MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: End-of-Week Fight Announcement Roundup (CMigrator copy 20)

The Ultimate Fighter Live Finale: Marcello v Sicilia It was a busy week of fight announcements by the UFC. Below are the new fights that I haven’t given my initial thoughts on yet: Yaotzin Meza vs. Sam Sicilia, UFC Fight Night 71 An injury to Doo Ho Choi has created an opening for Yaotzin Meza to step in on short notice to face Sam Sicilia at UFC Fight Night 71, which takes place July 15 at Valley View Casino Center in San Diego, California. Meza isn’t very good at all and Sicilia, for his flaws, is still a heavy hitter who is skilled at knocking people out. Meza is going to look to wrestle Sicilia in this fight but Sicilia actually has decent wrestling to go along with his knockout power. I don’t think very highly of Meza and think Sicilia should be the clear favorite heading into this bout, one I believe he wins by T/KO. Jimmie Rivera vs. Marcus Brimage, UFC Fight Night 72 Due to an injury to Ian Entwistle, Marcus Brimage will now meet UFC newcomer Jimmie Rivera at UFC Fight Night 72, which goes down July 18 at SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland. It’s expected to take place on the preliminary card. Rivera is a top prospect who is finally making his way to the UFC after doing well in WSOF and Bellator in the past. He has previously competed in Zuffa, where he lost to Dennis Bermudez on TUF 14. He’s improved a lot since then, though, and is one of the better prospects at his weight class at the moment. Brimage was also on TUF 14 but he made it to the UFC right after the show and has been pretty solid over the years fighting some very good competition inside the Octagon. He is coming off of a knockout loss to Cody Garbrandt, but that was a tremendous fight he’s looked awesome as a bantamweight. I like Rivera a lot as a prospect but Brimage is a bit more proven, and since he had a full camp here I have to lean towards him here to pick up the win. But it’s not a sure thing by any means. Frankie Saenz vs. Sirwan Kakai, UFC Fight Night 73 A bantamweight bout between top-15 ranked Frankie Saenz and Sirwan Kakai has been added to UFC Fight Night 73, which goes down August 8 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Saenz is 2-0 in the UFC and in his last fight picked up a big upset win over Iuri Alcantara. He has very effective wrestling and size for the division and is overall a tough out for most guys in his weight class. Kakai, on the other hand, fought last weekend on short notice against Danny Martinez, winning the fight by decision. He showed very good striking and overall was impressive in that fight, but Saenz and Martinez are a class a part and this is a much tougher fight for him. You can’t count Kakai out of this fight as he has better striking, but Saenz is a very good bantamweight with excellent wrestling and coming off of the win over Alcantara, he should be favored in this bout. Uriah Hall vs. Joe Riggs, UFC Fight Night 73 And finally, a welterweight bout between Uriah Hall and Joe Riggs was added to UFC Fight Night 73. This fight… wow. This is not a good fight for Riggs, let’s just put it that way. Yes, Hall is inconsistent and overrated, but Riggs is a completely shot fighter and I do not see how he wins this fight. Despite fighting in a new weight class, Hall should be a massive favorite here, and he might end Riggs’ career.

Written by Adam Martin.

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