UFC 249 Preview & Predictions
The UFC is set to return on Saturday after an extended layoff due to the coronavirus outbreak and it will be the first major sports organization to open back up. UFC 249 was initially scheduled for April 18th in New York but the promotion was unable to negotiate with state laws and ESPN regulations in order to perform the event without fans. The event is now in Jacksonville, Florida with limited media coverage and no fans allowed in attendance for the event while some fighters who were previously set to compete on the card had to back out because of their country's regulations. Dana White and the UFC have done an excellent job working with their fighters and health officials to determine the safest possible solutions while keeping the sport active. In this article I will be giving my preview of each fight on the card followed by a prediction.
Light Heavyweight: (UR) Ryan Spann (17-5, 3-0 in UFC) vs. (UR) Sam Alvey (33-13-1, 10-8)
Preview: Both fighters were initially supposed to fight other opponents in late March but because of the coronavirus epidemic the fights were cancelled and now Ryan Spann and Sam Alvey have agreed to fight each other for this event. Ryan Spann was previously set to fight Paul Craig (12-4-1, 4-4-1 in UFC) on March 21st in London but since the fight was cancelled he gets a better opportunity against a proven veteran in Sam Alvey. Ryan Spann is a 28 year old American fighter who is undefeated in the UFC after joining the promotion in 2018 following a successful appearance on Dana White’s Contender Series.
Fight Breakdown: When we look at how these two match-up against each other, it’s really the classic grappler vs. striker match-up in some regard as Ryan Spann has eleven of his seventeen victories coming by submission. He is known for his guillotine choke with seven victories coming that way and Spann has really improved his striking since joining the UFC; he even earned a knockout victory against Antonio “Lil Nog” Nogueira on May 11th of last year. Sam Alvey is a veteran striker that has shown power in the past but he has really struggled recently going 2-3 since moving to Light Heavyweight with three straight losses now. In Alvey’s last fight he lost against Klidson Abreau by a decision and although Alvey did a good job striking from distance and in the clinch, he absorbed more significant punches and surrendered two takedowns during the fight. Sam Alvey is 34 years old and it seems as though he is not as dangerous as he once was in the UFC and the promotion is giving him no free passes as they place Ryan Spann in front of him on Saturday.
Prediction: The biggest underdog on the card according to vegas betting is Sam Alvey and his road to victory is either winning a close decision or earning a knockout but it’s easier said than done against an opponent that hasn’t lost in three years. I’m going with Ryan Spann in this match-up as I believe he can win this fight wherever it goes and he is a legitimate prospect in the UFC
Ryan Spann wins by unanimous decision
Featherweight: (UR) Bryce Mitchell (12-0, 3-0 in UFC) vs. (UR) Charles Rosa (12-3, 3-3 in UFC)
Preview: UFC fans were amazed by Bryce Mitchell when he pulled off only the second submission victory by twister ever in the UFC and it earned him the submission of the year honours. The 25 year old has already won two bonuses in just three appearances with the promotion and “Thug Nasty” is just getting started but now he has a big test ahead of him against veteran fighter Charles Rosa. Fighting only six times since 2014, injuries and other situations have prevented Charles Rosa from performing but the 33 year old returned in 2019 after a 30 month layoff to earn a first round submission victory over Manny Bermudez (15-2, 3-2 in UFC). Rosa has always put a fight on for the fans even during his defeats with three fight of the night bonuses in losses against Dennis Siver, Yair Rodriguez and Shane Burgos.
Fight Breakdown: This is the biggest test of Bryce Mitchell’s career as he faces a legitimate black belt in Jiu-Jitsu that has never lost by submission. Charles Rosa also excels in finishing the fight on the ground with eight victories by submission but Rosa might be more comfortable keeping the fight on the feet. Bryce Mitchell doesn’t particularly land strikes at a high rate (1.83 sign. per minute) as he constantly looks for takedowns with thirteen attempts in three fights. Charles Rosa fights with solid volume as he lands 3.85 significant strikes per minute and 14 takedowns landed on 41 attempts in six fights. During the Shane Burgos fight he out-landed Burgos 172-154 and heading into the third round he was arguably winning the fight but Burgos was able to finish the fight in the final round to earn the victory. If it wasn’t for inactivity I think Charles Rosa would be more well-known in the MMA community because he is an absolute beast.
