3 Picks For November 21’s UFC Fight Night Card From Monterrey
#12 Neil Magny (+195) vs. #15 Kevin Gastelum (-250) – Welterweight
Originally designed to be a fight between rising star Kevin Gastelum and welterweight contender Matt Brown, Neil Magny’s been forced to sub for an injured Brown at the top of the card. Gastelum’s split decision catchweight loss to Tyron Woodley is the only blemish on the 24-year-old’s record as he’s been a marvel in UFC competition following his Ultimate Fighter 17 win. Magny’s no free pass, mind you. He hustles hard, can finish a fight and has gone a sparkling 8-1 in his last nine fights. Both men are handfuls as grapplers and strikers, although Gastelum’s more likely to take out his opponent with a well executed submission. If Magny’s not careful, he could experience a repeat of his UFC 190 rear naked choke defeat with Gastelum playing Demian Maia’s part this go-around. Provided Gastelum makes weight (never a slam dunk for the guy), we think he’ll exit Mexico with the W.
Our Pick: Gastelum
#4 Ricardo Lamas (-750) vs. Diego Sanchez (+475) – Featherweight
We have a Diego Sanchez sighting! The name brand MMA vet is back in the Octagon for his first fight since the summer of 2014 and with a fully healed collarbone to match. His reward? A featherweight tilt with Ricardo Lamas. Ranked #4 in the division by the UFC, Lamas is an explosive dynamic fighter with wrestling and Jiu-Jitsu skills that can punish vulnerable opponents. He’ll be looking for redemption after falling on the wrong end of a first round KO in his April UFC Fight Night headline bout with Chad Mendes. It’d be fantastic to see the Sanchez of old reemerge for an amazing comeback run, but there’s a reason why the odds heavily favour Lamas.
Our Pick: Lamas
#3 Jussier Formiga (+280) vs. #5 Henry Cejudo (-375) – Flyweight
Flyweights always get unfairly overlooked so that’s how you can get a tilt like this tucked into a UFC Fight Night offering without too much fanfare. Two of the division’s very best will throw down with Brazilian Jussier Formiga facing undefeated American Henry Cejudo. Despite having “judo” in his name, we’d peg Formiga as having the edge in that department. Cejudo’s unlikely to keep his perfect record intact if he’s looking to outdo Formiga’s judo and Jiu-Jitsu credentials, but he definitely holds the advantage when it comes to strikes. (Mind you, Cejudo is a freestyle wrestling champ. It’s not like he’s a lock to get eaten up by Formiga’s technique.) The Los Angeles born fighter brings strong Muay Thai and can rock opponents when he connects. Formiga’s two UFC losses have both come from TKOs and we see Cejudo adding a third by the time Saturday’s through.
Our Pick: Cejudo
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