The UFC offers fight fans a massive showdown at featherweight this weekend with the hard-hitting #5 ranked Josh Emmett stepping into the cage to do battle with the #9 ranked highlight reel Ilia Topuria. With this fight in mind and more, here are the locks for this week to make that extra bread.
Best Bets-UFC Fight Night: Emmett vs Topuria
Trevor Peek vs Chepe Mariscal
The preliminary card has a lot to offer with nine fights slated for Saturday night. In a lightweight encounter, the undefeated Trevor Peek will welcome to the Octagon for the first time Chepe “Machine Gun” Mariscal.
Peek was initially inked to fight Victor Martinez, but the 31-year-old pulled out from the bout this past week. To fill the gap, 4-fight LFA vet Mariscal signed at the dotted line and will subsequently make his UFC debut.
Peek is 8-0, having secured his UFC debut victory over Erick Gonzalez in February this year. Mariscal is enjoying a three-fight win streak with all three of those victories coming by way of finish. Expect this one to be exciting, but ultimately Mariscal will prove to be too much for Peek as his BJJ pedigree and finishing ability on the feet will provide him a finish in his UFC debut.
Fight Pick: Chepe Mariscal via Knockout
Mateusz Rębecki vs Loik Radzhabov
Working up the card, fight fans have an intriguing matchup on the international stage as Poland’s Mateusz Rębecki does battle with Tajikstan’s Loik Radzhabov. Rębecki comes into the bout with an eye brow raising 14-fight win streak. Rębecki won his UFC debut back in January of this year and is a former FEN Lightweight Champion.
Radzhabov is most notably a veteran of the 2019 and 2021 PFL seasons fighting to a 4-4-1 record with the promotion. At 17-4-1, Radzhabov has fought a much stiffer level of competition than his opponent Saturday night. Radzhabov has wins over notables Alex Martinez and Akhmed Aliev and has done battle with the likes of Raush Manfio and Natan Schulte.
This will be a close fight and one that will primarily be fought on the feet. Radzhavov has fought the tougher competition and will enjoy the trifecta of a height, arm, and leg reach advantage which will prove to be the deciding factors of the lightweight contest.
Fight Pick: Loik Radzhabov Moneyline
Neil Magny vs Phil Rowe
The preliminary card will close out with a welterweight bout to be contested by 37-fight vet Neil Magny and the up-and-coming Phil Rowe.
There is more than enough data on the table for fight fans to know that Magny is a tough test for anyone. A multiple time record holder in the UFC history books, Magny’s awkward build and unusual style has earned him victories over Carlos Condit, Robbie Lawler, Li Jingliang, and Geoff Neal. The “Haitian Sensation” hopes to bounce back from a loss in his last fight to Gilbert Burns.
Rowe is enjoying a three fight win streak, having earned finishes in all three bouts. The “Fresh Prince” is a well-experienced grappler and has secured four submission victories amongst his ten career wins.
This will be the recipe for success for the 32-year-old Rowe, as Magny has suffered more than half of his defeats by tap.
Fight Pick: Phil Rowe via Submission
Brendan Allen vs Bruno Silva
Opening the main card, a welterweight battle will ensue as Brendan Allen takes on promotional newcomer Bruno Silva. Allen is 9-2 with MMA’s biggest promotion and is riding a 4-fight win streak. Allen was set to face #10 ranked Jack Hermansson in a main event collision, but Hermansson pulled from the fight.
Silva is looking to string two in a row after snapping a two-fight skid with his win over Brad Tavares at UFC Fight Night: Pavlovich vs Blaydes. Silva will be making his debut to the division, after dropping down from middleweight.
Allen, the favorite, is the smart pick here. Silva has everything to gain, but “All In” has simply been more impressive during his tenure with the UFC. With wins over better competition, Allen is an established force within the welterweight division.
Fight Pick: Brendan Allen Moneyline
Austen Lane vs Justin Tafa
In a bout of heavyweight finishers, fight fans should expect this one to end early. Austen Lane, who has 11 TKO/KO victories to his name, has never seen the judges’ scorecards. Similarly, Justin Tafa has found finishes in all six of his professional victories but has suffered two losses at the hands of the judges.
The easy bet here would be a prop bet under 1.5 rounds. If that is not your style, the former NFL defensive tackle is the knockout artist to pick in this one.
Fight Pick: Austen Lane via Knockout
Josh Emmett vs Ilia Topuria
The main event showcases a bout between two incredibly hard hitters in the featherweight division. Josh Emmett, although looking to rebound from a loss to Yair Rodriguez at UFC 284, is a well-established threat in the 145-lb. division.
Ilia Topuria is coming into the bout as a heavy favorite, is undefeated in his five-fight UFC tenure, and has finished his last four opponents. Topuria is undoubtedly faster than Emmett but can fight to the point of reckless abandonment which Emmett can counter and make him pay. This fight is much closer than what the odds say and picking a winner is. . .up to you.
Fight Pick: Fight to End by KO/TKO