UFC Prague (UFC Fight Night 145) is set to take place February 23 at The O2 Arena at the capital city of the Czech Republic. The main event of the card is that a light heavyweight bout between Thiago Santos and Jan Blachowicz, and now the UFC is beginning to fill out the card by announcing each one of the preliminary bouts. Four brand new prelims have been revealed for the card (along with people mention in previous posts here), and here are my thoughts on the new bouts in the current MMA odds and ends.
Veronica Macedo vs. Gillian Robertson, UFC Fight Night 145
The first new bout of course is that a women’s flyweight matchup involving Veronica Macedo and Gillian Robertson. Nolan King of all FloCombat broke the brand new. Macedo (5-2-1) is 0-2 at the UFC but set up a spirited effort in a decision loss to Andrea Lee that won her a share of”Fight of the Night.” Robertson (5-3) is 2-1 in the UFC, with all of her struggles end in entry win or lose. Both women are in dire need of a success, and this battle could go either way. I’d slightly lean towards Robertson since she’s fought a higher level of competition, but it’s close.
Carlo Pedersoli Jr. vs. Dwight Grant, UFC Fight Night 145
Then we have a welterweight bout between Carlo Pedersoli Jr. and Dwight Grant. Sherdog broke the information. Pedersoli Jr. (11-2) opened his UFC career using a split decision win over Brad Scott but suffered a quick KO loss to Alex Oliveira his last time out. Grant (8-2) is coming from a split decision loss to Zak Ottow in his final fight. Both guys have a lot to prove but I think Pedersoli Jr. is a much better fighter based on what we’ve observed in the UFC and Cage Warriors and I would favor him here.
Magomed Ankalaev vs. Klidson Farias de Abreu, UFC Fight Night 145
After a couple other competitions fell through, Magomed Ankalaev will go back to the Octagon against UFC newcomer Klidson Farias de Abreu. Ankalaev (9-1) endured a devastating submission loss to Paul Craig in his UFC debut but bounced back nicely with a TKO win over Marcin Prachnio in his final struggle. Abreu (14-2) is riding a six-fight win streak into this contest and all 16 of his wins have finished within the space. I would not feel comfortable laying huge juice on Ankalaev after what happened in the Craig struggle, but on paper that he must have the benefit in this one. With that said, if Abreu is a massive underdog like Craig was, maybe he could be worth taking a flier on.
Damir Ismagulov vs. Joel Alvarez, UFC Fight Night 145
And added into the card is a welterweight bout between Damir Ismagulov and Joel Alvarez. MMADNA broke the information. Ismagulov (17-2) is riding a 12-fight win streak and won a decision over Alex Gorgees in his UFC debut. Alvarez (15-1) is a veteran of the Spanish regional scene and has finished all 15 of his professional victories. Alvarez looks like a solid potential but Ismagulov is about a whole other level and that I would peg him as a big favorite to win this battle.
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