UFC

[9-6] +3.04
3* [2-1] +2.39

GRADED:

1/16/21
3*Dusko Todorovic -140 L Closing Line: -175
1*Max Holloway -180 W Closing Line: -160
1*Max Holloway -155 W

1/20/21
1*Mike Davis -180 W Closing Line: -165
1*Tom Breese -122 L Closing Line: -155
1*Tyson Nam -130 L Closing Line: -125
1*Michael Chiesa by Submission +250 L Closing Line: +250

1/23/21
3*Makhmud Muradov +103 W Closing Line: -220
2*Amir Albazi +120 W Closing Line: -120
1*Amir Albazi +105 W
2*Julianna Pena +110 W Closing Line: +100
1*Amanda Ribas -253 L Closing Line: -345
0.5*Amanda Ribas by Submission +275 L Closing Line: +165
1*Under 2.5 Michael Chandler/Dan Hooker -110 W Closing Line: -110
1*Under 2.5 McGregor/Poirier -116 W Closing Line: -190
Hit Chandler +350 KO for 0.25* but only posted it in BB thread. Wont count it

PENDING:

2/6/21
3*Diego Ferreira -110
2*Alexander Volkov -160
2*Alex da Silva -115
1.25*Frankie Edgar +350
0.25*Frankie Edgar by decision +500

1*Danilo Marques +205
1*Alexandre Pantoja -125
1*Timur Valiev -150

2/13/21
1*Gabe Green +103
2*Gabe Green -110
1*Maycee Barber +159
1*Kelvin Gastelum -219
1*Gillian Robertson +153
1*Anthony Hernandez +300

2/20/21
2*Jamall Emmers -155
1*Jai Herbert +130
1*Jai Herbert +165
1.5*Mike Trizano +100
1*John Castaneda +120
1*Julian Erosa +120

2/27/21
2*Dominick Reyes -110

3/6/21
3*Amanda Lemos -104
2*Thiago Santos +232
2*Kyler Phillips +169
2*Over 3.5 Rds Petr Yan/Aljamain Sterling -105
1*Parlay (Jan Blachowicz +225 & Islam Makhachev -310) +330
1*Casey Kenney -108

3/13/21

3/20/21
2*Derek Brunson +145

3/27/21
2*Stipe Miocic +140
How about a write-up on the Johnson/Guida fight. I love Johnson -210. In my review of the fight I was shocked to see Johnson's record was 16-14. But if you review his opponents most if not all were as tough as they come. Age 34 to 39, height 5'10 to 5'7, reach I'm sure favors Johnson also. We know Guida will try and smother Johnson and take him down. Will it be effective or work? I think Johnson is athletic enough and strong enough to counter Guida's strategy? What do you think?
 
How about a write-up on the Johnson/Guida fight. I love Johnson -210. In my review of the fight I was shocked to see Johnson's record was 16-14. But if you review his opponents most if not all were as tough as they come. Age 34 to 39, height 5'10 to 5'7, reach I'm sure favors Johnson also. We know Guida will try and smother Johnson and take him down. Will it be effective or work? I think Johnson is athletic enough and strong enough to counter Guida's strategy? What do you think?
Yah Johnson has a 3" reach advantage. I really don't have a feel on that fight. I think you're right in that everyone knows what Guida wants to do. He is so consistent with his approach but the skills and talent just aren't there. He's a guy that outhustles opponents to wins. Johnson on the other hand is incredibly talented imo. His hand speed I think is top notch in the division. He's also the only guy to ever really hurt Khabib. I just find him totally unpredictable. He just seems to have so many mental lapses and finds ways to lose. I don't get how you can beat Poirier and Barboza but lose to Darren Elkins and Steven Ray. He was piecing up Gaethje, Elkins, Thiago Moises and found a way to let them back in the fight and get finished. It makes you wonder if he just struggles mentally with adversity because when the going is good he looks amazing. But I've just seen the tides turn so drastically and so quickly numerous times in his fights. In summary, his fights just don't make sense to me.

