UFC 240 takes place tomorrow night in Canada and we’ve got our predictions for all the fights below.
Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar
There’s no real question that Holloway still remains the dominant king of the hill at featherweight despite his loss to Dustin Poirier at lightweight and he’ll be looking to prove that as he faces a perennial 145lb contender in Edgar.
Generally Edgar relies on his excellent cardio, speed, distance management and volume striking to best his opponents on the feet, which has proven to be a successful formula over the years.
However, on this occasion he’s facing someone who can not only match him in those regards, but also in many cases do it better. Holloway hits harder, his striking is lazer accurate and his shot selection is excellent, while he is a master of using range and footwork to his advantage.
Edgar is also a very good wrestler though and mixing things up with ground work could be his best chance here, but Holloway has strong takedown defense and is adept at getting back to his feet quickly when he is brought to the mat.
So, as good of a fighter as Edgar is, it’s just hard to see him getting the better of Holloway here and i’m expecting to see Holloway hitting his opponent far more than he’s been used to in the past, leading to a third round TKO stoppage.
Max Holloway wins by decision.
Cris Cyborg vs. Felicia Spencer
Amanda Nunes certainly dispelled the air of invincibility surrounding Cris Cyborg for many years, but aside from the remarkable two-division champion, no-one has come close to troubling the Brazilian star.
I don’t expect that to be any different on Saturday night. Spencer’s striking is a work in progress still and is unlikely to be troubling Cyborg, so she’s going to have to take a different route from Nunes to achieve victory.
Spencer is a good grappler and has a string of submission wins to her name, so that’s going to be her focus in this fight, but she’s going to have deal with a wall of hard-hitting strikes plus Cyborg’s strength and wrestling in order to make that gameplan work for her.
Spencer’s never been up against someone with Cyborg’s striking intensity, power and strength and I think as with many others who have gone up against her that’s going to lead to a rude awakening as she finds herself ill-equipped to deal with the kind of offense coming her way, leading to a second round TKO stoppage.
Geoff Neal vs. Niko Price
Neal has acquitted himself well in his first three fights in the UFC after graduating from the Contender Series and it’ll be interesting to see if he can keep that going against a potentially challenging opponent in Price.
Price is always a threat because he’s a very hard hitter who will be aggressive and look for the finish wherever the fight goes.
Neal may be equipped to deal with that though as he has good power, but is more methodical and technical in his striking approach and that should enable him to exploit the gaps Price leaves defensively, potentially leading to a TKO stoppage, though I’ll settle for a decision victory.
Geoff Neal wins by decision.
Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Arman Tsarukyan
Tasarukyan marked himself out as a fighter to watch in his UFC debut, even although he lost, but the UFC aren’t giving the 22-year-old any easy fights.
On the feet I’d expect Tsarukyan to have the advantage as he’s a more comfortable striker than Aubin-Mercier, who has worked to improve his stand-up, but stil relies heavily on his grappling to get the job done.
Tsarukyan also excels on the mat and is a surprisingly well-rounded fighter for his age. That should lead to some competitive grappling action here as OAM is a solid wrestler with a judo background and penchant for rear-naked choke submissions.
This should be a competitive fight, but while there as some risks in picking a fighter like Tsarukyan who is still young and developing, I think his striking edge, good grappling and cardio will enable him to secure a decision victory here.
Arman Tsarukyan wins by decision.
Marc-André Barriault vs. Krzysztof Jotko
Barriault’s heavy hands make him a threat on the feet and he’s also a tough customer who remains dangerous even if he’s hurt, but he’s not particularly well rounded.
On the other hand, Jotko has more tools at his disposal and he’d be wise to use them here. That’s not to say he can’t mix things up a bit with Barriault at striking range, but it’s his clinch work and wrestling that will be his keys to victory here.
Jotko has been caught in the past, so Barriault has a chance, but I’ll take the better grappler here to grind out a decision win.
Krzysztof Jotko wins by decision.
Prelims (Predicted winners in bold)
Alexis Davis vs. Viviane Araujo
Hakeem Dawodu vs. Yoshinori Horie
Gavin Tucker vs. Seung Woo Choi
Alexandre Pantoja vs. Deiveson Figueiredo
Gillian Robertson vs. Sarah Frota
Erik Koch vs. Kyle Stewart