Prediction: I don’t see any scenario where Bryce Mitchell wins this fight on the feet but submitting Charles Rosa is no easy task and Rosa will force the 25 year old prospect into a brawl if the fight goes long. Rosa doesn’t have the best defence but so far in Mitchell’s career, he hasn’t shown a lot of volume or power in his striking so it’s hard to take “Thug Nasty” in this fight against a brawler with great ground credentials.
Charles Rosa wins by 2nd round TKO
Welterweight: (13) Vicente Luque (17-7-1, 10-3 in UFC) vs. (UR) Niko Price (14-3-1, 6-3-1 in UFC)
Preview: This is a strong welterweight match-up as Vicente Luque looks to avenge his 2019 loss (decision loss against Stephen Thompson) as he fights Niko Price for the second time in his career. Price had a wild 2019 with three fights that concluded with two victories and all fights ending by knockout. His last fight in October was a performance of the night 1st round knockout victory against James Vick (13-5, 9-5 in UFC).
Fight Breakdown: The two fighters fought in 2017 with Luque winning by 2nd round submission by D’Arce choke and we can learn a bit about this match-up by looking at the fight and how it played out.Both fighters threw a lot of volume in this fight but Luque was able to land more frequently and with more damage at a 122-50 pace and he even earned two knockdowns during the fight. Vicente Luque is a wild man landing 5.18 significant strikes per minute and he always looks to finish the fight with six victories by submission and nine victories by knockout. Niko Price doesn’t land as much volume but he lands with a lot of power as he has 10 victories by knockout despite an average of 2.93 significant strikes per minute and Price mixes in takedowns occasionally and he has 3 victories by submission.
Prediction: Obviously the big difference between the two fighters is the volume that Luque fights with and since the Price fight in 2017 he has gone 5-1 with his only loss against Thompson while Price has gone 4-2 with the two losses coming by knockout. Honestly this fight could go either way and the safer bet is definitely Luque based on his volume striking and the result in their last match-up but I'm going with Niko Price by knockout.
Niko Price wins by 1st round KO
Middleweight: (10) Uriah Hall (15-9, 8-7 in UFC) vs. (UR) Ronaldo Souza (26-8-1, 9-5 in UFC)
Preview: This is a fantastic match-up as two veteran fighters meet in the octagon for the first time in their careers and both guys are still extremely dangerous and competitive in the sport. Uriah Hall has won two fights in a row with a knockout victory over Bevon Lewis followed by a split decision win against Antonio Carlos Junior. Jacare Souza had a poor 2019 going 0-2 with both losses coming by decision against opponents Jack Hermansson and Jan Blachowicz.
Fight Breakdown: Uriah Hall is one of the most dangerous strikers in the UFC as the 35 year old has highlight reel knockout victories over Adam Cella, Gegard Mousasi, Krzysztof Jotko and Bevon Lewis. He lands 3.43 significant strikes per minute and he occasionally throws in takedowns but he likes to keep the fight on the feet against most of his opponents. Jacare Souza is a legend of the sport as the 40 year old is a World Jiu-Jitsu Champion and was the former Strikeforce Middleweight champion. He has 14 victories by submission and Souza has a strong striking game as well with 8 wins by knockout in his career. The one weakness in Jacare’s game is his striking defense as he tends to absorb a lot of shots and that has cost him in recent fights. His striking can be comparable to Yoel Romero in some regards as Souza has a lot of power but he doesn’t throw as much volume and he eats jabs and leg kicks moving forward towards his opponent.
Prediction: Jacare Souza is the better grappler and he has more experience against top competition but Uriah Hall is a true wildcard in this fight. Whenever I pick against Uriah, I always think back to the fight in 2015 when he knocked out Gegard Mousasi in such a surprising moment. I have to go with Souza though as I believe he has the more well rounded skill set to get the job done.
Ronaldo Souza wins by unanimous decision
Women’s Strawweight: (7) Carla Esparza (15-6, 6-4 in UFC) vs. (8) Michelle Waterson (17-7, 5-3 in UFC)
Preview: Two of the most experienced female fighters in the UFC face off for the first time in their careers as both are hoping to move one step closer to a title fight. Carla Esparza has really rebounded after a rough 2018 as she has won two fights in a row with decision victories over Virna Jandiroba and Alexa Grasso. Michelle Waterson was on a roll winning three fights in a row until her October fight against Joanna Jedrzejczyk where she lost by decision.