Skill for skill, I am 100% behind your wager and feel on the fight. Johnsons 79% takedown defense is also a huge plus in this matchup. If it stays on the feet you'd have to think Guida gets shredded. I just can't trust Johnson to seal the deal. Especially against a guy like Guida who is just gonna keep hanging around and pestering all fight. I lean Johnson but will pass. Be rooting for you
 
[9-6] +3.04
3* [2-1] +2.39

GRADED:

1/16/21
3*Dusko Todorovic -140 L Closing Line: -175
1*Max Holloway -180 W Closing Line: -160
1*Max Holloway -155 W

1/20/21
1*Mike Davis -180 W Closing Line: -165
1*Tom Breese -122 L Closing Line: -155
1*Tyson Nam -130 L Closing Line: -125
1*Michael Chiesa by Submission +250 L Closing Line: +250

1/23/21
3*Makhmud Muradov +103 W Closing Line: -220
2*Amir Albazi +120 W Closing Line: -120
1*Amir Albazi +105 W
2*Julianna Pena +110 W Closing Line: +100
1*Amanda Ribas -253 L Closing Line: -345
0.5*Amanda Ribas by Submission +275 L Closing Line: +165
1*Under 2.5 Michael Chandler/Dan Hooker -110 W Closing Line: -110
1*Under 2.5 McGregor/Poirier -116 W Closing Line: -190
Hit Chandler +350 KO for 0.25* but only posted it in BB thread. Wont count it

PENDING:

2/6/21
3*Diego Ferreira -110
2*Alexander Volkov -160
2*Under 1.5 Rds Devonte Smith/Justin Jaynes -155
1.25*Frankie Edgar +350
0.25*Frankie Edgar by decision +500
1*Seung Woo Choi +205
1*Danilo Marques +205
1*Alexandre Pantoja -125

2/13/21
1*Gabe Green +103
2*Gabe Green -110
1*Maycee Barber +159
1*Kelvin Gastelum -219
1*Gillian Robertson +153
1*Anthony Hernandez +300

2/20/21
2*Jamall Emmers -155
1*Jai Herbert +130
1*Jai Herbert +165
1.5*Mike Trizano +100
1*John Castaneda +120
1*Julian Erosa +120

2/27/21
2*Dominick Reyes -110

3/6/21
3*Amanda Lemos -104
2*Thiago Santos +232
2*Kyler Phillips +169
2*Over 3.5 Rds Petr Yan/Aljamain Sterling -105
1*Parlay (Jan Blachowicz +225 & Islam Makhachev -310) +330
1*Casey Kenney -108

3/13/21

3/20/21
2*Derek Brunson +145

3/27/21
2*Stipe Miocic +140

Quote Reply
 
Last edited:
Under 1.5 Rounds -155 Devonte Smith/Justin Jaynes
Current line: Under -155

What I wrote about Smith in his originally scheduled bout vs Alex Da Silva:
Devonte Smith burst onto the scene with 3 fabulous 1st round KO's before being KO'd by his own training partner Khama Worthy. His 3 wins were against lackluster competition. Joe Lowry (0-2 UFC), Julian Erosa (3-5 UFC), Dong Hyun Ma (3-5 UFC). Aside from Smith's raw punching power, not alot can be taken away from his 4 fights because all finished early in the 1st round. The only fight lasting longer than the 1st round against UFC caliber competition was against John Gunther in 2017. A bout in which he loss by 3rd round TKO in the promotion RFO. Smith's power was still present in the fight but Gunther is a zombie and absorbed his big shots early and continually took Smith to the mat. Smith used his superior athleticism to explode back to his feet a few times but like alot of heavy hitting fast starters, the cardio ran out quite quickly. Not only did the grappling defense wither as the fight progressed the pop on his shots did as well.

