The UFC has announced numerous new bouts over the past couple of weeks for its upcoming pay-per-view cards that summer. Below are my thoughts on those new matchups.
Talita Bernardo vs. Melissa Gatto, UFC 237
Due to an injury to Jessica Rose Clark, Talita Bernardo will meet UFC newcomer Melissa Gatto in a women’s bantamweight bout at UFC 237, occurring May 11 at Jeunesse Arena at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bernardo (6-3) is currently 1-2 in the UFC and is coming off of a decision win over Sarah Moras. Gatto (6-0-2) is undefeated in her MMA career fighting the Brazilian regional arena. Bernardo hasn’t looked very good in the UFC and contemplating Gatto is only 22-years-old she’s definitely someone to keep your eye on when the odds for this battle come out. If she’s the underdog she could be worth a punt.
Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Alexa Grasso, UFC 238
A women’s strawweight bout between Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Alexa Grasso is set for UFC 238, which takes place June 8 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois. The card comprises five women’s bouts in total, including this fight.
Kowalkiewicz (12-4) is only 5-4 in the UFC and is coming off of back-to-back losses to Jessica Andrade and Michelle Waterson. She’s making a quick return to the Octagon since the struggle against Waterson happened only a couple of weeks before, and she is probably in a must-win position in this struggle against Grasso at UFC 238. Grasso (10-2) is 2-2 in the UFC but hasn’t fought since last May when she had been filed by Tatiana Suarez. Both Kowalkiewicz and Grasso are solid-yet-flawed fighters, but based on her expertise I’d guess Kowalkiewicz are a small favorite at open.
Diego Sanchez vs. Michael Chiesa, UFC 239
Welterweights Diego Sanchez and Michael Chiesa are scheduled to fight at UFC 239, taking place July 6 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Sanchez (29-11) is 18-11 all-time inside the Octagon and is one of the longest-tenured fighters around the UFC roster and also a future Hall of Famer. He moved up to welterweight this past year and has since gone 1-2 using a weight loss loss to Matt Brown followed closely by back-to-back wins over Craig White and Mickey Gall, who he only finished in devastating fashion. Chiesa (15-4) is 8-4 at the UFC and submitted Carlos Condit in his welterweight debut in his final bout. Both Sanchez and Chiesa looked amazing in their last fights, but provided that Sanchez is 37 and has obtained a ton of harm during his career, you need to lean towards Chiesa here.
Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Jack Marshman, UFC 239
Middleweight prospect Edmen Shahbazyan yields at UFC 239 if he takes on Jack Marshman.
Shahbazyan (9-0) is only 21-years-old and is currently 2-0 at the UFC with a knockout win over Charles Byrd and also a split decision win over Darren Stewart. He is one of the best young prospects in 185lbs and all but one of his career victories has come by knockout. Marshman (23-8) is 3-3 in the UFC and is coming off of a controversial split decision win over John Phillips. Though Marshman is a solid gateekeeper at 185lbs, Shahbazyan is the future of the branch, and he’ll undoubtedly be a huge favorite heading into this bout.
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