For the fourth consecutive week, the UFC is back in action. Sacramento plays host to an intriguing card that features the return of Urijah Faber, as well as an all important Women’s Bantamweight headliner. The two headliners come in the form of an undefeated rising star in Aspen Ladd and the former UFC Women’s Featherweight Champion Germaine de Randamie. With Amanda Nunes gunning for a rematch with Cyborg, perhaps one of these headliners make a statement that grabs her attention.
UFC Fight Night 155 Main Card on ESPN+ (8 p.m. ET):
135 lbs.: Germaine de Randamie vs. Aspen Ladd – I had Aspen Ladd initially, as she has the skills and toughness necessary to contend for the belt. Her only problem and it’s why I’m switching my pick, is her brutal weight cut. The way she looked yesterday is extremely concerning. Add in the fact that this is a five round fight against a durable and tough former champion in Germaine de Randamie.
I expect a fun fight early, but as the rounds wane, so does Ladd’s cardio. Only toughness keeps her afloat, in the later rounds. However, in the end Germaine de Randamie can crack and in the fourth or fifth round, she ends the fight via TKO.
135 lbs.: Urijah Faber vs. Ricky Simon – I’m super high on Ricky Simon, but his last fight against Rani Yahya opened the possibility that Urijah Faber may have a real shot here. I say that because Yayha oddly outstruck and hurt Simon on the feet. Now, Faber isn’t an offensive juggernaut, but maybe this time off has changed his approach. Either way, I can’t go against the California kid in his return. So with that, I have Faber winning via split decision.
145 lbs.: Mirsad Bektic vs. Josh Emmett – Fun fight. While Mirsad Bektic has all the skills to be a world champion, something irks me about this fight. Perhaps it’s because Josh Emmett consistently throws bombs. I mean, he’s the definition of a head hunter and he’s got legitimate knockout power. While Bektic is tough, it’s hard for me to believe the dude who got knocked out by Elkins is ready for power like this. Maybe he is, but for now, I have Emmett winning via KO.
185 lbs.: Karl Roberson vs. Wellington Turman – Honestly, Karl Roberson by whatever he wants. Usually that’s a knockout, so let’s go with that.
185 lbs.: Cezar Ferreira vs. Marvin Vettori – There’s a possibility that Marvin Vettori keeps this on the feet and starches Ferreira, but there’s a bigger possibility that Ferreira rag-dolls Vettori to the ground and controls him for the majority of the fight. I’ll go with the latter, and say Ferreira wins via decision.
UFC Fight Night 155 Prelims on ESPN+ (5 p.m. ET):
205 lbs.: Mike Rodriguez vs. John Allan – Add another knockout win to Mike Rodriguez’s resume.
145 lbs.: Andre Fili vs. Sheymon Moraes – This fight should be on the main card. Sheymon Moraes can absolutely crack. Andre Fili embraces the brawl. Put those two ingredients together and you’ve got a fun scrap. As for a prediction, I’m going with Fili. While there’s a good chance his defensive liabilities and Moraes power end his night, I’m in the belief that he survives the initial storm and picks apart the Brazilian with his volume striking. So with that, I’ve got Fili winning via decision.
135 lbs.: Nicco Montano vs. Julianna Pena – Both fighters have been out for quite some time. Nicco Montana has dealt with injuries and who know’s what, while Julianna Pena gave birth to her first child. As for the fight, Pena should take this. Montana doesn’t have the power or precision on the feet to make a difference. Meanwhile, Pena is a physically strong wrestler. Once she secures a takedown, her top control is suffocating. Throw in a solid gas tank and Pena rolls here. So with that, I have Pena winning via submission.
145 lbs.: Darren Elkins vs. Ryan Hall – This is a tough fight to call, but I’m going with Ryan Hall. I believe Darren Elkins is the better all around fighter, but Hall’s ridiculous submission game and ability to thwart danger on the feet has me edging him. Albeit boring, Hall has demonstrated a solely leg strike attack from the outside. If it worked against Gray Maynard, I don’t see why it wouldn’t against Elkins. So with that, I have Hall winning via decision.
135 lbs.: Jonathan Martinez vs. Liu Pingyuan – If Jonathan Martinez worked on his takedown defense, he probably wins this fight. However, going based on his recent fights and Liu Pingyuan’s aggressive nature, I could see a scenario where a takedown wins a close round. That favors Pingyuan. So with that, I have Pingyuan extending his winning streak to ten with a decision victory.
115 lbs.: Livinha Souza vs. Brianna Van Buren – I was pumped when Livinha Souza debuted in the UFC. With her size and power, she definitely can buzzsaw through the division. The only problem is, her gas tank needs refining. If you can survive the initial firestorm, there’s a possibility she’s gasses. Brianna Van Buren is at a size and reach disadvantage, but she’s a damn good wrestler. I believe she can grind down Souza, and also surprise the Brazilian on the feet with her quick hands. In the end, I have Van Buren winning via decision.
135 lbs.: Benito Lopez vs. Vince Morales – This should be a wild one, as Benito Lopez is absolutely overly aggressive. It makes for an entertaining scrap, but I’ll go with the more technical Vince Morales to outpoint Lopez via decision.