Prime Beef, UFC 253 Predictions
Source: @UFC_AUSNZ via twitter
It's here! It's finally here! A day that feels more like Christmas than it does fight night sees a beef that is so juicy, so tender, so well seasoned, that a fight fan, hell a sports fan, can't help but salivate over. Two fighters in their prime, two fighters who are undefeated, two fighters who aim to entertain, and two fighters that absolutely despise each other. This fight is as sure as a thing as it gets.
So yes, Adesanya versus Costa will be a certified slobberknocker, no doubt, but we also have another title fight to look forward to that could steal the show as well. Dominick Reyes and Jan Blachowicz has all the potential in the world to be a great fight. Just like in the main event, these men have styles that wreak of combat, no going backwards, neither are defensive in nature.
What a night this could be. PREDICTIONS!
Israel Adesanya vs. Paulo Costa
I can't really put into words how much I've been looking forward to this fight. Personally, I don't think this fight is on the same level of a Connor - Khabib or Usman - Colby in terms of beef, this riviarly isn't deep seeded out of nonsense. This is just two guys who don't like each other and want to be each other up, and to me that's what makes it so good. These guys just want to kick each others ass for honour, pride, and the belt, and that's enough for me.
Remember when we were told that Izzy and Romero was a guaranteed blood bath? Realistically, anyone who truly knew how both of those guys fought you knew it was going to be an odd fight. This fight however, no nonsense will be had! Costa comes for blood and Adesanya is like a surgeon who will gladly get his hands dirty. A chef's kiss is in order.
The key to this fight is if Costa can get Adesanya out of there before the third round. We saw him fade in the Romeo fight, and with such a long layoff I can't see his conditioning being any better than it was when he was active. But Izzy had issues with Gastelum, a smaller, less powerful, and less athletically gifted fighter than Costa. So there are question marks on both sides.
Costa will come forward like he's on a warpath, so the ball is in Izzy's court. Will he be able to withstand the constant barrage? Can he avoid the big shots? Can he use his skills to fend off the beast from Brazil? Or will he be erased as all of Costa's previous victims have. This is going to be one hell of a fight!
Prediction: Paulo Costa, 3rd RD TKO
Jan Blachowicz vs Dominick Reyes
It's going to be super strange to see this belt wrapped around the waist of a guy not named Jon Jones, but this is the world we live in now. Jan and Dom square off in a very intriguing matchup, Reyes has a beautiful blend of power and speed in his game goes up against the more rugged and more experienced guy in Blachowicz.
Reyes is the favourite in this one, and probably for good reason, but Jan has big power and a really solid grappling game. However, I think Reyes' ability to move fluidly, counterpunch, and bang it out with the best in the division will ultimately grant him a spectacular stoppage, not to mention the title.
Prediction: Dominick Reyes, 2nd RD TKO
Kai Kara-France vs. Brandon Royval
Listen, I didn't expect Royval to take out Elliot and lot of people don't think he can take out France. He can, and he will win this fight if he can get it to the ground, but that's a big "if". Striker vs Grappler, but I France's grappling is better than Royval's striking, in other words, I have no clue who wins this fight.
Prediction: Kai Kara France, Decision
Sijara Eubanks vs Ketlen Vieira
Before her loss to Aldana, Vieira was on the verge of a title shot, but so we can't forget how good this woman is despite the long layoff. I don't see where Eubanks wins. She isn't a great striker, and you'd have to give Vieira the edge on the ground too, no? In my opinion, these are just two different level of fighters.
Prediction: Ketlen Vieira, Decision
Hakeem Dawodu vs. Zubaira Tukhugov
Terrible look for Tukhugov coming in 5 pounds overweight, but maybe that was all part of the plan? I doubt it. Hakeem is the better all-around fighter in my humble opinion, plus he's Canadian. This is an easy decision.
Prediction: Hakeem Dawodu, Decision
Rest of the Card
Riddell def Da Silva
Matthew def Sanchez
Young def Klein
Camur def Knight
Espino def Hughes
Marques def Ibragimov
2020 Predictions Record: 131 - 79 - 2