We’re back with another preview that is covering a lot of close fights this weekend. Again, the heavyweights headline the card with Alistair Overeem taking on Augusto Sakai in a six-fight main card!
With a slight edge physically, I think Alistair will try to keep his distance and tactically pick his shots whilst coming in and out of the pocket. Those heavy hands of the Englishman will be the difference in this fight, despite Sakai holding an impressive 15-1 record. Sakai take a lot of punishment, with over 6.5 significant strikes being absorbed per minute by the Brazilian and I think one of those powerful strikes from Overeem will stop the fight early. At 6/5 to win by TKO/KO, Overeem is definitely a for sure bet to put into an acca.
Heavyweights Ovince St. Preux and Alonzo Menifield collide in what will be a fight that will end early that is for sure. As mentioned in previous predictions, we know that St. Preux can finish fights in a variety of methods, but he faces a tough opponent in Menifield. The latter’s only defeat came in his most recent outing, where he was on the wrong end of the judge’s scorecards against Devin Clark. With that said, 8 of Menifield’s 9 wins have come via TKO/KO, where I’m sure he will end this fight in similar fashion. At 8/11 to win, a big lump sum on a double involving Alonzo and Alistair could be interesting.
A close fight is up next in the form of the women’s bantamweight bout, between Sijara Eubanks and Karol Rosa. Most of their fights have gone the distance, but these two women have shown that they can produce early finishes. Eubanks will look to use her versatility on the ground to control the fight and I reckon she will, with a 66% success rate when it comes to takedowns. At 11/10 to win outright, Eubanks is worthy of being backed considerably.
Welterweights Michel Pereira and Zelim Imadaev square up in what is to be an interesting fight. The Russian has lost his two fights within the UFC, along with Pereira losing his two previous fights in the octagon, making this a bout where both fighters have everything to fight for. The Brazilian is in desperate need to redeem himself after being disqualified for an illegal knee on Diego Sanchez, which I believe he can rectify and overcome. Both fighters are at 10/11, so it is evident that this fight can go either way, but I’m pipping the Brazilian to come out on top.
The main card starts off with lightweights Thiago Moises and Jalin Turner going toe-to-toe. The latter is known for his early finishes, with an average fight time of just over six minutes. However, Moises is an all-round fighter, that can control the tempo if he’s given the privilege to do so. I think the Brazilian will be able to do this effortlessly and can finish the fight how he sees fit. At 10/17, Moises is the for-sure bet of the night.