UFC makes its way to Long Island, New York, for UFC on ABC 3. Brian Ortega looks to get back into title contention, taking on the dangerous Yair Rodriguez. The co-main event will see Michelle Waterson-Gomez take on the perilous Brazilian Amanda Lemos.
For Aussie fight fans, it will be an early start tomorrow as the preliminary card starts at 1 am AEST, with the main card at 4 am.
Brian ‘T-City’ Ortega vs Yair ‘El Pantera’ Rodriquez
One man is looking for a rematch with the champ, and the other wants a shot at him. This will be a great fight, so don’t blink (Aussie fans, try not to fall asleep). Ortega is coming off a loss to Alex Volkanovski. The decision didn’t go Ortega’s way, but there were times he had the champion in trouble.
Rodriguez is also coming off a loss to former champion Max Halloway. A win over ‘T-City’ will put him next in line to challenge Volkinovski. He is a very unorthodox striker and will need to keep Ortega guessing. What ‘El Pantera’ can’t do is leave himself wide open to get tagged as he did with Halloway. If he does, he may fall into a submission hold, and we’ve seen how quick Ortega can slap on a guillotine choke.
Ortega needs to not get in a brawl with Rodriguez. he is sometimes too tough for his own good, as evident in his loss to Halloway. Once he rocks Rodriguez, go in for the kill and make it an easy night at the office.
Betting Odds on Neds: Brian Ortega $1.60 Yair Rodriguez $2.35
‘The Karate Hottie’ Michelle Waterson vs Amanda Lemos
Waterson has won one of her last five fights, so she needs a win here. She probably won’t get cut from the promotion if she does lose, but it will be good to see her get back into the winner’s circle.
Lemos racked up a five-fight win streak before it ended at Jessica Andrade’s hands. One of the highlights of that streak was her submission win over Miranda Granger, a choke that looked like she was in an impossible position to finish. She is a powerful puncher; standing and trading with her is not a good idea.
Waterson will need to be aware of Lemos’ power. She could go the Angela Hill route, but she may find herself on the wrong end of a decision. Waterson has several submission wins, so that may be the way to go in this fight.
Betting Odds on Neds: Michelle Waterson $3.40 Amanda Lemos $1.33
‘The Leech’ Li Jingliang vs Muslim ‘King of Kung Fu’ Salikhov
Jingliang is a 14-year veteran in the UFC, and a scalp like this will be a good one for Salikhov. The ‘King of Kung Fu’ is riding a five-fight win streak. Can he make it six? Fans will have to wait and see.
Jingliang is tough and will throw down when needed, but it may be wrong to get in a dog fight with Salikhov; his right hand can put anyone to sleep. Salikhov also likes to go to the body with the jab and then attack with a spin kick; Jiangliang will need to watch for that. Salikhov’s two losses have come by submission, so it may be wise for Jingliang to submit him as a KO may not happen.
Salikhov will need to mix things up as he did against Taleb and be patient. Though Jingliang has not been KO’d, Salikhov has the right hand to do it.
Betting Odds on Neds: Li Jingliang $2.35 Muslim Salikhov $1.60
Matt ‘Danger’ Schnell vs ‘Ther Tibetan Eagle’ Sumudaerji
Can Schnell bring the ‘danger’ to Long Island? He will have to if he is going to win this fight. Sumudaerji, a southpaw, has a nice straight left, which he put Malcolm Gordon away with at UFC Vegas 15. Sumudaerji does not want to go to the ground with Schnell; of his four losses, all four have come by way of submission, and if Schnell locks in a triangle, it will be all over.
On the other hand, Schnell will have to avoid staying on his feet with Sumudaerji. Staying upright and brawling with ‘The Tibetan Eagle’ might make him lose a decision; he is better off going for his bread and butter, grappling (he has a beautiful Triangle choke) to win.
It could be a quick night for the winner in this fight.
Betting Odds on Neds: Matt Schnell $3.20 Sumudaerji $1.36
Shane ‘Hurricane’ Burgos vs Charles ‘Air’ Jourdain
After a two-fight skid, Burgos returned to the winner’s circle last November by defeating Billy Quarantillo. His two losses were against Edson Barboza and Josh Emmett, respectively. The ‘Hurricane’ doesn’t put on a boring fight, so Jourdain better be ready.
Although he got taken down early, Jourdain bounced back perfectly in his fight with Lando Vannata. He knocked down Vannata with a lovely left hand and finished him with a guillotine. Burgos will not be as easy to finish, so Jourdain should be ready for a war.
A win here might even see Jourdain fight a higher-ranked opponent, but this should be a cracking fight no matter what happens.
Betting Odds on Neds: Shane Burgos $1.60 Charles Jourdain $2.35
‘Lucky’ Lauren Murphy vs Miesha ‘Cupcake’ Tate
These ladies finally get to face off after a couple of false starts. The former champion Tate returned last year, coming out of retirement after five years. In her previous fight, she lost a unanimous decision to Ketlan Vieira. Tate’s strength is her grappling, so taking it might be a three-round wrestle fest with ‘Cupcake coming out on top.
Ultimate Fighter alum Murphy will need to not play into Tate’s wrestling. Keeping her distance so she doesn’t get caught in the clinch or so that she sprawl should be her aim. Making it a firefight is what will win it for her.
Betting Odds on Neds: Lauren Murphy $2.70 Miesha Tate $1.46
Enjoy the fights!