His opponent on 6 days notice is Justin Jaynes. Jaynes is a striker and coach at Xtreme Couture. His striking does not reflect what you'd expect from a coach at all. He is guns blazing from the jump and can be very reckless. Jaynes has made it out of the 1st round in 1 of 3 UFC bouts. His first appearance in the UFC octagon ended in a 30 second KO win to Frank Camacho (Jaynes also took this fight on 1 week notice), Loss by submission to Gavin Tucker in the 3rd (Had Tucker hurt real bad in the 1st but couldn't finish the fight), Loss via TKO to Gabriel Benitez in the 1st round. All in all, Jaynes has yet to reach the final bell in any of his fights and had a real shot at having all of his fights end in the 1st round. It was nice to see him get deeper into the fight against Tucker because we learned his cardio is dogshit. His fighting style is kill or be killed. In his last 7 bouts, 6 have ended in the 1st round (13/22 fights have ended in the 1st). In fights reaching the final round he is (2-5). And taking the fight on 7 days notice I do not expect this approach to change. Knowing full well his not so good cardio is probably even worse without a full training camp. He will probably have to go for broke on his usual first round KO strategy. Jaynes also has his back against the wall. At 31 years of age and on the verge of a 3 fight losing streak he could very well end up getting cut from the UFC roster with another loss here. Go big or or go home.

I expect this one to be a banger. Both men enter the octagon with 6 of their last 7 bouts ending in the first round. Both men throw caution to the wind and slam KO worthy hammers. Also of note both men have suffered KO defeats and their last two losses have been via finishes. I expect Jaynes to really push the action once the octagon door closes and for one of these two fighters to find a chin. My guess is Devonte Smith 1st round KO.
 
Last edited:
Seung Woo Choi +205 (74.5" Reach) vs Youssef Zalal (72" reach)
Current line: Choi +200

Previous writeup on Choi for originally scheduled bout:
Seung Woo Choi is a monster 145'er and a ferocious striker. At 6'0 with a 74.5" reach, Choi is an imposing specimen in the featherweight division. It is pretty safe to say that in almost every matchup Choi would hold the size and power advantage at 145. He is an assassin on the feet. Extremely aggressive, he pressures his opponents with a variety of techniques and attempts to break their will. His cardio is fantastic, his striking is crisp and technical, his hands are heavy, and his right body kick is nasty. I think his standup game is elite in the 145 division but his takedown defense is not. And that is precisely why he is 1-2 in the UFC. Choi's takedown defense in my opinion is not bad, its just a vulnerability because it's not bulletproof. And to be fair his 2 losses are against some of the most promising prospects in the division in Movsar Evloev (4-0) and Gavin Tucker (4-1). Both guys could not strike with him, but their high level grappling allowed them to neutralize his weapons in the standup.

His opponent is Youssef Zalal. "The Moroccan Devil" is taking the fight on 10 days notice. I had originally bet this matchup in October 2020 and posted in BB thread when Choi opened as a +350 dog. That number was quickly shot down to +230 before the bout was cancelled. Shockingly just 3 months later this line opened at Choi +130 before getting bet to +200. What a difference a few months make.

Zalal's footwork is outstanding and has a variety of strikes that he uses very well. He lacks power but is a very crafty striker. Despite how nimble he is on the feet, he really does his heavy lifting in the grappling department. Using his strikes to set up takedowns and taking guys to the mat when he is threatened on the feet. His BJJ is fun to watch. Attacks from all positions and is able to reverse out of compromising positions regularly. Zalal's cardio is pretty average. I have yet to see him gas, but the footwork dwindles as the rounds proceed and his defense becomes much less formidable. Outside of his last bout versus Ilia Topuria (who manhandled him for 3 rounds), Zalal really hasn't faced anyone worth mentioning. Zalal has beaten (1-1 UFC) Austin Lingo, (2-5 UFC) Jordan Griffin, and (1-2 UFC) Peter Barrett. And I am assuming Topuria is legit as he has only 2 fights thus far in the UFC despite being undefeated prior (10-0 overall, 2-0 UFC, Topuria has beaten Zalal and a (1-3 UFC) Damon Jackson). Whereas Choi has taken two guys making a top 15 push in the loaded featherweight division to the 3rd round in his first two UFC fights and dominating a lesser fighter in Suman Mokhtarian.

