It’s fight night at the Apex again (or, as it’s sometimes known, ‘Sweet Dreams Stadium) as two Light Heavyweights look to move up the rankings. Ultimate Fighter Alum Thiago Santos takes on a man who came up through the Contender Series, Jamahal Hill.
Champions of season 30 of The Ultimate Fighter will be crowned. In the Heavyweight division, Kamaru Usman’s brother Mohammed will take centre stage, taking on Zac Pauga. In the Bantamweight division. Brogan Walker takes on Julianna Miller.
UFC Fight Night: Santos vs Hill
Thiago ‘Murreta’ Santos vs Jamahal ‘Sweet Dreams’ Hill
This should be a cracking fight. A victory here for Jamahal Hill will get him one step closer to a title shot in a crowded division. Hill is ranked fifth, and a win over a former title challenger will help that cause.
Santos has been there before; he’s challenged for the title. The Brazilian will do anything to get back there, and Hill is standing in his way. Santos also sorely needs a win here; he has won only one fight in his last five. If ‘ Murreta’ is to make a charge for the title, a win is a must.
Both men have knock-out power, and the winner may come down to who strikes first.
Betting Odds on Neds: Thiago Santos $3.60 Jamahal Hill $1.30
Vicente ‘The Silent Assasin’ Luque vs Geoff ‘Handz of Steel’ Neale
Luque will be looking to get back in the title hunt after coming off a loss to Belal Muhammed. ‘The Silent Assasin’ is a quality fighter who can put on a show on his day. He is very experienced and has been in the Octagon with the division’s best.
Neale will want to crack the top 10 at Welterweight, and both fighters share a couple of opponents. Beating Luque convincingly is what Neale should aim for; anything less is a disappointment.
Like the main event, this is also an ‘Ultimate Fighter’ vs ‘Contender Series’ fight; maybe we will see which is the better reality show at the end.
Betting Odds on Neds: Vicente Luque $1.52 Geoff Neale $2.55
Augusto Sakai vs Serghei ‘The Polar Bear’ Spivac
Like it has been said in this blog before, there is nothing like a Heavyweight fight.
Sakai’s back is against the wall; he must win this fight. Losing his last three fights, even if they were against top-tier competition, won’t help him. A veteran of MMA, before making it to the UFC via the Contender Series, Sakai fought in Bellator. His only loss came to former UFC fighter Cheick Kongo (he also had a draw).
Like his opponent, Spivac has also fought some of the best of the division and has even beaten them. It’s unusual to see someone with his fight experience not be ranked; maybe it’s because of a couple of losses to key opponents. Beating Sakai here should get him ranked.
Betting Odds on Neds: Augusto Sakai $3.45 Serghei Spivac $1.32
Ariane ‘Queen of Violence’ Lipski vs Priscila ‘Zombie Girl’ Cachoeira
The main card starts with a fight between two women who probably have the best nicknames in all of MMA. Fans should be treated to a knock-down drag-out fight.
The fight will be at a catch-weight; Lipski failed to make the Flyweight limit and has been fined 20% of her purse.
Both women are coming off a win; they want to keep their momentum going to make it two in a row. Lipski likes to come forward and is known as a striker, but she does have a few submissions on her record. Could this be the way to victory for the Brazilian?
Cachoeira, like Lipski is a striker. If there is one area where she is uncomfortable, it’s off her back. Cachoeira will want to keep the standing; Lipski has the better ground game.
Betting Odds on Neds: Ariane Lipski $1.53 Priscila Cachoeira $2.55
Note: The author hasn’t watched enough of the Ultimate Fighter to comment on the finalist’s journey.