UFC 247 is tomorrow night & emanates from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. The weigh-ins took place, this morning & all 24 fighters successfully made weight. It’s a pretty top-heavy card, but features some very promising prospects throughout the entire night.
Here’s a quick-look at the full card…
Main Card (LIVE on PPV) – 10:00pmET
Light Heavyweight Championship – Jon Jones (C) (25-1) vs Dominick Reyes (12-0)
Women’s Flyweight Championship – Valentina Shevchenko (C) (16-3) vs Katlyn Chookagian (13-2)
Heavyweight Bout – Juan Adams (5-2) vs Justin Tafa (3-1)
Featherweight Bout – Mirsad Bektic (13-2) vs Dan Ige (12-2)
Heavyweight Bout – Derrick Lewis (22-7) vs Ilir Latifi (14-7)
Preliminary Card (LIVE on ESPN) – 8:00pmET
Middleweight Bout – Trevin Giles (11-2) vs Antonio Arroyo (9-3)
Flyweight Bout – Lauren Murphy (11-4) vs Andrea Lee (11-3)
Welterweight Bout – Alex Morono (17-5) vs Kalinn Williams (9-1)
Early Preliminary Card (LIVE on ESPN Plus) 6:15pmET
Bantamweight Bout – Miles Johns (10-0) vs Mario Bautista (7-1)
Bantamweight Bout – Domingo Pilarte (8-2) vs Journey Newson (9-2)
Bantamweight Bout – Andre Ewell (15-6) vs Jonathan Martinez (11-2)
Featherweight Bout – Austin Lingo (7-0) vs Youseff Zalal (7-2)
Let’s start our breakdown with the headliner, arguably the greatest Mixed Martial Artist of all-time, Jon ‘Bones’ Jones defending his Light Heavyweight Title against the undefeated Dominick Reyes.
Just by the two headlining names, casual fans may think it’s a foregone conclusion that Jones will easily retain against the mostly unknown Reyes. However that may not be the case. Jones may be the favorite in every Sports book on the planet but Reyes has put together quite the resumé since his UFC debut in the Summer of 2015 which was a 1st round KO of the 13-year MMA veteran, Joachim Christensen. After that, Reyes has pretty much cleared out the 205-pound division of contenders, holding wins over Jared Cannonier, former-title challengers Ovince St Preux & Volkan Oezdemir & most recently a violent 1st Round KO of former Middleweight Champion, Chris Weidman to solidify himself as the unquestioned # 1 Contender to the Pound-for-Pound King, Jon Jones. It’s also well-known that Jones’ biggest problems have come against tall, strong, well-rounded fighters in the form of Alexander Gustafsson & Thiago Santos. Reyes poses a very viable threat to the reigning 205-pound King and shouldn’t be taken lightly one-bit.
Prediction – Jones by Decision
The final of our 2 breakdowns will be the other title fight on the card which is the co-feature of the evening, with 125 pound Women’s Champion Valentina Shevchenko making her 3rd title defense against BJJ specialist Katlyn Chookagian.
Outside of Amanda Nunes, Valentina Shevchenko may hold the best resumé of any woman on the UFC roster at present time. Holding wins over former champions Holly Holm & Joanna Jedrzejczyk, as well as former title challengers Jessica Eye & Liz Carmouche. While Shevchenko is the clear odds-on favorite to defend her title, Chookagian poses a very real threat to the 125-pound Queen’s reign. Shevchenko is one of the best strikers in all of the UFC, in any weight class. Chookagian has the best fight style to have a chance to pull the upset. The challenger has a slow, grinding, work-horse type of style that keeps her in any fight & wins her most of them. She’s a poor-man’s Daniel Cormier for lack of a better example. She wants to bring you to the mat & if she’s successful, her opponent is in a world of trouble & isn’t getting up unless they lose a limb in the process. Now, with that being said, the champion may be too much for her to handle in the end.
Prediction – Shevchenko by Late-Round TKO
Rest of Card Predictions :
Adams Over Tafa by TKO
Bektic Over Ige by Decision
Lewis Over Latifi by TKO
Giles over Arroyo by Decision
Lee over Murphy by Submission
Morono Over Williams by Decision
Johns Over Bautista by Decision
Pilarte Over Newson by Submission
Ewell Over Martinez by TKO
Lingo Over Zalal by TKO
Thanks for reading & let me know your predictions for UFC 247 on Twitter @tvttedwhiteboy!