This line just seems to wide. I think Choi is going to have a massive power advantage and have serious doubts Zalal will want to test him much on the feet. Or be able to gain Choi's respect standing. Who dictates where the fight takes place will most likely take the match. Choi will be the biggest fighter Zalal has faced thus far and I think the length and strength will give him problems. And at +205, I think the price is right to gamble on Choi keeping this fight standing. Choi via 2nd round TKO.
 
Smartz-Any idea why MMA doesn’t provide leg reach stats which in my opinion is more important than arm reach?
Probably just because boxing only shows arm reach on tv. MMA is still trying to break away from alot of boxing traditions. i.e. The 10 point must system for MMA seems silly to me. And having boxing judges be the judges for MMA when the sports are entirely different.

If you want leg reach stats . UFC.com has them. Just click on the matchups. Link below

https://www.ufc.com/event/ufc-fight-night-february-6-2021#8940
 
Probably just because boxing only shows arm reach on tv. MMA is still trying to break away from alot of boxing traditions. i.e. The 10 point must system for MMA seems silly to me. And having boxing judges be the judges for MMA when the sports are entirely different.

If you want leg reach stats . UFC.com has them. Just click on the matchups. Link below

https://www.ufc.com/event/ufc-fight-night-february-6-2021#8940
Thanks Smartz
 
[9-6] +3.04

2/6/21
3*Diego Ferreira -110
2*Alexander Volkov -160
0.5*Alexander Volkov by KO/TKO/DQ +140
2*Under 1.5 Rds Devonte Smith/Justin Jaynes -155
1.25*Frankie Edgar +350
0.25*Frankie Edgar by decision +500
1*Alexandre Pantoja -125
1*Danilo Marques +205
1*Seung Woo Choi +205

Diego Ferreira -110 (74" reach) vs Beneil Dariush (72" reach)
Current line: Diego -120

Diego looks to avenge his loss to Beneil Dariush 6.5 years ago. A fight where Dariush was just the more skilled fighter. Landing strikes from distance and maintaining top control in rounds 2 and 3. An intelligent fight strategy that put points on the scorecards. Ferreira was never in any real trouble but couldn't mount any substantial offense against Dariush and loss easily by unanimous decision. Ferriera went on to lose to future interim champ Poirier by TKO a few months later in April 2015. After that fight Diego began training at now rising gym Fortis MMA under Sayif Saud (he was previously coaching himself). Debuting under his new camp in January 2016. Since 2016, the two fighters careers have gone in opposite directions. Dariush going 7-3-1 while narrowly escaping defeat against Drew Dober and Drakkar Klose. Being nearly out on his feet in both matches and rallying with miraculous comebacks. He could easily be 5-5-1. Ferriera on the other hand, has gone 6-0 with a near 2:1 strikes landed to absorbed ratio in the process. W Anthony Pettis (UFC 16-10), W Mairbek Taisumov (7-2 UFC), W Rustam Khabilov (10-3 UFC), W Kyle Nelson (1-3 UFC), W Jared Gordon (4-3 UFC), W Olivier Aubin-Mercier (7-5 UFC). Besting 3 top 15 foes in a row.

