The UFC has announced a number of new bouts over the last few weeks because of its upcoming pay-per-view cards that summer. Below are my thoughts on those new matchups.
Talita Bernardo vs. Melissa Gatto, UFC 237
Because of an injury to Jessica Rose Clark, Talita Bernardo will now meet UFC newcomer Melissa Gatto at a women’s bantamweight bout at UFC 237, taking place May 11 at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bernardo (6-3) is 1-2 at the UFC and is coming off of a decision win over Sarah Moras. Gatto (6-0-2) is undefeated in her MMA career fighting on the Brazilian regional scene. Bernardo has not looked very good from the UFC and considering Gatto is just 22-years-old she’s definitely someone to keep your eye 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 place 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 at the UFC and is coming off of back-to-back losses to Jessica Andrade and Michelle Waterson. She is making a fast return to the Octagon since the struggle against Waterson took place only a couple of weeks before, and she is likely in a must-win position in this fight against Grasso in UFC 238. Grasso (10-2) is 2-2 at the UFC but has not fought since last May when she had been submitted by Tatiana Suarez. Both Kowalkiewicz and Grasso are solid-yet-flawed fighters, but depending on her experience 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 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 last year and has since gone 1-2 using a knockout loss to Matt Brown followed by back-to-back wins Craig White and Mickey Gall, who he only finished in devastating fashion. Chiesa (15-4) is 8-4 at 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 harm throughout his career, you need to lean towards Chiesa here.
Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Jack Marshman, UFC 239
Middleweight prospect Edmen Shahbazyan yields at UFC 239 when he takes on Jack Marshman.
Shahbazyan (9-0) is just 21-years-old and is currently 2-0 in the UFC with a knockout win over Charles Byrd and also a split decision win over Darren Stewart. He is one of the top young prospects at 185lbs and all but one of his career victories 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 good gateekeeper at 185lbs, Shahbazyan is the future of this branch, and he’ll definitely be a huge favorite heading into the particular bout.
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