A number of quality bouts have been revealed for upcoming UFC cards, and my thoughts on them are below.
Demian Maia vs. Anthony Rocco Martin, UFC on ESPN 3
Standout welterweights Demian Maia and Anthony Rocco Martin will fight at UFC on ESPN 3, taking place June 29 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Combate broke the news. Maia (26-9) is 20-9 in the UFC and is coming from a submission win over Lyman Good. Martin (16-4) is 8-4 in the UFC and has won four of his fights since moving up to welterweight. Martin is a fantastic fighter and could very well win this fight, but according to Maia’s degree of knowledge and the quality of his resistance over the years that he deserves to be the betting favorite here.
Paul Craig vs. Alonzo Menifield, UFC on ESPN 3
An intriguing light heavyweight bout between Paul Craig and Alonzo Menifield match at UFC on ESPN 3. Craig (11-3) is 3-3 at the UFC and is coming from a miracle submission win over Kennedy Nzechukwu. Menifield (8-0) is undefeated as an expert with all of his wins coming from stoppage, such as a brutal KO over Vinicius Moreira in his UFC debut. You can never completely count Craig out as he’s proven he can return and win late in the fight by submission, but on newspaper Menifield is the better athlete and he must be a massive favorite here.
Marlon Vera vs. Sean O’Malley, UFC 239
An exciting bantamweight bout between Marlon Vera and Sean O’Malley is scheduled for UFC 239, taking place June 6 in T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani broke the information. Vera (13-5-1) is 7-4 in the UFC and is coming from three straight endings over Frankie Saenz, Guido Cannetti and Wuliji Buren. O’Malley (10-0) is 2-0 in the UFC but has not competed in over a year because of a USADA suspension. O’Malley is a huge young prospect but Vera is fighting a high level at the moment and deserves to be the favorite here.
Cezar Ferreira vs. Martin Vettori, UFC Fight Night 155
Middleweights Cezar Ferreira and Marvin Vettori are set to battle at UFC Fight Night 155, taking place July 13 in an unannounced place in Sacramento, California. Combate broke the information. Ferreira (13-7) is 9-5 in the UFC and is coming from an upset decision reduction to Ian Heinisch. Vettori (12-4-1) has not fought in over a year due to some USADA suspension and also in his final fight dropped a split decision to Israel Adesanya. This is a near fight but given how close Vettori was to beating Adesanya, even with the long layoff I’d favor him slightly to get the win here over the aging and chinny Ferreira.
Beneil Dariush vs. Drakkar Klose, UFC on ESPN 3
Lightweights Beneil Dariush and Drakkar Klose may even meet at UFC Fight Night 155. Dariush (16-4-1) is 10-4-1 in the UFC and is coming from back-to-back wins over Drew Dober and Thiago Moises. Klose (10-1-1) is 4-1 in the UFC and is coming from consecutive wins over Bobby Green and Lando Vannata. This is an excellent matchup but I’d really favor Klose as stylistically it’s a great fight for him as he ought to be able to keep it standing and win the battle that is spectacular.
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