Prior to each UFC fight card, Jay Primetown takes a look at some of the key contests at each event. In the latest installment, we look at the lone heavyweight fight scheduled at UFC Fight Night 107 as American Timothy Johnson takes on Poland’s Daniel Omielanczuk. Timothy Johnson (Record: 10-3, -155 Favorite, Power Ranking: C-) The 32-year-old heavyweight has fought four times in the UFC dating back to 2015. He’s fought credible competition, including a win over 15th-ranked Marcin Tybura, compiling a 2-2 record overall. He enters UFC Fight Night 107 coming off a controversial split-decision loss to Alexander Volkov. Weighing in right at the 265-pound limit, Johnson is one of the biggest fighters in the UFC. Thus far in the promotion, he’s proven to be quite durable. He’s willing to engage with opponents, where he’s capable of landing heavy shots as he moves forward. He combines that with a solid chin and durability. Johnson does well to use his size to push opponents against the cage and to make his fights ugly. He’s not a flashy fighter, but his style is generally effective. In terms of grappling, he’s a former Division II wrestler, and that has translated into him securing 1.5 takedowns per 15 minutes in the Octagon. In top control, he has heavy ground-and-pound capable of a finish. Daniel Omielanczuk (Record: 19-6-1, +135 Underdog, Power Ranking: D) Known as the “Polish Bear,” Omielanczuk has been fighting in the UFC since 2013. He has had seven bouts inside the Octagon, compiling a 4-3 record. His last fight in the promotion was at UFC 204, when he was finished for the first time in the UFC in getting submitted by Stefan Struve. A three-time Polish Muay Thai champion, the 35-year-old is a dangerous fighter on the feet. He likes to move forward, firing off leg kicks both to the legs as well as to the upper body. Striking from the southpaw stance, he’s had some success in the UFC, landing those kicks from awkward angles. Against smaller heavyweights, he has used his weight to push them against the cage, but when tasked to fight the bigger fighters in the division, he’s been unable to find that control. An area where Omielanczuk has struggled is on the ground. He’s successfully defended only 47 percent of takedown attempts. In four of his seven UFC bouts, he’s been taken down a minimum of two times. Matchup A battle of Top 15 heavyweights pits Johnson against Omielanczuk at UFC Fight Night 107. This is an interesting matchup, as Omielanczuk is a better technical striker while Johnson is more of a brawler. If distance was a key to this bout, I would give the advantage to Omielanczuk. However, Johnson does well to close distance and fight ugly. He has a three-inch reach and 20-pound weight advantage. It’s that size differential that will make for an advantage for the American. His size and strength are major factors for him to be able to land the heavier punches and to push his opponent against the cage. Once on the cage, Johnson will be able to use his strength and NCAA Division II wrestling ability to secure takedowns on Omielanczuk. The Polish fighter has struggled to defend takedowns throughout his UFC tenure, and Fight Night 107 should be no exception. In top control, Johnson will use his size to maintain control as well as deliver powerful ground-and-pound strikes. It will be difficult for Omielanczuk to survive 15 minutes if Johnson is landing from top position. The advantages for Johnson, either standing or on the ground, are here in this fight. He can push Omielanczuk to the cage in a standing exchange and land better from close range or use his size and strength to out grapple his opponent. Johnson is one of my most confident plays on this fight card. At just -155, he’s worth making a sizable bet on. I had Johnson handicapped as a -225 favorite, so I see significant value on him compared to the betting line.
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