The UFC lands in Ottawa, Canada tonight/today(depending on what country your reading this in) for an action packed card. This is the last UFC event for almost three weeks, so make sure you don’t miss out on one of the most under rated cards of the year. The main event is a potential welterweight title eliminator between Canada’s own Rory MacDonald and Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. MacDonald will make his first appearence in the octagon since his parcipation in 2015’s Fight of the Year, while in his absence Thompson has won his two contests in stunning fashion and that has helped propel him to the summit of the division. In the co-main event, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone makes his second outing at welterweight against the hard-hitting vet Patrick Côté. Elsewhere on the main card, Steve Bossé takes on Sean O’Connell in a light-heavyweight battle; Olivier Aubin-Mercier clashes with Thibault Gouti and in the first ever women’s flyweight match up Valérie Létourneau will battle Scotland’s own Joanne Calderwood. The undercard is just as exciting with Jason Saggo vs. Leoandro Silva, Chris Beal vs. Joe Soto and Elias Theodorou vs. Sam Alvey, to name but a few.
I am now going to put my own “Armchair Expert” status on the line and attempt to predict the outcome of these fights, while also (hopefully) helping you win some money in the process.
Rory MacDonald vs. Stephen Thompson
Styles make fights, as they say and that will never be better proven than in this contest. Thompson is an undefeated kickboxer winning all 57 bouts and he has won 13 fights since turning pro with MMA, only dropping a decision to Matt Brown. As exciting and extravagant as “Wonderboy” has been inside the octagon, his one loss and the manner in which he was defeated makes me lean towards MacDonald getting the victory. Although Rory has’nt fought in almost eleven months, I think that break away will have reinvigorated him. “The Red King” likes to close the distance and land heavy strikes on his opponent and isn’t afraid to take the fight to the mat. Thompson likes to keep the distance so he can throw his wild kicks and as we seen in the Matt Brown fight; if the fight is taken to him up close and personal, he is taken out of his comfort zone. MacDonald will know this and will be sure to implement this on the night. With any fight Thompson is involved in; one slick kick can end the fight but I can’t see MacDonald staying in that sort of range for long enough in the fight.
MacDonald by decision.
Donald Cerrone vs. Patrick Côté
On paper, this looks like easy work for “Cowboy” but Côté is as tough as they come and he has been around the block more than once. Even at 36, Côté still posses knockout power; stopping his last two opponents. The Canadian also has an incredible record when fighting in his own country, only losing once in 18 fights. It will also stand to him that this is only Cerrones second outing at welterweight, but “Cowboy” can never be counted out, he always comes to fight. He has incredible stand up and a very under rated ground game. I think he will keep Côté at distance with kicks to the legs and body and when the time is right, drag him to the ground,take his back and choke him out.
Cowboy by submission.
Steve Bossé vs. Sean O’Connell
Both men like to bang and whoever connects the cleanest will be the victor. O’Connell will probably be remembered more for his highlight reel of him fooling around at weigh-ins rather than his actual fights. Although he lands an incredible amount of shots, he absorbs just as many. Bossé on the other hand picks his shots that bit better and has a greater defence. For that alone I can see Bossé landing a big shot to the head of O’Connell thus ending the fight early.
Bossé by KO.
Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Thibault Gouti
Both men are coming off bad losses and will want to bury that memory with a victory here. Gouti’s UFC debut didn’t go to plan, tapping out after 24 seconds and that put a stop to his 11 fight win streak. Unfortunately, those wins weren’t exactly against a murders row and I think Aubin-Mercier will have too much for Gouti. I’d imagine Aubin-Mercier will take him down and ground and pound him for 15 minutes.
Aubin-Mercier by Decsion.
Valérie Létourneau vs. Joanne Calderwood
This first ever women’s flyweight fight should produce a good old fashioned back and forth match. Létourneau has heavy hands and she enjoys letting them loose on her opponents face. If she can stay smart and draw Joanne into trading shots she could snatch the win but I don’t see it playing out like that. Calderwood is a talented fighter, she’s been decent but not overly impressive in her UFC career so far but now that she has teamed up with the Tristar gym her game should move to the next level. I expect her to stick to her game plan and pick Valérie off with careful placed shots and do enough to win by decsion.
Joanne Calderwood by Decsion.
Best of the Rest:
Jason Saggo vs. Leandro Silva
Saggo to win.
Misha Cirkunov vs. Ion Cutela
Cirkunov to win.
Tamdan McCrory vs. Krzysztof Jotko
Jotko to win.
Chris Beal vs. Joe Soto
Beal to win.
Elias Theodorou vs. Sam Alvey
Theodorou to win.
Randa Markos vs. Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger
Markos to win.
Colby Covington vs. Jonathan Meunier
Covington to win.
Ali Bagautinov vs. Geane Herrera
Bagautinov to win.
Bet of the Day:
If your feeling adventurous an accumulator on all my predictions is about 898/1
For the less optimistic go for Markos, Theodorou, Jotko, Cirkunov, Calderwood and MacDonald an accumulator on all 6 pays about 40/1.
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