His move to Fortis transformed his striking in a major way. His grappling was never in doubt being a world class jiu jitsu practicioner, but his striking was raw and lacked finesse. Over the years he has developed outstanding striking defense and quick counters. Parlaying that with outstanding cardio, constant pressure, and incredible pace. Diego has become a real problem on the feet, easily handling high level strikers Taisumov and Pettis in his last two bouts. Comparing footage from his loss to Dariush to the win against Pettis, he was a shadow of his current self. Needless to say, I expect this fight to play out quite differently this time around. Ferriera has blossomed into a contender while Dariush has seemed to remain stagnant as a fringe top 10 gatekeeper. Ferreira by 2nd round TKO.

Alexander Volkov -160 (80" reach) vs Alistair Overeem (80" reach)
Current line: Volkov -200

In this heavyweight strikers delight, Alexander Volkov looks to continue his ascent to the top of the UFC ranks. Volkov's record is extremely misleading. His 2 defeats have come at the hands of Derrick Lewis and Curtis Blaydes. In the fight against Lewis, he absolutely dominated Derrick for 2.99999 rounds. Getting clipped and knocked out with a few seconds left (by the 2nd heaviest hitter in the UFC) and preventing an easy 30-27 victory. While the fight against Blaydes, he continually got taken down by the best takedown artist in the UFC but suffered very little damage. Volkov dominated the 5th and final round and if the fight was a few minutes longer most likely would have finished Blaydes. Alot was learned from the fight with Blaydes. #1 His takedown defense was no match for Blaydes wrestling (Hard to say if anyones is as he averages a whopping 7 takedowns per contest) #2 Volkov's cardio is high level for HW division (looked very nimble in the 5th despite being tackled for 4 rounds straight), #3 Defensive jiu jitsu is outstanding (Mitigated damage on the ground tremendously against a fearsome ground and pounder). His standup game is rarely in question. Volkov maintains distance very well and uses 6'7 frame effectively. Dominating some of the heaviest hitters in the UFC on the feet (Lewis, Hardy, Harris, Nelson). I have a hard time finding where Overeem is superior in this matchup. At this point in his career his striking is inferior, chin is extremely questionable, and won't be able to fight at distance (this being one of the rare instances that he is the smaller fighter). If he has any advantage, it's in the grappling. The question is can he get Volkov to the mat? I doubt it. Overeems level of grappling is eons away from the likes of Blaydes. In fact, if you were to subtract the Blaydes fight which I feel is reasonable as I consider Blaydes ability to get people to the mat as an outlier (averages 2 more takedowns per contest than Khabib). Opponents have only been successful on 5/30 attempts. 83% stuff rate, which is very high level. I think Volkov gets the finish here and may be adding a unit on him finishing within the distance closer to fight time. Volkov by 2nd round TKO.

Under 1.5 Rounds -155 Devonte Smith/Justin Jaynes
Current line: Under -170

What I wrote about Smith in his originally scheduled bout vs Alex Da Silva:
Devonte Smith burst onto the scene with 3 fabulous 1st round KO's before being KO'd by his own training partner Khama Worthy. His 3 wins were against lackluster competition. Joe Lowry (0-2 UFC), Julian Erosa (3-5 UFC), Dong Hyun Ma (3-5 UFC). Aside from Smith's raw punching power, not alot can be taken away from his 4 fights because all finished early in the 1st round. The only fight lasting longer than the 1st round against UFC caliber competition was against John Gunther in 2017. A bout in which he loss by 3rd round TKO in the promotion RFO. Smith's power was still present in the fight but Gunther is a zombie and absorbed his big shots early and continually took Smith to the mat. Smith used his superior athleticism to explode back to his feet a few times but like alot of heavy hitting fast starters, the cardio ran out quite quickly. Not only did the grappling defense wither as the fight progressed the pop on his shots did as well.

