Quite a few quality bouts have been shown 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, occurring 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 at the UFC and has won all four of his fights since moving up to welterweight. Martin is an excellent fighter and may very well win this fight, but based on Maia’s degree of knowledge and the quality of his opposition over the years 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 meet at UFC on ESPN 3. Craig (11-3) is 3-3 in the UFC and is coming from a miracle submission win over Kennedy Nzechukwu. Menifield (8-0) is undefeated as an expert with all his wins coming by stoppage, such as a brutal KO over Vinicius Moreira in his UFC debut. You can never fully count Craig out as he’s proven he can come back and win in the struggle by entry, but on newspaper Menifield is the better athlete and he must be a huge 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 at 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 hasn’t competed in more than a year due to some USADA suspension. O’Malley is a huge young potential but Vera is fighting at a high level right now 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 fight at UFC Fight Night 155, taking place July 13 at an unannounced place in Sacramento, California. Combate broke the news. Ferreira (13-7) is 9-5 from the UFC and is coming off of an upset decision reduction to Ian Heinisch. Vettori (12-4-1) hasn’t fought in over a year because of a USADA suspension and 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 would 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 also fulfill at UFC Fight Night 155. Dariush (16-4-1) is 10-4-1 in the UFC and is coming off of back-to-back wins over Drew Dober and Thiago Moises. Klose (10-1-1) is 4-1 in the UFC and is coming off of successive wins over Bobby Green and Lando Vannata. This really is a quality matchup but I’d really favor Klose as stylistically it is a great fight for him as he should be able to keep it standing and also win the striking battle.
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