The UFC heads to its usual stomping ground on March 3, as the UFC 222 is scheduled to happen at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Read on for our previews of each fight of this event’s fight card, and don’t forget to register for odds updates.
Betting Preview for UFC 222 – Headlined by Yana Kunitskaya vs Cris Cyborg
Where: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
When: Saturday, March 3 2018
Line: Yana Kunitskaya (+800) vs Cris Cyborg (-1500) –view all UFC on FOX lines
TV Broadcast: PPV
Cris Cyborg (-1500) vs. Yana Kunitskaya (+800)
Cris Cyborg is the reigning women’s featherweight champion. She is still undefeated (4-0) in the UFC since starting to fight in Dana White’s MMA outfit in 2016. Although the 32-year-old Brazilian is just a relatively new fighter in the UFC, she has long made herself popular in the MMA world thanks in large part to her successes in Strikeforce and EliteXC. Cyborg has an overall pro record of 19-1-0 with a no-contest fight, and has defended her current title twice; she outpointed Holly Holm last December and TKO’d Tonya Evinger in July. Yana Kunitskaya is looking like a sacrificial lamb for Cyborg, but if anything, the 28-year-old Russian is a veteran of the sport with a 10-3-0, 1NC record. There is a good reason why she earned a ticket to share the octagon with a fighter of Cyborg’s caliber, but there’s also a reason why she is a huge -800 underdog in this fight.
WRITER’S PREDICTION: Cyborg destroys, mauls, pounds, Kunitskaya in the first round.
Brian Ortega (+175) vs Frankie Edgar (-225)
Frankie Edgar (21-5-1) was originally slated to fight in this event’s main event but Max Holloway withdrew, paving the way for Cyborg and Kunitskaya to take over the headliner In any case, Edgar vs. Brian Ortega is an intriguing collision between two fighters, who are on a win streak. Edgar has won his last two fights, which includes his knockout victory over Yair Rodriguez last May. There’s a wide gap between that fight and his meeting with Ortega, but for an experienced fighter like Edgar, that inactivity might not really matter that much. Having said that, Ortega is one of the hottest fighters in the UFC today. The 26-year-old fighter from Los Angeles is 5-0-1 in the UFC. He is coming off a sensational submission win over Cub Swanson last December, which succeeded a Round 3 submission win over Renato Moicano in July.
WRITER’S PREDICTION: Edgar wins via decision.
Andrei Arlovski (+180) vs Stefan Struve (-240)
Stefan Struve and Andrei Arlovski have both been around the sport for a long time, and even casual MMA fans should not have much trouble putting faces on these two fighters’ names. Struve is the towering fighter seven-footer in this matchup, but is not necessarily the Goliath to Arlovski’s David even though the Dutch is the favorite in this match. For one, Arlovski has won (and lost) to some of the sport’s best fighters. He also reigned as the heavyweight division in 2005. The 39-year-old Arlovski (26-15-0) has wins over Frank Mir, Roy Nelson, and Fabricio Werdum. Struve, who is 32-9-0 in his MMA career, is coming off a loss to Alexander Volkov via TKO last September.
WRITER’S PREDICTION: Andrei Arlovski
Sean O’Malley vs. Andre Soukhamthath
While Sean O’Malley and Andre Soukhamthath are barely recognizable faces on the street, but they could potentially get at least a hundred more Twitter followers after their fight this March. Both combatants can light up the fireworks inside the octagon. O’Malley is an unbeaten fighter who owns a perfect 9-0-0 record, which he’ll put on the line against Soukhamthath (12-5-0). Soukhamthath is capable of putting the first blemish on O’Malley’s record, as he is a dangerous fighter with eight wins by knockout and three via submission.
WRITER’S PREDICTION: O’Malley gets his 10th win at the expense of Soukhamthath.
Cat Zingano vs. Ketlen Vieira
It’s been a while since we last saw Cat Zingano (9-2-0) fight, but she’s finally making a return this March against Ketlen Vieira. She is already 35-year-old, but no one can sleep on someone like her, who possesses a devastating knockout power and big advantage in terms of experience over Vieira. Vieira is a lot younger than Zingano at 26, and though she knows the elite status of her opponent, she’s being boosted by a clean 9-0-0 MMA record. Vieira has three first-round finishes.
WRITER’S PREDICTION: Vieira extends her win streak with a decision over Zingano.
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