UFC Rotterdam Preview – Giant Vs. Other Giant

The UFC octagon returns to Rotterdam and in the main event (and really the only fight with any title implications) we have 6’7 Russian giant Alexander Volkov going up against 7’0 “Skyscraper” Stefan Struve in the tallest combined matchup in UFC history. In the UFC’s previous trip to The Netherlands, We saw Holland’s favorite son Alistair Overeem earn himself a title shot with a win over Andrei Arlovski. While Struve is streaking, A win this weekend will likely just move his name up in the rankings instead of being granted a shot at Stipe.

Alexander Volkov (-119) Vs. Stefan Struve (-101)

In Alexander Volkov you have a dynamic striker from a Karate background. He will likely have to use distance management in order to get the longer Struve to fall into his counterstrikes. Volkov has gone 2-0 since he was signed with decision wins over Tim Johnson and Roy Nelson. Previously, Volkov was the Bellator Heavyweight Champion and had some impressive wins over fighters like Blagoy Ivanov and Richard Hale.  In Stefan Struve, you have the largest fighter to ever grace the UFC octagon. Struve always comes to the octagon with a finishers mentality and while he has had a propensity to be on the unfortunate ends of finishes in his lengthy career, he has also shown proficiency in being on the positive end. In Struve’s last two fights he has beaten Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva via a quick elbow KO and defeated Daniel Omielanczuk by D’arce Choke. The Henri Hooft Protege will need to utilize all of his tools if he wants to dispatch Moscow’s Volkov. Overall, I see Stefan Struve taking the victory in this fight. Although Volkov has an impressive resume, He has not faced any fighter up to Struve’s caliber at this moment in his career. While Struve has had some very impressive victories over Minotauro Nogueira, Pat Barry and current UFC Heavyweight Champion Stipe Miocic. Stefan Struve Def. Alexander Volkov

Siyar Bahadurzada (-137) Vs. Rob Wilkinson (UNL)

Siyar Bahadurzada returns to the octagon after a year and a half on Saturday in Rotterdam. His last fight against Brandon Thatch ended by a 3rd round submission in favor of the Afghani. Rob Wilkinson is an undefeated welterweight prospect out of Tasmania taking this fight on short notice after Abu Aziatar pulled out. I tend to pick the Fighter who is not fighting their UFC debut because octagon jitters are a real factor in debut fighters. Siyar Bahadurzada Def. Rob Wilkinson

Marion Reneau (-300) Vs. Talita Bernardo (UNL)

Marion Reneau was supposed to be facing former UFC Featherweight Champion Germaine De Randamie. But after an unfortunate injury, we get to see Brazilian Talita Bernardo make her debut. In her last fight, Reneau faught to a draw against former 135 title challenger Bethe Correia, before that she defeated Milana Dudieva by brutal elbow KO. Unlike the Bahadurzada fight, I see the short notice fighter taking the victory. While Reneau has been streaking, she is also 40 and Bernardo seems ready to take the next step in her career. Talita Bernardo Def, Marion Reneau

Leon Edwards (-260) Vs. Bryan Barberena (+220)

Prospect killer Bryan Barberena travels across the atlantic to face England’s Leon Edwards. Leon is 5-2 in the UFC with notable wins over Albert Tumenov and Vicente Luque. The Birmingham killer is looking to make 4 in a row with a win over Barberena. Bryan “Bam Bam” Barberena is looking to go from “Prospect Killer” to “Contender Killer” with a victory over Edwards. Barberena is 4-2 in the UFC with quality wins over rising stars Sage Northcutt and Warlley Alves. Leon Edwards needs to take the next step in this fight. If he can dispatch Barberena in quick fashion I can see him jumping into the top 15 into possible matchups with fighters like Matt Brown, Dong Hyun Kim and Tarec Saffiedine. I have Edwards winning by a close decision. Leon Edwards Def. Bryan Barberena

Other Predictions

Darren Till (-188) Def. Bojan Velickovic (+163)

Mairbek Taisumov (UNL) Def. Felipe Silva (+210)

Michel Prazeres (-420) Def. Mads Burnell (UNL)

Rustam Khabilov (-300) Def. Desmond Green (+250)

Francimar Barroso (+120) Def. Aleksander Rakic (UNL)

Zabit Magomedsharipov (UNL) Def. Mike Santiago (UNL)

Abdul-Kerim Edilov (UNL) Def. Bojan Mihajlovic (+475)

Andrew Holbrook (-176) Def. Thibault Gouti (+151)

Categories: MMA, UFCTags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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