MMASucka’s UFC on ESPN 18 Staff Picks

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MMASucka staff picks are locked in for tonight’s Thanksgiving weekend event. UFC on ESPN 18 will go down in a few short hours from the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main card will begin at 10:00pm ET (7:00pm PT) live on both ESPN+ and ESPN2.

The Fights

A fight between heavyweights Curtis Blaydes and Derrick Lewis was intended for the main event. However, a positive COVID-19 test pulled Blaydes from the card thus cancelling the fight in full. As a result, Anthony Smith and Devin Clark has been bumped up to serve as our featured fight. Ready for five rounds is Smith, having fought for the light heavyweight title in March of last year. He will look to snap a current two-fight skid in 2020 after losses to Glover Teixeira and Aleksandar Rakic. His opponent, Clark, will compete in his first promotional main event and his first five-round fight. The “Brown Bear” looks for his third win of the calendar year following back-to-back decisions over Dequan Townsend and Alonzo Menifield.

Miguel Baeza and Takashi Sato will meet in the 170-pound division for the co-main event. Dana White’s Contender Series standout Baeza looks to remain undefeated fresh off a May knockout of Matt Brown. Former Pancrase title challenger Sato targets another finish after his sub-minute knockout in June over Jason Witt.

Due to the late shuffling of tonight’s main card, only four of the six fights will be included in our picks. Check out all of our remaining staff picks for UFC on ESPN 18 further below.

UFC 246

Staff Picks

Throughout the remainder of the year, staff picks will be composed of two different MMA promotions: UFC and Bellator. As of September 25th, the events of ONE and RIZIN will no longer be counted for our picks (including a recent deduction of the last two RIZIN cards from our records). With the cancellation of PFL for 2020, this promotion will be excluded as well.

Main cards will makeup both UFC and Bellator picks. The WINNER of staff picks will have a choice between receiving a championship belt from ProAmBelts or a championship chain from Championship Chains. The 2019 winner was awarded to Michael DeSantis, compiling a record of 321-178. Second-place Connor Deitrich collected a close score of 319-180 with third-place Ed Gallo not far behind totaling at 312-183.

Check out our staff picks for UFC on ESPN 18: Smith vs. Clark below.

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Staff Records after UFC 255

1. Michael DeSantis: 191-79
2. Connor Deitrich: 185-85
3. Wesley Riddle: 174-91
4. Jack Buchanan: 167-81
5T. Dan Rose: 166-105
5T. Nate Freeman: 166-101
7. Frazer Krohn: 165-106
8. Jeremy Brand: 162-100
9. Mike Lynch: 161-95
10. Ash Camyab: 160-111
11. Andrew Benjamin: 145-116
12. Matt Bricker: 136-93
13. McKenzie Guardiero: 134-105
14. Ryan Hobbs: 95-64
15. Ashwin Viswanathan: 83-51
16. Mike Skytte: 67-45
17. Mitchell Banuelos: 64-39
18. Joshua Yule: 55-28
19. Ed Gallo: 54-27
20. Jeremy Cook: 14-6

*Note: not all staff pick for every event*

Spike Carlyle (9-2) vs. Bill Algeo (13-5)

Jeremy Brand: Carlyle via UD
Wesley Riddle: Algeo via UD
Michael DeSantis: Carlyle via Round 1 TKO
Matt Bricker: Algeo via UD
Connor Deitrich: Carlyle via Round 2 TKO
Ash Camyab: Algeo via UD
Andrew Benjamin: Carlyle via UD
Frazer Krohn: Carlyle via UD
Dan Rose: Carlyle via Round 1 TKO
Mike Lynch: Carlyle via UD
Nate Freeman: Carlyle via UD

Staff picking Carlyle: 8
Staff picking Algeo: 3

Josh Parisian (13-3) vs. Parker Porter (10-6)

Jeremy Brand: Porter via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Porter via Round 1 SUB
Michael DeSantis: Parisian via Round 1 TKO
Matt Bricker: Parisian via Round 1 TKO
Connor Deitrich: Parisian via Round 1 TKO
Ash Camyab: Parisian via UD
Andrew Benjamin: Parisian via UD
Frazer Krohn: Porter via Round 1 TKO
Dan Rose: Parisian via Round 1 TKO
Mike Lynch: Parisian via Round 1 TKO
Nate Freeman: Parisian via Round 1 TKO

Staff picking Parisian: 8
Staff picking Porter: 3

Miguel Baeza (9-0) vs. Takashi Sato (16-3)

Jeremy Brand: Sato via UD
Wesley Riddle: Sato via Round 1 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Baeza via Round 2 TKO
Matt Bricker: Baeza via Round 2 TKO
Connor Deitrich: Baeza via UD
Ash Camyab: Sato via UD
Andrew Benjamin: Sato via Round 1 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Sato via Round 2 TKO
Dan Rose: Baeza via UD
Mike Lynch: Sato via Round 1 TKO
Nate Freeman: Baeza via SD

Staff picking Baeza: 5
Staff picking Sato: 6

Anthony Smith (33-16) vs. Devin Clark (12-4)

Jeremy Brand: Smith via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Clark via UD
Michael DeSantis: Smith via Round 2 TKO
Matt Bricker: Smith via UD
Connor Deitrich: Smith via Round 2 SUB
Ash Camyab: Smith via Round 2 TKO
Andrew Benjamin: Clark via SD
Frazer Krohn: Smith via UD
Dan Rose: Clark via UD
Mike Lynch: Smith via Round 4 SUB
Nate Freeman: Clark via UD

Staff picking Smith: 7
Staff picking Clark: 4

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Wesley Riddle is a 25-year-old writer out of Harrisonburg, Virginia and a recent graduate from Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia, having obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Health and Physical Education. Watching the draw between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard from 2011 sparked his interest in the sport of mixed martial arts. He created "All That MMA" on Twitter, which came to birth in December of 2013. He would join with MMASucka in the later quarter of 2016. Some of Riddle's hobbies include music, playing golf, watching horror movies, and working with non-profit organizations throughout his community. You can follow him on Twitter at @AllThatMMA or @WesleyRiddleMMA, and on Instagram @WesleyRiddle.

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