UFC Vegas 25 Preview and Predictions
The UFC is back with another card tonight, featuring a Light Heavyweight tilt between two rising stars in the division in Dominick Reyes and Jiri Prochazka. In the co-main event, we have fan-favorite Cub Swanson taking on Giga Chikadze in a fascinating Featherweight battle. This card is a 6 fight main card, and we all know how I feel about those. But, I will power on for y’all, our faithful Vendetta Sports Media fans. Without further ado, let’s dive into our predictions for UFC Vegas 25.
UFC Vegas 25 Opening Fight: Poliana Bothelo x Luana Carolina (Women’s Flyweight)
The opening fight on the main card for UFC Vegas 25 features two women who are accustomed to pure kickboxing fights in Poliana Bothelo and Luana Carolina. These ladies love to trade flashy strikes, especially high kicks coming off either foot. It will be interesting to see if there is any sort of game plan from either Bothelo or Carolina to get this fight to the ground. Luana Carolina may look to avoid that, seeing that in her last bout she had that exact gameplan but got caught in a kneebar and was on the shelf for a year afterward. Who will have the upper hand in the striking game? I am going with Bothelo, seeing her have a case for the top 15 after this one. Bothelo via unanimous decision.
Merab Dvalishvili x Cody Stamann (Bantamweight)
The next fight up from the APEX in Las Vegas is a Bantamweight bout between rising prospect Merab Dvalishvili, winner of 5 straight, and Cody Stamann, looking to bounce back off a loss in his last fight. Dvalishvili will look to bring the pressure, always taking chances either on the feet or looking for takedowns. I am convinced the man has an endless gas tank. He will use his kickboxing to establish a range on the feet and look to shoot. But the same can be said for Cody Stamann. Stamann is arguably the best wrestler in the Bantamweight division, so he will be more than happy to turn this into a grind-it-out war on the mat. Cody Stamann has yet to finish a fight in the UFC, whereas Dvalishvili has and is basically cast iron. I expect a decision win for Merab here as he looks to make a case for a big fight at 135. Dvalishvili via unanimous decision.
Sean Strickland x Krzysztof Jotko (Middleweight)
Listen, Dana White was putting this fight card together and he really wanted to put the hardest names to spell all on the same card.
Anyway, our third fight from UFC Vegas 25 is a returning Sean Strickland from 205 back down to 185 and Krzysztof Jotko who seems to be turning his career around after a serious rough patch. Both men are riding three-fight win streaks and are wanting to make a case for a top-10 spot in the Middleweight rankings. Veterans of the game, I expect this to mostly be a stand-up fight, seeing that Strickland will be huge for the division and very hard to take down or keep there for a long period of time. like Jotko, but I think this is a bad matchup for him. Three decisions in a row here as we are learning 6 fight main cards can drag on if the action is slow. Strickland via unanimous decision.
Ion Cutebela x Dustin Jacoby (Light Heavyweight)
Side note: can we get a little more control at weigh-ins? What Cutebela did made me panic about another Drakkar Klose situation, but that was not the case.
The fourth fight on this card is probably going to win KO of the night as I don’t see this one getting past one round. Ion Cutebela and Dustin Jacoby are all pressure and will empty their respective gas tanks looking to knock the lights out of their opponent. Cutebela has technically lost his last two under awfully unique circumstances, and Jacoby has won back-to-back fights. I want to give the edge to Cutebela based on his wrestling abilities and he should look to wear down Jacoby, but I am bucking the trend and going with the underdog here. Dustin Jacoby makes a name for himself tonight. Jacoby via KO.
Giga Chikadze x Cub Swanson (Featherweight)
The co-main event for UFC Vegas 25 features a veteran of the game in Cub Swanson and someone still looking to carve out a name for themselves in the UFC in Giga Chikadze. Chikadze tried twice on Dana White’s Contenders Series, neither time really making a name for himself and turning back to the regional scene. Racking up wins there is one thing, but his level of competition leaves a little to be desired. He did pick up a win in his last fight against wannabe fighter James Krause, but that doesn’t say much. Cub Swanson on the other hand has been around the block and back a few times. In his last fight, he starched Daniel Pineda and showed the world he still has something left in the tank. I am riding Swanson here, maybe making one last climb up towards the 145-pound title picture. Swanson via TKO.
UFC Vegas 25 Main Event: Dominick Reyes x Jiri Prochazka (Light Heavyweight)
The battle of the god awful hair styles. Reyes looks like he’s been losing his hair since he was a kid and Prochazka is doing this weird hair on the back of his head thing.
I tend to get off track easily. The UFC Vegas 25 main event showcases what the UFC’s Light Heavyweight division is all about; a former title challenger looking to get back to the top and a fast-rising prospect who is setting the world on fire. Dominick Reyes took Jon Jones to deep waters and battled well in a 25-minute war, but hasn’t looked the same since. His last fight was a TKO loss to now champion Jan Blachowicz and looked like he just never really got going in that fight. Reyes was trending towards being the top dog at 205 until suffering losses to Jones and Blachowicz.
On the other hand, Jiri Prochazka has been a man possessed since coming into the UFC. Prochazka knows one thing and one thing only: finish the fight by any means necessary. 24 of his 27 professional wins have come by KO/TKO. He obliterated Volkan Oezdemir in his last fight, showing what kind of top-level striking he has in his arsenal. Neither man looks to take down their opponent, so I expect this to be a brawl on the feet. This fight won’t see the championship rounds, and in the end, I am riding Jiri Prochazka here. He and Blachowicz would put on a hell of a title fight. Prochazka via TKO.