Fight Breakdown: Carla Esparza comes from a strong wrestling background and she always looks for opportunities to take the fight to the ground while Michelle Waterson is a karate fighter with a solid submission game. Carla lands 28% of her total significant strikes while on the ground and her last fight against Alexa Grasso saw her earn 4 takedowns on 11 attempts. She averages about 4 takedowns per fight with a grappling accuracy of 36% and she is very tactical in her approach as she takes her time and doesn’t look for anything too risky to finish the fight. Michelle Waterson is a fairly well rounded striker and she likes to mix in takedowns but I imagine in this match-up she will utilize her distance striking and try to keep Esparza at range. Her last fight against Joanna was really deflating as the former Champion outlanded her 180-58 while earning 3 takedowns on Waterson. Michelle hasn’t really fought the strong grapplers in the division like Claudia Gadelha, Randa Markos and Tatiana Suarez and it’s concerning because it’s hard to really judge how she will face against a grappler like Esparza.
Prediction: Carla Esparza has struggled the most against grapplers in her career but Michelle Waterson is predominantly a striker so it gives me concern in picking Waterson. I will say that Michelle Waterson has an advantage on the feet but I think Esparza will just be too much for her once the fight goes to the canvas.
Carla Esparza wins by unanimous decision
Heavyweight: (12) Aleksei Oleinik (58-13-1, 7-4 in UFC) vs. (UR) Fabricio Werdum (23-8-1, 11-5 in UFC)
Preview: The oldest fight on the card as two 42 year old Heavyweight legends face off in a fight that will hopefully live up to expectations in the grappling department. Both fighters have made a career with their grappling and submissions and although Werdum was more successful, Oleinik has more victories by submission. Aleksei Oleinik had a rough 2019 losing twice but he opened 2020 with a January victory over Maurice Greene by armbar submission in the second round. Fabricio Werdum hasn’t fought since March of 2018 where he lost by 4th round knockout against Alexander Volkov. This is Werdum’s return fight after receiving a two year suspension from USADA in 2018 for Trenbolone found in his system.
Fight Breakdown: Aleksei Oleinik is one of my all-time favourite fighters as the Russian has now won 46 fights by submission including six of his seven UFC victories coming by submission. The Boa Constrictor is not a threat on the feet at all and he has been exposed in the past by Alistair Overeem, Walt Harris and Curtis Blaydes. Once the fight reaches the ground however he always looks for various submissions and he has been very successful in his style. Fabricio Werdum is a former champion and a very well-rounded fighter during his prime with powerful striking and excellent submissions. His last victory was against Marcin Tybura in 2017 where he won by decision, out-landing his opponent 310-254 with 274 strikes from distance as he was only able to land 2 of 14 takedown attempts. In comparison the last victory for Oleinik saw him beat Maurice Greene by 2nd round submission after absorbing more strikes but landing all three takedowns and attempting three different submissions before finally ending the fight.
Prediction: Werdum is comfortable if the fight goes to the ground during this fight but Oleinik needs this fight to go to the ground if he has a shot at winning. The biggest question mark is whether Oleinik can earn a submission victory against a former Jiu-Jitsu World Champion and someone that has never lost by submission in MMA. I’m going to cheer for history on this one.
Aleksei Oleinik wins by 1st round submission
Welterweight: (6) Donald Cerrone (36-14-1, 23-11 in UFC) vs. (15) Anthony Pettis (22-10,9-9 in UFC)
Preview: Two of the most exciting fighters in the UFC’s history face off for the second time in their career on Saturday as both men look to end losing streaks. Donald Cerrone was on a roll at the start of 2019 winning three fights in a row including impressive victories over Alexander Hernandez and Al Iaquinta but that all came crashing down fast as he lost three straight fights by knockout against opponents Tony Ferguson, Justin Gaethje and Conor McGregor. Anthony Pettis had a lot of buzz surrounding him after a wild knockout finish against Stephen Thompson in 2019 but his next two fights were losses against Nate Diaz and Carlos Diego Ferreira.
