UFC 269 Predictions

Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

UFC 269 Predictions

UFC/Boxing

UFC 269 Predictions

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Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

UFC 269 kicks off on Saturday evening at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The card will be headlined on pay-per-view by Charles Oliveira vs. Dustin Poirier for the lightweight title. This will be the final pay-per-view card of 2021 and the second-to-last card of the year.

This card features 16 ranked fighters in their respective divisions and two championship bouts in the co-main event and the main event. 2021’s final pay-per-view card will be an excellent one and it has competitive fights up and down the entire card. Now, let’s get to the predictions for each fight on the card:

*Card is subject to change:

Early Preliminary Card Predictions

Flyweight Bout- Gillian Robertson def. Priscila Cachoeira via split decision

Bantamweight Bout- Randy Costa def. Tony Kelley via first-round TKO/KO

Featherweight Bout- Darrick Minner def. Ryan Hall via third-round TKO/KO

Flyweight Bout- No. 4 Alex Perez def. Matt Schnell via unanimous decision

Flyweight Bout- No. 13 Miranda Maverick def. Erin Blanchfield via unanimous decision

Middleweight Bout- No. 15 Andre Muniz def. Eryk Anders via second-round submission

Preliminary Card Predictions

Middleweight Bout- Bruno Silva def. Jordan Wright via first-round TKO/KO

This fight has the makings of a barn burner and because of that, the more experienced fighter, Bruno Silva, should have the advantage. Silva is an aggressive knockout artist, and he is always on the hunt for a stoppage. Jordan Wright has a penchant for getting his own stoppages, but his lone career loss came against Joaquin Buckley via a second-round KO. This will be exciting from the opening bell.

Heavyweight Bout- No. 11 Augusto Sakai def. Tai Tuivasa via second-round TKO/KO

In the heavyweight division, any fight can end after one punch is thrown. Augusto Sakai is on a two-fight losing streak and he is ready to turn around his career as a ranked heavyweight. Tai Tuivasa is a ferocious power puncher, but Tuivasa is known for his wild exchanges. Sakai is the more technical fighter, and he will expose Tuivasa’s defensive holes.

Bantamweight Bout- No. 9 Dominick Cruz def. No. 8 Pedro Munhoz via split decision

In what is essentially a bantamweight elimination fight, Dominick Cruz will take a page out of Jose Aldo’s book and implement leg kicks and body shots on Pedro Munhoz. Cruz is as clinical of a striker as it gets in the UFC, and he will outstrike Munhoz en route to a close decision victory. He will stay alive in the title race and move up the ladder.

Featherweight Bout- No. 9 Dan Ige def. No. 7 Josh Emmett via split decision

Dan Ige will have a standout performance against a fellow top 10 featherweight, Josh Emmett. There is a very good chance that striking will be a mainstay throughout the fight and that favors Ige. He is coming off a decision loss to Chan Sung Jung in June, but Ige is prepared to bounce back in what is going to be a tough fight. Emmett is an experienced veteran but Ige’s striking prowess could be the deciding factor.

Main Card Predictions

Bantamweight Bout- Sean O’Malley def. No. 15 Raulian Paiva via unanimous decision

It seems that every fight for Sean O’Malley is bigger than the next regardless of who his opponent is. This time, it is against a ranked opponent, but O’Malley has the clear striking advantage and will make the most of it. Paiva tends to drop his hands when approaching the pocket and if that happens against O’Malley, Paiva’s holes will be exploited. Paiva is a tough customer so that will make it more difficult for O’Malley to stop him. After three rounds, O’Malley will get a unanimous decision win.

Flyweight Bout- No. 6 Kai Kara-France def. Cody Garbrandt via unanimous decision

It does not get any more difficult for a debut in a lighter weight class than Cody Garbrandt’s flyweight debut. Kai Kara-France does not have as much power as Garbrandt, but he has the advantage of knowing what it is like to cut down to 125 pounds. Kara-France will be able to survive Garbrandt’s power and if Garbrandt tries to wrestle, Kara-France will be able to defend the takedowns. Expect this to go the distance and Kara-France to have the upper hand.

Welterweight Bout- No. 12 Geoff Neal def. No. 14 Santiago Ponzinibbio via second-round TKO/KO

Geoff Neal has one speed and that is full throttle. Neal returns after a loss to Neil Magny in May, and he learned a lot from the defeat. Santiago Ponzinibbio had a bounce-back win in June over Miguel Baeza. Neal will search for a knockout win, and he will earn it against an older contender in Ponzinibbio.

Bantamweight Title Bout- (C) Amanda Nunes def. No. 3 Julianna Pena via first-round submission

Everyone is wondering if Julianna Pena is in over her head. To simply answer that, she is in over her head against Amanda Nunes on Saturday. Nunes is the greatest female mixed martial artist in history and she does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon. Nunes can do it all in the octagon and she will be in charge from the opening bell. Expect Nunes to take this to the ground and test Pena’s grappling. Nunes submitted Megan Anderson in her last time out in the UFC, and this will be a similar performance for Nunes.

Lightweight Title Bout- No. 1 Dustin Poirier def. (C) Charles Oliveira via fourth-round TKO/KO

For the fight everyone has been waiting for, it is finally here. Oliveira will make his first title defense against one of the best lightweights in the world. Oliveira won the vacant lightweight title against Michael Chandler at UFC 262 in what was one of the most exciting fights of the year. There was a moment where Oliveira had Chandler in trouble with a submission, as well as moments where Chandler closed in on stopping Oliveira. As great as Oliveira is, his nine-fight winning streak will come to a close against Poirier. From a striking standpoint, Poirier has the edge over Oliveira, and he cannot be overlooked on the ground either. Expect Poirier to find himself in the top position and pour punches down on Oliveira until the referee steps in.

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