A pair of upcoming fight cards have received upgrades to them, and I’ll offer my thoughts on the newest bouts in the current MMA odds and ends.
Chance Rencountre vs. Kyle Stewart, UFC on ESPN+ 1 (UFC Fight Night 143)
We have the last fight card upgrade for the UFC on ESPN+ 1 card this weekend, taking place Saturday in Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Chance Rencountre eventually has his opponent as he’ll take on Octagon newcomer Kyle Stewart in a lightweight bout on the card. ESPN first broke the news. Rencountre’s original opponent Randy Brown was pulled in the card because of a rumored USADA flagging, while Dwight Grant wasn’t cleared to fight due to an eye injury. Rencountre (12-3) chose to Belal Muhammad in his UFC debut but’d won four consecutive bouts before it. Stewart (11-1) has just lost once in his profession, to top LFA prospect James Nakashima, also in his last bout conquered Braden Smith by choice. I believe most will seem to fade Rencountre in this area, and I expect Stewart to really be a slight favourite here despite making his UFC debut on short notice.
Lando Vannata vs. Marcos Rosa, UFC 234
Lightweight Lando Vannata recently reupped a fresh four-fight contract with the UFC, and he now returns to combat Octagon newcomer Marcos Rosa at UFC 234, occurring February 10 at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia. ESPN broke the information. Vannata (9-3-2) only has a 1-3-2 album in the UFC, but almost every one of his battles was exciting that is why the UFC decided to bring him back. He’s coming off of a draw against Matt Frevola, also hasn’t really won a fight as a KO win over John Makdessi at December 2016. Rosa (6-4) is a veteran of the Brazilian regional circuit also has actually won three of his final four bouts by stoppage. Ultimately it feels like the UFC has reserved Vannata a winnable fight, and I expect him to be a sizeable favorite to get his hands raised.
Dong Hyun Ma vs. Devonte Smith, UFC 234
And finally, Dong Hyun Ma (formerly called”another” Dong Yun Kim) will return at UFC 234 if he chooses on Devonte Smith in what ought to be an action-packed lightweight bout. Ma (16-8-3) is 3-2 overall from the UFC and is now riding a three-fight win series including a notable TKO win over Takanori Gomi along with a decision win over Damien Brown. Smith (9-1) is 1-0 so much in the UFC with a ridiculous KO win over Julian Erosa. He’s won his last five fights, and all eight of his ace wins have come by stoppage, with his lone defeat a TKO loss to John Gunther. I very much like watching Ma battle and I must provide the UFC matchmakers props for booking what’s sure to be an exciting fight. But I’m very high on Smith and I think he’s likely to come back in here and finish Ma’s win streak. Look for Smith to be the preferred in the sportsbooks following his flashy UFC debut.
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