Fight Breakdown: The two fought back in 2013 where Anthony Pettis won the fight by 1st round knockout following some brutal kicks to the body. After that fight Anthony Pettis would go on to win the Lightweight title against Benson Henderson by 1st round armbar submission. Pettis has a solid martial arts background in Taekwondo and Jiu-Jitsu and the 33 year old has 11 victories by knockout and 7 victories by submission. He has struggled since losing the title in 2015 going 4-8 over that span but he is dangerous at any moment and wherever the fight goes. Donald Cerrone has a kickboxing and Jiu-Jitsu background and like Pettis he is comfortable wherever the fight goes with 17 victories by submission and 10 victories by knockout. Nobody can deny Cowboy’s willingness to fight but the 37 year old has now lost three fights in a row by knockout and one has to wonder how durable he is moving forward.
Prediction: Both fighters fight similar styles as they prefer to fight standing but are comfortable if their opponent wants to take the fight to the ground. Cowboy throws very smooth combinations and the head kick is always there but Pettis has arguably more power behind his kicks and punches while mixing in some unorthodox striking. I think Anthony Pettis will win by knockout and it will put the UFC in a tough situation with Cerrone moving forward.
Anthony Pettis wins by 1st round KO
Heavyweight: (UR) Greg Hardy (5-2-1, 2-2-1 in UFC) vs. (UR) Yorgan De Castro (6-0, 1-0 in UFC)
Preview: The first fight on the main card sees two UFC heavyweight prospects battle it out in a fight that isn’t expected to last more than one round. Greg Hardy entered the UFC as a disliked figure but I believe he earned some respect back from fighters and fans in November where he fought Alexander Volkov for three hard rounds and despite losing proved he was legit. Yorgan De Castro recently joined the UFC in October with a debut 1st round knockout victory over Justin Tafa and De Castro has five of his six victories coming by knockout.
Fight Breakdown: Greg Hardy has been constantly evolving since joining the promotion in 2019 and the former NFL star looked a lot better in the Volkov fight than in his previous fight against Ben Sosoli where he gassed out during the second half of the fight. I don’t really see a situation where either fighter looks for a takedown as I think both men are happy to stand and trade hoping for the 1st round finish.
Prediction: Greg Hardy is training with American Top Team and he has been putting in the work to try and get himself to the next level and this is also a big opportunity for De Castro to earn a statement win. I’m going with De Castro to connect and get the first round stoppage victory.
Yorgan De Castro wins by 1st round KO
Featherweight: (7) Jeremy Stephens (28-17-1, 15-16-1 in UFC) vs. (9) Calvin Kattar (20-4, 4-2 in UFC)
Preview: This is an exciting featherweight fight as both men are trying to avenge recent losses and move one step closer to a potential title fight in the future. Jeremy Stephens hasn’t won a fight since his 2018 knockout victory over Josh Emmett as he has gone 0-3-1 in his last four fights with losses against Jose Aldo, Zabit Magomedsharipov and Yair Rodriguez. Calvin Kattar’s last fight was a fight of the night performance bonus in a losing effort against Magomedsharipov and that fight was a lot closer than people give Kattar credit. The last round in that fight showed a strong rally by Kattar but Zabit managed to win 29-28 on the judges score card.
Fight Breakdown: Both fighters have a very solid striking game and both prefer fights to stay on the feet with each fighter possessing knockout power. Jeremy Stephens throws a lot of power behind his strikes and as a result his volume is lower at 3.09 significant strikes per minute but he has good defence on the feet and has only been knocked out twice in his career. Stephens occasionally utilizes his grappling with a 38% accuracy on takedowns as he averages 1.18 per fight. Calvin Kattar loves to fight in close quarters and he tends to push his opponents into a brawl as he lands 5.12 significant strikes per minute while absorbing 6.36 as he is constantly moving forward. His takedown defense is up at 78% and despite absorbing a lot of strikes, Kattar has never lost by knockout in his 24 fight career.
Prediction: Jeremy Stephens is going to continue to look for the knockout but Calvin Kattar will apply so much pressure and constantly be on the attack that it might be suffocating. In Stephens' last fight, Yair Rodriguez out-landed him 96-50 and won by decision and Jeremy Stephens was out-landed against Zabit 70-41 and lost by decision. I see a similar outcome in this fight as Kattar out strikes him on the way to a decision victory.
