MMA Odds and Ends for Monday: Weekend Fight Announcement Roundup
A few new fights were announced for upcoming cards this weekend, and here are my thoughts on them:
Darren Till To Headline UFC Liverpool
The UFC is headed to Liverpool, England with Darren Till as the headliner. UFC Fight Night 130 takes place Saturday, May 27 at Echo Arena, and the UFC officially announced the news of Till headlining it, though no opponent has been officially announced for him yet. Till (16-0-1) is 4-0-1 in the UFC and in his last outing he brutally knocked out Donald Cerrone for the biggest victory of his career to date. He has a ton of potential and it will be interesting to see who he fights on this card, with fighters like Jorge Masvidal, Leon Edwards, and Stephen Thompson possibilities.
Elias Theodorou vs. Trevor Smith, UFC Liverpool
The UFC announced two fights official for UFC Liverpool, and the first is a middleweight bout between Elias Theodorou and Trevor Smith. Theodorou (14-2) recently defeated Dan Kelly to get back into the win column and is an impressive 6-2 overall in the UFC. Smith (15-7) is a surprising 5-4 in the UFC and in his last fight defeated Chris Camozzi. He's 37 now but has shown no signs of slowing down, though some of his past performances can't be forgotten. Though Smith is an underrated fighter, Theodorou is the younger and more durable fighter in this matchup and will be the betting favorite.
Dan Kelly vs. Tom Breese, UFC Liverpool
A middleweight bout between Dan Kelly and Tom Breese was also officially announced for UFC Liverpool. Kelly (13-3) won four-straight fights to emerge as a contender in the middleweight division but has dropped back-to-back fights. Breese (10-1) lost to Sean Strickland in his last fight, snapping his three-fight win streak in the UFC. He tried to make welterweight for his last fight but fell ill and has decided to move back to middleweight. Kelly has come through as the underdog time and time again but Breese should have the physical advantage in this fight. I'm expecting close odds with a slight lean towards Breese as a favorite.
Andrei Arlovski vs. Tai Tuivasa, UFC 225
A matchup between heavyweight legend Andrei Arlovski and up-and-comer Tai Tuivasa has been added to what is shaping up to be a stacked UFC 225 card. MMAFighting.com broke the news. Arlovski (27-15, 1 NC) is currently riding a two-fight win streak and recently defeated Stefan Struve via decision. He is more of a gatekeeper now but is still ranked in the top-15 at heavyweight. Tuivasa (7-0) has won bout of his fights so far in the UFC, and all of his wins have come by knockout. He looks like a great prospect in the heavyweight division and this fight will show where he's at. Though Arlovski is the bigger name, all the hype is behind Tuivasa and he should be heavily favored here.
Marcin Held Signs With ACB
We also have a free-agent signing to report as Marcin Held has officially been signed by ACB. Held (23-7) went 1-3 in the UFC, defeating Nasrat Haqparast by decision in his last outing but he looked overmatched for the most part in his other fights. Still, he's a young fighter at 26 and has a lot of time to improve. We saw how much potential he had when he fought in Bellator, and perhaps he can tap into some of that potential in ACB.
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Mixed martial arts journalist. Lead writer for MMAOddsbreaker.com and also featured at @MMARatingsNet, @mmanews_com and @fightodds_io.
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