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UFC Singapore predictions

Donald Cerrone
Donald Cerrone faces Leon Edwards at UFC Singapore.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

UFC Singapore snuck up on us and with good reason. The Saturday morning card is far from great, as it lacks star power, yet UFC Singapore does offer some decent match ups along with the wonderful pacing of UFC Fight Pass. The event features an important welterweight bout in Donald Cerrone vs. Leon Edwards in its featured attraction, a key fight for light heavyweight prospect Tyson Pedro, who takes on veteran Ovince Saint Preux, and a scrappy bout pitting Jessica-Rose Clark against Jessica Eye.

What: UFC Singapore (UFC Fight Night 132)

Where: Singapore Indoor Stadium in Kallang, Singapore.

When: Saturday, June 23. The eight-fight UFC Fight Pass preliminary card begins at 4:30 a.m. ET, and the four-fight main card begins at 8:00 a.m. ET also on UFC Fight Pass.

Donald Cerrone vs. Leon Edwards

Man, Donald Cerrone will really fight anyone, anywhere. This bout with Leon Edwards is a dangerous fight and one that doesn’t do a whole lot for his career and résumé, as Edwards is not a big name in MMA, at least not yet.

By now we know what “Cowboy” brings to the table. Cerrone is a talented striker that mixes things up well with kicks and punches. Cerrone has plenty of power and he’s capable of putting away almost anyone at lightweight or welterweight. The 35-year-old fighter also has a pretty advanced ground game with good positioning and dangerous submissions. It seems that Cerrone has lost some steam in the last year or so, but he’s still far from washed up. Today, Cerrone remains very competitive in the UFC.

Meanwhile, Edwards is a very technical striker with a great takedown defense. The Englishman can put together quick, solid combinations that can cause a great deal of damage. Edwards is not really a power puncher, but he’s very precise with his shots and has stopped some of his opponents in the past. Grappling-wise, Edwards is not dangerous, but he has a solid submission defense and a good ability to stuff takedowns.

Fun fight. This one is a bit tough to predict given Cerrone latest performances. I think Edwards carries the momentum here and I also think he has more knowledge on how to beat Cerrone than Cerrone has to beat him. Cerrone is always game and wouldn’t surprise me if he were to win. Yet, I think this is Edwards’ time to shine.

Pick: Edwards

Ovince Saint Preux vs. Tyson Pedro

This fight makes complete sense. Ovince Saint Preux is coming off a loss and needs to get back on the winning circle, and Tyson Pedro needs to start facing some of the more established names at light heavyweight.

OSP is massive for the division. The 35-year-old fighter is a competent striker with a good deal of power behind his attacks. OSP is also a good wrestler, but for some reason he chooses not to use his takedown abilities often. He also possesses strong submissions and a strong submission defense.

On the other hand, Pedro is a young, promising prospect who doesn’t have a ton of experience, but probably enough to start facing opponents the caliber of OSP. Pedro is a good grappler. He’s got solid submissions, takedowns, and positioning. Striking wise, Pedro is a bit unorthodox. He’s really good at sneaking shots in, especially his kicks, and he has good pop behind them.

I really like this booking. I think Pedro has a good shot here. He’s had issues before in the past with wrestlers, and OSP can certainly give him problems there given his size and wrestling skills. However, OSP has gotten away from his takedowns, so I don’t believe that should be a factor here. I see this being a stand-up fight where Pedro should land the better shots.

Pick: Pedro

Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Jessica Eye

This fight could be a fun one.

Jessica Eye is a very tough and well-rounded fighter. Her ground game is good and so is her striking. She doesn’t particularly excel in any area, but she can do a little but of everything. Eye was also pretty undersized at bantamweight, so at flyweight she can be more competitive. Eye also has a good amount of experience compared to her fellow flyweights.

Clark is another tough fighter that possesses decent movement and striking. She also has a strong grappling game. Clark is very strong for the division and fights at a good pace.

Skill-wise, these two are somewhat even. I think Clark might be the stronger grappler, but Eye might have the more polished striking. This will likely be a close fight, but I see Clark getting the win. She’s just simply a far more dominant grappler than Eye and I see her controlling enough of the action to get a decision win.

Pick: Clark

Li Jingliang vs. Daichi Abe

“The Leech” is back.

If you’ve been reading my prediction columns for a while, you probably already know how I feel about Li Jingliang. I find Jingliang to be one of the toughest guys to fight at welterweight. It’s not because he’s extremely skilled, but more because of his combination of style, athletic ability, and skill set. “The Leech” is extremely durable, strong, relentless, stubborn, and keeps a high pace all throughout his fights. On top of that, Jungliang’s wrestling and top control is very effective. His stand-up is not fancy or flashy, but he sticks to his basics, which are pretty solid.

Daichi Abe is very tough as well. He’s primarily a striker that attacks with single shots rather than combinations. Abe has very good movement on his feet and he’s also quick.

I’ve seen Abe fade in previous performances. I think the first round of this fight could be somewhat even, but I see Jingliang’s pace and strength eventually wearing down Abe. I can see “The Leech” picking up a late stoppage via submission or ground-and-pound.

Pick: Jingliang


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