Featherweight Bout: Brian Ortega (14-1) vs. Chan Sung Jung (16-5)
Luke Irwin: I think Zombie overwhelms Ortega with his pressure and striking, but that’s a heavy line against him there and Ortega is certainly talented enough to take a gamble on, here. Ortega hasn’t been in the octagon in nearly two years after being absolutely dominated and humiliated by Max Holloway, earning his first professional loss. Zombie is going to come at him and give him no time to knock off the ring rust. Sung via R4 TKO.
Women’s Flyweight Bout: Jéssica Andrade (20-8) vs. Katlyn Chookagian (14-3)
Luke: This is interesting, because Andrade is a former world champion, and a much more complete and dangerous fighter than Chookagian, but Andrade got bulldozed in 42 seconds by Zhang Weili to lose her title, then Rose Namajunas avenged her savage loss to Andrade, so, needless to say, momentum isn’t on Andrade’s side. If she fights like she’s capable of, she should roll Chookagian, but will that fighter show up? Or is that fighter done? I’m wagering Andrade shakes things off and gets back to her game. Andrade via R2 TKO.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Jimmy Crute (11-1) vs. Modestas Bukauskas (11-2)
Luke: Crute is a big step up in competition for Bukauskas’s second UFC fight, but there’s the depth at 205 for you. Bukauskas has a solid submission game, but is relying heavily on his fists and elbows lately, something that Crute, I feel, can avoid with his judo and BJJ game. Crute via R2 Submission.
Welterweight Bout: Claudio Silva (14-1) vs. James Krause (27-8)
Luke: Did James Krause have the quietest seven-fight UFC winning streak in history? Is he the least-likely fighter to run off seven in the octagon?? He’s coming off of a loss, but, I mean…he’s one fight removed from seven in a damned row! That being said…Silva himself is on a five-fight winning streak. I think Krause is crafty enough to avoid Silva’s submission game, and grind out a decision. Krause via SD.
Featherweight Bout: Jonathan Martinez (12-3) vs. Thomas Almeida (21-3)
Luke: This could get REAL wild. Two varied and exciting strikers battling it out, here. Almeida seems to have hit his peak, his only three losses are to Cody Garbrandt, Jimmie Rivera, and Rob Font. He may not get to the level some of us thought he’d get to, but as a high-level gatekeeper, he’s still a damned good fighter and does everything Martinez does, but a little better. Almeida via R3 TKO.
2020 Picks Record: 127-66