it against the fringe ranked competitors at LHW, but it is certainly a weapon in his arsenal.

An aggressive, fast-paced striker who threatens with wrestling from the get-go, Craig is a surprisingly entertaining fighter to watch. While the Scot’s pace can fall off during the later rounds, he remains dangerous from the mat throughout. Against a young fighter with questionable TDD and grappling, Craig has a great chance to ugly wrestle his way to a submission or exhausting decision.

Jamahal Hill

There is a lot left to learn about the youngster. Undeniable, however, is Hill’s knockout power. With a three-inch reach advantage, Hill carries heavy hands that flow with surprising speed. In part, Hill’s fleet footwork benefits his boxing as his movement blurs opponents perception of a safe striking range.

The major question mark lays over Hill’s relatively untested ground game. Untested may be polite when speaking of a fighter who was taken down six times by Darko Stosic, but those numbers only began to ramp up after Hill allegedly broke his hand. The first takedown attempt could dictate the result of the fight.

Predicted Result: Craig Decision

There is a lot of question marks surrounding Hill. Undeniable, of course, is Hill’s knockout power. With a huge reach advantage over many at 205lbs, Hill also benefits from his heavy hands and fleet footwork. The major question mark lays over Hill’s relatively untested ground game. Taken down six times by Darko Stosic, arguably those numbers only ramped up after Hill broke his hand. Craig is an aggressive, fast-paced striker who threatens with wrestling from the get-go. While the Scot’s pace can fall off during the later rounds, he remains dangerous from the mat throughout. Against a young fighter with questionable TDD and grappling, Craig has a great chance to ugly wrestle his way to victory.

Result: Craig def. Hill // Technical Submission (armbar) Round 1 1:59

Winner ✔️ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

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UFC 263 Preliminary Card

Drew Dober (23-10) vs Brad Riddell (9-1)

Lightweight (155)

Drew Dober

Stupid, sexy Dober had to swallow a tough loss to Islam Makhachev last time out. Although Dober possesses solid TDD, he was simply overpowered by a very elite fighter. Dober certainly has wrestling aptitude, but the only fight he has excelled on the mat was against Scott Holtzman. Instead, Dober’s grinding wrestling is often just another look to boost his relentless pressure boxing. An early starter, Dober pours out huge pressure and a suffocating pace which prevents from opponents finding an opening. There are clear holes in Dober’s game that a strong counter-puncher can pick apart, however.

Brad Riddell

Tough as nails, Riddell is a late-round fighter who ramps up the volume to an unbearable heat. Largely spending the early rounds getting reads on opponents, Riddell bides his time to eventually set up hard counters down the stretch. The Kiwi’s chin holds up in large part due to his clear view of the fight, often anticipating incoming strikes and attempting to roll with it. While Riddell has been hit more often than expected during his UFC career, in large part, this is due to his opponent’s threat of wrestling. Dober represents the striker-first fighter that Riddell has faced in the UFC. Technically cleaner, Riddell’s greater variety on the feet with creative counter combinations will undoubtedly lead to a consistent uppercut catching Dober during a level change.

Predicted Result: Riddell Decision

An early starter, Dober pours out huge pressure and a suffocating pace which prevents opponents from finding an opening. It is Dober’s wrestling, or threat of, which will determine his success against Riddell. Often, Dober’s grinding wrestling is often just another look to boost his relentless pressure boxing. Technically cleaner, Riddell’s greater variety on the feet with creative counter combinations will undoubtedly lead to a consistent uppercut catching Dober during a level change. With both men tough as old boots, it’s difficult to see a knockout stoppage from either man.

Result: Riddell def. Dober // Decision (unanimous – 29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Eryk Anders (13-5) vs Darren Stewart (12-6)

Light Heavyweight (205)

Eryk Anders

Eryk Anders is pretty much finished as a prospect in the Middleweight division. The thirty-three-year-old has endured a stonkingly poor run since 2018. Moving up LHW seems to be the answer that Anders is searching for. Once perceived as an exciting brick s**thouse of a man who walked opponents down and broke them, Anders had been exposed as a one-dimensional, plodding grinder since the Lyoto Machida match-up. His size in the clinch results in a decent amount of success, but Anders inability to set a decent pace on the feet often leaves him being countered to the tune of his opponent. That was until the last time out against Stewart (before a stupid decision ended it in an NC). By upping his volume, Anders’ increased activity harked back to the ‘prospect Anders’ that fans were wild over. His natural physical advantages overwhelmed Stewart and nullified the Brit’s own physical advantages.

Darren Stewart

Big Darren Stewart could see himself developing into a strange Michael Bisping role over the coming years if he keeps sharpening his tools. Although thirty years old, Stewart has looked fantastic in his previous two. Snapping up a rapid first-round guillotine choke against the explosive striker, Maki Pitolo, and then dropping a VERY dubious split decision to 2020 breakout fighter, Kevin Holland, it is safe to say that Darren Stewart is a problem at 185. While not athletically as gifted as many in the organisation, he is a grinder who has recently perfected the transition between pressure boxing and roughing up opponents against the cage. Unfortunately, Stewart massively struggled in the first fight as he was unable to rely on his physical gifts to rag-doll his opponents. While changes will have been made to the approach, Stewart seems destined to come off losing all of their 50/50 exchanges.

