Updated: Jun 10
Off the back of our third straight positive UFC card, we enter this PPV event up 10u on the nose! Shockingly we have a smaller fight card than last week with only 11 fights to name, but boy do we have some classics and live underdogs. I’m looking forward most to Zhang vs Joanna 2, as those two had a top 5 fight of all time their last go-round. If they can live up to half of that then we’re in for a treat. Legendary Valentina Shevchenko gets back in the octagon to bless us with her talents as she faces contender Taila Santos and Jiri Prochazka fights for the belt as his meteoric rise to the top hits its peak. We’ve got some star-studded matchups, lets get into the plays!
Joselyne Edwards vs. Romana Pascual (+140) | Pick: Pascual +140 (1u)
Ni Liang vs Silvana Gomez Juarez (-140) | Pick: Ni Liang +115 (0.5u)
Danaa Batgerel vs. Kyung Ho Kang (+115)
Danaa is coming into this week on short notice, accepting the fight just over a week ago after Saimon Oliveira had to cancel. He’s only just over two months out from getting knocked out by Chris Gutierrez and is eager to turn around his career. Kang is a horrible matchup for the Mongolian though. Decent on the feet, Kang’s true advantage lies in the wrestling and grappling on the ground. He should be able to take Danaa down at will and if not should be able to avoid the looping power shots coming his way to be competitive on the feet.
Pick: Kang +115 (1.5u)
Andre Fialho vs. Jake Matthews (+123) | Pick: Fialho -150 (1u)
Hayisaer Maheshate vs. Steve Garcia (-175)
Maheshate makes his UFC debut off of the contender series as a striker with proven knockout power throughout his brief career. He’s gotten wobbled in plenty of fights, but so has Garcia. Both have a tendency to get into brawls in their fights and leave gaps in their defense. Whether it’s Maheshate leaving his chin up when backing straight up or Garcia leaving room to be countered down the middle, these two have a tendency to not go the distance. One thing to note is that Garcia is 1-1 in the UFC and has fought just once in the past 30 months. I think the line is too big here, so I’ll sprinkle on the dog and expect a knockout.
Pick: Maheshate +145 (0.5u) & u2 rounds -135 (1u)
Seung Woo Choi vs. Joshua Culibao (+195) | Pick: Choi / Brendan Allen MLP -120 (1u)
Brendan Allen vs. Jakob Malkoun (+245) | Pick: Allen by Decision +250 (0.5u)
Jack Della Maddalena vs. Ramadan Emeev (+135) | Maddalena In R3 or Decision +120 (1u)
Zhang Weili vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk (+145)
If you’re a UFC fan, which I assume if you’re reading this article you are, and you haven’t watched these two’s first fight I implore you to go back and watch it. Five rounds of back and forth power and volume being thrown on the feet, it’s gone down as one of the best fights in MMA history. Both ladies were sent straight to the hospital after Zhang’s hand was raised and now they rematch two years later after Zhang’s two losses to Rose Namajunas. Dana White has come out and said the winner of this fight will have a title fight on their hands, so expect another fight.
Just like the first fight, expect this to stay on the feet and be a slugfest. Zhang has been able to implement a more balanced approach to her game, but leg kicks and expert boxing will be her calling card if she comes victorious. I don’t expect an early knockout for either fighter, as we very well could be headed to the judges again.
Pick: Zhang in R3 or Decision +110 (1u)
Harry How / Getty Images
Valentina Shevchenko vs. Taila Santos (+435) | Pick: Shevchenko / Zhang v. Joanna Fight to go Distance Parlay -150 (2u)
Jiri Prochazka vs. Glover Teixeira (+166) | Pick: Prochazka / Shevchenko MLP -142 (1u)
Mike Roche / Zulla MMA