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The preliminary card headliner comes in the Welterweight division, as Alex Morono takes on Matthew Semelsberger. A winner of three straight and seven of the last nine fights, Morono has quietly been climbing the Welterweight totem. Already six years into his UFC career, Morono has won ten times inside the octagon. Even with a knockout victory over Donald Cerrone on the resume, Morono is still searching for some respect and notoriety. Meanwhile, Semelsberger has been excellent since debuting in the UFC in late 2020. Winning four of five fights inside the octagon, Semelsberger has positioned himself in a fight against an opponent teetering on cracking the division’s top fifteen.
This should be a fun scrap that may even have implications on the rankings. Morono is a striker, who has a gas tank to match his high output. Landing 5.21 significant strikes, which ranks ninth all-time in the Welterweight division, Morono has often out landed his opponents. In fact, of Morono’s fifteen UFC fights, only twice has an opponent landed more significant strikes than him. The problems that Morono has often had, is against wrestlers and superior grapplers. Given Semelsberger is neither of those, expect the majority of this fight to take place on the feet. An area where Semelsberger has excelled. With good cardio, output and durability, Semelsberger can go a hard fifteen. However, boasting power too, Semelsberger has laid waste to two opponents in the UFC in sixteen seconds or less.
In a fight that could end on the dime or go the full fifteen, I’m going to side with Morono. A forgotten fighter in this Welterweight division, Morono has been on a tear of late. Always active on the feet and with a good gas tank, I believe we should be in store for an action packed fight. Yet, with Morono having some wrestling in his pocket, there is a chance that he could mix in a round defining takedown or two. While I’m not entirely banking on that, it’s not something that is out of the realm of possibility. Especially considering Semelsberger just got taken down four times in his last fight. So with that said, I predict Morono to win via decision.