The UFC continued to announce a range of fresh bouts for its upcoming cards. Here are the new matchups, together with my initial thoughts on these.
David Teymur vs. Charles Oliveira, UFC Fight Night 144
Lightweights David Teymur and Charles Oliveira will fight at UFC Fight Night 144, taking place February 2 at Centro de Forma????o Ol??mpica do Nordeste in Fortaleza, Brazil. Teymur (8-1) is 5-0 in the UFC and in his last excursion defeated Nik Lentz. He has had trouble getting competitions to fight him, as he is super dangerous but not rated in the top-15. Oliveira (25-8, 1 NC) is 13-8, 1 NC from the UFC and is coming off of a three-fight win series, including a submission win over Jim Miller in his final fight. As great as Oliveira is on the floor, this resembles the sort of matchup that’s kryptonite for him against a much-better striker in Teymur who also has exceptional takedown defense. For that reason, I’d actually favor Teymur inside this fight.
Junior Albini vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik, UFC Fight Night 144
Because of an injury to Dmitry Sosnovskiy, Junior Albini will now take on short-notice replacement Jarizinho Rozenstruik in UFC Fight Night 144. DWT broke the information. Albini (14-4) is 1-2 in the UFC and dropped to Aleksiy Oleinik through Ezekiel choke in his final fight. Rozenstruik (6-0) has won five of his fights by strikes except for his one look in RIZIN, which he won a determination in. Most bettors will look to fade Albini, however it’s hard to say if this is the right place to fade him as Rozenstruik is very unproven against a nice level of competition.
Rani Yahya vs. Ricky Simon, UFC 234
Bantamweights Rani Yahya and Ricky Simon are set to battle UFC 234, occurring February 10 at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia. Combate broke the news. Yahya (26-9, 1 NC) is 11-3, 1 NC in the UFC and has won seven of the last eight fights overall. He is a very underrated fighter and using a win here in case land a top-10 opponent. Simon (14-1) is 2-0 at the UFC and is riding a seven-fight win series in general. Yahya has all the expertise but Simon has plenty of upside down and I’d rather go with the fighter in this spot.
Sam Alvey vs. Gadzhimurad Antigulov, UFC Fight Night 145
Light heavyweight action between Sam Alvey and Gadzhimurad Antigulov will happen at UFC Fight Night 145, on February 23 in O2 Arena in Prague, Czech Republic. Igor Lazorin broke the news. Alvey (33-11, 1 NC) is 10-6 at the UFC and was recently knocked out by Antonio Rogerio Nogueria. Antigulov (20-5) is 2-1 in the UFC but endured a KO loss to Ion Cutelaba in his last struggle. This should be a true banger of a fight but I need to fade Alvey in this spot and proceed with Antigulov, although I’m expecting a close line in any event.
Cezar Ferreira vs. Tom Breese, UFC Fight Night 147
Because of an injury to Alessio di Chirico, Cezar Ferreira has awakened to fight Tom Breese in UFC Fight Night 147, which takes place March 16 at the O2 Arena in London, England. Ferreira (13-7) is 9-5 overall in the UFC but is coming off of a disappointing conclusion loss to Ian Heinisch. Breese (11-1) is 4-1 in the UFC and blasted Dan Kelly in his UFC middleweight debut. Ferreira is a good fighter but I don’t trust his chin against a powerful puncher like Breese, that I expect to be heavily preferred within his home country.
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