X-Factor! Some UFC Vegas 41 main card predictions
This weekend (Saturday, October 23, 2021), the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will remain within UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, for UFC Vegas 41. After a couple of rather depressing cards, this weekend’s event This week features a Main Event that also promises heavy-handed action between Paulo Costa and Marvin Vettori. The rest of the night is a bit more quality too, with some pretty well-known names leading up to the night’s biggest matchups.
Let’s take a closer look at these main card donnybrooks:
Female bantamweight: Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Joselyne edwards
Best win for Clark? Paige VanZant For Edwards? Yanan Wu
Current streak: Clark won his last fight, while Edwards fell short
X Factor: Clark is coming off ACL surgery
How do these two coincide: This looks like a kickboxing battle.
However, if a woman was likely to switch it up and try some takedowns, it would be Clark. The Australian is a complete fighter with good kickboxing range, clinch work and a solid grappling game. She has struggled a bit to find her weight class at home, but Clark’s performance on his return to bantamweight last time was excellent.
This will be his first fight in 13 months.
Edwards from Panama is a slim forward. She does most of her work with long, straight punches, but the high-volume kickboxer has struggled a bit with her opponent’s takedowns inside the cage.
Provided Clark returns to action in a similar fashion, the 33-year-old veteran has all the tools to win this fight on his feet or on the mat. His combination of movement and power kicks should allow him to navigate Edwards’s range advantage, and the takedown option will likely be there if needed. Finally, Clark can probably win this fight in the clinch too, with his dirty boxing and his knees!
If it weren’t for her injury, Clark’s destruction of Alpar would have put her on the fast track at bantamweight. This is your chance to make up for it and get back on that path.
Prediction: Clark by decision
Featherweight: Alex Caceres vs. Seung Woo Choi
Best victory for Cáceres? Sergio Pettis For Choi? Julian Erosa
Current streak: Cáceres has won four in a row (!!!), while Choi has added three wins
X Factor: Cáceres is known for his inconsistency
How do these two coincide: This featherweight clash should result in some fun exchanges.
Cáceres went from promising and competitive to a cool veteran inside the Octagon, but he did so without sacrificing his unique flair and flair. “Bruce Leeroy” has done well since he returned to featherweight, dodging takedowns with good consistency and maintaining a little more pop on his strikes.
Early in his UFC career, Choi was held back by his wrestling defense. However, since he’s propped up that hole a bit, Choi has been able to put together combinations and find a home for his power shots much more effectively, resulting in his current winning streak.
Both men spend more time defending takedowns than chasing them, so this has the makings of a stand-up fight. In particular, all of Cáceres’ recent victories have come against grappling specialists, and that seems like a problem here. Choi is not going to dive for legs and will tire in the process; he’s going to hit Cáceres’s chin. Even after all these years, Caceres still gets caught leaning back with his hands down, and Choi has the skills to capitalize.
Choi is coming off a pretty brutal win over a lanky second-volume striker; wait for another here.
Prediction: Choi by decision
Welterweight: Francisco Trinaldo vs. Dwight Scholarship
The best victory for Trinaldo? Paul felder Because of Grant? Alan Jouban
Current streak: Trinaldo fell short last time out, while Grant returned to the win column.
X Factor: Trinaldo is 43 years old
How do these two coincide: I am cautiously optimistic about this one.
Trinaldo is amazing. “Massaranduba” is a huge star in his home country, Brazil, a star of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) who took advantage of the show in a long and successful season inside the Octagon. Trinaldo, a veteran kickboxer, has great power and is also capable of taking great shots from the best position.
Grant from the American Kickboxing Academy is a strange fighter. He has a gigantic reach and great power, but he struggles to pull the trigger often, resulting in bizarre, low-volume fights.
A few years ago, a match like this would have been a clear victory for Trinaldo. However, times have changed. At 170 pounds, it doesn’t have the size advantage that was so useful at the light weight. Also, it has gotten a bit slower and less durable with age, which means that the chance of Trinaldo getting close to a strong shot and getting crushed has increased considerably.
However, I am not yet ready to give up the Brazilian. Grant isn’t much younger at 37 years old, and he’s not as skilled as Trinaldo, nor is he likely to pick up the pace.
Trinaldo has the knack of outwitting Grant, and if the two of them trade wildly on occasion, he still packs a punch.
Prediction: Trinaldo by knockout
Light heavyweight: Nicolae Negumereanu vs. Ike Villanueva
Best win for Negumereanu? Aleksa Camur Why Villanueva? Vinicius Moreira
Current streak: Negumereanu won his last match, while Villanueva lost
X Factor: Negumereanu has struggled with a low level of opposition throughout his career.
How these two coincide: This isn’t a great fight, but it can be fun!
Romania’s Negumereanu is more physical talent than technical ability. Despite a few submission wins on his record, his work in the Octagon suggests he would rather trade strikes than fight. On the other hand, Villanueve also likes to trade, but his gifts fall more in the realm of toughness and experience than in athletics.
What to do in a fight between an untested prospect and a disappointing veteran? Truth be told, neither of them is particularly good at anything. However, with technique in the air, I like to side with toughness.
Hurricane Ike has power and won’t give up. You might be overwhelmed from the start by your younger foe, but if not, the odds of Negumereanu getting a bit weak when facing an opponent who won’t leave seems high.
Prediction: Villanueva by knockout