MMA Odds and Ends for Thursday: Bevy Of New UFC Fights Booked

masvidal-cruickshank A number of new UFC bouts were announced in the past 24 hours, and for today’s MMA Odds and Ends I’ll list them all and give my quick thoughts on all of them. Ovince St-Preux vs. Shogun Rua, UFC Fight Night 56 Next weekend’s UFC Fight Night 56 card has undergone some changes. Due to an injury to Jimi Manuwa, Shogun Rua will now take on Ovince St-Preux in the main event, while St-Preux’s original opponent, Francimar Barroso, was pulled from the card. The event takes place November 8 at Ginasio Municipal Tancredo Neves in Uberlandia, Brazil, and airs on FS1. I actually think OSP is a worse matchup for Shogun than Manuwa was. Shogun has shown some poor takedown defence as of late, and OSP is a pretty athletic wrestler and very strong. On the feet there’s no doubt Shogun has more power and better technique, but there’s no guarantee he’ll be able to keep it in the centre of the Octagon. I do think Shogun should be favored, but OSP is a live dog here based on the styles. Diego Rivas vs. Rodolfo Rubio, UFC Fight Night 56 A late-notice fight was added to UFC Fight Night 56, and it’s a featherweight bout between TUF Latin America competitors Diego Rivas and Rodolfo Rubio. I don’t know enough about either fighter to give an accurate assessment of the bout, so I will not give a lean for this matchup. Donald Cerrone vs. Myles Jury, UFC 182 The co-main event of UFC 182 is set, and it’s a three-round lightweight bout between top-10 ranked Donald Cerrone and Myles Jury. The card takes place January 3 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, and is headlined by UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones taking on Daniel Cormier for Jones’ light heavyweight title. Cerrone vs. Jury is a great fight, and it’s a perfect fight at this point in time. Cerrone had an amazing 2014, going 4-0, and dating back to last year is on a five-fight win streak, while Jury is undefeated in his career and in the UFC. Jury is a stud, and I think he has a chance to win this fight, but I think Cerrone does deserve to be the favorite going into this one, although he definitely has a chance to be upset. Rustam Khabilov vs. Danny Castillo, UFC 182 A long-rumored lightweight bout between Rustam Khabilov and Danny Castillo was also added to UFC 182. Castillo lost his last fight by split decision to Tony Ferguson, but many thought he won the bout and the UFC clearly was impressed as they are giving him a top-15 opponent here in Khabilov, who is coming off of a submission loss to Benson Henderson. This should be a pretty good fight and it’s interesting stylistically, but I lean towards Khabilov and think he deserves to be the favorite heading into the bout. Eddie Alvarez vs. Benson Henderson, UFC Fight Night 59 The co-main event of UFC Fight Night 59 is set and it’s a lightweight bout between Eddie Alvarez and Benson Henderson. The card takes place January 18 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts, and the main event is a five-round featherweight fight between Conor McGregor and Dennis Siver. This is a tough fight to call. It looks like Henderson is on the decline judging by the fact he was knocked out by Rafael dos Anjos in his last outing, while Alvarez lost a decision to Donald Cerrone in his UFC debut. Alvarez is the better boxer in this fight but Henderson is a more varied striker. This is a really tough one to call and could go either way, but I slightly lean towards Alvarez in a three-round fight, although I would have leaned towards Henderson had this been set for five rounds. Jorge Masvidal vs. Norman Parke, UFC Fight Night 59 As well, a lightweight bout between Jorge Masvidal and Norman Parke was added to UFC Fight Night 59. Parke is a very solid fighter and can break into the upper echelon with a division over Masvidal, who I expected to be matched up with a legitimate top 10 opponent. I think Masvidal is one of the best in the world, and although he can be a bit lazy at times, I think he beats Parke here. It’s a competitive fight but I lean towards Masvidal to get the W. Uriah Hall vs. Costas Philippou, UFC Fight Night 59 And finally, a middleweight bout between Uriah Hall and Costas Philippou was added to UFC Fight Night 59. This is a very good fight between Philippou, a top-15 middleweight, and Hall, who can break into the top 15 of the division with a win. These two have fought once previously on the regional circuit, with Philippou taking home a majority decision win. This is a tough one to call this time around, as both men, while talented, are also flawed. Hall has been a disappointment in the UFC while Philippou has been inconsistent. I’m having a hard time picking this fight, but I’m assuming Hall will be slightly favored as the betting public loves him, although if I had a gun to my head I’d lean slightly towards Philippou.

Written by Adam Martin.

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