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An early contender for a performance bonus comes in the Lightweight division, as Jai Herbert takes on Kyle Nelson. A loser of three of the last four, with all three losses coming inside the distance, Herbert comes into this fight needing to right the ship. Nearly pulling off an upset win over Ilia Topuria in his most recent fight, Herbert returns to the O2 Arena hoping to get the job done this time around. Otherwise, his tenure with the UFC will likely meet an end. Meanwhile, Nelson comes into this fight in the same boat as Herbert. A loser of three of his last four, all of which he was stopped in, the Canadian moves back up to the Lightweight division seeking a spark. A much needed one, as another loss will likely result in Nelson’s walking papers.

The judges won’t be needed in this fight, as both men are proven finisher’s, who have yet to see the scorecards during their UFC tenure. Herbert is a striker, with excellent power. Having dropped and nearly upset Ilia Topuria in his last fight, Herbert has proven that he is very dangerous on the feet. However, there are some glaring flaws in the Brit’s game. Lacking durability, Herbert has been knocked out in three of his four losses. The other loss came via submission, which isn’t surprising given his lack of wrestling and grappling. Perhaps looking to exploit those vulnerabilities is Nelson, who is a striker, but has attempted to wrestle in the UFC. Attempted being the key word, as Nelson has only landed two takedowns at a 12% accuracy in four UFC fights. With power on the feet, Nelson has proven to be dangerous early in the fight. As the fight wanes, so does he and his durability however.

In what is bound to be an exciting fight for however long it last, I’m going to side with Herbert. Knowing Nelson lacks the necessary wrestling to give Herbert fits, this fight will play out on the feet. An advantage for Herbert, as his power and size should overwhelm Nelson – who might I add is coming up from Featherweight. With a two-inch height and six-inch reach advantage, expect Herbert to get the better of Nelson on the feet and eventually put the Canadian down via TKO.

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