It has been a long wait for Aussie MMA fans, but tomorrow is the day. Alex Volkanovski could join the double champ club, but it won’t be easy as he takes on Islam Lakhachev.
In the co-main event, Yair Rodriguez and Josh Emmett will slug it out for the interim Featherweight title. One of Australia’s most exciting fighters, Jack Della Maddalena, is also on the card, taking on Randy Brown.
Islam Makachev vs Alexander ‘The Great’ Volkanovski
Two men who are chasing greatness. Makachev will be the Featherweight Champions’ most formidable challenge to date. However, if you have followed Volkanovski’s career, then you know that not only does he love a challenge, he overcomes them as well. The Aussie has cardio for days; he always tries to win in the scramble and has fast, slick combinations. Will it be enough?
Makhachev will be looking to do what he does best, wrestle. The question is, will he be able to keep Volkanovski down? The Russian will look to drag his opponent where he hasn’t been before, and he will push the pace. It will be a long night if Volkanovski can’t stop the takedown. It won’t be just the submissions that the Aussie will have to worry about; it will also be the ground and pound.
This is an excellent test for Volkanovski; win or lose, he will become a better fighter on the other side.
Odds on Neds: Islam Makhachev $1.25 Alex Volkanovski $4.00
Yair ‘El Pantera’ Rodriguez vs Josh Emmett
Two of the Featherweight division’s top contenders look to either become the new kingpin. Depending on the main event’s outcome, they may not be the interim champion for long. Josh Emmett is at home on the feet or the ground. He comes from a great team, Team Alpha Male, renowned for producing great lighter-weight fighters.
Fans were robbed of what would have been a great fight back in July last year when Brian Ortega was injured against ‘El Pantera’, and most people would have expected a rematch between those two. Without fighting for six months, Rodriguez can’t wait around for a rematch, especially when a Championship opportunity comes knocking. Rodriguez is a dynamic striker; he must avoid Emmett’s wrestling. These two will go toe to toe, making for an exciting fight.
Odds on Neds: Yair Rodriguez $1.52 Josh Emmett $2.55
Jack Della Maddalena vs Randy ‘Rude Boy’ Brown
Della Maddalena, a man who got his start in Dana White’s contender Series has shown that he is an exciting prospect in the Welterweight division. His three wins since coming off the show have all been by TKO. Now he gets the chance to do it in front of hometown fans; there is no doubt he will rise to the occasion.
Brown has been in the UFC longer than his opponent, so he knows what it takes to get the job done in the Octagon. ‘Rude Boy’ is looking forward to giving Della Maddalena a loss in his backyard. It may be a tough ask, as the Aussie fans will give it to the American all day (or night for US fans watching).
Odds on Neds Jack Della Maddalena $1.52 Randy Brown $3.60
Justin ‘Bad Man’ Tafa vs Parker Porter
After having only three fights to his name, Justin Tafa was quickly snapped up by the UFC. Since arriving in the promotion, he has gone 2-3. A win over Parker will ensure he can fight on another Aussie card, and Tafa has heavy hands and will be looking for the knockout.
Parker has double the amount of fights his Aussie counterpart has. After three wins in a row, Porter lost in his last fight by submission. The American will be looking to start another winning streak with Tafa standing his way. Porter will not want to throw hands with the Aussie; instead, he should look to grind out a win.
Odds on Neds: Justin Tafa $1.78 Parker Porter $2.05
Jimmy ‘The Brute’ Crute vs Alonzo ‘Atomic’ Menifield
After having some time off, Jimmy Crute will once again grace the Octagon. His last fight, which took place in 2021, was a loss against the current Light-Heavyweight Champion, Jamahal Hill. Before that, Crute lost to former title challenger Anthony Smith as well. Hopefully, the time off will have refreshed Crute and doesn’t have any ring rust.
Menifield is coming off two good wins, including one over Misha Cirkunov, A man that has beaten Crute. However, he will be walking into enemy territory, but it’s not out of the question that he can beat Crute. Menifield has power, but he can also go the distance if needed. He only has two submission wins; one was a win by submission to punches. He will have to be careful on the ground; Crute has submission wins and trains with some good submission fighters.
Odds on Neds: Jimmy Crute $1.55 Alonzo Menifield $2.50
Early prelims start at 10 am AEDT on UFC Fight Pass. The main card is only available on Pay Per View, either on Fight Pass or Main Event.