Calvin Kattar wins by unanimous decision
Heavyweight: (2) Francis Ngannou (14-3, 9-2 in UFC) vs. (6) Jairzinho Rozenstruik (10-0, 4-0 in UFC)
Preview: This is one of the most anticipated heavyweight match-ups in a while as two of the most dangerous knockout artists face off for the first time with the winner likely getting a title shot. Francis Ngannou has been on a roll recently with three straight first round knockout victories over three difficult opponents in Curtis Blaydes, Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos. The 33 year old is the most dangerous fighter in the UFC currently and it would be hard to deny him a title shot if he manages to win this fight by knockout. Jairzinho Rozenstruick joined the UFC in 2019 and the 32 year old kickboxer went 4-0 with four knockout victories including a very late finish of Alistair Overeem in December.
Fight Breakdown: Francis Ngannou is the definition of a knockout artist as he has an average fight time of 6 minutes with seven of his victories coming by first round stoppage. His fight against Stipe Miocic was a major point in his career as it questioned different aspects of his game. The champion was able to land 12 takedowns on 28 attempts while outlanding Ngannou 140-42 and Ngannou landed the majority of his strikes in the first round so this fight really put a question mark on his cardio and wrestling. He hasn’t really had to address the issue since then (besides the horrendous Derrick Lewis fight) because he has been finishing his opponents before the two minute mark. Jairzinho Rozenstruick is similar to Ngannou as the 32 year old opened his UFC career with three quick stoppages but his most recent fight was a true battle against Alistair Overeem. The fight went to the 5th round where Rozenstruick was able to get the victory thanks to a late knockdown and this was a fight that showed Rozenstruick can go 5 rounds. The total significant strikes at the end of the fight were 89-74 in favor of Rozenstruick and it was a true back and forth battle with Rozenstruick taking the edge in the 2nd, 4th and 5th rounds which was truly impressive against a veteran like Overeem. Rozenstruick lands about 3.7 significant strikes per minute which is pretty solid volume for a heavyweight and he does a great job mixing in leg kicks and body strikes.
Prediction: I think overall Francis Ngannou has more explosive power but I’m always wondering what happens if someone can push Ngannou into the later rounds like Stipe did during that title fight. In my opinion Rozenstruick can win this fight if he attacks with more volume and survives past the 1st round. I’m going to surprise a lot of people and pick Rozenstruick to win by decision because sometimes when two explosive fighters face off, we don’t get a knockout finish.
Jairzinho Rozenstruick wins by unanimous decision
Bantamweight: (CH) Henry Cejudo (15-2, 9-2 in UFC) vs. (UR) Dominick Cruz (22-2, 5-1 in UFC)
Preview: I never would have expected this fight to be announced if someone asked me about it a couple months ago as Dominick Cruz fights for the first time in three and a half years as he takes on the Bantamweight champion. Henry Cejudo became the bantamweight champion in June of last year when he won by third round knockout against Marlon Moraes and after vacating his flyweight title in December, it seems as though Cejudo has his eyes on defending the Bantamweight belt. The last fight for Dominick Cruz was the infamous 2016 fight against Cody Garbrandt as the young 25 year old walked in there and beat Cruz by decision making it the first loss Cruz has suffered in 10 years. Since then Dominick Cruz has been plagued by injuries and unable to compete but at 35 years old he is back and ready to make a statement.
Fight Breakdown: Henry Cejudo was previously an Olympic wrestler before he began his career as an MMA fighter.. He even won Gold in 2008 at the Olympics for his weight class and after wrestling for a while he decided to make the switch to MMA in 2013 and he would make his UFC debut in 2014. His wrestling background impacts his approach in MMA as he lands 2.16 takedowns per fight while landing 35% of his takedowns but he has definitely found a home for his striking in recent matches. He lands 3.82 significant strikes per minute while only absorbing 2.73 per minute and his striking defense is a solid 66%. Cejudo does an excellent job attacking the body with his strikes and he looks for opportunities in the clinch to mix in knees and other strikes and it gives his opponent a lot to think about throughout the fight on the various attacks. Dominick Cruz was a technician during his run as Champion as he landed 3.53 significant strikes per minute while only absorbing 2.15 thanks to a 75% significant strike defense. He is also a very talented wrestler that landed on average 3 takedowns per fight while having a takedown defense of 83% to defend against wrestling opponents. His last fight against Garbrandt saw him out-land his opponent 176-136 in significant strikes but he was knocked down 4 times during that fight and Cruz was unable to secure any of his 14 takedown attempts. Cruz did continue to stay busy throughout the fight and his cardio has always been one of his biggest weapons. Cruz has fought and gone the distance in seven championship round fights in his career including victories over Demetrious Johnson, TJ Dillashaw, Urijah Faber and Joseph Benavidez.
