Tag: UFC Chile

UFC Chile: Drunk Predictions

UFC Chile: Drunk Predictions

Last weekend was a nice (and needed) return to form – a 9-4 mark over 13 fights in Rio de Janeiro to help bring my yearly percentage closer to where I want it to be overall.

There is still a long way to go, but I feel like I’m building a little momentum and doing the background work to keep this thing moving along in the right direction.

So let’s keep things moving.

Here are my picks.

These are the UFC Chile: Punch Drunk Predictions.

Demian Maia vs. Kamaru Usman

Maia is one of my all-time favourite fighters, but just like his last two bouts, this is a nightmare matchup for the grappling wizard. Usman is a better version of Colby Covington – he’s more powerful, more athletic and more focused – and I think this turns into a lopsided fight pretty quickly.

The Brazilian is dangerous whenever he gets his hands on you, but Usman should be able to dictate the terms of engagement and put Maia in spots where his offensive options are limited. Look for a steady diet of takedowns and rugged ground-and-pound that brings this one to a close inside the distance.

Prediction: Kamaru Usman

Alexa Grasso vs. Tatiana Suarez

I’ve gone on the record with my beliefs that Suarez has championship potential myriad times, so I’m obviously rolling with her here.

Grasso has been good, but not great since coming over from Invicta and while I like her boxing skills and general toughness, I think she can be too passive at times and that should create opportunities for Suarez to get inside, get a takedown and maul her on the canvas.

The only real uncertainty to me here is whether she’ll get the finish or not and I’m leaning towards no, just because I think Grasso will do a good job to shell up and play defense whenever Suarez starts unloading and looking for submissions.

Prediction: Tatiana Suarez

Jared Cannonier vs. Dominick Reyes

This is the most intriguing fight in the main card to me because while Cannonier is headed to middleweight after this one, he can still crack and for as good as Reyes has looked, he hasn’t really been tested yet in his career.

The only time Cannonier has been finished in his career was against Shawn Jordan back in his UFC debut, so I’m not sure Reyes is going to be able to get him with one shot here like he has pretty well everyone else. I know he subbed Jeremy Kimball last time out, but it started with some thunder, which is his way in to everything else he wants to do in the cage.

My head says Cannonier because he’s more seasoned and still carries some pop, but my heart says Reyes because he’s look so damn good and the division needs a relatively young newcomer to start making moves and he could very much be that dude.

I’m going to go with Cannonier, but I’m fully aware that this could end up looking like a really bad pick.

Prediction: Jared Cannonier

Diego Rivas vs. Guido Cannetti

This is a hometown showcase for Rivas, the lone Chilean competing on the main card, and while it’s not a complete squash match, he should be able to get the job done.

I honestly think you can throw out his last performance as he was returning after a lengthy layoff and a battle with testicular cancer, so the fact that he was even in the cage was a victory in and of itself.

While he’s far from a complete fighters or a finished product, Rivas does have enough power and striking acumen to get the job done here against his fellow TUF Latin America alum.

Prediction: Diego Rivas

Veronica Macedo vs. Andrea Lee

There are lots of people who envision Lee as an instant contender and some kind of breakthrough signing for the UFC, but I’ve never been in that camp. She’s had some success, sure, and collected a few nice finishes, however she lost to the two veteran talents she’s faced and still needs to answer some questions for me before I’m ready to christen her a contender.

Macedo was fighting way over her head at bantamweight and has never beaten anyone of great substance, so I don’t think she’s going to come in and expose all kinds of holes in Lee’s game, but this should be a more suitable matchup for her and a chance for “KGB” to start convincing me that she’s for real.

Ultimately, I think Lee gets the win – she’s bigger, more experienced and more technical – but I’m not as high on her prospects as everyone else.

Prediction: Andrea Lee

Vicente Luque vs. Chad Laprise

This is a terrific fight between welterweights on the fringes of contention and the winner should move into the Top 15. Laprise has looked great since returning to the division and is unbeaten in his career when competing at 170 pounds, while Luque is 5-1 in his last six and has tremendous finishing instincts.

For me, it’s that one loss in Luque’s recent run that is instructive here. Leon Edwards was able to initiate the grappling and use his wrestling to neutralize Luque’s weapons and I think Laprise should be able to do the same here.

He’ll need to be careful coming in to avoid a stinging left hand or leaving his neck exposed, but if he can put Luque on his back, the Canadian should be able to keep his winning streak intact.

Prediction: Chad Laprise

Preliminary Card Picks

Zak Cummings def. Michel Prazeres
Alexandre Pantoja def. Brandon Moreno
Poliana Botelho def. Syuri Kondo
Gabriel Benitez def. Humberto Bandenay
Enrique Barzola def. Brandon Davis
Frankie Saenz def. Henry Briones
Felipe Silva def. Claudio Puelles

2018 Prediction Record: 87-63-0 (.580)