Three new fights have been announced for upcoming UFC cards. Here they are, along with my thoughts on each fight. Iuri Alcantara vs. Leandro Issa, UFC 190 A bantamweight contest between Iuri Alcantara and Leandro Issa has been added to UFC 190, which goes down August 1 at HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It’s expected to be on the preliminary card. Alcantara was one of the top 135lbers in the world for a few years but losing to Frankie Saenz like he did in his last fight was downright terrible. Alcantara showed no sign of urgency in the fight as he was taken down repeatedly en route to losing a blowout decision as a huge favorite. Issa has been inconsistent in the UFC, but he’s coming off of back-to-back submission wins and it looks like he’s actually improving, which is nice to see. The UFC rarely matches up winners with losers, so it’s interesting they decided to go that route here. Clearly they want to see if Issa is legit by testing him against Alcantara, and if he can pull off the win that would be huge for him. I haven’t really been impressed with Alcantara in a while, and although Issa has been inconsistent in the UFC, I really think he’s catching Alcantara at a good time here. Look for Alcantara to be the favorite, but Issa is absolutely a live dog. Chris Camozzi vs. Tom Watson, UFC Fight Night 73 A middleweight bout featuring Chris Camozzi and Tom Watson is headed to UFC Fight Night 73, which goes down August 8 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. It will likely be placed on the prelims. This fight makes a lot of sense because both fighters have recent decision losses to Rafael Natal, and both guys are on losing streaks in the UFC that will likely lead to the loser of this fight being released despite their fan-friendly styles. Camozzi was tapped out by Ronaldo Souza in his most recent fight after winning two fights on the regional circuit, but prior to that had lost four fights in the UFC so he’s 0-5 over his last five Octagon appearances. Watson, meanwhile, has lost three of four and four of six in the UFC, so he really needs to beat Camozzi to keep his spot on the roster. This should be a competitive scrap between two guys desperate to keep their jobs, and I could honestly see either winning it. I imagine the fight goes to decision, and it will likely be a split decision given the styles at play here. I lean Watson slightly, but I wouldn’t bet on either guy winning this fight. Max Holloway vs. Charles Oliveira, UFC Fight Night 74 A fantastic five-round featherweight fight between Max Holloway and Charles Oliveira will headline UFC Fight Night 74, which takes place August 23 at SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Both guys have been exceptional as of late, and the winner of this fight will move into the list of title contenders at 145lbs. Holloway has won six-straight fights with five finishes in that span, including a career-defining submission win over Cub Swanson in his last fight. He’s still only 23 years old but already has an impressive 9-3 record in the UFC, and the crazy thing is he’s still improving. Oliveira, who has won his last four fights in a row, is only 25 himself, and keeps getting better every time we see him. He has a fantastic 8-4, 1 NC record in the UFC and getting a way over one of the division’s hottest talents in Holloway would be huge for him. I expect an amazing fight between these two, one that takes place both on the feet and one the mat. I could really see either guy winning this fight, but I slightly lean towards Holloway. I just feel like he has the better striking and Oliveira’s chin is a bit questionable. Having said that, Oliveira’s ground game is as legit as it comes and Holloway has been exposed on the mat before, so he’s absolutely live here. Regardless of who wins, though, it should be a great fight for the fans.
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