Alright, some big fights tonight. Can’t watch the SKY card going on right now, but here’s my picks for everything today, anyways:
Adam Azim vs Santos Reyes: Azim has continued to progress with each fight, and I think he’s ready to take on what Reyes will bring to him, though I haven’t seen him fight in the past. Azim by TKO round 8
Rey Vargas vs O’Shaquie Foster: I really like Foster, and I think his style could cause Vargas some trouble early on. But, Vargas is a true vet, and I think he’ll be able to regroup and gameplan Foster and be cruising by the mid rounds. He’ll have to work fast, though. You can’t drop too many rounds against Foster. Vargas by close UD, maybe even a Majority or Split Decision.
Lenier Pero vs Viktor Vykhryst: I don’t think Pero is a future champ, but he’s still an interesting prospect for the heavyweight division. I’ve actually watch Vykhryst live on the undercard of a Luis Ortiz fight night. He’s very aggressive but seems to lack elite power for the division, and gets caught easily. Pero will exploit this, but his iffy defense will be brought to question, too. Pero by KO/TKO round 3, but I’m not confident about Pero.
Mario Barrios vs Jovanie Santiago: Not sure what to think of this fight. Both Barrios and Santiago are coming into this fight on two fight losing streaks, all four fights to very talented opponents. Barrios has a higher profile, but I just don’t know how much he’s got in the tank still. Barrios by TKO/KO round 6
UFC 284 (why not?)
Islam Makhachev vs Alexander Volkanovski: A true champ vs champ fight is incredibly rare in the UFC, and a P4P 1 vs 2 fight is even more so. Volk moving up to lightweight to take on Makhachev, while already being a smaller featherweight, is a tall ask. He’ll have the Perth crowd behind him, but to take on a much bigger man who can do everything as well (or better) than he can. Still, I think Volk is explosive enough and long enough (only giving up an inch in reach) to beat Makhachev on the feet, where the big Russian is largely considered to have a minor weakness whereas Volkanovski has defeated some of the best stand-and-bang fighters in UFC history. Makhachev should dominate on the ground, though, making this a very fun matchup. Despite Makhachev being a heavy favorite, I’m picking Alex ‘the Great’ on this one. Makhachev hasn’t been brought deep against a game fighter, and Volk has a dog that just doesn’t quit. I think he can have some success in the later rounds, and could really take over the bout with his explosiveness and power. Volkanovski by UD