UFC 268 Usman Vs Covington 2 Betting Predictions


Kamaru Usman – Decision (This isn’t as clear-cut an Usman victory as first presumed. Re-watching the first fight reveals several occasions where Covington shook Usman with the ferocious pace and volume that he is capable of pouring out for the full five rounds. Usman’s recent firepower under Wittman has been pleasing, yet his lack of defensive savvy remains exploitable for Covington. To say Covington doesn’t have a chance of winning this would be foolish. Unfortunately for Colby fans, ring rust is likely to rear its ugly head. Aside from a muted victory over a decrepit Tyron Woodley, Covington has effectively remained inactive for two years. If there were ever a fighter to struggle with a bruised ego – it would be the confidence fighter whose striking centres around a belief in out-pacing, out-gritting opponents. If either man engages in the grappling department, Usman’s size may prove the key differential, but I expect a repeat of their solely striking contest from the first meeting)


Weili Zhang – TKO Round 4 (Can Rose replicate her first-round knockout? Yes, absolutely. Is it likely? No. Instead, there is a greater chance that Rose secures the early rounds with her exceptional use of angles and ability to pepper a more conservative Zhang from range. Around the mid-point, however, it will be Rose’s durability that comes into question as Zhang’s confidence grows after eating Rose’s shots. Of greatest interest is Rose’s defensive grappling and whether it can hold up in the championship rounds. Confidence will flood back to Zhang if she lands her tree-chopping leg kicks early. Rose’s long, bladed stance is a prime target for the former champ – forcing Namajunas to square up and enable Zhang to close the distance with less risk. Add on the bodywork that will pay dividends by the later rounds, and Zhang could regain her title in a brutal fashion)

Justin Gaethje – TKO Round 3 (A fantastic fight that would perhaps be more interesting in a five-round format. One key to the fight is the low kick. Even the great, Khabib Nurmagomedov, struggled with the aggressive leg kicks that Gaethje throws freely throughout his fights. Chandler has shown a vulnerability to low kicks in the past, suffering a dead leg to Brent Primus. Early pressure to the lower half may force Chandler into panic wrestling, opening himself up to damage in the process. Still, Gaethje’s wrestling credentials are regularly overrated. Taken down by both Michael Johnson and Eddie Alvarez (obviously, Khabib too), Chandler could well buy himself vital control time and rounds on the mat. If, as expected, Gaethje weathers Chandler’s early power – the safest call is the walking highlight reel to find the finish late)


Marlon Vera – TKO Round 3 (The likelihood of Edgar cruising out a decision is pretty compelling. Vera is frustratingly inept off his back and is at an athletic disadvantage to a forty-year old. Even with a freakishly deep gas tank, a clear path to victory in wrestling superiority, and an athletic edge – Edgar has to successfully close the distance three times this fight, that’s two too many for me to be confident in his chin)


Shane Burgos – Decision (Quarantillo, for all the relentless pressure on the feet, is tame compared to the power of Josh Emmett and Edson Barboza. Burgos’ scrambles should be able to keep this fight moslty standing, and his pace should out-last Quarantillo’s forward pressure. Worryingly, Burgos’ delayed knockout to Barboza may have been the first visible sign of wear and tear after years of wars. If Burgos is a shell of his former self, Quarantillo’s trips and ground threat could be as much of a threat as it was against Gabriel Benitez)

Alex Pereira – TKO Round 1 (Make no mistake. This is a kickboxer against an experienced MMA operator. Pereira may well be on the way to a rude awakening. Michailidis was more than happy to dive on takedowns against Modestas Bukauskas, and Pereira’s lack of experience on the mat will sorely show. Unfortunately for the Greek, he is too happy to engage in a brawl before shooting. To do so against Pereira is near-suicidal, considering Pereira’s ridiculous power)

Bobby Green – Decision (It has been over two years since we’ve seen the loud-mouthed Yankee in the octagon. Unfortunately for Al, ring-rust or not, his style should be countered by Green. Green’s solid TDD will keep the fight standing, while his jab should regularly punish Iaquinta’s tendency to sit on the centre-line. Most likely, however, Green will happily allow a back-and-forth affair in the pocket where he can showcase his slick head movement and counter-striking. This never lends itself to dominant scorecards, however, and it is only with great caution that I back the in-form Green)

Phil Hawes – Decision (Low-output counter-striking and an aversion to risks ensures that Curtis keeps himself relevant until the final round. Hawes, a flawed fighter, could well walk himself onto a hard technical counter from Curtis. The freakishly powerful hands and wrestling of Hawes, however, are too great an equaliser to overlook)

Edmen Shahbazyan – Decision (A fantastic match-up that Shahbazyan has the barest edge in. A fast starter that fades after opponents have read his dangerous initial layer of striking, Imavov’s sniping counter-striking is unlikely to win the early rounds. Granted, the Frenchman will be able to pick apart Shahbazyan by the later rounds as the youthful prospect hasn’t shown the ability to adapt on the spot. Shahbazyan’s greater control over his output in the Hermansson fight leads me to backing him)

Ian Garry – Submission Round 2 (I mean, there is always the prospect of a flash knockout? Williams certainly carries the power, but his inability to deliver it in a meaningful manner leaves him stranded eating damage. Without the gas tank to remain a lethal threat outside of the first round, Williams should be an easy opponent for Garry to game plan against. Don’t buy into the hype just yet)

Chris Barnett – TKO Round 2 (I simply cannot back Gian Villante at Heavyweight. Chris Barnett represents one of the last bastions of a by-gone era. The big lad has journeyed across many promotions on the back of being a small, overweight Heavyweight who pulls off crazy aesthetic spinning/jumping attacks. Against Villante, a man who has eaten himself into a punching bag, Barnett will have a couple of opportunities per round to land something special)

Dustin Jacoby – Decision (Allan may well be tough as nails but he will be a sitting duck for fifteen minutes against Jacoby. The Brazilian is far too hittable, unable to takedown Jacoby, and unlikely to ever read Jacoby’s variety. While the American is a last-minute replacement, he has only shown in the UFC the ability to engage in his preferred fight and stay away from Allan’s preferred phone booth brawl)

Ode Osbourne – TKO Round 1 (The stocky Texan is a powerful fighter who should have no trouble cracking the paper chin of Osbourne, but he cannot afford to fight with reckless abandon. While Vergara’s durability is slightly in his favour, this feels like a quick fire-fight with the winner being the man first to punish an errant power shot)

Feeling lucky?

Ode Osbourne R1 (+380)

Ian Garry by Submission (+550)

Chris Curtis by KO/TKO (+650)

Al Iaquinta by Decision (+300)

Michael Chandler by Finish (+320)

Leave a Reply!

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x