UFC 245: Usman vs Covington Preview

 

By Kyler Kuehler

UFC 245: Usman vs. Covington will air on December 14, 2019, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Early Preliminary Card (Fight Pass)

PUNAHELE “STORY TIME” SORIANO (6-0-0) vs  OSKAR “IMADLO” PIECHOTA (11-2-1)
This is a three-round fight in the middleweight division. Soriano brings striking and jiu-jitsu. Piechota brings striking and jiu-jitsu. Both are well-rounded; Piechota is a better grappler. Soriano has jiu-jitsu to fight Piechota, but Piechota will counter with his own. Soriano will try landing takedowns, only to be stopped and brought to the ground in return. Piechota will be able to out grapple Soriano until he forces him to quit. My prediction: Piechota wins via submission in Round 2.

#2 JESSICA “EVIL” EYE (14-7-0, 1 NC) vs #6 VIVIANE “VIVI” ARAUJO (8-1-0)
This is a three-round fight in the women’s flyweight division. Eye brings boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. Araujo brings striking and jiu-jitsu. Eye brings good striking power; her grappling, not so much. Araujo will take advantage of that by bringing Eye to the ground early on. Eye will try to get back to her feet, but Araujo will not let that happen. She will keep Eye under her control throughout the fight until the very end. My prediction: Araujo wins via unanimous decision.

#5 BRANDON “THE ASSASSIN BOY” MORENO (15-5-1) vs #6 KAI “DON’T BLINK” KARA-FRANCE (20-7-0, 1 NC)
This is a three-round fight in the flyweight division. Moreno brings Muay Thai and jiu-jitsu. Kara-France brings boxing and jiu-jitsu. Kara-France’s boxing looks to give Moreno trouble. However, Moreno’s Muay Thai is more accurate ad brings heavier attacks. He will use it to hit harder and faster than Kara-France. This will cause Kara-France to grow frustrated and try to attack with uncontrollable strikes. He will end up exposing himself and pay the price in return. My prediction: Moreno wins via knockout in Round 3.

CHASE “THE TEENAGE DREAM” HOOPER (8-1-0) vs DANIEL “KID DYNAMITE” TEYMUR (7-3-0)
This is a three-round fight in the featherweight division. Hooper brings striking and jiu-jitsu. Teymur brings kickboxing, Muay Thai, and wrestling. When looking at the striking techniques from both fighters, Teymur looks to take this fight with ease. However, his striking s not the best and when adding in his grappling he is not great at that either. Hooper will be able to take advantage of both by attacking Teymur head-on. Teymur will become too defense to even try fighting back and will only eat strikes until he can no more. My prediction: Hopper wins via TKO in Round 1.

Preliminary Card (ESPN 2)

MATT “THE IMMORTAL” BROWN (21-16-0) vs BEN “KILLA B” SAUNDERS (22-12-2)
This is a three-round fight in the welterweight division. Brown brings Muay Thai, judo and jiu-jitsu. Saunders brings karate, taekwondo, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. Both are skilled to the core and always give every fight their all. Saunders holds great striking and defense, but Brown is more aggressive. He will go after Saunders right away and taunt him causing Saunders to grow cautious. When Saunders becomes vulnerable Brown will go full force on him and not let him recover even the slightest. My prediction: Brown wins via knockout in Round 3.

#2 KETLEN “FENOMENO” VIEIRA (10-0-0) vs #10 IRENE “ROBLES” ALDANA (11-5-0)
This is a three-round fight in the women’s bantamweight division. Vieira brings kickboxing, judo, and jiu-jitsu. Aldana brings boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. From what both bring to this fight it appears to be a pretty even matchup. Vieira is great with her judo and jiu-jitsu, which she will use to try to control Aldana. Aldana will be able to fight back with her jiu-jitsu and wrestling and even counter a few of Vieira’s attacks. Vieira will continue to push forward, but Aldana will continue to remain right alongside her. My prediction: Vieira wins via split decision.

OMARI “WOLVERINE” AKHMEDOV (19-4-1) vs #10 IAN “THE HURRICANE” HEINISCH (13-2-0)
This is a three-round fight in the middleweight division. Akhmedov brings striking, sambo, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. Heinisch brings boxing and wrestling. Both are great wrestlers and look to out grapple each other. However, Akhmedov is much more equipped in his grappling game as he holds jiu-jitsu and sambo techniques. By combining all three he will destroy Heinisch and not give him an edge. My prediction: Akhmedov wins via submission in Round 1.

