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UFC Vegas 72 Preview and Predictions

UFC Vegas 72 card

(Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

UFC Vegas 72 card
(Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

UFC Vegas 72 Preview and Predictions

UFC Vegas 72 is the definition of a filler card. The UFC had a week on the schedule that needed to be filled so they packed it with subpar fights. At this point, it is not a foreign concept. That said, two young rising bantamweights, Song Yadong and Ricky Simon, will fight in the main event in what seems to be a great fight. Outside of that, the card is not great. Still, the Vendetta Sports Media preview team is here to preview and predict the UFC Vegas 72 main card. You can find our prediction records below.

James Herrick: 37-25-2

Garrett Burroughs: 38-24-2

Jerry Walker: 31-22-1

Anthony Miranda: 25-26-1

Josh Quinlan vs. Trey Waters — Welterweight

James: Welterweights Josh Quinlan and Trey Waters are set to open the UFC Vegas 72 main card. Quinlan and Waters are both incredibly inexperienced. Quinlan has one UFC fight under his belt. That fight resulted in a first-round knockout over Jason Witt. Meanwhile, Waters earned a UFC contract because he took this fight on short notice. Previously, Waters attempted to earn a UFC contract on Dana White’s Contender Series (DWCS), but he lost to Gabriel Bonfim. Yes, Bonfim is a really good prospect. The problem is Waters went from losing on DWCS to fighting on a UFC main card.

That is not to say Waters does not have talent — he does. Waters is a very long striker with knockout power and he can catch fighters as they pressure him. At the same time, Quinlan has absurd knockout power as well. If he connects, he wins by knockout.

I think Quinlan will be able to land that knockout shot. Waters fights with his hands down and uses range management and head movement to avoid strikes. I think Quinlan can land leg kicks to damage his movement which will allow him to get in the pocket and land a massive strike. I will take Quinlan by second-round knockout.

Garrett: Waters via decision

Jerry: Quinlan via TKO/KO

Anthony: Quinlan via TKO/KO

Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Waldo Cortes-Acosta — Heavyweight 

James: Unranked heavyweights Marcos Rogerio de Lima and Waldo Cortes-Acosta will fight on the UFC Vegas 72 main card. Anytime you see unranked heavyweights on the main card you know a card is not great. Regardless, I am interested to see how Cortes-Acosta does against higher-ranked competition. In the past, he has shown that he is a solid heavyweight and he has impressed in his brief UFC tenure. Overall, he has tallied a 2-0 UFC record. Meanwhile, de Lima has much more UFC experience and has gone 9-6 in the promotion.

Cortes-Acosta has really solid boxing. He has quick hands, good straight punches and can put combos together. Plus, he has solid cardio and is not afraid to push the pace. de Lima is a solid striker as well. His leg kicks could cause Cortes-Acosta a lot of problems. Ultimately, I think Cortes-Acosta’s volume will be the difference maker. de Lima has suspect cardio and will be in trouble in Cortes-Acosta pushes the pace. I will take Cortes-Acosta by decision.

Garrett: Cortes-Acosta by TKO

Jerry: Cortes-Acosta by TKO

Anthony: de Lima by KO/TKO

Julian Erosa vs. Fernando Padilla — Featherweight 

James: At UFC Vegas 72, Julian Erosa will welcome Fernando Padilla to the UFC, who’s making his debut after going 14-4 on the regional scene. Erosa, on the other hand, is 6-6 in the UFC and nearly worked himself into the featherweight rankings. Although, his momentum was stopped after he was knocked out by Alex Caceres in his last fight.

Erosa is a tough fighter to analyze. That is because he has been knocked out cold on several occasions, but he has also shown a lot of durability in other fights. In his skills, he has strong offense tools which are centered around his awkward striking and ability to fight in the pocket. That said, he has a lot of defensive liabilities, while Padilla is a long striker with the ability to counter-punch. That is a great recipe to beat Erosa. I think Padilla peppers Erosa with counterpunches and works his way to victory. I will take Padilla via decision.

Garrett: Padilla by decision

Jerry: Erosa by decision

Anthony: Erosa by decision

Rodolfo Vieira vs. Cody Brundage — Middleweight

James: At UFC Vegas 72, Rodoflo Vieira will fight Cody Brundage. Both fighters have had relatively average starts to their UFC career. In the UFC, Vieira has gone 3-2 while Brundage has gone 2-2.

This fight is a BJJ practitioner versus a wrestler. Vieira is a BJJ practitioner and has a ton of high-level BJJ experience under his belt. Meanwhile, Brundage has college wrestling experience. Outside of those skills, Brundage has better boxing and cardio.

I think this fight comes down to Brundage’s game plan. If he opts to stand and trade with Vieira, I think he wins. If he tries to use his wrestling, I think Vieira lands a submission. I will take Brundage via decision, but I do not love the pick.

Garrett: Brundage by decision

Jerry: Vieira by submission

Anthony: Rodolfo Vieira by decision

Caio Borralho vs. Michal Oleksiejczuk — Middleweight

James: In the co-main event, Caio Borralho will fight Michal Oleksiejczuk. This may not be the best co-main event, but I am interested in this fight. I really like Borralho and I think he is the best prospect at middleweight. He has impressed with a 3-0 start against solid competition early in his UFC career. Oleksiejczuk performed well in the organization too at 6-3-1, proving to be an above-average UFC fighter.

Oleksiejczuk has some really good boxing. His hands are quick and he can put really good combinations together. This fight is a stylistic nightmare for Oleksiejczuk, however — Borralho is a great grappler. Once the fight is on the ground, he has great top control, submissions and ground-and-pound. You really can not ask for much more. At the same time, Oleksiejczuk’s biggest weakness is his grappling and, more specifically, his takedown defense. I will take Borralho by submission.

Garrett: Borrahlo by submission

Jerry: Borrahlo by decision

Anthony: Borralho by decisison

No. 8 Song Yadong vs. No. 10 Ricky Simon — Bantamweight

James: As much as I have spoken badly about UFC Vegas 72, I love this main event. Song Yadong and Ricky Simon are two of the most promising bantamweights in the later portion of the rankings. Yadong is 8-2-1 in the UFC. In his last fight, he lost to Cory Sandhagen. Although, he showed a lot of impressive skills and proved to be an elite bantamweight. Similarly, Simon has gone 8-2 in the UFC while demonstrating championship potential.

Simon’s game is centered around his wrestling. He has solid takedowns and gets work done once he gets the fight to the ground. On the feet, he has solid boxing. It is relatively basic, but he has a lot of power in his hands. Yadong is a quick and dynamic striker. I love his hand speed and boxing combinations, and I’m really interested to see how he defends takedowns. Overall, he has good takedown defense, but he is not light out. If Simon attempts enough takedowns he will land some.

The real difference maker is the fact that this is a five-round fight. I think Yadong has the better cardio and I could see him making Simon tired. If he can defend takedowns and work to the body he should find success later in the fight. I will take Yadong by decision.

Garrett: Simon by decision

Jerry: Simon via submission

Anthony: Yadong via KO/TKO

***

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