The UFC has announced numerous new bouts over the last few weeks for its forthcoming pay-per-view cards that summer. Below are my thoughts on these new matchups.
Talita Bernardo vs. Melissa Gatto, UFC 237
Because of 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 in Jeunesse Arena at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bernardo (6-3) is 1-2 at the UFC and is coming from a decision win over Sarah Moras. Gatto (6-0-2) is undefeated in her MMA career fighting on the Brazilian regional arena. Bernardo hasn’t looked very good from the UFC and considering Gatto is only 22-years-old she is definitely someone to keep your eye on when the odds for this fight come out. If she is the underdog she could be worth a punt.
Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Alexa Grasso, UFC 238
A women’s strawweight bout between Karolina Kowalkiewicz and also Alexa Grasso is set for UFC 238, which takes place June 8 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois. The card features five women’s bouts in total, including this particular fight.
Kowalkiewicz (12-4) is only 5-4 in the UFC and is coming from back-to-back losses to Jessica Andrade and Michelle Waterson. She’s making a quick return to the Octagon since the struggle against Waterson took place only a couple of weeks ago, and she is likely in a must-win position in this fight against Grasso in UFC 238. Grasso (10-2) is 2-2 in the UFC but hasn’t fought since last May when she had been submitted by Tatiana Suarez. The two Kowalkiewicz and Grasso have been solid-yet-flawed fighters, but depending on her experience I’d guess Kowalkiewicz would be a small favorite in the open.
Diego Sanchez vs. Michael Chiesa, UFC 239
Welterweights Diego Sanchez and Michael Chiesa are scheduled to fight at UFC 239, occurring July 6 in T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Sanchez (29-11) is 18-11 all-time inside the Octagon and is among the longest-tenured fighters on the UFC roster and also a future Hall of Famer. He proceeded to welterweight this past year and has since gone 1-2 with a weight loss loss to Matt Brown followed by back-to-back wins Craig White and Mickey Gall, who he just finished in devastating fashion. Chiesa (15-4) is 8-4 in the UFC and filed Carlos Condit in his welterweight debut in his final bout. Both Sanchez and Chiesa looked amazing in their last fights, but given that Sanchez is 37 and has obtained a whole lot of damage throughout his career, you have 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 just 21-years-old and is currently 2-0 at the UFC with a knockout win over Charles Byrd plus also a split decision win over Darren Stewart. He’s one of the top young prospects in 185lbs and all but one of his career successes has come by knockout. Marshman (23-8) is 3-3 at the UFC and is coming from a controversial split decision win over John Phillips. Though Marshman is a solid gateekeeper in 185lbs, Shahbazyan is the future of this branch, and he’ll definitely be a massive favorite heading into the bout.
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