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The preliminary card headliner comes in the Middleweight division, as Gerald ‘GM3’ Meerschaert takes on Dustin Stoltzfus. Originally, both were set to fight different opponents. Stoltzfus saw two different bookings go by the wayside, whereas Meerschaert was set to welcome Abusupiyan Magomedov to the UFC, but the Russian-German withdrew. Seeing an opportunity to book the two, the UFC did just that. Coming into this fight on a two-fight win streak, including a recent comeback victory over Makhmud Muradov, Meerschaert finds himself in a position to reclimb the Middleweight ranks. Meanwhile, Stoltzfus will hope that third time’s the charm. Having lost his first two inside the octagon, Stoltzfus will roll the dice against a tough opponent in Meerschaert. Prior to the losing streak, Stoltzfus had won ten straight.

Prediction

This is a tough go for Dustin Stoltzfus, who can’t afford to go 0-3 inside the octagon. Having seen two opponents more on par with him fall out, he is now tasked with fighting a seasoned veteran in Gerald Meerschaert. A dangerous grappler and submission artist, Meerschaert has made a living off off submitting foes. In fact, all eight of Meerchaert’s wins in the have come via submission. While Meerschaert’s durability has failed him sometimes, more often than not, he has proven that he can withstand any initial storm and comeback. As for Stoltzfus, he is mainly a wrestler with good grappling abilities. However, having fought two excellent grapplers in back-to-back fights, Stoltzfus has yet to showcase his abilities. Considering a third strong grappler in Meerschaert is in the wings, it should be interesting to see how Stoltzfus fares this time around. 

As for a prediction, I have Meerschaert winning. Durability aside, this is perhaps his most favorable fight since fighting Ryan Janes. Often an underdog or fighting a Russian, Meerschaert will get to showcase his superior grappling and dangerous submissions against someone who has struggled against fellow grapplers. While I don’t want to dismiss Stoltzfus, it’s hard to see how he fends off Meerschaert. So with that said, I predict that Meerschaert wins via submission.

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