For the eight consecutive week, the UFC is back in action. Headlining the event, is a Welterweight contest between two of the most dynamic fighters in the UFC. If you like crazy roundhouse kicks or the usage of the cage to create offense, then you’re in store for a doozy. Thompson, is coming off a controversial defeat to Darren Till. The media, including me saw it for Thompson. However, in Till’s hometown, the judges saw it for the Brit. As for Pettis, the former UFC Lightweight Champion is moving up to Welterweight. He’s coming off an epic fight against Tony Ferguson, which saw him close to snatching victory before suffering an injury that halted him from fighting back. Now, Pettis seeks a rebirth in his career, at Welterweight.
UFC Fight Night 148 (ESPN+ 6) Main Card (8 p.m. ET):
170 lbs.: Stephen Thompson vs. Anthony Pettis – This fight has potential to see some crazy mixed martial art techniques. I’m talking, levitating twenty kick combos and such. Kidding aside, this is going to be a fun one. The fact is though, while Pettis is healthier at Welterweight, he is smaller and outweighed by foe Stephen Thompson. Given Thompson’s recent falters, particularly leaving fights up the judges, I expect him to be a little more aggressive than usually. More body kicks and volume from Wonderboy, leading to a fourth round finish is what I predict in this fun main event.
265 lbs.: Curtis Blaydes vs. Justin Willis – If Willis offered fight ending power, he’d have a real shot in this fight. However, he doesn’t and Blaydes is going to dictate where this fight goes. I expect Blaydes to use his wrestling though, to tire and perhaps finish Willis via his vicious ground-and-pound. Matter of fact, I’ll go with that. Blaydes via TKO.
155 lbs.: John Makdessi vs. Jesus Pinedo – Makdessi should outpoint the short notice foe Pinedo via decision
125 lbs.: Deiveson Figueiredo vs. Jussier Formiga – Interesting fight. Formiga is one of the very best Flyweights in the world, yet he has yet to fight for a UFC title. Every title eliminator, he has faltered. This particular fight he goes up against a very athletically superior athlete in Figueiredo. And as long as Figueiredo doesn’t engage in any grappling, he should best Formiga on the feet. Hell, he could even knock out Formiga. But, I’ll just go with Figueiredo to win via decision.
145 lbs.: Luis Pena vs. Steven Peterson – Pena should win this, but he looked dreadful in his last fight. Peterson isn’t exactly a world beater in any department , but he’s durable and scrappy. Two ingredients in which I feel aide him in a sloppy split decision victory.
125 lbs.: J.J. Aldrich vs. Maycee Barber – Interesting fight. Aldrich is a technical striker, who is patient in her approach. Barber is more dynamic and well rounded. While Aldrich could outpoint Barber, her lack of finishing power leaves this fight open for Barber to bust up Aldrich with kicks or elbows. So with that, I have Barber winning via decision.
UFC Fight Night 148 (ESPN+ 6) Prelims (5 p.m. ET):
145 lbs.: Bryce Mitchell vs. Bobby Moffett – I was very impressed with Moffett in his last fight against Chas Skelly. He fought out of a lot disadvantageous positions and turned them into superior one’s. Also, Moffett’s pace, cardio and submission prowess are all on point. So with that, I have Moffett winning via decision.
135 lbs.: Frankie Saenz vs. Marlon Vera – Tough fight to call. On one end, Vera is striker, who is the taller man, as well as has a big reach advantage. On the other end, Saenz is solid wrestler, who embraces the grinding victories. Now, Vera could very well light up Saenz on the feet, but something tells me Saenz puts Vera on the cage and grinds him down. So with that, I have Saenz winning via decision.
125 lbs.: Alexis Davis vs. Jennifer Maia – This is a toss-up, but I have Davis winning. In what should be a kickboxing match, Davis offers slight more volume than Maia. I could see Davis mix in a well timed takedown too, ensuring her a round or two. So with that, I have Davis winning via decision.
115 lbs.: Angela Hill vs. Randa Markos – This is another a toss-up, but I favor Markos due to her octagon control. Both will have their moments, but it’s the forward pressure of Markos that award her the split decision nod.
135 lbs.: Chris Gutierrez vs. Ryan MacDonald – Ehh, Gutierrez via knockout.
125 lbs.: Jordan Espinosa vs. Eric Shelton: No clue who Espinosa is, but Shelton is a solid Flyweight who is two split decision defeats flipped from being 4-1 in the UFC. Despite early issues with wrestling, Shelton has shored up that weakness and looks primed to make a run. So with that, I have Shelton via decision.