His opponent on 6 days notice is Justin Jaynes. Jaynes is a striker and coach at Xtreme Couture. His striking does not reflect what you'd expect from a coach at all. He is guns blazing from the jump and can be very reckless. Jaynes has made it out of the 1st round in 1 of 3 UFC bouts. His first appearance in the UFC octagon ended in a 30 second KO win to Frank Camacho (Jaynes also took this fight on 1 week notice), Loss by submission to Gavin Tucker in the 3rd (Had Tucker hurt real bad in the 1st but couldn't finish the fight), Loss via TKO to Gabriel Benitez in the 1st round. All in all, Jaynes has yet to reach the final bell in any of his fights and had a real shot at having all of his fights end in the 1st round. It was nice to see him get deeper into the fight against Tucker because we learned his cardio is dogshit. His fighting style is kill or be killed. In his last 7 bouts, 6 have ended in the 1st round (13/22 fights have ended in the 1st). In fights reaching the final round he is (2-5). And taking the fight on 7 days notice I do not expect this approach to change. Knowing full well his not so good cardio is probably even worse without a full training camp. He will probably have to go for broke on his usual first round KO strategy. Jaynes also has his back against the wall. At 31 years of age and on the verge of a 3 fight losing streak he could very well end up getting cut from the UFC roster with another loss here. Go big or or go home.

I expect this one to be a banger. Both men enter the octagon with 6 of their last 7 bouts ending in the first round. Both men throw caution to the wind and slam KO worthy hammers. Also of note both men have suffered KO defeats and their last two losses have been via finishes. I expect Jaynes to really push the action once the octagon door closes and for one of these two fighters to find a chin. My guess is Devonte Smith 1st round KO.
 
Last edited:
Frankie Edgar +350 (68" Reach) vs Cory Sandhagen (70" reach)
Current line: Edgar +315

I waited on this wager figuring this line would rise but was surprised when it rose 100 cents from the opener. Edgar should definitely be the dog here but oddsmakers and the market are disrespecting Edgar's skills/body of work. Edgar has dropped 3 of his last 5 but the competition has been fierce (all losses to top 5 opponents). He got KO'd for the 1st and 2nd time in his career after being caught in the 1st round by power punchers Chan Sung Jung and Brian Ortega and just got outclassed by the great Max Holloway. He easily beat Cub Swanson by unanimous decision and squeaked by Pedro Munhoz in his last bout by a questionable split decision. I personally thought Edgar won but most media outlets did not. It definitely was a very close bout. I thought Edgar looked terrific and Munhoz was a terrible matchup for Edgar. A power puncher who sits in the pocket, has relentless pressure, vicious leg kicks (Edgar relies on movement) and a bjj ace with great takedown defense. He was able to mostly nullify Edgar's strong wrestling and had the cardio to keep up with Edgar's constant movement. And holding the power advantage, he had Edgar on his heels for most of the bout. But Edgar still found his way to land solid combos all night.

This match will be Edgar's 2nd fight since dropping down to 135 (which in all honesty is probably the right weight class for him given his small stature). Ironically, Sandhagen is tied as the tallest opponent he has ever faced in the UFC. This match reminds me alot his fight with Yair Rodriguez in 2017. Edgar had mostly been written off after being outclassed by Jose Aldo for the 2nd time and was facing an undefeated flashy young striker in Yair. Frankie had opened as a -260 favorite and the line was bid down to even by fight time. Edgar outclassed Yair, dragging him to the mat, neutralizing his weapons and beating that ass. My analogy falls short in that the aging Edgar was 4 years younger at the time and Yair has never held the rank or regard Sandhagen currently does. But there are quite a few similarities. Both are elite 5'11 orthodox stance strikers, utilizing flashy strikes, plenty of movement, and questionable takedown defense. While Yair has a dangerous submission game much like Cory, Cory's ability to scramble and find his way back to the feet is superior. However, Yair holds a 60% takedown defense while Sandhagen is just 30%. For those who aren't aware, 30% takedown defense is putrid and seldom seen even with low echelon fighters. I was shocked to see this stat next to a prospect universally respected as a top 3 fighter in the weight class. Cory has been successfully taken down in every UFC bout to date. To be fair, I have not seen Sandhagen in a compromising position on the ground outside of his bouts with Iuri Alcantara and Aljamain Sterling. In 2018 he miraculously survived an incredibly deep armbar (ala Tony Ferguson) from Alcantara and in 2020 suffered an early submission loss to the uber talented Aljamain Sterling. Of his 7 bouts he really has only faced one "grappler" in Sterling (a Serra BJJ Black Belt w/ college wrestling credentials). Like Sterling, Edgar also has a black belt in bjj (under Ricardo Almeida), elite wrestling, solid top control and cardio for days.

