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A pair of ranked fighters are set to clash in a pivotal fight in the Bantamweight division, as Ricky Simon takes on Jack Shore. A winner of four straight, two of which have been halted inside the distance, Simon is coming into his own. With several big names on resume like Merab Dvalishvili, Montel Jackson, Rani Yayha, Ray Borg and Raphael Assunacao, it’s time to start viewing Simon as a legit contender. Meanwhile, undefeated and newly ranked, Shore will look to continue his reign over the Bantamweight division. Having already won five fights inside the octagon, with the last being over Timur Valiev, Shore is destined to prove that he will be a contender in short order.

An excellent fight, this has the makings to be a war of nutrition. Simon is an absolute workhorse, who is amongst the best wrestlers in the division. All-time I might add, as Simon ranks second in the Bantamweight division in takedowns landed at thirty-five. On the feet, Simon can hold his own with pressure and a jab, but it’s no secret that he utilizes his striking to get inside and take foes down. Backed by endless cardio, Simon simply never slows down. Ready to embrace the pace, is Shore. Primarily a grappler, Shore has already landed eighteen takedowns in only five fights. Excellent in top control, Shore looks to soften opponents up with ground-and-pound to open up a submission. Given eight of sixteen wins have come via submission, it’s a sound method. No slouch on the feet, Shore is technical and precise. In fact, so precise, that he ranks second all-time in the Bantamweight division in significant strike accuracy at 59.9%.

A tough fight to predict, I’m leaning towards Shore. Given his grappling and ability to pop back up when taken down, I’m confident that Simon won’t be able to rack up ample control time to steal rounds. On the feet, Shore has a clear advantage. He’s the more comfortable striker, as well as active and accurate. If the Welshman can manage to keep this fight standing for the majority of the round, he should be able to sway the rounds in his favor. So with that said, I predict that Shore will win via decision.

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