The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s latest offering from the UFC Apex on Saturday in Las Vegas features a six-bout preliminary slate that looks a bit better than usual. That can be attributed to the top two fights: Brazilian veteran Bruno Silva tries to continue his rise through the middleweight ranks in a solid test against Andrew Sanchez, while Danny Roberts meets Ramazan Emeev in a well-matched welterweight tilt. Lurking below might be the most fascinating story in the card, as Luputa Godinez steps in on a modern-UFC record seven-day turnaround for a flyweight clash with Luana Carolina. Add in three other encounters between fighters guaranteed to bring action, and this is worth the watch.
Now to the preview for the UFC Fight Night 195 prelims:
MiddleweightsNR | Bruno Silva (20-6, 1-0 UFC) vs. NR | Andrew Sanchez (12-6, 5-4 UFC)
ODDS: Silva (-135), Sanchez (+115)
Silva is an interesting entrant into the UFC’s middleweight division. “Blindado” had a slow start to his career, but after failing to win his preliminary bout on Season 3 of “The Ultimate Fighter Brazil,” things finally clicked for Silva, who went on a run of wins that eventually saw him land in Russia and claim M-1 Global’s middleweight championship. It is hard to pick out any standout skill for Silva, but he is a testament to how far confidence and power can carry a fighter through a division like middleweight. Silva’s striking may not be the prettiest, but he is enough of a grappler to get by and is willing to survive until he can throw something that knocks out his opponent. Silva failed a drug test immediately upon signing with the UFC in 2019, but his debut in June proved to be worth the wait, as he pounded out Wellington Turman on the ground in under a round. Silva is essentially a finished product at this point, so up next is a clear move up the ladder. Sanchez looked to have championship-level upside after winning his season of “The Ultimate Fighter” in 2016. “El Dirte” had upended two top prospects in Phil Hawes and Khalil Rountree while showing off both knockout power and a strong grappling game. Sanchez is still a well-rounded fighter, but a lack of high-level athleticism has proven to be an issue, as well as an inability to keep a pace. Given anything except the blankest of defensive slates, the situation turns into an adventure if Sanchez is forced to press the action past the first round, with things usually going against him by the end of the fight. Silva can be outwrestled, so it would not be a shock if Sanchez is able to take this fight to the mat and control the action for a good while. However, an opponent like Silva, whose modus operandi is to survive and keep presenting danger, seems primed to find a finish at some point after Sanchez inevitably tires. The pick is Silva via third-round knockout.
Continue Reading » Emeev vs. Roberts
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