DWCS 20 Highlights: Antonio Arroyo Chokes Stephen Regman

Antonio Arroyo is now 2-0 on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. Arroyo took on Stephen Regman in the main event of DWCS 20. Arroyo went the distance in his first DWCS bout and didn’t earn the UFC contract. This time he nabbed a su…

Antonio Arroyo is now 2-0 on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. Arroyo took on Stephen Regman in the main event of DWCS 20. Arroyo went the distance in his first DWCS bout and didn’t earn the UFC contract. This time he nabbed a submission victory over Regman. MMA News will keep you posted on […]

The post DWCS 20 Highlights: Antonio Arroyo Chokes Stephen Regman appeared first on MMA News.

Predictions! UFC On ESPN 4 ‘Prelims’ Preview – Pt. 2

Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

While Kamaru Usman, Colby Covington and the other top-ranked Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight standouts try to sort themselves out, Rafael dos Anjos and Leon Edwar…

UFC Fight Night: Weigh-ins

Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

While Kamaru Usman, Colby Covington and the other top-ranked Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight standouts try to sort themselves out, Rafael dos Anjos and Leon Edwards will make their claims for contendership inside AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas, this weekend (Sat., July 20, 2019), headlining UFC’s fourth ESPN show. UFC on ESPN 4 will also see Greg Hardy duke it out with Juan Adams alongside two other Heavyweight bouts, as well as a pivotal Lightweight bout between James Vick and Dan Hooker.

Three UFC on ESPN 4 “Prelims” undercard bouts remain to be examined (check out the first batch here). Shall we?

145 lbs.: Alex Caceres vs. Steven Peterson

It’s been more than five years since Alex Caceres (14-12) choked out the surging Sergio Pettis to cap off a five-fight unbeaten streak, and “Bruce Leroy” is just 4-7 since. He was last seen welcoming Kron Gracie to the Octagon in February, tapping to the Brazilian jiu-jitsu great’s rear-naked choke two minutes into the first round.

He will have 3.5 inches of reach on “Ocho.”

Even though the gritty effort Steven Peterson (17-8) turned in against Benito Lopez on “Contender Series” didn’t result in victory, but did earn him a spot in the Octagon two fights later. He’s currently 1-2 in UFC with one “Fight of the Night” bonus to his credit and most recently dropped a decision to Luis Pena in March.

Eight of his 12 professional stoppage wins have come by submission.

On one hand, Caceres’ takedown defense is an Achilles’ heel he seems incapable of fixing. On the other, Peterson has nothing to offer besides pressure and wrestling that relies more on relentlessness than technique. Caceres’ long-range striking presents a quandary for “Ocho,” who has no means to close the distance besides just marching through it.

Peterson can definitely grind him out against the cage or from top position; however, I just don’t think he’s crafty enough to get himself into those positions consistently. Caceres potshots at range to take the decision.

Prediction: Caceres via unanimous decision

135 lbs.: Raquel Pennington vs. Irene Aldana

Raquel Pennington (9-7) capped a four-fight win streak with an upset decision over Miesha Tate to earn herself a title shot against Amanda Nunes, only to succumb to ground-and-pound after 4.5 one-sided rounds. She returned six months later against Germaine de Randamie, who shut down the Coloradan’s wrestling to claim a wide decision victory.

She stands two inches shorter than Irene Aldana (10-4) at 5’7.”

Aldana got off to a rough start in the Octagon, losing a “Fight of the Night”-winning decision to Leslie Smith and a narrow split decision to Katlyn Chookagian five months later. She has since won three straight, including a comeback submission of Bethe Correia in Rio this past May.

All but one of her eight finishes have come in the first round.

Pennington at her best would be an issue for Aldana — the Mexican slugger doesn’t like pressure, even from technically inferior strikers. “Rocky’s” looked anything but her best against de Randamie, though, and the lingering effects of the Nunes beatdown remain a concern.

Aldana’s the better boxer of the two, and if Pennington can’t commit to powering through incoming fire to slow things down against the fence, she’s in for a long night. In short, Aldana rides her momentum and distance striking to victory.

Prediction: Aldana via unanimous decision

205 lbs.: Sam Alvey vs. Klidson Abreu

Sam Alvey (33-12) went 3-3 as a UFC Middleweight before making the move to 205 pounds, where he knocked out Marcin Prachnio and scraped past Gian Villante in his first two appearances. “Smilin’” has since suffered rough knockout losses to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Jimmy Crute, the former of whom was more than a 3:1 underdog.

He has dispatched 19 professional opponents via (technical) knockout, including five in the Octagon.

Klidson Abreu (14-3) — who boasts a submission win over Johnny Walker — brought a six-fight win streak into his late-notice Octagon debut, including wins over several European standouts. Top prospect Magomed Ankalaev proved too much for “Urso Branco,” though, claiming a decision in Prague.

The fight was Abreu’s first trip to the judges, as he has submitted 10 foes and knocked out another four.

Despite Abreu being a top prospect, Alvey can win this if he plays his cards right. The American’s takedown defense has historically been one of his strongest assets, and Abreu is definitely far less intimidating on the feet than on the mat. Thing is, Alvey is legendarily bad at playing his cards right, and even that fearsome power of his has been scarce lately.