Both fighters are very durable and lack true KO power. I see this fight going to the final bell with it being a 3 rounder. If this bout stays on the feet, it's hard to believe Sandhagens diverse striking and length don't win out over Edgar's boxing. But with Sandhagens deficiencies at stopping the takedown and Edgar's high level grappling, I think Edgar has a much better chance than +350. I am confident Edgar gets him to the mat whether or not he can control Sandhagen there will determine the victor. I will be rooting for the future hall of famer to force the MMA world to still view him as a force to be reckoned with. Edgar by decision (added 0.25u on Edgar by decision +500).

Danilo Marques +205 (77" reach) vs Mike Rodriguez (82.5" reach)
Current line: Marques +195

Another striker vs grappler matchup. Mike "Slow-Mo" Rodriguez is an outstanding striker. Possessing a variety of techniques and raw power to boot. At 3-4 in the UFC, Mike has got all of his wins via 1st round KO. In all fights going past the first round (Except KO loss to Da Un Jung) have resulted in losses. He should have won his last bout vs Ed Herman and a terrible referee call ruined a TKO for Mike. He eventually got submitted via Kimura shortly thereafter (I was very fortunate to win the wager).

On the feet, Marques skill level does not compare to what Mike brings to the table. Conversely, the opposite is true for the skill mismatch on the ground. Mike not only defends takedowns poorly (40%), he seems absolutely helpless once he gets there. Also when opponents force Mike into grappling exchanges his cardio depletes rapidly. The winner of this fight will be determined by who dictates where the fight takes place. If Marques can't get the fight to the mat, I expect him to get KO'd early. But if he lands takedowns, his top control should allow for an easy victory. With how poor Mike is defending takedowns and how amateur he is off his back, +205 seems to be definitely worth a wager.

Alexandre Pantoja -125 (67" Reach) vs Manel Kape (68" reach)
Current line: Pantoja -120

They have thrown Manel Kape to the wolves in his UFC debut. Kape comes in heavily hyped as an AKA product and former champion in Rizin. Kape is a very good athlete with fluid kicks and punches in his repertoire. Relies on his quick movement and often fights with his hands down inviting his opponents to throw. Thats where Kape's strengths lie, on the feet. He does struggle to defend takedowns and seems very amateur off his back. Early on he uses his athleticism to explode back to his feet, but fighters only have a few of those in their back pocket until they burn themselves out. At 27, Kape's game is ever evolving, I just think this matchup is too much too soon. He's facing a man in Pantoja who is dangerous everywhere. A BJJ ace with solid takedowns and serious KO power on the feet. Unfortunately for Pantoja, he's in a division with a guy at the top (Deiveson Figueiredo) that does everything he can but in a bigger frame and with more power. As Pantoja has climbed the ranks in the UFC he has naturally found less success. Dropping 2 of his last 3 to undefeated Askar Askarov and champ Deiveson Figueiredo. Losing both of these bouts by decision.

