Featherweight Bout: Calvin Kattar (20-3) vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov (17-1)
Luke Irwin: Magomedsharipov, much like his Dagestanian fighting brothers are icy-cold brutally efficient war machines, not to ever be confused with War Machine. Magomedsharipov via UD.
Heavyweight Bout: Alexander Volkov (30-7) vs. Greg Hardy (5-1)
Luke: A failsafe is that if Hardy finds himself in trouble, he’ll find a way to get himself DQ’d or turn it into a no-contest, so you’re bound to at least break even! Heavy money! If Volkov can dodge a Hail Mary and drag Hardy into the later rounds, he’ll either fold him, or have him go to the inhaler. Volkov via R2 Submission.
Welterweight Bout: Danny Roberts (16-5) vs. Zelim Imadaev (8-1)
Luke: Imadaev was a one-man wrecking crew in Russia, winning all eight of his fights by T/KO. Then he comes to the UFC and immediately drops a majority decision to Max Griffin, a game but limited fighter. Roberts can be prone to the KO, but it’s usually kicks and knees that take him out. I think Imadaev has a similarly tough time, here. Roberts via SD.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Ed Herman (24-14) vs. Khadis Ibragimov (8-1)
Luke: Just like Imadaev above, Ibragimov won his first eight fights on the regional circuit in Russia, before losing his first contest in the UFC. Herman isn’t exceptionally gifted, but this is the man’s TWENTY-THIRD UFC FIGHT. There’s nothing he hasn’t seen before. Matter of fact, I think he’ll prey on Ibragimov’s inexperience. Herman via R1 Submission.
Welterweight Bout: Anthony Rocco Martin (16-5) vs. Ramazan Emeev (18-3)
Luke: Underrated bout, here. Martin is a grappler by trade, but the only losses he has in the UFC are to high-level grapplers. For some reason, he can’t figure them out or refuses to develop enough striking to counter them. Emeev via UD.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Klidson Abreu (15-3) vs. Shamil Gamzatov (13-0)
Luke: Well, we’ve seen a pattern of Russian fighters making their UFC debut and promptly losing, but Gamzatov has more experience than most, fighting in WSOF/PFL. But I’ll err on the side of the percentages. Abreu via SD.