WE could look back at this card and point it out as the coming out party for some of the young fighters on display. Jose Aldo gets a surprising second shot at the featherweight crown and two strawweight fighters are building their case for a title shot. Let’s dive in to those storylines, plus everything else UFC 218 has to offer!
UFC Predictions: 24-16
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#5 Tecia ‘The Tony Tornado’ Torres (9-1) vs. #6 Michelle ‘The Karate Hottie’ Waterson (14-5)
BOTH Torres and Waterson are trying to climb up the strawweight rankings and earn a title shot against Rose Namajunas the divisions newest champ. The last loss for both fighters came against Namajunas so a revenge match is pretty high up on their agenda. Torres and Waterson aren’t shy when it comes to throwing hands, but I think Torres’ ground game will help her get the coveted W.
VERDICT: TORRES W
#4 Eddie ‘The Underground King’ Alvarez (28-5, 1NC) vs. #5 Justin ‘The Highlight’ Gaethje (18-0)
ALVAREZ certainly has the talents to floor Gaethje and take out the win, but I don’t think he will. There will definitely be moments where Alvarez looks capable of winning, but ‘The Highlight’ will be able to absorb blows thrown at him and then retaliate emphatically. The streak goes on for Gaethje.
VERDICT: GAETHJE W
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#2 Henry ‘The Messenger’ Cejudo (11-2) vs. #4 Sergio Pettis (16-2)
JUST three cards ago at UFC 215 Henry Cejudo got his mojo back and returned to the winner’s circle. Against Pettis, he has a much harder fight on his hands with the young phenom seemingly ready to start living up to the hype in the flyweight division. While Pettis shows plenty of promise, Cejudo looms as a potential champ in this division and he should stamp his ticket for another shot at the belt.
VERDICT: CEJUDO W
#1 Alistair ‘The Demolition Man’ Overeem (43-15, 1NC) vs. #4 Francis ‘The Predator’ Ngannou (10-1)
OVEREEM is a serious vet of the UFC circuit while Ngannou is almost the exact opposite as an up and comer with serious power. Even though he has five wins in his last six attempts it’s hard to paint a picture where Overeem is the winner here. The 37-year-old will cause some headaches for ‘The Predator’ and his defense will be hard to crack. The speed and athleticism of Ngannou will eventually shine through though.
VERDICT: NGANNOU W
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C Max ‘Blessed’ Holloway (18-3) vs. #1 Jose Aldo (26-3)
THIS fight seems destined to pan out exactly the same way that June’s fight did. Frankie Edgar was meant to be squaring off against Holloway but after his withdrawal from the fight, Jose Aldo stepped up to the plate to take the title shot he thinks he deserves. He did lose the belt to Holloway at UFC 212 and he seems destined to do so again for the second time in less than six months.
VERDICT: HOLLOWAY W
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