Just as the UFC decided it would be a good idea to host Werdum vs. Tybura, two fighters with no connection to Sydney, Australia as the main event, they have also made the co-main event a relatively uneventful one.
It’s Australian vs. Australian as Bec Rawlings gets set to face Jessica-Rose-Clark. Interestingly, Rose-Clark is stepping into this fight on short notice after Rawlings’ original opponent, Joanne Calderwood announced that she is unable to compete.
Rawlings enters this contest after two consecutive defeats to Paige VanZant (via vicious KO) and Tecia Torres. Rose-Clark, on the other hand, will be making her UFC debut after picking up a split decision win over Carina Damm at Titan FC 45.
Bec Rawlings is close to the bottom of the talent pool in any of the women’s divisions in the UFC. Whether it is because there isn’t much talent to choose from in these divisions, or the truly elite who stand at the top of the divisions are far beyond the levels of the lower-ranked fighters – it’s hard to decide.
Anyway, Rawlings is moving up a weight class for this fight in the new UFC flyweight division. Likewise, “Jessy Jess” is moving down a weight from bantamweight. As you can probably imagine, Rose-Clark is bigger of the two fighters.
“Jessy Jess” enters this contest with a brilliant wrestling background and has the ability to throw Rawlings around and that’s probably where this breakdown ends.
Despite entering as the underdog, we’ll be backing “Jessy Jess” to win this one comfortably and put a likely end to Rawlings’ time in the UFC.
Prediction: Jessica Rose-Clark by unanimous decision
You can find the best odds for a Jessica Rose-Clark victory at Bet365
Tim Means vs. Belal Muhammad is sure to be a fascinating war between two fighters trying to break through in the UFC’s welterweight division. Both the lightweight and welterweight divisions are deep in the UFC and that means that talented fighters such as Means and Muhammad are still trying to find a way to make a name for themselves.
Means recently bounced back with a win over Alex Garcia after surprisingly losing to Alex Oliveira in a “rematch” at UFC Fight Night 106. A win here would take him to 4-1 in his last five actual contests and 8-2 in his last ten contests.
Despite the nickname, Belal “Remember the Name” is still struggling to capture the attention of audiences despite impressive victories against Jordan Mein and Randy Brown back-to-back.
What a fight! Can Means stick to his distance and punish Muhammad with his long-range weapons or will “Remember the Name” sneak inside and find a way to turn this into a grappling contest. Either way, this is compelling UFC action.
Means is a vicious striker and if Muhammad can’t find a way to weave past his limbs, he’ll find himself in for a long night. Muhammad has recently controlled his last two contests by using his superior wrestling abilities.
You’ll find us backing the underdog in this battle in the hope that Belal Muhammad can score an upset victory at UFC Fight Night 121. He has the tools to be able to grind out Means for a decision.
Prediction: Belal Muhammad by unanimous decision
You can find the best odds for a Belal Muhammad victory at BetVictor
Jake Matthews and Bojan Velickovic are fighting to stay relevant on the UFC’s roster at UFC Fight Night 121.
Matthews enters this contest after losing two-straight battles with Kevin Lee and Andrew Holbrook. Of course, Kevin Lee is a superior talent, but Matthews was entirely supposed to defeat Holbrook in Melbourne, Australia. Now, Matthews returns to welterweight – what was his original weightclass.
Velickovic has had an interesting start to his UFC career, racking up a unique record of 2-2-1 in his five contests so far. Despite this awkward record, he hasn’t been all that bad and his loss to Sultan Aliev was via split decision. Most recently, however, he was dismantled by Darren Till with ease.
Bojan Velickovic somehow still manages to stick to his guns, despite not steamrolling anyone in the competition so far. His usual technique is to keep his distance and patiently wait for openings before pot-shotting them with well-timed counter strikes. It works on occasion, and it causes opponents to slow their pace down with respect for his striking, however, it often leads to back-and-forth rounds that result in split decisions.
Jake Matthews is a relatively well-rounded fighter. He has excellent scrambling ability, fight intelligence and manages to stay competitive through any aspect of the fight. He also moves around the octagon lightly and doesn’t stand in front of his opponent for too long. This is the key against Velickovic, who will likely want to plant his feet and find his counter strike opportunities.
