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UFC Vegas 39 Main Card Preview And Predictions

The UFC machine chugs on this weekend with a special start time of 4 PM ET for UFC Vegas 39 taking place from the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. There is a lot to like on this card from top to bottom, from former title contenders to a co-main event that is sure to bring the action. The main event between Mackenzie Dern and Marina Rodriguez has fight fans salivating at all the possibilities of the outcome. Enough of the talking, let’s get this UFC Vegas 39 preview started.

Chris Gutierrez x Felipe Colares (Bantamweight)

Our UFC Vegas 39 preview takes a look at the opening bout of the main card, which takes place in the Bantamweight division between two prospects looking to make a name for themselves in a top-heavy 135lb division. Chris Gutierrez is on a massive hot streak, winner of 4 of his last 5 including a draw. Gutierrez, the heavy -265 favorite, will look to keep the fight standing and use his long-range to keep Colares at bay. Felipe Colares is 2-2 in the UFC with a nice win over Luke Saunders but also some very disappointing performances as well. I don’t see a way that Colares can manage a win here against a guy who should crack the top-15 in Gutierrez. Gutierrez will find a way to get it done. Gutierrez via unanimous decision.

Sabina Mazo x Mariya Agapova (Women’s Flyweight)

Next up will definitely be a more even contest between Sabina Mazo and Mariya Agapova. Mazo has had an up and down UFC career, going 3-2, but at age 24 she has all the tools and potential in the world to make a name for herself. It’s all about putting the pieces together. Mazo has excellent takedown defense which is always a key attribute to have. She will need all the help she can get going against Mariya Agapova who is always looking for submission when she gets the fight to the ground. Both women are coming off a loss in their last fight, so who wants it more? I tend to lean towards someone who is a submission specialist because it shows me that they have good stamina and they are relentless. I don’t foresee a submission win necessarily but Agapova should be able to grind out a win on points. Agapova via unanimous decision.

Tim Elliott x Matheus Nicolau (Flyweight)

I am out on Tim Elliott. This man has had chance after chance in the UFC and always has squandered opportunities. He was one of the oldest fighters to fight on The Ultimate Fighter, somehow managed to win the show, and looked like a scrub against then-champion Demetrious Johnson. He has been given cupcake fights to build his status back up in the division. Matheus Nicolau is no cupcake, and that will be shown Saturday. Nicolau is a stud at 16-2 and will look to jump into potentially the top 5 after a dominant win. Nicolau via 2nd round submission.

Randy Brown x Jared Gooden (Welterweight)

Randy Brown burst onto the scene in 2016 with a huge debut win against Matt Dwyer and put everyone on notice, then things kinda started to fall apart. A 6-4 record in the UFC isn’t spectacular but keeps his job. Jared Gooden kind of has a similar story as well which makes this fight all the more interesting. Both Brown and Gooden are well-rounded in their styles, but you could give a slight nod to Brown based on the statistics of their fights (striking accuracy, takedown defense, etc.).Gooden has been in there with some solid names in the division and performed well, so unless he goes and does something stupid he should be able to lean on his previous fight experience to get a win and hopefully crack the top-15 at 170lbs. Gooden via 3rd-round TKO.

Mackenzie Dern x Marina Rodriguez (Women’s Strawweight)

Our UFC Vegas 39 preview ends with the main event of the evening, pitting a potential superstar who has had prior stumbles against a veteran who is a bonafide winner. Mackenzie Dern has all the advantages on paper: much taller, longer reach, and just visibly much larger than her opponent. Dern is a well-known grappling wizard and a submission specialist and is always looking for any way to make her opponent tap out of pass out. The weaknesses Dern has in her game are she has hilariously bad striking (38% which I believe is the lowest in division) and she does not have a KO victory on record. Going against someone like Marina Rodriguez who has the capability to finish a fight in that facet should make things awfully interesting. Rodriguez has back-to-back wins over some tough outs in Amanda Ribas (the only fighter to register a win against Dern) and Michelle Waterson. My gut is telling me that Rodriguez can keep the pressure and avoid the grappling of Dern, but I just can’t bet against Dern. I have been hesitant in the past with Dern, and this might be my last shot with her. Dern via 3rd round submission.

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