The two fighters share one common opponent in Yuta Sasaki. A middling ex-UFC fighter, he was stopped in the 1st round by submission when fighting Pantoja but won a lopsided unanimous decision to Kape. Interestingly enough these fights took place 1 month apart. So they essentially fought the exact same guy. As its doubtful a vet like Sasaki made major changes in a matter of weeks. Sasaki was outmatched on the feet vs Kape but continually dragged Kape to the mat at will and pressured him with sub attempts and strikes. I want to say he scored 4-5+ takedowns in a 3 round fight. Aside from Kyoji Horiguchi (who he loss to via sub), Kape has never faced consistent high level competition like he is about to in the UFC. Especially being thrust into a top 5 bout in his debut. I'd give Kape a slight edge in the standup but think Pantoja carries more power in his shots. Pantoja also just has more ways to win as well with his very high level BJJ game. If Pantoja feels threatened standing, I think he will just take it to the ground and end the fight via submission.
 
Last edited:
Seung Woo Choi +205 (74.5" Reach) vs Youssef Zalal (72" reach)
Current line: Choi +200

Previous writeup on Choi for originally scheduled bout:
Seung Woo Choi is a monster 145'er and a ferocious striker. At 6'0 with a 74.5" reach, Choi is an imposing specimen in the featherweight division. It is pretty safe to say that in almost every matchup Choi would hold the size and power advantage at 145. He is an assassin on the feet. Extremely aggressive, he pressures his opponents with a variety of techniques and attempts to break their will. His cardio is fantastic, his striking is crisp and technical, his hands are heavy, and his right body kick is nasty. I think his standup game is elite in the 145 division but his takedown defense is not. And that is precisely why he is 1-2 in the UFC. Choi's takedown defense in my opinion is not bad, its just a vulnerability because it's not bulletproof. And to be fair his 2 losses are against some of the most promising prospects in the division in Movsar Evloev (4-0) and Gavin Tucker (4-1). Both guys could not strike with him, but their high level grappling allowed them to neutralize his weapons in the standup.

His opponent is Youssef Zalal. "The Moroccan Devil" is taking the fight on 10 days notice. I had originally bet this matchup in October 2020 and posted in BB thread when Choi opened as a +350 dog. That number was quickly shot down to +230 before the bout was cancelled. Shockingly just 3 months later this line opened at Choi +130 before getting bet to +200. What a difference a few months make.

Zalal's footwork is outstanding and has a variety of strikes that he uses very well. He lacks power but is a very crafty striker. Despite how nimble he is on the feet, he really does his heavy lifting in the grappling department. Using his strikes to set up takedowns and taking guys to the mat when he is threatened on the feet. His BJJ is fun to watch. Attacks from all positions and is able to reverse out of compromising positions regularly. Zalal's cardio is pretty average. I have yet to see him gas, but the footwork dwindles as the rounds proceed and his defense becomes much less formidable. Outside of his last bout versus Ilia Topuria (who manhandled him for 3 rounds), Zalal really hasn't faced anyone worth mentioning. Zalal has beaten (1-1 UFC) Austin Lingo, (2-5 UFC) Jordan Griffin, and (1-2 UFC) Peter Barrett. And I am assuming Topuria is legit as he has only 2 fights thus far in the UFC despite being undefeated prior (10-0 overall, 2-0 UFC, Topuria has beaten Zalal and a (1-3 UFC) Damon Jackson). Whereas Choi has taken two guys making a top 15 push in the loaded featherweight division to the 3rd round in his first two UFC fights and dominating a lesser fighter in Suman Mokhtarian.

This line just seems to wide. I think Choi is going to have a massive power advantage and have serious doubts Zalal will want to test him much on the feet. Or be able to gain Choi's respect standing. Who dictates where the fight takes place will most likely take the match. Choi will be the biggest fighter Zalal has faced thus far and I think the length and strength will give him problems. And at +205, I think the price is right to gamble on Choi keeping this fight standing. Choi via 2nd round TKO.
 
Timur put on a clinic. Took no damage through 15 minutes and was never in trouble. Outstruck 96-19. Day probably get cuts after this match on a 4 fight skid
 
Throwing lunch money on Joselyne Edwards +175. Heavy lean. Was very impressed with her last outing but haven't seen enough of her to make it an actual play
 
Last edited:
Top