- Date & Location: Wednesday, Jan. 20 @ Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi UAE
- Odds: Michael Chiesa (+110) vs. Neil Magny (-140) via Bovada
- Prediction: Chiesa via submission
The UFC packs three fights into one week during its current trip to Abu Dhabi. The first event, UFC on ABC 1, takes place on Saturday, January 16 while the promotion’s visit to Etihad Arena closes out on Saturday, January 23 with the UFC 257 pay-per-view card. Sandwiched between those two events is UFC Fight Island 8. That fight card takes place on Wednesday, January 20. The main event is a welterweight matchup between Michael Chiesa and Neil Magny.
Chiesa spent the first six years of his UFC career at lightweight. He went 7-4 at 155 pounds. After losing two fights in a row via submission, Chiesa decided it was time to more to the 170 pound weight class. Since he made the move to welterweight, Chiesa has won three fights in a row.
Magny, who is also on a three-fight winning streak, has fought at welterweight since he joined the UFC in 2013. One of the most active fighters in the history of the UFC’s 170-pound weight class, Magny has 23 fights to his name as a UFC welterweight. His record is 17-6 with the promotion.
Chiesa is the No. 8 ranked fighter in the official UFC welterweight rankings. Magny checks in at No. 9.
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CHIESA vs. MAGNY ODDS
CHIESA vs. MAGNY PREDICTION & PICK
Chiesa and Magny are both well-rounded fighters who can compete anywhere the fight might go, but they both favor specific and different disciplines. That fact is reflected in the stat line.
Magny is the better striker of the two. He is more active on his feet, more accurate and better defensively. Magny has earned seven of his 24 wins via knockout as opposed to three via submission. The 33-year-olds best path to victory is to keep this fight standing.Magny is susceptible to submissions. He has tapped four times in his career.
On the opposite side of the cage, Chiesa is the better grappler. His takedown average and accuracy is higher than Magny’s as is his takedown defense. Also 33, Chiesa has 11 wins via submission and 0 via knockout. Chiesa has one knockout loss on his record, three submission setbacks and 0 losses via decision.
This is a five-round bout and I believe Chiesa will get the fight to the ground. When that happens he’ll have a distinct advantage over his opponent.
Pick: Chiesa +105 via Bookmaker.
BETTING VALUE WITH CHIESA
I like Chiesa’s chances of getting a submission, but it’s not so easy to rule out a decision win for Chiesa either and there is also a chance that Magny could squeeze out a decision.
Of Magny’s four submission losses, three came in the first round and one in the second. Statistically that indicates Chiesa’s best bet is to get the fight to the mat early before Magny is warmed up and not covered in sweat. All five of Chiesa’s UFC submission wins have come in the second round. It appears as if the longer this fight goes the more of a chance it has to go the scorecards and with that, there is a chance Magny can convince the judges he is the better fighter over five rounds.
If bettors are nervous about a finish, the safe play is Chiesa as the winner without a method of victory.
Prediction: Chiesa by submission +115 at BetOnline.
WHO HAS THE EDGE?
As I state above, this mainly depends on where the fight tales place and which fighter implements his style and when. Overall, I feel that Chiesa has more tools to pick from. I also feel that moving up to welterweight and starting his run there at 3-0 will give Chiesa the edge in confidence.
FIGHT STATS: CHIESA vs. MAGNY
|Michael Chiesa||Category||Neil Magny|
|2.07||Significant Strikes Landed Per Minute||3.96|
|1.95||Significant Strikes Absorbed Per Minute||2.15|
|3.84||Takedown Average Per 15 Minutes||2.63|
|1.1||Submission Average Per 15 Minutes||0.3|
WHAT’S AT STAKE
This fight is all about position. A win won’t earn the victor a title fight, but it could very well put him inside the top-five of the welterweight division. With that, a victory after this contest should put the winner in the conversation for a title fight. This is a very important bout for both of these veteran UFC competitors.
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