Sure, he knocked out Prachnio, but Prachnio gave him that counter on a silver platter.

Abreu’s the stronger ground artist and should be able to at least hold his own against his infamously inactive foe on the feet. As a result, Alvey drops another frustrating decision.

Prediction: Abreu via unanimous decision

It’s free mixed martial arts (MMA) violence on ESPN and leaves your evening open for whatever other debauchery you have planned after hours. It all sounds like a bargain to me — see you Saturday, Maniacs!

Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC on ESPN 4 fight card this weekend, starting with the ESPN “Prelims” that are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the main card portion that will also air on ESPN at 9 p.m. ET.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC on ESPN 4: “dos Anjos vs. Edwards” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

Current UFC “Prelims” Prediction Record for 2019: 96-51

White: Benavidez next for Cejudo

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

UFC president Dana White says Henry Cejudo will defend his flyweight title upon his return to the Octagon. Henry Cejudo’s next opponent will be Joseph Benavidez, according to UFC …

UFC 238: Cejudo v Moraes

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

UFC president Dana White says Henry Cejudo will defend his flyweight title upon his return to the Octagon.

Henry Cejudo’s next opponent will be Joseph Benavidez, according to UFC president Dana White.

White said that Cejudo, the UFC bantamweight and flyweight champion, is most likely to defend his 125-pound belt in his next bout. Cejudo is currently recovering from surgery and is targeting a return at the end of the year or early 2020.

“He would go to 125, defend that title, then we would decide who he would fight next (at bantamweight),” White told TMZ. “As long as Cejudo is willing to defend both titles, I think that he is the guy who could carry both divisions.”

Until now, it wasn’t entirely clear where the UFC was going at either 125 and 135 pounds. Cejudo won the bantamweight title with a win over Marlon Moraes last month at UFC 238, but due to a shoulder injury, hasn’t said which division he would like to fight in next upon his return. Cejudo defended his flyweight title against T.J. Dillashaw in January. He won it last summer against Demetrious Johnson.

If Cejudo decided to fight at bantamweight before flyweight, Aljamain Sterling and Petr Yan were two opponents that made the most sense. Following White’s comments, Sterling asked his fans on social media who they would like to see him fight for the interim bantamweight title.

Also in the mix to fight Cejudo was UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber. Faber returned from retirement last weekend at UFC Sacramento, scoring a 46-second TKO win over prospect Ricky Simon. Faber called out Cejudo after the win.

However, ultimately, it appears Joe-B is first in line. Benavidez, the No. 1 contender at 125 pounds, holds a December 2016 win over Cejudo, prior to Cejudo’s reign as champion. The former two-time UFC title contender is coming off a TKO of Jussier Formiga last month. He is considered by many to be one of the best fighters never to have won a belt in the Octagon.

Benavidez responded to the “great news” that he is getting the next shot at Cejudo on social media Tuesday.

DWCS 20 Highlights: Ode Osbourne Earns Verbal Tap Over Armando Villarreal

Ode Osbourne didn’t need a lot of time to put Armando Villarreal away. In a bantamweight tilt, Osbourne collided with Villarreal at DWCS 20. While Osbourne had success on the feet, he also showcased his skills on the ground. He submitted Villarre…

Ode Osbourne didn’t need a lot of time to put Armando Villarreal away. In a bantamweight tilt, Osbourne collided with Villarreal at DWCS 20. While Osbourne had success on the feet, he also showcased his skills on the ground. He submitted Villarreal via armbar in the first round. The official Twitter account of the UFC […]

The post DWCS 20 Highlights: Ode Osbourne Earns Verbal Tap Over Armando Villarreal appeared first on MMA News.

DWCS 20 Highlights: Brendan Allen Submits Aaron Jeffery

Brendan Allen vs. Aaron Jeffery opened up the 20th edition of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series (see results here). This was a middleweight contest and it ended in the opening frame. Allen made a statement, pulling off a submission over…

Brendan Allen vs. Aaron Jeffery opened up the 20th edition of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series (see results here). This was a middleweight contest and it ended in the opening frame. Allen made a statement, pulling off a submission over Jeffery via rear-naked choke. Time will tell if it’s enough to get him a […]

The post DWCS 20 Highlights: Brendan Allen Submits Aaron Jeffery appeared first on MMA News.

DWCS 20 Highlights: Don’Tale Mayes Stops Ricardo Prasel

The 20th edition of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series (see results here) rolls along with Don’Tale Mayes’ TKO victory over Ricardo Prasel. The heavyweight bout between Mayes and Prasel didn’t make it past the opening round. Mayes …

The 20th edition of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series (see results here) rolls along with Don’Tale Mayes’ TKO victory over Ricardo Prasel. The heavyweight bout between Mayes and Prasel didn’t make it past the opening round. Mayes finished Prasel with punches and had just one second to spare in the round. DWCS 20 is […]

The post DWCS 20 Highlights: Don’Tale Mayes Stops Ricardo Prasel appeared first on MMA News.