Joe Duffy is almost immediately associated with being the guy who defeated Conor McGregor back in the day in Cage Warriors. Since entering the UFC in 2015, Duffy has scored three first round victories and lost a tough battle against Dustin Poirier.
Reza Madadi trains at All Stars gym in Stockholm, and his passion for fighting comes through in his training and output during the fight. Madadi is famous in Sweden for providing entertaining fights and always brings the heat.
Joe Duffy is classes above Reza Madadi and will continue to work his way up the rankings at lightweight. Madadi has never been stopped, but I think this fight is a risk for him to be finished inside the earlier rounds as Duffy certainly packs a punch.
Darren Stewart represents the locals choice and expected fan favourite in London this weekend as ‘The Dentist’, with a 7-0 record, steps in to take on veteran Francimar Barroso for the second time after their earlier bout in November 2016 ended in a no contest. After Barroso and Stewart had collided heads during the first round, Barroso went down while Stewart rained the punches down on him before the referee stopped the bout as a TKO victory for Stewart. A review process overturned the decision to a no contest once decided that there was an accidental clash of heads involved, which was not noticed at the time.
Darren Stewart fights with power and will try and bully his opponent with brute force. Barroso, on the other hand, isn’t supremely technical and his only real advantage coming into this one is his wrestling.
Hard to predict, but I’m leaning on the athleticism of Stewart to get him by on this one and keep his unbeaten run going. It’s always difficult to lean the way of an inexperienced and underskilled fighter against a veteran, but this is a good opportunity.
You know the heavyweight division is tired when our token battle of the big men is between Daniel Omielanczuk and Timothy Johnson coming off losses. Omielanczuk was riding a three-win streak before losing to Stefan Struve in round 2 in a contest at UFC 204. Timothy Johnson was on an eight-win streak as a professional mixed martial artist before going 2-2 in the UFC since joining.
Timothy Johnson is the much bigger heavyweight and comes in with a decent height/reach advantage of three inches as well. Johnson has the physical attributes in this one to grind out a decision victory against the durable Omielanczuk.
Joe Duffy vs. Reza Madadi
Joe Duffy to Win by KO/TKO
Saturday 18th March, 20:30 GMT
Odds: +150 – BetVictor
Francimar Barroso vs. Darren Stewart
Darren Stewart to Win
Saturday 18th March, 19:00 GMT
Odds: -175 – Bet365
Daniel Omielanczuk vs. Timothy Johnson
Timothy Johnson to Win
Saturday 18th March, 17:45 GMT
Odds: -163 – Betway