There are definitely concerns about Matthews after losing to Holbrook, but he had plenty of good moments through the contest as well. Velickovic, despite likely landing the cleaner and harder shots, may fall behind on the scorecards because of Matthews’ pace and volume.
Prediction: Jake Matthews by split decision
You can find the best odds for Over 2.5 Rounds at Bet365
The bout between Elias Theodorou and Daniel Kelly is certainly an intriguing one.
Both of these fighters, who have similar records, enter this contest after experiencing their second-ever loss in their careers. For Theodorou, he was dissected by a classy striking performance from Brad Tavares over three rounds. Daniel Kelly wasn’t as fortunate as Theodorou and found himself staring up at the ceiling after Derek Brunson ran through him early in the first round in their fight in New Zealand.
When I said that Theodorou vs. Kelly is an interesting matchup, it’s because Theodorou’s constant movement and strange angles will provide an interesting challenge for the aging Kelly who likes to sneak up on an opponent and initiate his judo-throws and takedowns. If he can’t secure the takedown, he is probably going to struggle to win this on the scorecards.
Theodorou is not just an active mover inside the octagon, he also throws plenty of strikes. His volume is very appealing to the judging criteria and his takedown defense is likely enough to hold off the constant attack fo Daniel Kelly.
This one will likely last the distance. It’s hard to see Daniel Kelly finding a way to keep up with the extreme pace of Theodorou over three rounds.
Prediction: Elias Theodorou by unanimous decision
You can find the best odds for Total Rounds – Over 2.5 at Bet365
The incredibly underrated Alexander Volkanovski misses out on another chance to shine after his original opponent, Humberto Bandenay, withdrew earlier this week with an injury. Shane Young from New Zealand will step in to compete against the relentless Australian.
Volkanovski is on a super rare 12-win streak dating back to 2013. He cleaned up the Australian circuit before making his way to the UFC where he has defeated his two opponents so far.
His opponent is no slouch, however. Young is on a five-fight winning streak of his own and has been competing in New Zealand and China recently. 9 of Young’s 11 victories have come via way of stoppage, which is a unique feat for someone in the featherweight division.
Volkanovski is a calculated operator inside the cage. He picks his shots wisely and when they fall short it’s likely because he is using them to advance on his opponent to secure a clinch or takedown. He nearly finished Hirota in the first round after connecting with multiple clean strikes, but Hirota somehow managed to stick through it all.
Shane Young is the rare example of a fighter who has complete confidence in his hands. He works behind his jab to set up his other vicious strikes, but seemingly none are more damaging than the consistent pounding of his jab into an opponents face.
Unfortunately for Young, he’s coming up against a talented grappler and striker in Volkanovski.
Volkanovski is way too complete for a fighter not just for Shane Young, but for most of the fighters at the middle-to-lower end of the UFC’s top-15 as well.
Prediction: Alexander Volkanovski by KO/TKO – Round 2
You can find the best odds for Total Rounds – Under 2.5 at Bet365
Bec Rawlings vs. Jessica Rose-Clark
Jessica Rose-Clark to win
Saturday, 18 November – 11:30 pm (ET) / 4:30am (GMT)
Odds: +125 – Bet365
Tim Means vs. Belal Muhammad
Belal Muhammad to win
Saturday, 18 November – 11:00 pm (ET) / 4:00am (GMT)
Odds: +210 – BetVictor
Jake Matthews vs. Bojan Velickovic
Total Rounds – Over 2.5
Saturday, 18 November – 10:30 pm (ET) / 3:30am (GMT)
Odds: -188 – Bet365
Elias Theodorou vs. Daniel Kelly
Total Rounds – Over 2.5
Saturday, 18 November – 10:00 pm (ET) / 3:00am (GMT)
Odds: -250 – Bet365
Alexander Volkanovski vs. Shane Young
Total Rounds – Under 2.5
Saturday, 18 November – 9:00 pm (ET) / 2:30am (GMT)
Odds: -143 – Bet365