The UFC continued their recent series of struggle announcements late to the week, and also the newly-revealed bouts are listed below in the MMA odds and ends.
Saparbek Safarov vs. Nick Negumereanu, UFC Fight Night 147 Because of an accident to Gokhan Saki, light heavyweight Saparbek Safarov will now take on Octagon newcomer Nick Negumereanu in UFC Fight Night 147, set for March 16 in The O2 Arena in London, England. Nolan King of all FloCombat broke the information. Safarov (8-2) has been finished by Gian Villante and Tyson Pedro in his initial two UFC fights and that he has not fought in over a year today. Negumereanu (9-0) is a undefeated 24-year-old prospect fighting from Romania who has finished all of his pre-UFC competitions within the space. Despite taking the fight on short notice and making his Octagon introduction, I enjoy Negumereanu to win this particular battle. It is a pure fade about the chinny Safarov, that I hope to get cut from the UFC if he loses this fight. The odds are already out for this one, and indeed the UFC newcomer is a 2-to-1 preferred to get his hands raised.
UFC Fight Night 148 vs. Frankie Saenz, marlon Vera The UFC has re-booked that the bantamweight bout between Marlon Vera and Frankie Saenz that was scrapped days before UFC 235 for UFC Fight Night 148, which takes place March 23 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville Tennessee. Vera (12-5-1) is 6-4 at the UFC and is coming off of back-to-back stoppage wins over Guido Cannetti and Wuliji Buren. Saenz (13-5) is 5-3 at the UFC and conquered Henry Briones and Merab Dvalishvili in his last two bouts by decision. I don’t find the line shifting much from where it shut before Saenz got injured. Start looking for the line to be identical to that which it finished it, with Vera as a near 2-to-1 favorite.
Poliana Botelho vs. Lauren Mueller, UFC 236
Because of an arm injury, Paige VanZant is from her women’s flyweight bout against Poliana Botelho at UFC 236 and instead Lauren Mueller is taking the battle. The card is set for April 13 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. Botelho (7-2) is 2-1 in the UFC but lost by entry to Cynthia Calvillo in her last struggle. Mueller (5-1) is 1-1 at the UFC but was submitted by Yanan Wu in her last fight. It’s another fight between two flawed fighters that may go either way, but based on title worth I’d anticipate Botelho to be favored here.
Greg Hardy vs. Dmitry Smoliakov, UFC on ESPN 3
Controversial heavyweight Greg Hardy will return at UFC on ESPN 3 against Dmitry Smoliakov. The card is set for April 27 at BB&T Center at Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Igor Lazorin broke the information. Hardy (3-1) lost by DQ to Allen Crowder in his UFC debut as a massive favorite but had won his three former pro MMA bouts by knockout. Smoliakov (9-2) was completed in bout of his UFC appearances before bouncing back with a entry win on the Russian regional scene in January. However, at 36 decades old he does not have any upside and the UFC is bringing him in here to shed. I would not advocate putting the juice Hardy after what happened in his UFC debut, but I fully expect him to become a monster favorite yet again for this particular fight.
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