A number of quality bouts are revealed for upcoming UFC cards, and my thoughts on these 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 from 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 could very well win this fight, but according to Maia’s level 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 meet at UFC on ESPN 3. Craig (11-3) is 3-3 at the UFC and is coming off of a miracle submission win over Kennedy Nzechukwu. Menifield (8-0) is undefeated as a pro with all his wins coming by stoppage, such as a brutal KO over Vinicius Moreira in his UFC debut. You can never completely count Craig outside as he’s proven he can return and win late in the fight by entry, 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 intriguing bantamweight bout between Marlon Vera and Sean O’Malley is scheduled for UFC 239, taking place June 6 at 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 finishes over Frankie Saenz, Guido Cannetti and Wuliji Buren. O’Malley (10-0) is 2-0 at the UFC but hasn’t competed in more than a year due to some 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, occurring July 13 in an unannounced place in Sacramento, California. Combate broke the news. Ferreira (13-7) is 9-5 in the UFC and is coming from an upset decision loss 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. That is a near fight but given how close Vettori was to beating Adesanya, in spite of the long layoff I would favor him slightly to get the win over the aging and chinny Ferreira.
Beneil Dariush vs. Drakkar Klose, UFC on ESPN 3
Lightweights Beneil Dariush and Drakkar Klose may also 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 at the UFC and is coming from successive wins over Bobby Green and Lando Vannata. This is a quality matchup but I would really favor Klose as stylistically it’s a good fight for him because he should have the ability to keep it standing and acquire the battle that is spectacular.
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