Miocic vs Ngannou - UFC 260 - Preview
Jamie Mullarky vs. Kharma Worthy: The main card begins in the lightweight division between two fighters looking to bounce back from their previous losses. Jamie Mullarky at only 26 years of age will be looking for his first UFC win against a tough opponent in Kharma Worthy. This looks to be an entertaining start to the main card with both having a high finish percentage. I think Mullarky will get his first win in the Octagon here and will showcase his energy and power which will be too much for Worthy.
My prediction: Mullarky by KO
Gillian Robertson vs. Miranda Maverick: Two young flyweights are up next in a bout that looks to be very interesting considering both fighters have a high submission finish rate. This could go either way in becoming a very grappling heavy match that is fought on the floor or a straight up kickboxing fight. I expect Gillian Robertson to use her octagon experience to control the fight, if she can do this and keep the fight on the ground she will likely find her way to a decision win.
My prediction: Robertson by DEC
Sean O’Malley vs. Thomas Almeida: The heaviest favourite on the main card is up next as ‘Suga’ Sean O’Malley will look to bounce back from his first professional loss here against Thomas Almeida. O’Malley’s mentality will be the most important factor coming into this fight in how he reacts to that first loss. If he has lost the feeling of invincibility he has shown in previous fights he may be slower and more tentative in throwing the heavy shots that have landed devastating knockouts. Thomas Almeida doesn’t look like a difficult opponent on paper having lost 4 of his previous 5 fights. However, he does have the advantage over O’Malley in that he knows what it’s like to go into a fight on the back of a loss and the pressure that comes with it. I expect O’Malley to get back to winning ways here if he is able to put the loss behind him and fight the same way he was at the start of last year. If O’Malley doesn’t start quickly then Almeida may grow in confidence and therefore grow into the fight.
My prediction: O’Malley by KO
Tyron Woodley vs. Vicente Luque: The co-main event features the former welterweight champion in Tyron Woodley looking to stop his 3-fight losing streak against the promising and exciting Vicente Luque. This could well be Woodley’s final chance to show that he belongs in the UFC, as we have seen very recently former champions that are losing regularly being cut from the roster. Vicente Luque will be looking to add the biggest name of his career to his win column which will shoot him into the top 10 of the division. If he can put the pressure on and keep Woodley backing away he will be confident of landing his power shots and even if they don’t lead to a knockout will give him a decision win. However, I expect to see a different Woodley than has been on display in recent years as he is not in a main event or title fight meaning he only needs to fight for a maximum of 15 minutes instead of 25. This should mean that Woodley will fight at a higher pace with more action as he will not need to be holding any in reserve for the championship rounds. This plays into Woodley’s hands as he will be conditioned to fighting for 25 minutes whereas Luque has not felt this. In order for Woodley to get the win I think he needs to revert back to his wrestling base and show his dominance in closing the space and getting top position. If he can manage to do this and maintain it throughout the fight, I think Woodley has enough to get back in the win column.
My prediction: Woodley by DEC
Stipe Miocic vs. Francis Ngannou: The main event of the evening sees one of the most anticipated rematches in the UFC. The challenger, Francis Ngannou, will be looking to justify the hype that has risen around his name due to the devastating nature of his previous four finishes. Ngannou will be looking to connect with one power shot that has put away many UFC heavyweights and is probably the most feared in the promotion. He will need to bide his time in looking for this punch as if he comes out swinging and looking for another sub-minute knockout, he is likely to gas himself out as he did in the first fight with Miocic. If he can manage his stamina and doesn’t throw everything into every shot early on, he will stand a better chance of landing a punch later on that will put Miocic out. Miocic will look at his game plan from their last meeting and think he doesn’t need to change much, if Miocic can avoid being hit regularly and secure takedowns Ngannou does not have the wrestling ability to scramble and get into a more favourable position. I’m going to go with Miocic for my pick in this main event as I think the wrestling skills that he has will guide him to another decision win. However impressive Ngannou’s previous four knockouts have been I haven’t seen enough since their previous fight to suggest that he has developed his skills in a way that can beat Miocic. Adding to this, Miocic’s experience of fighting for 5 minutes puts him in good stead in retaining his championship and good value as the underdog.
My prediction: Miocic by DEC
Written by Luke Penny