UFC 213 Co-Main Event – UFC Interim Middleweight Championship
Many people believe that when Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker step inside the octagon together at UFC 213 that it will be one of the greatest fights in recent years.
Height: 6’0″ (183cm)
Reach: 73.0″ (185cm)
If you were to choose one man in the UFC that you would never want to step inside the octagon with, it’s Yoel Romero. Yes, someone like Conor McGregor is incredibly technical and equally as deadly but Yoel Romero is just a freakishly strong monster.
Yoel Romero is in a whole different category to most fighters. Firstly, Romero won a silver medal in wrestling at the 2000 Olympic Games. His time is now. He’s ticked over to 40-years-old and has done everything right to put himself into position for a title shot. Unfortunately for Romero, the champion Michael Bisping was booked into a bout with Georges St. Pierre and then later suffered a knee injury. Now, he gets his chance to win an interim title against Robert Whittaker.
Height: 6’0″ (182cm)
Reach: 73.5″ (187cm)
Want your shot at a title? Do your talking inside the octagon, not outside of it. Robert Whittaker is the best example of this. After being matched against the extremely tough Jacare Souza in a fight that nearly everyone expected him to lose, Whittaker went out there and dominated Souza. He stuffed his takedowns and then beat him up on the feet before finishing him in the second round. Whitter has now won consecutive Performance of the Night awards and a decisive victory over Romero would surely result in another one.
This one will all come down to whether Yoel Romero can secure the takedown against Robert Whittaker. Romero is arguably the best wrestler in the entirety of the UFC. He’s freakishly athletic and usually has his way when it comes to the grappling inside the octagon. More recently, he’s also fell in love with throwing hands. He packs a seriously devastating punch and has racked up a number of KO/TKO victories.
The story entering this fight completely resembles Whittaker’s last fight against Jacare Souza. Many though that Souza would be able to take Whittaker down and submit him. However, Whittaker stuffed the takedowns relatively easy and his footwork enabled him to constantly keep away from Souza while pumping his jab and other punches into his face. Whittaker showed that he can completely neutralise the threat of a takedown with his effective distance management. It’s worth noting that Yoel Romero’s wrestling is much more distinguished than that of Jacare Souza.
Another important consideration is Romero’s tendency to tire as the fight progresses. Romero consistently fatigues by the third round in fights but admittedly, he still finds a way to win the fight. At the moment of his devastating knee against Chris Weidman, he managed to pull together enough force and energy to explode upwards with one of the most brutal knees of our time.
This is going to be an extremely tough fight for Robert Whittaker but I think that he has the skills to move past Yoel Romero and claim the UFC Interim Middleweight Championship. I think he hangs on through the first few rounds and manages to stop Yoel Romero after beating him up on the feet and hurting him.
Yoel Romero vs. Robert Whittaker
Robert Whittaker to Win
Saturday 8th July – 11:00 pm (ET) / 3:00am GMT
Odds: -105 – Ladbrokes