Preview: UFC Fight Night 186 Prelims

Menifield vs. Knight

By Tom Feely Feb 24, 2021

Light Heavyweights

NR | Alonzo Menifield (9-2, 2-2 UFC) vs. NR | William Knight (9-1, 1-0 UFC)

ODDS: Menifield (-115), Knight (-105)

Two gifted light heavyweight prospects go at it in this one. It took Menifield two tries to earn a contract on Dana White’s Contender Series, but he made up for lost time once he hit the Octagon. His 2019 campaign saw him continue his streak of quick finishes with knockout wins over Vinicius Moreira and Paul Craig. However, things quickly went off the rails for Menifield in his June bout against Devin Clark. The “Brown Bear” managed to survive Menifield’s opening barrage, at which point Menifield had exhausted himself to the point of ineffectiveness. That would have been a smart time for a step back, but instead, Menifield stepped in on late notice for a tough fight against Ovince St. Preux that went about as expected. Menifield looked improved and attempted to pace himself better, but St. Preux’s odd grab bag of skills eventually led “OSP” to score a brutal knockout victory. Menifield really could use a win here against a fellow two-time DWCS alum in Knight. The “Knightmare” is still an extremely raw prospect, having only made his professional debut in 2018, but he has mostly been able to nullify any growing pains through sheer strength. Knight is a ball of muscle, and while his striking does not look particularly comfortable, the threat of his power alone has been enough to make opponents seek to lock up with him, at which point they simply get overpowered if not finished. A 2019 loss to Tafon Nchukwi showed that Knight can struggle against someone who can match his physicality, and that is what makes this fight with Menifield interesting. Both men’s respective losses came against opponents who can match their strength, and that figures to be the dynamic here. Menifield should have the more functional game and be dangerous early, but the Clark fight showed just how much he dumps his gas tank in pursuit of a finish. As such, this basically seems like a fight where Knight just needs to survive the early going, at which point he should be able to take over the fight despite a lack of any reliable weapons. Add in that he seems to be the stronger and more powerful of the two, and the pick is Knight via ugly decision.

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