Tag Archives: Malcolm Gordon

UFC Vegas 47: Hermansson vs Strickland – Early prelims predictions

After a short two week break following on from the return of fights in 2022, the UFC is back with a middleweight main event at UFC Vegas 47 this weekend.

In the headline fight Jack Hermansson looks to make it back-to-back wins when he takes on Sean Strickland at 185-pounds, where we could either see a new contender in the division or find out that neither are championship calibre.

Last time out at UFC 270 we had a bad night, going 5/11 with one perfect pick to move to 519/813 (63.84%) with 218 perfect picks (42%).

We’ll look to improve that record here, starting with the early prelims of this 13-fight card.


Malcolm Gordon (13-5) vs Denys Bondar (16-3) – (Flyweight/125lbs)

An exciting flyweight bout to open the card up. Gordon suffered defeat in his first two UFC bouts to Amir Albazi and Su Mudaerji, before finally getting in the win column last time out against Francisco Figueiredo at UFC Vegas 31, while Bondar makes his UFC debut on an eight-fight win streak.

Gordon is a talented striker on the feet with good technique and leg kicks, while Bondar is a relentless grinder who looks for wrestling and top control to dominate his opponents. With 16 finishes from 16 wins, his top control is so smooth and he looks for finishes over just holding the position which isn’t good news for someone like Gordon who struggles in the grappling department.

Bondar will come forward and look to score the takedown eventually and the only way that Gordon wins this is via a submission off his back or by avoiding takedowns for the entire 15 minutes. That just doesn’t seem likely to me, so I think Bondar secures a ground-and-pound finish midway through the second after wearing Gordon down.
PICK – Denys Bondar via Knockout, Round 2

Jason Witt (19-7) vs Phil Rowe (8-3) – (Welterweight/170lbs)

Two welterweights looking to make an impression on the UFC fanbase in this one. Witt bounced back from a 12-second KO defeat at UFC Vegas 21 with a majority decision win over Bryan Barbarena at UFC Vegas 33, while Rowe claimed a knockout win over Orion Cosce on the same card to bounce back from his own defeat in the previous fight.

Witt is an excellent wrestler with a good gas tank, but his glass chin doesn’t help him when he comes up against true power punchers. Rowe is, unsurprisingly, a great power puncher with good technique and good range too. Rowe also has a massive 10.5 inch reach advantage and knows how to use that distance well, so he will likely step away plenty to avoid getting into grappling exchanges.

I expect Witt will be able to start the fight well and potentially take the round, but Rowe will know it only takes one big shot to put Witt down. On this occasion, I expect Rowe will survive a bad opening round off his back then get back to his feet and land a big right hand that puts Witt out, again.
PICK – Phil Rowe via Knockout, Round 2



Jailton Almeida (14-2) vs Danilo Marques (11-3) – (Light Heavyweight/205lbs)

A very fun light heavyweight bout between two Brazilians in this one. Almeida makes his UFC debut on a nine-fight win streak, who earned a contract thanks to a submission win on Dana White’s Contender Series. Marques on the other hand saw a four-fight winning streak snapped last time out, when he got knocked out by Kennedy Nzechukwu at UFC Vegas 30.

Almeida has previously described himself as ‘the Brazilian Khabib’ and you can see why in his fighting style. ‘Malhadinho’ looks to get takedowns quickly and with little energy being exerted, before wrapping up the legs and landing damage and advancing position. He has finished all his victories, with nine of them coming via submission. Marques on the other hand is also a talented grappler, who has some good kicks and looks to set up grappling exchanges once he’s closed the distance.

If Marques tries to engage in grappling then he’ll find himself quickly outmatched by the athleticism and power of Almeida. On the feet, it’s a pretty even match up but Almeida once again seems to have the advantage and while his cardio is untested at this level, we watched Marques’ fail him in his most recent fight. Overall, Almeida gets top position and pushes for submissions but claims a wide decision win by the end of this one.
PICK – Jailton Almeida via Decision

UFC Vegas 31: Makhachev vs Moises – Prelims predictions

The lightweight division takes centre stage once again for the UFC this weekend as the highly rated Islam Makhachev headlines his first card against Tiago Moises at UFC Vegas 31.

Makhachev is hotly anticipated to make a run for the lightweight title in the future but takes on arguably his biggest test so far in this main event clash, replacing Max Holloway vs Yair Rodriguez which fell apart due to an injury for ‘Blessed’.

Last week at UFC 264 we had an excellent run, going 11/12 with three perfect picks to move to 363/566 (64.13%) with 163 perfect picks (44.9%) overall.

Lets see if we can improve on that run here with this 11 fight card, starting with the early prelims and prelims here.


Alan Baudot (8-2) vs Rodrigo Nascimento (8-1) – (Heavyweight/220-265lbs)

A heavyweight banger to open the card as Baudot looks for his first UFC win against Nascimento. Baudot lost his debut, getting KO’d by Tom Aspinall at UFC Fight Island 5 while Nascimento won his debut but was knocked out by Chris Daukaus on the same card in 45 seconds.

