UFC Vegas 24: Gastelum vs Whittaker Predictions
Source: Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC
We currently are living in a bizarro world. In this current time and space, Jake Paul is the A-side in a boxing match. In the other, more sensible reality, Kelvin Gastelum and Robert Whitaker's fight are put above all other fighting events as it rightfully should. I imagine in that alternate reality world peace has been achieved, and global hunger has been eradicated. Seems like an awesome place to live. But I digress.
Yes, Jake Paul is fighting tonight, and yes, he is fighting Ben Askren. Both are names that apparently carry more weight in the fighting world than a former TUF winner and a former UFC champion. Don't hate the player, hate the game, I suppose, but Vegas 24 still has a great fight card to offer, so without further adoooo....predictions!
Kelvin Gastelum vs Robert Whittaker
I honestly can't recall a fighter being in an odder situation than Robert Whittaker is at the moment. He is the #1 contender within the division but has become the UFC's version of a Whomp. That's a Mario Party reference for those who don't understand. You'd think with wins over Till, and Cannonier he would be back in Dana White's good books, but alas, he is set up for another tough fight where the stakes are lesser than they should be.
With all that said, Gastelum probably doesn't offer up too much of a challenge for Whittaker. Don't get me wrong, Kelvin looked much better in his last fight, but we've got to be honest, he hasn't looked all that good otherwise. His wrestling has gone by the wayside, his lack of arsenal standing has limited his overall game, and quite honestly, he is begging to be picked apart by a more diverse fighter.
I'm down for a Gatelum -Adesanya rematch, but I don't think it's coming at the expense of Bobby Knuckles.
Prediction: Robert Whittaker, Decision
Drakkar Klose vs Jeremy Stephens
We can sit here and say that Stephens is on the downslope of his career with five straight losses, but is he really? What I mean to say, was Stephens ever supposed to win any of those fights? I'd argue no. As much of a gladiator he is, he's never really been a true title contender. For someone who has more years in the UFC than Klose has career fights (which is fucking nuts btw), his defining moment is still that hellish KO over RDA, almost a decade ago.
These two are only separated by a year age-wise, but experience-wise Klose is an infant compared to Stephens. I think fighting guys within Klose's range of talent suits Stephens much more than trying to hang with 145s top guys. Klose is much more likely to put himself in danger to get his offence off, and to me, that means Lil Heathen finally gets back in the win column in a devastating fashion.
Prediction: Jeremy Stephens, 2ND TKO
Andrei Arlovski vs Chase Sherman
This is just another fight for Arlovski to prove that he is not bad enough to retire, but he's also not good enough to be a serious title contender once again (that ship sailed six years ago). So what gives? Why is this man still fighting? For the love of the game? For the thrill of competition? I don't know, but I certainly am not picking Chase Sherman.
Prediction: Andrei Arlovski, Decision
Abdul Razak Alhassan vs Jacob Malkoun
Okay, does someone within the UFC hate Malkoun? I mean, Phil Hawes in your debut and now ARA? Sheesh, tough go. At any rate, ARA by trauma inducing KO.
Prediction: ARA, 1st RD TKO
Alex Munoz vs Luis Pena
This is probably going to be a really close fight that will more than likely be decided by Munoz's wrestling. However, I'm hoping for the best possible outcome here, an exciting fight. I think that favours Violent Bob Ross.
Prediction: Luis Pena, Decision
Rest of the Card
Cortez def Kish
Romanov def Espino
Godinez def Penne
Meerschaert def Fabinski
Bush def Hubbard
Gravely def Birchak
2021 Predictions Record: 51-31-1