OKTAGON 54 Main Event Breakdown

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After three title fights early Friday morning (US time) from Singapore’s ONE Championship, the MMA action keeps kicking on the third month’s second day. Unlike most Saturdays, the action will take place entirely in the afternoon this weekend due to the time difference between Europe and the United States.

Before the UFC returns to its Apex facility for another Fight Night, OKTAGON MMA is back in its Czech Republic homebase for OKTAGON 54. Live coverage of OKTAGON 54 begins at noon ET/ 9 am PT on Saturday. As always, the card is exclusive to subscription-based streaming platform DAZN inside the United States.

It’s a packed card this week from Ostravar Arena in Ostrava. It’ll be tournament time on Saturday (no, not that one, though it will take hold on the sports calendar later on in the month.) OKTAGON kicks off a 16-contender bracket in its lightweight division with seven of the eight opening-round contests taking place here.

Beyond the lightweight tournament, there’s a marquee fight in the main event. Unification at 185 lbs. tops the bill.

Middleweight Championship in Headliner Saturday

Current OKTAGON MMA Middleweight Champion Patrik Kincl (27-10, 1 NC MMA, 3-0 OKTAGON) returns to defend his title against OKTAGON MMA Interim Middleweight Champion Piotr Wawrzyniak (12-5 MMA, 1-0 OKTAGON) in a unification battle. As with most MMA title fights, the OKTAGON 54 main event is a maximum of five rounds at five minutes per round to close the night’s activities.

OKTAGON 54 Main Event Fighter Comparison and Betting Odds

Heading into the OKTAGON 54 main event on Saturday afternoon, both of these men stand level at 5-foot-11. Patrik Kincl owns a 1.1-inch reach advantage (72 inches even to 70.9 inches) over Piotr Wawrzyniak ahead of this fight.

Oddsmakers have Patrik Kincl installed as a -225 favorite on the money line, while Piotr Wawrzyniak counters as a +163 underdog. If you plan on betting on this or any other fight happening this weekend, please wager responsibly.

Kincl Returns After Injury Hiatus

Champion Patrik Kincl has posted a record of 4-1 in his last five fights. At the present time, he’s on a three-fight winning streak. Most recently, he scored a unanimous decision on May 21 last year against Karlos Vemola (36-8 MMA, 11-3 OKTAGON) during OKTAGON 43 from Prague, Czech Republic.

Initially, Kincl was supposed to return to the promotion on Dec. 29 in the year-end OKTAGON 51 to defend the 185-lb. strap against Vlasto Cepo (12-3 MMA, 4-2 OKTAGON), but he was unable to make the date due to suffering a broken orbital bone in sparring. Cepo stayed on the card, losing to Wawrzyniak (third-round knockout) for the interim championship.

Recently, Kincl talked to James Lynch about the time off.

“Actually, I was lucky,” Kincl began. “I just [missed] one week of training and then I came back to the gym, but of course without sparring sessions, without contact, without punching and kicking and so on.”

During that same interview, Kincl discussed what it’s been like cutting weight ahead of the OKTAGON 54 main event.

“It’s always the same job,” he said. “I feel a little bit tired, but so far, so good. I feel strong, I feel great in the cardio sessions. Yeah, I feel pretty, pretty great.”

With Kincl now having received a clean bill of health, can he successfully defend and unify the belt? Tune into Saturday’s card and find out.

Piotr Wawrzyniak Looking To Run Winning Streak to Six in a Row

In the other corner, Piotr Wawrzyniak has posted an unbeaten record of 5-0 in his last five MMA fights, with four of those wins coming by way of knockout. He’s had a short time to prepare for the OKTAGON 54 main event, having just fought about two months ago. Back in June of last year, he stopped Adam Laguna (7-2 MMA) with a punch in the first round of their fight in Babilon MMA 28.

A quick turnaround is never easy for any fighter. How much of a training camp has Piotr Wawrzyniak been able to have going into this headliner? Will the short window between fights affect him negatively?

Only time will tell.

Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction

You’ve got a strength vs. strength matchup in the OKTAGON 54 main event on Saturday. The edge goes to Patrik Kincl, a boxer and judoka.

Kincl is Brutal With Elbows

Of Patrik Kincl’s 27 career wins in MMA, 19 have been recorded without the judges needing to submit a scorecard. 13 of his stoppages have been by knockout, including his 2022 fight against Alex Lohore.

During the first round, Kincl and Lohore stalked one another as both men waited for the seminal moment. The former landed a high kick to drop Lohore. Although he got back up, Kincl poured it on with vicious elbows, leading to a knockout victory in under two minutes.

Look for Patrik Kincl to try and wobble Piotr Wawrzyniak. At the same time, however, stopping Wawrzyniak is easier said than done.

Piotr Wawrzyniak Has Tremendous Ground and Pound

In the other corner, the OKTAGON 54 main event could be a short affair, particularly if the fight goes to the mat. You don’t even need to look back too far in the videotape library to find a prime example of this, either.

Back in December, Vlasto Cepo absorbed Piotr Wawrzyniak’s ground and pound. Round three saw him dump Cepo to the canvas. From there, Wawrzyniak sliced Cepo open with shots before unloading with a barrage from top mount. Despite warnings from the ref, Cepo couldn’t defend himself and this one was stopped.

One takedown is all Piotr Wawrzyniak needs to gain an advantage over Patrik Kincl here.

Final Thoughts

Even though ONE Championship will have three title fights to start the weekend Friday morning, the OKTAGON 54 main event might be the most entertaining fight of the weekend. Will this one live up to the billing?

Prediction: Piotr Wawrzyniak by Fourth-Round Knockout.

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Drew Zuhosky has been writing about combat sports since May of 2018, coming to MMASucka after stints at Overtime Heroics and Armchair All-Americans. A graduate of Youngstown State University in Youngstown, OH, Drew is a charter member of the Youngstown Press Club. Prior to beginning his professional career, Drew was a sportswriter for YSU's student-run newspaper, The Jambar, where he supplied Press Box Perspective columns every week.

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