A number of new UFC bouts were announced by the promotion yesterday, and for today’s MMA Odds and Ends, I’ll give my initial thoughts on all of them. Ian McCall vs. Brad Pickett, UFC London In what should be a “Fight of the Night” candidate at UFC London, Ian McCall will fight Brad Pickett, who is dropping to 125 pounds. This is going to be a standup war between two of the best boxers in the lower weight classes and I absolutely cannot wait for it. Based on the fact he’s more proven at the weight class, I’d have to lean McCall slightly here, perhaps around -150 or so, but Pickett has been counted out before and ended up winning on numerous occasions, and the fact this bout takes place in his home country of England means things could get interesting if it hits the judges’ scorecards. Gunnar Nelson vs. Omari Akhmedov, UFC London In a welterweight matchup between two undefeated fighters, Gunnar Nelson will tae on Omari Akhmedov in what should be a fantastic fight. This is a really tough fight to call and I can honestly see either man winning. I’ll have to watch more tape on both guys before I make my lean, but if I had to guess, Nelson will be favored because he has slightly more hype surrounding him, but you cannot count Akhmedov out. Igor Araujo vs. Danny Mitchell, UFC London In another welterweight bout, Igor Araujo of TUF 16 will take on Danny Mitchell, who is making his UFC debut. Araujo is a powerful wrestling but Mitchell has solid BJJ, meaning the fight could be very interesting if it plays out on the ground like I think it will. I’m not really sure how the betting public will take the line for this but if I had to guess, Araujo would open as a slight favorite due to more bettors knowing his name. Alan Patrick vs. John Makdessi, UFC 169 In a lightweight fight between two strikers, Alan Patrick of Brazil will take on John Makdessi at UFC 169. Although I was impressed with Patrick’s UFC debut, Makdessi is a veteran of the Octagon and I just think he’s a much more solid striker. So I definitely give him the edge in the standup if this fight stays standing, which I expect it to. So look for Makdessi to enter this fight as a -200 favorite and possibly even more next February. TJ Waldburger vs. Mike Pyle, UFC 170 And finally, the UFC announced a fun welterweight bout between TJ Waldburger and Mike Pyle will take place at UFC 170. This is a matchup between two excellent BJJ fighters who both have solid standup skills but questionable chins, making it an almost even match. I do think that Pyle’s overall striking is more advanced, but Waldburger is improving on the feet as well, so it’s going to be interesting if the fight stays on the feet because either man can get KOed. And if it hits the ground, it should be interesting as well as both have very tricky guards. I’m going lean the veteran Pyle here ever so slightly, but honestly this fight can go either way and it should open near a Pick ’em next Febuary at the sportsbooks.
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