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UFC Chile Preview – The most avoided fighters in the UFC square off.


When it comes to MMA in South America, only one nation comes to mind and its the nation of Brazil. Brazil has ruled South America from an MMA Standpoint, Legends such as Lyoto Machida, Vitor Belfort, Anderson Silva, Jose Aldo, Fabricio Werdum, Junior Dos Santos and many, many more reside in the nation. Off the top of my head, I can only name a few South American fighters, not from Brazil. Santiago Ponzinibbio hails from Argentina, Marlon Vera hails from Ecuador, Enrique Barzola is from Peru, and the man of the moment Diego Rivas hails from the host nation of Chile

Welterweight: Vicente Luque (-210) Vs. Chad Laprise (+175)

In a battle of former TUF Competitors, Luque and Laprise will clash for a rather exciting Welterweight battle. Vicente Luque is 5-2 in the UFC with his only losses coming in his debut and to current rising star Leon Edwards. He has also defeated talented prospects such as Niko Price and Belal Muhammad and looks to be on the up and up. Laprise also is on a tear as well. At 6-2 in the UFC, Laprise has won his last three fights via TKO with two of them coming at Welterweight. The Former lightweight will have a slight disadvantage against Luque which I believe will ultimately be his downfall. Vicente Luque Def. Chad Laprise

(A fight between Andrea Lee and Veronica Macedo is on the main card but I genuinely haven’t seen either fight yet. So I’m gonna take a closer look at an undercard fight instead)

Flyweight: Brandon Moreno (+110) Vs. Alexandre Pantoja (-130)

These two competitors from The Ultimate Fighter faced off in the opening round of their season and Pantoja ultimately took that victory. That loss ended up being a blessing in disguise for Moreno however as it allowed him to take a short notice fight against the streaking Louis Smolka and he actually took out Smolka for one of the biggest upsets in the calendar year of 2016. Pantoja ended up making it to the semifinals of that season and was given a UFC Contract once the show ended. I ultimately believe that Pantoja will win on Saturday. Both fighters are coming off of their first UFC losses and this is just a battle to regain momentum. Pantoja’s pressure and ability to take away the grappling skills of Moreno will give him the victory. Alexandre Pantoja Def. Brandon Moreno

Bantamweight: Diego Rivas (-160) Vs. Guido Cannetti (+140)

I’m most looking forward to this fight. Not because of the skills between the two, but because of the story. Diego Rivas was 7-0 in MMA and just came off of a performance of the night victory over Noad Lahat when he was diagnosed with cancer. After it was treated, he came back very quickly and lost a decision to Jose Quinonez. Now, in his home nation of Chile, he looks to get the biggest victory of his career over the Argentinian Guido Cannetti. I try not to bet with feelings, this time I just can’t help myself. Chile has gotten behind Rivas more than I’ve ever seen a country do for a fighter (Not named Conor McGregor). Diego Rivas Def. Guido Cannetti

Light Heavyweight: Dominick Reyes (-260) Vs. Jared Cannonier (+220)

It wasn’t too long ago when people were talking about Jared Cannonier being the next big prospect at Light-Heavyweight. Oh, how the times have changed. Cannonier is still a great UFC Caliber fighter, however, Dominick Reyes is looking unstoppable at this moment. His wins over Jeremy Kimball and Joachim Christensen looked effortless. I fully expect him to get another victory in chile on Saturday, but Cannonier is able to make it competitive and it goes to Decision. Dominick Reyes Def. Jared Cannonier 

Women’s Strawweight: Alexa Grasso (+380) Vs. Tatiana Suarez (-475)

Tatiana Suarez is the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 23, Where she demolished Amanda Cooper in the finals. She followed up that performance by outclassing Viviane Pereira. Overall, Suarez has the Best Wrestling out of any Strawweight in the world right now and I fully expect her to take advantage of her strength. Alexa Grasso is a Stout Striker and has the ability to push Suarez from a power standpoint. I Just believe that Suarez’ striking defense and her grappling offense will be able to give her the victory. Tatiana Suarez Def. Alexa Grasso

Welterweight: Kamaru Usman (-365) Vs. Demian Maia (+305)

Out of the Entire UFC, These two Welterweights are the most avoided fighters in the UFC. Kamaru Usman has been billed by many as a boring fighter based on the way that he plays it safe against fighters who he is levels ahead of. His performances against Emil Meek, Alexander Yakovlev, and Sean Strickland were lackluster even though he didn’t lose a round. On the contrary, His performance against Sergio Moraes shows that he has the ability to finish fights if he knows that he isn’t just years ahead of his opponents, but light years. Demian Maia is 0-2 since UFC 211. He lost in his title shot against Champion Tyron Woodley in one of the worst fights I’ve ever seen then he followed that up with a striking performance against Wrestling specialist and noted Douche-Canoe Colby Covington. I believe that Kamaru Usman is more dangerous than both Covington and Woodley. I believe that Usman will take the win in a rather disappointing fight that might end by TKO at some point when Maia gets gassed. Although I believe that Usman will win, I gain so much more respect for Demian Maia by even taking this fight on short notice. Kamaru Usman Def. Demian Maia

Other Selections:

Welterweight: Michel Prazeres (+135) Def. Zak Cummings (-155)

Women’s Flyweight: Andrea Lee (-335) Def. Veronica Macedo (+275)

Women’s Strawweight: Poliana Botelho (-165) Def. Syuri Kondo (+145)

Featherweight: Gabriel Benitez (-200) Def. Humberto Bandenay (+170)

Featherweight: Brandon Davis (+165) Def. Enrique Barzola (-195)

Bantamweight: Frankie Saenz (-270) Def. Henry Briones (+230)

Lightweight: Felipe Silva (-300) Def. Claudio Puelles (+250)

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