Predicted Result: Anders Decision

Last time out against Stewart, Ander’s returned to the form that had fans excited a few years back. Upping his volume and utilising his natural physical advantages in the clinch, Anders overwhelmed Stewart. Unable to call upon his physicality to rag-doll Anders, Stewart seems destined to once again lose the 50/50 coin flips as the weaker physical specimen. Stewart is a durable grinder that Anders will struggle to break, however.

Result: Anders def. Stewart // Decision (unanimous – 29-28, 29-27, 29-27)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Lauren Murphy (14-4) vs Joanne Calderwood (15-5)

Women’s Flyweight (125)

Lauren Murphy

A one-dimensional fighter, Murphy seeks to grind opponents with her average boxing before securing long stretches of control time from the top. While Murphy is a work-horse who will continue to force the fight onto her own terms throughout the fifteen minutes, she lacks a Plan B. I must reiterate, Lauren Murphy epitomises the ‘eh’ factor of Women’s Flyweight.

Joanne Calderwood

Joanne Calderwood is WMMA’s sweetheart. Utilising her Muay Thai background, Calderwood excels in the octagon with an excellent array of kicks and a solid clinch game. Unfortunately for Calderwood, the Scotswoman often fails to adopt the correct gameplan. Often losing to grapplers who aren’t afraid of eating a punch, Calderwood’s lack of power leaves her powerless to hitting the mat. More often than not though, Calderwood drowns opponents in volume for fifteen minutes.

Predicted Result: Calderwood Decision

Murphy is a one-dimensional fighter that regularly fails to entertain. Either grinding opponents on the feet with awkward boxing or more commonly securing long stretches of control time on the mat, Murphy is a work-horse who fights on her own terms for three rounds. Calderwood, WMMA’s sweetheart, has an excellent array of kicks and a solid clinch game yet often fails to bring the correct gameplan to the octagon. Regularly losing to grapplers who aren’t afraid of eating a punch, Calderwood’s lack of power leaves her powerless to hitting the mat. More often than not though, Calderwood drowns opponents in volume for fifteen minutes.

Result: Murphy def. Calderwood // Decision (split – 28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

Winner ❌ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Hakeem Dawodu (12-1-1) vs Movsar Evloev (14-0)

Featherweight (145)

Hakeen Dawodu

A calculated Muay Thai fighter, Dawodu calls upon his chin regularly as he primes for his counters. Executing killer body kicks regularly, Dawodu aims to out-strike opponents based on significant power shots rather than volume. Despite Dawodu’s sharp, technical counter striking, he remains wide open for takedowns in the open and struggles to rise off his back.

Mosvar Evloev

Beautifully well-rounded in terms of technicals, Evloev is sadly nearing his peak in regards to athletic aptitude. A rugged chain wrestler who thrives in ugly fights, Evloev sets a hard pace that makes up for his smaller size. Additionally, solid boxing too can grab rounds on the scorecards, but the ‘take one to give one’ mindset is far too dangerous to adopt against Dawodu.

Predicted Result: Evloev Decision

Despite the lack of stoppages in the UFC, Dawodu is a sharp, technical counter striker with underrated power. Often called upon his chin to prime for counters, Dawodu out-strikes opponents with significant shots rather than volume. Killer body kicks find Dawodu great success but also leave him exposed to takedowns. Against, Evloev, it is a risky choice to take. The well-rounded chain wrestler sets a hard pace and thrives in ugly fights. Solid boxing with surprising snap keeps Evloev active in between grappling, but the ‘take one to give one’ mindset is dangerous to adopt against Dawodu.

Result: Evloev def. Dawodu // Decision (unanimous – 29-27, 29-27, 29-27)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Pannie Kianzad (14-5) vs Alexis Davis (20-10)

Women’s Bantamweight (135)

Pannie Kianzad

Three W’s in a row? Kianzad is burning hot after her torrid start to the UFC. Sharpening her boxing on the outside, Kianzad has also patched up her clinch work with effective dirty boxing. A lack of feints and robotic movement, however, allows opponents (i.e. Jessica Rose-Clark) to land hard counters. Kianzad’s strong left hook will catch Davis when she inevitably turtles down into her high guard.

Alexis Davis

Stopping a three-fight slide just a few months ago, the former Bantamweight challenger turned back the clocks against Sabina Mazo. Managing to stay threatening in a constantly evolving division, Davis dominates the pace of a fight through her technical chops. Late takedowns, low kicks and grinding clinch work all secure rounds on the cards.

