ESPN+22: Blachowicz vs. Jacare

Preview and Predictions for UFC on ESPN+22: Blachowicz vs. Jacare by Danny Rourke and Darell Garner 

The UFC is back in São Paulo, Brazil this weekend for UFC on ESPN+22: Blachowicz vs. Jacare. Action begins Saturday from the Ginasio do Ibirapuerra in São Paulo with: 
Prelims        ESPN+   5:00PM/ETMain Card   ESPN+   8:00PM/ET
UFC São Paulo Main Card Predictions
Markus Perez (-130) vs. Wellington Turman (+110)
To kickoff the Main Card, Markus “Maluko” Perez (12-2-0) meets Wellington Turman (15-3-0) in a Brazilian vs. Brazilian Middleweight duel. Fighting out of Curitiba, Brazil Wellington Turman will be searching for his first win inside the Octagon after losing a narrow Split Decision to Karl Roberson in his promotional debut at UFC Sacramento in July which ended a four fight win streak for Turman. A native of São Paulo,Markus Perez was quite the showman at the ceremonial weigh-ins yesterday, coming out adorned in face paint resembling that of the Joker in The Dark Knight. Perez, who is 2-2 in the UFC, is coming off a Second Round Submission win over Anthony Hernandez at UFC Fortaleza in February, and will be looking to put together his first UFC win streak if he can find his way past Turman. Both Turman and Perez are durable having never been stopped in their professional careers and share  near mirror results in terms of their paths to victory— Perez with three KO/TKO, six Submissions, three Decisions, Turman with four KO/TKO, seven Submissions, four Decisions. I expect an exciting bout between these equally matched opponents, giving a slight edge to Markus Perez. 
Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction: Perez via First Round Submission 
D’Bo’s Pick: Perez via Decision  
Antonio Arroyo (+100) vs. Andre Muniz (-120)
Two Brazilian fighters who made good in their second stint on Dana White’s Contender Series this summer will meet in their official promotional debuts, as Antonio Arroyo (9-2-0) and Andre “Sergipano” Muniz (18-4-0) face off in a Middleweight contest. Competing on DWCS Brazil Season 1 last summer, Andre Muniz defeated Bruno Assis by Decision, but was not awarded a contract for his performance. Muniz capitalized on his second opportunity to compete on the Contender Series this summer, defeating Taylor Johnson via First Round Submission and earning a UFC contract. Antonio Arroyo has followed an almost identical path, winning by Decision in his first appearance on the Contender Series, competing again this summer, and securing his UFC contract with a Second Round Submission win over Stephen Regman in July. This is a  pretty even matchup, but give Andre Muniz a slight upper hand as he possesses twelve Submission wins, and both of Antonio Arroyo’s losses have occurred by way of Submission.    Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction: Muniz via First Round Submission 
D’Bo’s Pick: Arroyo via Decision 
#13 Charles Oliveira (-360) vs. Jared Gordon (+300)
In a Lightweight bout, the UFC all -time leader in Submission wins, Charles “Do Bronx”Oliveira (27-8-0,1NC) will look to extend a current five fight win streak as he makes his 25th Octagon appearance at UFC São Paulo against Jared “Flash” Gordon (15-3-0). A winner in six of his last seven, including five straight stoppage victories, Charles Oliveira has been doing everything right as he seeks his third win in the calendar year against Jared Gordon. After teasing a run a Featherweight, Charles Oliveira has found his home again at 155 pounds by stopping Clay Guida, Cristos Giagos, Jim Miller, David Teymur, and Nik Lentz on his current run. Jared Gordon continues his path to redemption, overcoming a two fight losing streak in his last bout with a Unanimous Decision win over Dan Moret at UFC Minneapolis in June to improve to 3-2 in the UFC. Jared Gordon, who trains under Renzo Gracie in NYC, has never been submitted in eighteen pro fights and will need a career defining performance to escape past the red hot Charles Oliveira. 
Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction: Oliveira via Decision 
D’Bo’s Pick: Oliveira via First Round Submission 
#14 Mauricio Rua (-255) vs. Paul Craig (+215)
In a Light Heavyweight bout, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (26-11-0) looks to add to his highlight reel of finishes as he squares off with “The Bearjew” Paul Craig (12-4-0) in the UFC São Paulo Co-Main Event. Paul Craig steps in to replace an injured Sam Alvey looking for his second win in two months on the heels of his Performance of the Night First Round Submission win over Vinicius Moreira at UFC Mexico City in September. Craig’s win in Mexico City was his eleventh career win by Submission and the third Performance of the Night bonus for the Bearjew in last five fights. While only competing  a handful of times since 2015, Shogun has remained in form  winning four of his last five fights against the likes of Tyson Pedro, Gian Villante, Corey Anderson, and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. The Bearjew is 4-4 in the UFC and has never gone the distance in his career. With that said, I expect the more polished and accurate striker, Shogun Rua to get the stoppage victory in an explosive and entertaining contest. 
Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction: Shogun via First Round KO
D’Bo’s Pick: Shogun via Decision 
MAIN EVENT 
#6 Jan Blachowicz (-210) vs. #8MW Jacare Souza (+175)
Jan Blachowicz (24-8-0) will be looking make his bid for a title shot as he travels into enemy territory with the intentions of spoiling the Light Heavyweight debut of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu extraordinaire Ronaldo Jacare Souza  (26-7-0,1NC). After alternating wins and losses over his last five fights at Middleweight, Jacare Souza hopes a move to Light Heavyweight will rekindle title run possibilities for the perennial contender from Manaus, Brazil. Following a TKO loss to Thiago Santos at UFC Prague in February, Jan Blachowicz responded emphatically with a blistering Second Round KO of Luke Rockhold at UFC 239 in July. With a win, Blachowicz remains in title contention along with Dominic Reyes and Corey Anderson. Jacare would like nothing more to derail the powerful Polishman with a successful debut at 205 pounds. 
Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction: Blachowicz via First Round TKO  
D’Bo’s Pick: Souza via Second Round Submission 
Next week, the UFC pays a visit to our Nation’s capital in Washington D.C. for UFC on ESPN 7: Overeem vs. Rozenstruik. Share your thoughts and picks with us in the Comments section below, and enjoy the fights!! 

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