UFC Fight Night 156 Main Card
Valentina Shevchenko vs. Liz Carmouche
There’s a little extra spice in this main event given that Carmouche is one of only two fighters to hold a previous win over Shevchenko, albeit due to a cut caused by a controversial upkick back in 2010.
Shevchenko has continued to evolve since then though and is now the dominant force at 125lbs, while Carmouche has also tried to make a name for herself in the relatively new weight class as well.
Striking wise, the current champion should have a distinct advantage with her technical kickboxing ability, with Carmouche being tough, durable and possessing decent boxing, but just not being on the same level.
However, Carmouche has good wrestling and is very strong, so she could look to take the fight to Shevchenko on the mat. That being said, Shevchenko has developed a notable wrestling game of her own and isn’t lacking in the strength department either.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens if and when these two do lock horns in the grappling department, but I think Shevchenko should compete well and with her striking advantage and distant management she’ll control the action on the feet and emerge with a decision victory.
Prediction: Valentina Shevchenko to win by decision – Bet Now
Vicente Luque vs. Mike Perry
Luque has been on an excellent under-the-radar run in the welterweight division, losing only once in his last 10 outings, and that being against another impressive contender in Leon Edwards.
This should be a fun fight as Luque finished in all 9 of those fights, mostly with strikes, but also sprinkling in a few submission finishes along the way, while Perry is always on the hunt for a big knockout finish.
Luque is certainly the more well-rounded fighter here and he’ll enjoy a 4.5” reach advantage on the feet, which he’d be wise to use to his advantage and try to be the more tactical fighter here as Perry will be swinging for the fences and has a tough chin, so he’ll be hard to put away.
This is a tricky one because Luque can be hit and Perry has the kind of power to end a fight in an instant, but as long as he doesn’t get drawn into a toe-to-toe war I think he can edge the action on the feet and seize on any opportunity to get the fight to the mat to finish by submission.
Prediction: Vicente Luque to win by submission in Rd2 – Bet Now
Luiz Garagorri vs. Humberto Bandanay
If your wondering what a relatively unknown fighter like Garagorri is doing on the main card, the fact that he grew up in Uruguay, where this event is taking place, should help make things a bit clearer.
Both fighters are essentially offensively minded strikers and so we could be in for a brawl here. At first glance Garagorri’s record looks impressive at 12-0 with a string of first round finishes to his name, but these are all on the regional circuit against nobodies so doesn’t say a whole lot.
Bandanay’s record is a bit more solid, although he’s struggled so far in the UFC. If the two fighters get reckless, as they are prone to do, then anything goes, but I think Bandanay’s experience against a higher level of opposition and submission skills will aid him here as he slugs early and then goes for a tapout finish.
Prediction: Humberto Bandanay to win by submission in Rd1 – Bet Now
Volkan Oezdemir vs. Ilir Latifi
Oezdemir made a big impact when he first arrived in the UFC, but he’s since hit upon tougher times and now is in dire need of a win after losing three fights in a row.
Latifi is by no means an easy opponent to reverse that trend. Oezdemir has proven knockout power, will offer up the higher volume of strikes, is good in the clinch and has a knack for first round finishes, but the short stocky Latifi is a hard-headed customer.
Latifi also throws with destructive finishing power too, but behind it he’s often setting up his powerful wrestling game and that could be a significant factor here.
Latifi is somewhat predictable, so Oezdemir could just look to strike from range and keep him at bay, but despite a significant height advantage, he’s only working with a 1.5” reach advantage, plus he likes to clinch, which could be a real problem against such a strong opponent, so I’m going to lean towards Latifi here to bring him down and submit him.
Prediction: Ilir Latifi to win by submission in Rd2 – Bet Now
Rodolfo Vieira vs. Oskar Piechota
A highly decorated jiu-jitsu master, Vieira makes his UFC debut after a 5-0 start to his MMA career that’s included four submission victories.
Piechota suffered the first loss of his 12 fight career last time out, but he’s a decent enough fighter whose problem is that he’s a good grappler but will be outclassed here, so he’ll likely have to rely on his striking advantage here to make an impact.
I think Vieira is just going to prove to much for him on the mat though and will get the submission he’s hunting for sooner or later – and most likely the former.
Prediction: Rodolfo Vieira to win by submission in Rd1 – Bet Now
Enrique Barzola vs. Bobby Moffett
Two high paced grapplers here, so it’ll be interesting to see who is able to get the better of the action.
Barzola is the more active fighter on the feet, but he’ll also be waiting for chances to go for takedowns and he should prove to be the better wrestler here.
Moffett will be comfortable on the mat though and his high tempo and well versed submission game makes him a real threat.
Nevertheless, I think Barzola will prove to be too much for Moffett and will fight his way on the feet and the mat to a decision victory.
Prediction: Enrique Barzola to win by decision – Bet Now
UFC Fight Night 156 Prelims
(Predicted winners in bold)
Ciryl Gane vs. Raphael Pessoa Nunes
Tecia Torres vs. Marina Rodriguez
Rogerio Bonterin vs. Raulian Paiva
Geraldo de Freitas vs. Chris Gutierrez
Rodrigo Vargas vs. Alex Da Silva
Gilbert Burns vs. Alexey Kunchenko
Veronica Macedo vs. Polyana Viana