Predicted Result: Kianzad Decision

Riding a three-fight rise, Kianzad is burning hot after her torrid start to the UFC. Sharpening her boxing on the outside, Kianzad has also patched up her clinch work with effective dirty boxing. A lack of feints and robotic movement, however, allows opponents (i.e. Jessica Rose-Clark) to land hard counters. Former Bantamweight challenger, Alexis Davis, looked like a fighter reborn against Sabina Mazo. Dominating fights based on savvy and technical superiority, Davis’ utilises late takedowns, low kicks and grinding clinch work to steal rounds on the cards.

Result: Kianzad def. Davis // Decision (unanimous – 29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Matt Frevola (8-2-1) vs Terrance McKinney (10-3)

Lightweight (155)

Matt Frevola

Matt Frevola is not afraid to eat some punishment. Solid across all areas, Frevola is a rugged fighter who adapts as the fight drags on. Targetting the body with kicks before shooting on their softened mid-rift, Frevola is a difficult fighter for opponents to predict in the octagon. While Frevola has been stopped early before, a knockout loss to Polo Reyes in a minute, he more regularly shrugs off huge damage.

Terrance McKinney

Matt Frevola is not afraid to eat some punishment. Solid across all areas, Frevola is a rugged fighter who adapts as the fight drags on. Targetting the body with kicks before shooting on their softened mid-rift, Frevola is a difficult fighter for opponents to predict in the octagon. While Frevola has been stopped early before, a knockout loss to Polo Reyes in a minute, he more regularly shrugs off huge damage.

Predicted Result: Frevola Submission Round 3

Solid across all areas, Frevola is a rugged, gritty fighter who ships a lot of punishment as he drags opponents into murky waters. Targetting the body with kicks before shooting on their softened mid-rift, Frevola is a difficult fighter for opponents to predict in the octagon. Short notice call-up, Terrance McKinney, is a high-amplitude striker who races into fights with flashy strikes to create confusion before scrambling for an opponent’s back. Adhering to the kill or be killed tag, McKinney’s explosive bursts leave him fatigued by the second round. While Frevola has been stopped early before, a knockout loss to Polo Reyes in a minute, he more regularly shrugs off huge damage.

Result: McKinney def. Frevola // KO (punches) Round 1 0:07

Winner ❌ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

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Steven Peterson (18-9) vs Chase Hooper (10-1-1)

Featherweight (145)

Steven Peterson

Ridiculously durable, aggressive on the feet and surprisingly competent submission grappler, Steven Peterson is a long underrated name in the UFC. While his work is often ugly to watch, Peterson’s solid TDD, stinging jab and vast experience must surely give the old vet the nod.

Chase Hooper

Hooper is an incredibly difficult fighter to back after his past couple of fights. Pushed by the UFC far too early in his career after riding unprecedented success, Hooper lacks any sort of striking game. There is a huge amount of guesswork whether Hooper will be able to get the fight to the mat, and even before then, if the twenty-one-year-old can limit the punishment sustained on the feet. Having said that, on the mat, his massive 6’1″ frame is a nightmare for opponents to hang with.

Predicted Result: Peterson Decision

Hooper is an incredibly difficult fighter to back after his past couple of fights. There is a huge amount of guesswork whether Hooper will be able to get the fight to the mat, and even before then, if the twenty-one-year-old can limit the punishment sustained on the feet. Of course, on the mat, Hooper’s huge 6’1″ frame is a nightmare for opponents to hang with. Old vet, Steven Peterson, is stylistic torture for Hooper, however. Ridiculously durable, aggressive on the feet and surprisingly competent submission grappler, Peterson should be able to keep the fight standing long enough to dominate every round.

Result: Peterson def. Hooper // Decision (unanimous – 29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Winner ✔️ // Method ✔️ // Round ✔️

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Carlos Felipe (10-1) vs Jake Collier (12-5)

Heavyweight (265)

Carlos Felipe

Despite his disgustingly padded record, Felipe has slowly begun to prove himself in the UFC. A straightforward jabber and low-kicker Heavyweight prototype, plodding for the full three rounds, Felipe’s chin and late-round output are decent qualities.

Jake Collier

In all fairness to Collier, the big man threw a huge volume against Gian Villante. Sadly, victories over Villante don’t exactly count for much these days. There are still questions whether Collier isn’t suffering from some form of physical or mental issues, after considering his terrifying body transformation.

Predicted Result: Felipe TKO Round 3

Despite his disgustingly padded record, Felipe has slowly begun to prove himself in the UFC. A straightforward jabber and low-kicker Heavyweight prototype, plodding for the full three rounds, Felipe’s chin and late-round output are decent qualities. Collier may have thrown a huge volume against Gian Villante yet victories over Villante don’t count for much these days.

Result: Felipe def. Collier // Decision (split – 28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

Winner ✔️ // Method ❌ // Round ❌

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Prediction Accuracy

UFC 263

Winner: 10/13

Method: 7/13

Round: 7/13

2021 MMA Season

Winner: 132/226

Method: 111/226

Round: 107/226

MMA Overall

Winner: 323/530

Method: 248/530

Round: 233/530

Takeaway comments: Italian Meatball runs headfirst into his ceiling once again.


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