Prediction: Obviously both men are going to be ready in the event that the fight goes five rounds but the major talking points are definitely the power and wrestling of Cejudo against the volume and defense of Cruz. I think this fight is a lot closer than people anticipate because Cruz has already shown in the past the ability to come back from long lay-offs and put on a show. Both men are ridiculously talented but I might be leaning towards Cruz based on his knowledge of the game and ability to perform in five round fights.
Dominick Cruz wins by split decision
Lightweight: (1) Tony Ferguson (25-3, 15-1 in UFC) vs. (4) Justin Gaethje (21-2, 4-2 in UFC)
Preview: This was supposed to be Tony Ferguson vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov but because of travel restrictions and a curse that has plagued UFC fans from ever seeing the two compete, it is now Tony Ferguson vs. Justin Gaethje. This fight is for the interim belt and it’s kind of insane considering Tony Ferguson already won the interim belt three fights ago but he is still trying to wait for an official title shot. Ferguson has won 12 fights in a row dating back to 2013 including stoppages in all of his last three fights against Kevin Lee, Anthony Pettis and Donald Cerrone. Justin Gaethje is on a three fight win streak with all victories coming by first round knockout as he has defeated James Vick, Edson Barboza and Donald Cerrone.
Fight Breakdown: This fight is going to be absolutely insane as the two of them have a combined 15 performance of the night bonuses in 22 UFC appearances. Tony Ferguson has a background in collegiate wrestling and has a black belt in Jiu-Jitsu under Eddie Bravo while his stand-up striking really speaks for itself. He strikes at a rate of 5.51 significant strikes landed per minute while only absorbing 3.55 and despite not really going for takedowns he has won eight fights by submission. Tony’s cardio is some of the best in the UFC as he works throughout the fight at an extremely high rate and he rarely finds himself in serious danger despite fighting in some wars. Justin Gaethje fights like an absolute maniac as the 31 year old has 18 of his 21 victories coming by knockout and his volume is insane with 8.50 significant strikes landed per minute and 10.23 significant strikes absorbed per minute. He doesn’t really defend himself well on the feet and he constantly puts himself at risk of being knocked out but Gaethje has connected the big punch on three fights in a row. Tony Ferguson might have finally found someone that is as crazy as he is in the octagon and this fight has potential to be one of the greatest of all time.
Prediction: The smart pick is Tony Ferguson as I believe he has better awareness and timing in his movements and striking but Justin Gaethje is a legitimate wildman. The problem with Justin Gaethje has always been his defense as seen in the Dustin Poirier and Eddie Alvarez fight, he just absorbed way too many strikes and talented fighters can piece him up if they can survive the early onslaught. Tony Ferguson has never been knocked out and I believe he has the right style to make this an exciting fight but also pull away with the win.
Tony Ferguson wins by 3rd round TKO
Quick Overview of my picks:
Ryan Spann (-387) vs. Sam Alvey (+323): Ryan Spann by UD
Bryce Mitchell (-195) vs. Charles Rosa (+170): Charles Rosa by 2nd round TKO
Vicente Luque (-248) vs. Niko Price (+211): Niko Price by 1st round KO
Ronaldo Souza (-133) vs. Uriah Hall (+118): Ronaldo Souza by UD
Michelle Waterson (+108) vs. Carla Esparza (-122): Carla Esparza by UD
Aleksei Oleinik (+247) vs. Fabricio Werdum (-295): Aleksei Oleinik by 1st Round SB
Donald Cerrone (+127) vs. Anthony Pettis (-144): Anthony Pettis by 1st round KO
Greg Hardy (-190) vs. Yorgan De Castro (+166): De Castro by 1st round KO
Calvin Kattar (-250) vs. Jeremy Stephens (+194): Kattar wins by UD
Francis Ngannou (-300) vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruick (+225): Rozenstruick wins by UD
Henry Cejudo (-245) vs. Dominick Cruz (+175): Cruz wins by SD
Tony Ferguson (-200) vs. Justin Gaethje (+162): Ferguson wins by 3rd round TKO