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MMASucka’s UFC 280 Staff Picks

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One of the most highly-anticipated fight cards of 2022 has arrived.

UFC 280 is set for action this afternoon, October 21st from the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi. The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to the United Arab Emirates for the first time since UFC 267 in October of last year and the fifth time in promotional history. Five incredible fight pairings compose the main card portion beginning at 2:00pm ET (11:00am ET) on pay-per-view available for purchase to ESPN+ subscribers.

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Live results from the entire UFC 280: Oliveira vs. Makhachev event are available here at MMASucka.

The Fights

In the night’s featured main event, Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev will battle for a possible five rounds for the vacant UFC lightweight championship. The two competitors both came in a half-pound under the divisional mark making the fight for gold official.

Brazil’s Oliveira had the title stripped away after failing to make weight against Justin Gaethje in May earlier this year. Despite the matter, the fan favorite veteran has secured eleven straight wins since mid-2018 and looks for his twentieth finish in the octagon, an all-time record. Oliveira’s opponent, Makhachev, has only faced defeat once through his 23-fight MMA career to Adriano Martins in 2015. The Russian Sambo specialist rides a respectable ten-fight win streak with his most recent victories both coming in the first round over Dan Hooker and Bobby Green.

Bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling will meet challenger T.J. Dillashaw in the co-main slot. Serra-Longo Fight Team’s Sterling has won his last seven straight including the title victory over Petr Yan and his April defense and unification bout. Former divisional title holder Dillashaw returns for only the second time following his USADA suspension as he targets another win after his June of 2021 decision over Cory Sandhagen.

Also on the main card sees the aforementioned Petr Yan set for battle against 27-year-old Sean O’Malley at 135 pounds and well-rounded Beneil Dariush taking on former KSW two-divisional king Mateusz Gamrot at lightweight.

Katlyn Chookagian missed the flyweight mark by one and-a-half pounds for her scheduled fight against Manon Fiorot. However, it will continue on with Chookagian suffering a purse fine of 20%.

Find out who the MMASucka staff are picking to win from the main card of UFC 280 further below.

Staff Picks

Staff picks in 2022 will follow the same set of rules from the 2021 season. Throughout the calendar year, staff picks will be composed of main card fights from both UFC and Bellator events. Main card fights and selected preliminary fights will be included for PFL MMA. Dana White’s Contender Series are composed of the entire fight card.

The WINNER of staff picks in 2022 will have a choice between receiving a custom-made championship belt from ProAmBelts or a chain from Championship Chains. A winner is determined simply by the individual correctly picking the most victorious fighters at the year’s end. Nate Freeman secured his first victory with MMASucka in 2021 with a compiled record 243-136.

See our staff picks for UFC 280: Oliveira vs. Makhachev below.


Staff Records after UFC Vegas 62:

1. Wesley Riddle: 223-112
2. Frazer Krohn: 221-114
3. Michael DeSantis: 219-116
4. Nate Freeman: 213-107
5. Jeremy Brand: 205-124
6. Andrew Benjamin: 183-135
7. William Dong: 173-106
8. Chris Presnell: 170-120
9. Julio Monteros Jr.: 169-96
1o. Tim Wheaton: 166-94
11. Brian Knight: 134-93
12. Mike Lynch: 123-74
13. Jack Goodwillie: 121-59
14. Brandon Joint: 115-74
15. Ash Camyab: 105-77
16. Coby Weinsier: 87-47
17. Chinyere Okafor: 72-38
18. Jacek Okninski: 70-58
19. Roemello Reyes: 64-33
20. Ben Jamieson: 34-21
21. Matt Bricker: 24-22
22. Joe Porter: 11-5

*Note – not all staff pick for every event*


Katlyn Chookagian (18-4), +185
vs.
Manon Fiorot (9-1), -215

Catchweight Fight
– 127.5 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Fiorot via Split Decision
Michael DeSantis: Fiorot via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Fiorot via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Fiorot via Unanimous Decision
Tim Wheaton: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Julio Monteros Jr.: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Fiorot via Unanimous Decision
Jack Goodwillie: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
Ben Jamieson: Fiorot via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking Chookagian: 6
Staff picking Fiorot: 6


Beneil Dariush (21-4-1), +185
vs.
Mateusz Gamrot (21-1, 1 NC), -215

Lightweight Division
– 155 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Dariush via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Tim Wheaton: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Julio Monteros Jr.: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Jack Goodwillie: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
Ben Jamieson: Dariush via Round 2 SUB

Staff picking Dariush: 2
Staff picking Gamrot: 10


Petr Yan (16-3), -280
vs.
Sean O’Malley (15-1), +235

Bantamweight Division
– 135 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: O’Malley via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Yan via Split Decision
Michael DeSantis: Yan via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Yan via Round 1 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Yan via Round 2 TKO
Nate Freeman: Yan via Split Decision
Tim Wheaton: Yan via Round 3 TKO
Julio Monteros Jr.: Yan via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Yan via Split Decision
Jack Goodwillie: Yan via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Yan via Split Decision
Ben Jamieson: O’Malley via Round 1 TKO

Staff picking Yan: 10
Staff picking O’Malley: 2


Aljamain Sterling (21-3), -175
vs.
T.J. Dillashaw (18-4), +150

Bantamweight Divisional Championship
Co-Main Event
– 135 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Dillashaw via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Dillashaw via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Dillashaw via Split Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Sterling via Round 3 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Dillashaw via Unanimous Decision
Nate Freeman: Sterling via Split Decision
Tim Wheaton: Dillashaw via Split Decision
Julio Monteros Jr.: Sterling via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Dillashaw via Unanimous Decision
Jack Goodwillie: Dillashaw via Unanimous Decision
Roemello Reyes: Dillashaw via Split Decision
Ben Jamieson: Sterling via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking Sterling: 4
Staff picking Dillashaw: 8


Charles Oliveira (33-8, 1 NC), +160
vs.
Islam Makhachev (22-1), -190

Lightweight Divisional Championship
Main Event
– 155 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Oliveira via Round 2 SUB
Wesley Riddle: Makhachev via Round 3 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Oliveira via Round 3 TKO
Andrew Benjamin: Oliveira via Round 2 SUB
Frazer Krohn: Makhachev via Round 4 TKO
Nate Freeman: Makhachev via Round 2 TKO
Tim Wheaton: Oliveira via Round 4 SUB
Julio Monteros Jr.: Oliveira via Round 3 SUB
Brian Knight: Makhachev via Round 3 SUB
Jack Goodwillie: Oliveira via Round 2 SUB
Roemello Reyes: Oliveira via Round 2 TKO
Ben Jamieson: Oliveira via Round 1 SUB

Staff picking Oliveira: 8
Staff picking Makhachev: 4

*Fight odds from DraftKings*

UFC 280 FEATURED IMAGE:

Embed from Getty Images

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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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