UFC Fight Night: Santos vs Hill Predictions

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

UFC Fight Night: Santos vs Hill Predictions

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UFC Fight Night: Santos vs Hill Predictions

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The UFC returns to the Apex this Saturday, August 6th, when Thiago Santos takes on Jamal Hill, as each tries to take one step closer to a light heavyweight title shot. In the Co-Main Event, welterweight contender Vincente Luque looks to rebound after losing Belal Muhammed against Geoff Neal. Before that, the winners of The Ultimate Fighter will be crowned when Zac Pauga takes on Mohammed Usman in the heavyweight division, and in the Women’s flyweight division Julina Miller squares off with Brogan Walker. 

Fight One: Mayra Bueno Silva (8-2-1) (+106) vs Stephanie Egger (7-2) (-136)

Winner: Stephanie Egger by Decision

Mayra Bueno Silva and Stephanie Egger lead off the night in the Women’s Flyweight division. Silva looks to get her second win in a row after defeating Yanan Wu in her last fight, while Egger is coming off two straight wins, with her latest being submission of Jessica-Rose Clark. This is a battle of contrasting styles as a primary striker in Silva takes on a primary grappler in Egger, and I’m going to start the night off with an underdog pick by taking Stephanie Egger. Egger has had success in her last two fights while she is on the ground as she is coming off two straight finishes, one being a TKO by ground and pound and the other an armbar submission, and I believe she can find relatively the same success against Silva. In the past, when Silva has lost, her opponents have found success on the ground, such as her losses to Manon Fiorot and Maryna Moroz; because Egger is a grappling specialist, I believe she can take Silva to the ground and execute her gameplan to extend her win streak to three. 

Fight Two: Cory McKenna (6-2) (-225) vs Miranda Granger (7-2) (+172) 

Winner: Cory McKenna by Decision

In the strawweight division, the young Cory McKenna looks to improve to 2-1 in the UFC after losing her last fight to Elise Reed, while Miranda Granger looks to avoid a three-fight losing streak. This fight is very similar to that of the previous, where I think the grappling of one woman will be the difference maker in this fight, and that woman is Cory McKenna. Like Mayra Burno Silva, Granger’s losses in the UFC have been because of her opponents being able to control her on the ground, and I expect that to be the game plan, McKenna. Granger struggles to stop herself from being taken down, so it shouldn’t be difficult for Mckenna to get Granger on her back and control the fight. If McKenna stays off her feet and keeps Granger on her back, she should have a clear path to victory and take home the decision win. 

Fight Three: Jason Witt (19-8) (+196) vs Josh Quinlan (5-0) (-260) 

Winner: Josh Quinlan by KO/TKO 

“The Vanilla Gorilla” Jason Witt looks to avoid losing two straight fights as he matches up against Josh Quinlan, who makes his UFC debut after Dana White’s Contender Series. As mentioned earlier, the pattern continues with this fight as a wrestler takes on a striker, with this fight being Jason Witt, the wrestler, and Josh Quinlan, the striker, but in this one, I’m going to change my winner to the striker. Josh Quinlan should win this fight because, as we’ve seen in the past, Jason Witt loses his fights by KO/TKO. Witt may test Quinlan to get him down to the ground, but I believe Quinlan will be able to put up a good enough fight to tire out Witt and land one of his power punches to knock out Witt and win his UFC debut. 

Fight Four: Takashi Sato (16-5) (+230) vs Bryan Battle (7-1) (-310)

Winner: Bryan Battle by Decision

In the welterweight division, Takashi Sato looks to break his two-fight losing streak against a tough challenge in Bryan Battle, who has been undefeated since entering the UFC. This is a fight where I have a lot of confidence in my pick; I think Battle is on a higher level than Sato. Battle holds a four-inch reach advantage, lands almost five more significant strikes per minute, and lands more takedowns than Sato. The only thing that Battle needs to protect himself against is the potential knockout power of Sato, so I believe that Battle should take this fight to the ground. Sato has been susceptible to submissions in the past, as two of his last three losses have been by request. Although I don’t believe that Battle will submit Sato, I do think he will get him down to the mat and keep him there to dominate the fight on his way to a decision victory. 

Fight Five: Terrance McKinney (12-4) (-1100) vs. Erick Gonzalez (14-6) (+600) 

Winner: Terrance McKinney by KO/TKO

In the Lightweight division, the biggest favorite on the card, Terrance McKinney, looks to rebound from his loss to Drew Dober against Erick Gonzalez, who is looking for his first win in the UFC. With all respect to Erick Gonzalez, this fight isn’t even close, McKinney is levels above Gonzalez as a fighter, and he will show that this Saturday. This is a perfect showcase fight for McKinney because he can choose exactly how he wants it to go. I believe McKinney will come out firing and knockout Gonzalez quickly, but he could decide to take this fight to the ground and go for a submission, which would work just as well. No matter where this fight goes, McKinney will always have the advantage and improve to 3-1 in the UFC.

Fight Six: Michal Oleksiejczuk (16-5) (-670) vs Sam Alvey (33-17-1) (+430)

Winner: Michal Oleksiejczuk by KO/TKO

In the middleweight division, Michal Oleksiejczuk and Sam Alvey need a win and look to get it in this fight. I honestly feel like this fight is probably just as uneven as the previous fight on the card, it’s just that the oddsmakers put a little more respect on Alvey’s name, but they shouldn’t be. Alvey hasn’t won any of the last eight fights and still has a spot on the UFC roster. Oleksiejczuk should be incredibly happy that he can rebound after a loss with Sam Alvey, and I mean that with no disrespect to Sam Alvey, but he is not UFC caliber anymore. Oleksiejczuk will put on an absolute clinic on the feet until he can knock out Alvey, which will be at the end of the first round. 

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