Baudot is a heavy handed striker but quite slow on his feet, loading his strikes up but when landing taking someone’s head off. Nascimento is a supreme jiu-jitsu player with seven submissions from eight career wins, with superb top pressure and good sweeps from his back too. It’s a weird match up between them, but realistically Nascimento is likely to secure a takedown early and dominate to an early submission win if he can afford getting his head taken off first.

PICK – Rodrigo Nascimento via Submission, Round 1

Francisco Figueiredo (12-3-1) vs Malcolm Gordon (12-5) – (Flyweight/125lbs)

The brother of the former champion in Figueiredo takes on Malcolm ‘X’ Gordon in the flyweight division. Figueiredo won his debut with the company with a win over Jerome Rivera at UFC Fight Island 8, while Gordon went 0-2 in 2020 with first round defeats to Amir Albazi at UFC Fight Island 2 and Su Mudaerji.

Figueiredo fights in a similar way to his brother, just without the x-factor power and submission skills. Gordon on the other hand is a good wrestler with heavy top pressure and tiring his opponent out from above. Figueiredo will almost certainly look to use his defensive wrestling to keep the fight standing and just piece him up on the feet, while Gordon will try hard to take him down and wear him out.

Unfortuately for Gordon, Figueiredo’s got good power in his left hand and good takedown defence so he should be able to secure the win.
PICK – Francisco Figueiredo via Decision

Miles Johns (11-1) vs Anderson Dos Santos (21-8) – (Bantamweight/135lbs)

A fun bantamweight bout here as Johns and Dos Santos look to make it two wins in a row against each other. Johns was stopped by Mario Bautista before bouncing back with a stoppage win of his own against Kevin Natividad at UFC Vegas 12. Dos Santos lost his first two UFC fights via decision, but finally got a win when he submitted Martin Day.

Johns has a stiff jab that lands very often and always has his wrestling skills to fall back on whenever necessary. Dos Santos on the other hand has good power in his hands but the techniques are limited to hooks mostly, while his submission game on the ground is great and dangerous.

Johns’ wrestling is good enough to control where the fight goes and has the better striking on the feet, so as long as his cardio holds up this should be a good win for him.
PICK – Miles Johns via Decision

Khalid Taha (13-3) vs Sergey Morozov (16-4) – (Bantamweight/135lbs)

An absolute banger coming up at 135lbs as Taha and Morozov look to bounce back from defeats last time out in the UFC. Taha put on an okay performance against Raoni Barcelos at UFC Vegas 13 but was beaten, while Morozov got beaten up and submitted by Umar Nurmagomedov at UFC Fight Island 8.

Taha is a solid striker with good pressure and volume to his game, while Morozov has excellent grappling skills despite the defeat in his last bout via submission. Both fighters have issues with the other’s strengths and realistically this is a fight that has two outcomes.

Either Taha can avoid the takedowns and batters Morozov on the feet, or Morozov eats a few punches to get the fight to the ground and dominates on the mat. The latter is more likely in my eyes judging by Taha’s previous attempts at defending takedowns, so Morozov gets my pick.
PICK – Sergey Morozov via Decision

Amanda Lemos (9-1-1) vs Montserrat Ruiz (10-1) – (Strawweight/115lbs)

A fun fight in the women’s strawweight division between Lemos and Ruiz, both coming into the bout on win streaks. Lemos has won her last three, beating Mizuki Inoue at UFC Vegas 18 before KO’ing Livinha Souza at UFC 259. Ruiz on the other hand won her debut against Cheyanne Buys with an impressive performance at UFC Vegas 22.

Lemos is one hell of a striker, with great strikes and knees and also some really good takedown defence too. Ruiz is short and aggressive and in her last bout she showed that from the clinch she’s really dangerous with the head and arm throw to wear her opponents down.

Lemos is so powerful and has really good leg kicks to go with it too, so I’d be surprised if Ruiz can cope with this level of fighter right now.
PICK – Amanda Lemos via Knockout, Round 2

Daniel Rodriguez (14-2) vs Preston Parsons (9-2) – (Welterweight/170lbs)

Featured prelim bout is an interesting welterweight clash between the young Daniel Rodriguez against UFC debutant Parsons. Rodriguez is 2-1 in his most recent fights seeing a decision loss to Nicolas Dalby at UFC 255 sandwiched between wins over Dwight Grant and Mike Perry at UFC Vegas 22. Parsons is on a four-fight win streak coming into this fight and steps in on short notice.

Rodriguez is a sensational boxer, with fantastic jabs and a powerhouse of a left hand. Parsons is a very heavy wrestler who has excellent submission skills and a violent clinch game too. While Rodriguez has never fought a fighter as heavily reliant on wrestling, he was preparing for Abubakar Nurmagomedov. Rodriguez is by far the best fighter Parsons has ever fought and on short notice it’s surely a hurdle too much to overcome.
PICK – Daniel Rodriguez via Knockout, Round 2

UFC Vegas 15: Blaydes vs Lewis – Prelims Predictions

The heavyweight scene steps to the front of the queue for attention as Curtis Blaydes gets the fight he called for against Derrick Lewis.

