UFC Fight Night 171: Smith vs. Teixeira Predictions
Anthony Smith vs. Glover Teixeira
A few years ago it visibly started to become clear that Teixeira was past his best, becoming slower on the feet and less durable, but to his credit he’s adapted his style accordingly, falling back on his strong wrestling and submission skills to help rack up a three-fight winning streak.
Meanwhile, Smith impressed with his all-action style and impressive finishing record en-route to a 205lb title shot against Jon Jones, which he lost by unanimous decision, but has since bounced back with a submission win over Alexander Gustafsson.
Teixeira still has heavy hands and Smith is hittable, but if he stands and trades with the significantly younger, quicker man there’s a real risk it’ll be a bad night for him.
While Smith is a submission threat too I could see Teixeira being the more dangerous man on the mat, but there will be a significant amount of striking exchanges too and I think we’ll see ‘Lionheart’ making his mark with his speed advantage and aggression as the rounds go on, leading to a fourth round TKO stoppage.
Prediction: Anthony Smith to win by TKO in Rd4 – Bet Now
Ovince St. Preux vs. Ben Rothwell
OSP moves up to heavyweight to take on what’s likely to be a significantly bigger man in Rothwell.
Saint Preux’s striking has never been particularly cohesive or hard-hitting, so I’m not expecting him to be a major threat in that regard against a large, durable heavyweight like ‘Big’ Ben. If anything speed could be an advantage for him, but he’s had cardio issues in the past and the extra weight he’s carrying along with less than ideal training conditions means he’s unlikely to be pushing the pace for 15 minutes.
Rothwell has become even more plodding with time, but he still hits hard and he’ll also be hard to take down, which could make OSP more tired and foil his attempts to use his best weapon, which is his crafty submissions.
I think this could be quite a slow-paced fight overall and I’m picking Rothwell to be the one marching forward more and landing the heavier, more meaningful blows to earn a decision victory.
Prediction: Ben Rothwell to win by decision – Bet Now
Drew Dober vs. Alexander Hernandez
Always a tough competitor, Dober has nicely developed his skills during his time in the UFC and has finished his last two opponents in a little over two minutes combined.
As you might expect given that, Dober is aggressive and hits hard, but isn’t just a wild brawler these days and I think could be the all-round better striker here, though he doesn’t have Hernandez speed and explosiveness.
Hernandez is more well-rounded, with good wrestling and submissions, so it’s mat work that could be his key to getting a victory here, but Dober has been building a head of steam and if he can keep this one standing I think his forward pressure and power-punches could unsettle his opponent and pay dividends in the second round with a TKO stoppage.
Prediction: Drew Dober to win by TKO in Rd2 – Bet Now
Ray Borg vs. Ricky Simón
Simon is coming off a couple of losses, in direct contrast to Borg’s back-to-back wins, but that doesn’t necessarily indicate how this fight will go.
Simon is the more active and potent striker here and will be aided by a slight height and 6” reach advantage. He can be hit, but Borg has neither the volume of his offense nor power to really threaten him.
Instead Borg is best on the mat and will look for control and potential submissions, while also being very good in the scramble.
Simon has good wrestling though and is the stronger man, so I think he’ll be able to hold his own on the ground when he has to and control the stand-up action to secure a decision victory.
Prediction: Ricky Simon to win by decision – Bet Now
Karl Roberson vs. Marvin Vettori
Roberson is a solid kickboxer, but thus far in his MMA career has proven to be more of a threat with submissions.
Vettori is the busier man on the feet though and is durable too, while he’s likely to have the stronger all-round skills on the mat too, so if he stays mindful of Robertson’s submission threat I feel he’ll be able to edge the action wherever it goes and win out on the scorecards.
Prediction: Marvin Vettori to win by decision – Bet Now
UFC Fight Night 171 Prelims
(Predicted winners in bold)
Andrei Arlovski vs. Philipe Lins
Sijara Eubanks vs. Sarah Moras
Michael Johnson vs. Thiago Moisés
Hunter Azure vs. Brian Kelleher
Chase Sherman vs. Ike Villanueva
Gabriel Benítez vs. Omar Morales