The UFC has been extremely busy over the last week, announcing several new bouts for upcoming fight cards. One of these cards is UFC 236, that takes place April 13 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. Check out my thoughts on the main event between Max Holloway and Dustin Poirier here, and also my ideas on the other newly-announced bouts are below.
Eryk Anders vs. Khalil Rountree, UFC 236
Added to UFC 236 is a fascinating light heavyweight bout between Eryk Anders and Khalil Rountree. Anders (11-3) is only 3-3 from the UFC and is coming off of a decision loss to Elias Theodorou. He’s chosen to make the move up to light heavyweight permanently rather than cutting all that burden should help . Rountree (7-3, 1 NC) is 3-3, 1 NC from the UFC and is coming from a KO loss to Johnny Walker. While Rountree has more experience fighting as a light hearted and is a proven knockout artist, I still believe in Anders and believe he has more potential than what he’s shown in the UFC up to now. The opening line ought to be close to a Pick ‘em, but my early lean is towards Anders.
Paige VanZant vs. Poliana Botelho, UFC 236
Women’s flyweights Paige VanZant and Poliana Botelho will clash at this function. VanZant (8-4) is currently 5-3 in the UFC and is coming from a submission win over Rachael Ostovich. Botelho (7-2) is 2-1 at the UFC but lost by entry to Cynthia Calvillo in her last struggle. I’d definitely favor VanZant for the win and based on her popularity I would not be shocked if the line was massively skewed in her favor.
Wilson Reis vs. Alexandre Pantoja, UFC 236
At a rare flyweight struggle, Wilson Reis takes on Alexandre Pantoja. Reis (23-9) is 7-5 in the UFC and defeated Ben Nguyen by decision in his final bout. Pantoja (20-3) is 4-1 in the UFC and is coming off of two straight wins over Brandon Moreno and Ulka Sasaki. Reis is a good veteran but all the upside here is with Pantoja and that I expect him to be a tiny popular at open. Expect the loser of this fight to be released as the UFC cuts virtually every flyweight coming off of a loss.
Ovince Saint-Preux vs. Nikita Krylov, UFC 236
In a rematch nobody asked for, Ovince Saint-Preux takes on Nikita Krylov at a light heavyweight bout. St-Preux (23-12) is 11-7 at the UFC and is coming from a decision loss to Dominick Reyes. He is a gatekeeper at 205lbs and is no more a real title contender. Krylov (24-6) is 6-4 at the UFC and has been submitted by Jan Blachowicz in his final bout. OSP and Krylov formerly fulfilled at UFC 171 at 2014, with OSP winning by entry. I am not exactly certain why the UFC felt this rematch was necessary, but given how their initial battle went and how awful Krylov’s submission defense is, I would favor OSP to overcome him again.
Montel Jackson vs. Andre Soukhamthath, UFC 236
And finally, bantamweights Montel Jackson and Andre Soukhamthath match. Jackson (7-1) lost a decision to Ricky Simon in his UFC debut but bounced back well with a submission win over Brian Kelleher. Soukhamthath (13-6) is just 2-3 in the UFC but beat Jonathan Martinez by decision in his final struggle. Soukhamthath is too inconsistent to trust, and that I expect Jackson to be preferred here.
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