Pre-fight Analysis

Robert Whittaker vs Marvin Vettori Preview

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The UFC is set to make its debut in France this Saturday at UFC on ESPN+ 67, headlined by Ciryl Gane against Tai Tuivasa, and the co-main event between Robert Whittaker against Marvin Vettori in a high stakes clash in the middleweight division.

High Stakes Middleweight Matchup: Whittaker vs Vettori

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Number 1 ranked Middleweight contender Robert ‘The Reaper’ Whittaker (23-6) is just a couple months removed from trying to re-capture the middleweight crown against Israel Adesanya in a competitive decision loss this past February.

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Going into the rematch, many counted Whittaker out despite having a stretch of wins against Darren Till, Jared Cannonier and Kelvin Gastelum between the first and second fights with Adesanya. Whittaker showed strong improvement in his wrestling but still fell short against the champion, now on a quest to make a case for a third shot at the title he once carried.

Whittaker has a unique and crafty striking style that’s very dependent on speed and footwork. He will come in and out of the pocket in order to find openings for a big shot all the while avoiding counter strikes, and though it has been almost half a decade he has won by knockout, don’t underestimate the power of the Australian star.

As mentioned previously, his wrestling has gained much improvement and will always keep that up his sleeve for when it is needed. The 31 year old had actually earned a spot on the National Wrestling Team for Australia in 2018 but opted to not attend as he was on the hunt for a UFC title shot that he ended up getting.

His opponent this weekend; however, is seen as one of the better wrestlers in the division as Number 3 ranked Marvin Vettori (18-5-1) will look to push the former champion to his limits.

In his last five bouts, the ‘Italian Dream’ has landed 18 takedowns. Vettori has good size and enough strength to bully his opponents. When he doesn’t wrestle, he can put on a high volume striking that can negate an opponents offense. He is not as polished on the feet as Whittaker, but Vettori is more than capable of landing a sneaky blow as evident to his win against Paulo Costa.

Both men are 0-2 in their fights against the current champion, and are the only losses both men have had in the last six years, as Vettori also had his last shot at the title in June 2021 where he was dominated by Adesanya.

Though not as high in demand as Whittaker vs Adesanya 3 would be, it will be interesting to see which of the two men can make the bigger statement on their way back to a title shot.

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