#14 GEOFF “HANDS OF STEEL” NEAL (12-2-0) vs MIKE “PLATINUM” PERRY (13-5-0)
This is a three-round fight in the welterweight division. Neal brings striking and jiu-jitsu. Perry brings boxing, Muay Thai, and jiu-jitsu. Perry’s boxing background looks to give Neal trouble for Neal has never faced a skilled striker like Perry. Though Perry is not a great grappler and Neal will not let that slip by him. He will dodge many of Perry’s attacks and land a takedown on him to keep him on the ground. He will wear him down until Perry becomes vulnerable giving Neal the perfect opportunity to put him away. My prediction: Neal wins via submission in Round 2.

Main Card (Pay-Per-View – ESPN+)

#4 PETR “NO MERCY” YAN (13-1-0) vs #12 URIJAH “THE CALIFORNIA KID” FABER (35-10-0)
This is a three-round fight in the bantamweight division. Yan brings boxing, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. Faber brings boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. He is a former WEC Featherweight Champion. Faber looks to make another comeback with the help of his striking power and speed. However, Yan is pretty fast as well and will not give Faber much edge. He will be able to stand with Faber and land heavy blows on him. He then will transition to his wrestling and control Faber even more by out grappling him and wearing him down. My prediction: Yan wins via unanimous decision.

#1 MARLON “MAGIC” MORAES (22-6-1) vs #3(FW) JOSE “JUNIOR” ALDO (28-5-0)
This is a three-round fight in the bantamweight division. Moraes brings Muay Thai and jiu-jitsu. Aldo brings kickboxing, Muay Thai, Luta Livre, and jiu-jitsu. He is a former UFC and WEC Featherweight Champion. Aldo looks to take this fight with the aid of his Muay Thai and kickboxing. However, Moraes is a tough fighter and will give Aldo another run for his money. He will be able to stand with Aldo and wear him down. When Aldo is weak enough he will bring him to the ground and begin to use his ground-and-pound. He will keep this plan of attack up until Aldo can no longer go on. My prediction: Moraes wins via TKO in Round 3.

(C) AMANDA “THE LIONESS” NUNES (18-4-0) vs #1 GERMAINE “THE IRON LADY” DE RANDAMIE (9-3-0)
This is a five-round fight for the women’s bantamweight championship. Nunes brings boxing, judo, and jiu-jitsu. She is the current bantamweight and featherweight champion. De Randamie brings boxing, kickboxing, and Muay Thai. She is a former featherweight champion. De Randamie looks to use her striking abilities to win gold once again. However, Nunes will prove that once again she is too powerful. Her striking power will hurt de Randamie right away and cause de Randamie to the coward. She will keep her full-on attack at de Randamie until she goes down. My prediction: Nunes wins via knockout in Round 1.

(C) MAX “BLESSED” HOLLOWAY (21-4-0) vs #1 ALEXANDER “THE GREAT” VOLKANOVSKI (20-1-0)
This is a five-round co-main event for the featherweight championship. Holloway brings kickboxing, Muay Thai, and jiu-jitsu. He is the current featherweight champion. Volkanovski brings boxing, kickboxing, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. The wrestling ability of Volkanovski appears to be his key to victory or Holloway does not rely much on grappling. Holloway holds great takedown defense and has cardio beyond any fighter in the featherweight division. He will avoid all of Volkanovski’s takedowns and keep him under his control with the help of his Muay Thai. Volkanovski will grow weaker as the fight progresses while Holloway remains full of power. Once Volkanovski becomes too weak to fight back Holloway will go will off on him until the end. My prediction: Holloway wins via TKO in Round 4.

(C) KAMARU “NIGERIAN NIGHTMARE” USMAN (15-1-0) vs #2 COLBY “CHAOS” COVINGTON (15-1-0)
This is a five-round main event for the welterweight championship. Usman brings striking, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. He is the current champion. Covington brings Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. With both fighters just about identical in style, it’s hard to choose a favorite. Usman is an elite level wrestler with great cardio, but so is Covington. Not to mention Covington’s cardio is that of a freak of nature and it will be his main weapon. Usman holds good cardio himself, but he won’t be able to keep up with Covington. Covington will take advantage b his aggressive striking power mixed with speed to attack Usman with full-on force. Usman will try to transition to his wrestling, but that too will fail. Covington will be able to counter by his wrestling and prove why he is the next welterweight king. My prediction: Covington wins via unanimous decision.