UFC Fight Night 150: Preview & Predictions
By Alex Conway
The UFC touches down in South Florida this Saturday with a patchwork card that could still deliver fireworks, even if it doesn’t have a ton of hype behind it.
The main event features a couple of guys who were replacements for the original main event, a co-main event with a maligned and controversial figure while the more intriguing fights in my opinion are buried further down the card.
Jacare Souze fights Jack Hermansson in a middleweight main event, Greg Hardy battles Dmitry Smolyakov and further down the card Alex Oliveira and Mike Perry will try to outcrazy one another. John Lineker and Cory Sandhagen will see who is coming and going while Glover Teixeira tries to outlast a Hulk during The Avengers weekend premeire.
Jacare vs. The Joker
I, like many, didn’t expect Jack Hermansson to do what he did against David Branch when he stopped the BJJ black belt early in the first round with a guillotine. But he did and it opened a ton of eyes and put him on the short list to replace Yoel Romero when Romero pulled out of the rematch with Jacare this weekend.
I don’t like Hermansson’s chances against Jacare, but maybe this is the weekend Jacare shows up and loses a step.
Even if Jacare gets old really fast, I believe he is too skilled to fall against Hermansson. On the feet Jacare has power, but he will likely take this fight to the mat and dominate in the grappling exchanges via whatever he wants. Few have found success when Jacare decides to grapple and Hermansson is many levels below in the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu department.
Hardy vs. Smolyakov
Smolyakov didn’t fare well in his first two UFC appearances, going 0-2 against Luis Henrique and Cyril Asker in 2016 and 2017. But he is coming off a win on the regional scene that saw him get a first round kimura victory in Russia earlier this year.
But make no mistake, if the UFC is smart, they booked this fight because they believe Hardy can knock Smolyakov out and look good doing it.
The UFC took a big chance that the payoff would be worth the squeeze and that the domestic violence baggage Hardy brings with him would be forgot with a few highlight knockout wins.
I wouldn’t say all has been forgotten, but Hardy’s unimpressive first fight has him on the hot seat his second time out. The chatter around his fight has been relatively quiet, but a big win is sure to go viral. If he loses it would be time to cut the cord on this experiment.
I’m picking Hardy by first round knockout.
Oliveira vs. Perry
I mean two psychopaths are about to lock themselves in a cage together and I for one can’t wait.
Alex Oliveira and Mike Perry get bloody just for fun and this is a true test to see where both guys stand in the stacked UFC welterweight division.
I like Perry in this one because I think Oliveira is too willing to get into exchanges on the feet when taking it to the ground is the better strategy. Oliveira is willing to entertain the fans and get into brawls, which is a recipe for disaster against the heavy handed Perry.
I think Oliveira gets clipped and Perry gets the win.
Lineker vs. Sandhagen
This is the best fight on the card.
John Lineker is the pound-for-pound biggest puncher in the UFC and I don’t care to hear a debate. But Sandhagen might be the next big name to come out of the UFC’s bantamweight division.
He switches stances and uses length in a unique way for the weight class, and he’ll be taking on one of the shortest fighters he’ll ever come across.
I expect a steady diet of knees and uppercuts to counter Lineker’s aggressive bite down on the mouthpiece and throw bombs style. Lineker will be hard to put away, but I see Sandhagen getting a standout win over one of the more entertaining fighters to grace the UFC octagon.