The main event is a chance for both men to push towards the front of the queue for a title shot, with both fighters on impressive win streaks.

In the co-main, Anthony Smith looks to get back to winning ways when he takes on Devin Clark in the light-heavyweight division on a relatively below par card.

Last weekend we had an okay showing, with 7/12 correct picks but only two correct picks for the night. This moved our overall picks up to 175/264 (66.29%) with 80 perfect picks (45.71%) since starting our picks in June.

With eleven fights on the card scheduled, lets see what we can rustle up starting with the prelims here.

PRELIMS

Luke Sanders (13-3) vs Nate Maness (12-1) – (Catchweight/140lbs)

Two bangers meet up in the opening fight of the night as Luke Sanders and Nate Maness look to make it back-to-back wins in the UFC for the first time. Sanders is currently 3-3 in the organisation and won his last fight by KO’ing former champion Renan Barao in February 2019. Maness made his debut last time out, scraping past late notice opponent Johnny Munhoz Jr in August via decision. Sanders is a hard-hitting striker who has glaring deficiencies on the ground. Unfortunately Maness doesn’t have the skills on the mat to harm him in that way and in a stand up battle he is out-gunned. Sanders either hurts him in the pocket with some big shots, or picks him off for a judges decision.
PICK – Luke Sanders via Knockout, Round 2

Su Mudaerji (12-4) vs Malcolm Gordon (12-4) – (Flyweight/125lbs)

A striker’s paradise in this one as Su Mudaerji looks to make it back-to-back wins in the UFC as Malcolm Gordon looks for a maiden victory in the organisation. Gordon was tapped out on Fight Island by his short-notice opponent Amir Albazi which came as a shock since half of his wins in his career have come via submission. While Mudaerji did well to dominate against Andre Soukhamthath, Soukhamthath has a habit of imploding in fights. Mudaerji is a decent striker but has a level of wrestling far inferior to Gordon’s. If the fight goes to the ground then Gordon should be able to get a finish but if it’s on the feet, Mudaerji should be able to outstrike him. It’s a 50/50 fight but I think don’t Mudaerji has shown he can defend takedowns too greatly, so Gordon will take a win.
PICK – Malcolm Gordon via Submisison, Round 2

Kai Kamaka III (8-2) vs Jonathan Pearce (9-4) – (Featherweight/145lbs)

A six-fight win streak is what Kamaka is defending in this fight following a successful UFC debut against Tony Kelley back in August. Pearce was successful on Dana White’s Contender Series before a debut defeat to Joe Lauzon in August 2019 and this is his first fight since that loss. When Pearce fought Lauzon, he was absolutely battered to a first round knockout. He has a pressure game that is hard to implement against someone who is a better striker, which is what Kamaka is. Kamaka is also a better wrestler so he will control where this fight goes. He has had cardio issues in the past though but he should be good enough to secure the first two rounds at least to take a decision win.
PICK – Kai Kamaka III via Decision

Gina Mazany (6-4) vs Rachel Ostovich (4-5) – (Flyweight/125lbs)

A fight between two women who are likely fighting for their future in the organisation. Gina Mazany is a well-rounded fighter with good takedown defence and good striking, while Ostovich is a slick grappler and not much else going for her. Both of these women aren’t really UFC calibre as their records show, with three of Mazany’s four losses in the company coming in under two minutes. This one will likely go the distance either way, but I take Mazany because she’s got more to her game. This won’t be a great fight though.

Martin Day (8-4) vs Anderson Dos Santos (20-8) – (Bantamweight/135lbs)

Two fighters coming off back-to-back defeats will be keen to get back to winning ways in this bantamweight clash. Day lost to Pingyuan Liu in November 2018 before returning on Fight Island and losing to Davey Grant via knockout, while Dos Santos lost two decisions to Nad Nirimani and Andre Ewell, the last of those coming in July 2019. Day has a big striking advantage in this bout to go with his height and reach edge. He has some weak takedown defence, but Dos Santos showed against Ewell that despite having a wrestling edge he couldn’t get it going and that could be a big issue in this fight too. Day should be able to pick Dos Santos apart at range and so long as he doesn’t give up sloppy takedowns, should be comfortable keeping it on the feet too.
PICK – Martin Day via Decision

Ashlee Evans-Smith (6-4) vs Norma Dumont (4-1) – (Bantamweight/135lbs)

The prelims headliner in the women’s bantamweight division comes between two women who each lost their last bout. Evans-Smith was beaten by Andrea Lee almost two years ago in her last fight, where she took a step back and switched gyms to James Krause’s Glory MMA. Dumont made her debut in February this year against Megan Anderson and was knocked out with relative ease in the first round. Much like the earlier women’s fight we spoke of, Evans-Smith probably shouldn’t be in the UFC anymore and Dumont hasn’t shown anything in her one octagon bout to show she does either. The difference there is that she went up a weight-class to fight one of the best in that division. Aside from that, there’s next to no footage of Dumont in the cage so it’s hard to pick her against someone who we’ve seen plenty of. Even though she’s not very good, she has shown enough and fought better quality opponents with success and therefore I have to pick her.
PICK – Ashlee Evans-Smith via Decision