UFC on ESPN+ 1: Cejudo vs. Dillashaw (Main Card)

Preview and Predictions for UFC on ESPN+ 1: Cejudo vs. Dillashaw (Main Card) by Danny Rourke and Darell Garner 

The UFC launches this Saturday on the ESPN+ digital network with UFC on ESPN+ 1: Dillashaw vs. Cejudo LIVE from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn,New York. The UFC on ESPN+ 1 Main Card, and the Early Prelims, will be available for viewers on the ESPN+ digital subscription network, which is available for $4.99/month. (a free one week trial is available for first time subscribers).  The UFC will make its promotional debut on the ESPN Main Network with the ESPN Prelims, headlined by the featured bout between Lightweights Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone and Alexander Hernandez. Action starts with:

ESPN+ Early Prelims                       7:00PM/ET
ESPN Prelims                                  8:00PM/ET
UFC on ESPN+ Main Card           10:00 PM/ET

UFC Brooklyn Main Card Predictions 

#12 Glover Teixeira (-110) vs.  Karl Roberson (-110)

Glover Teixeira (27-7-0) is set to face “Baby K” Karl Roberson(7-1-0) on just eight days notice, following an injury  to Teixeira’s original scheduled opponent, Ion Cutelaba. Roberson was 4-0 in his professional career before receiving the opportunity in 2017 to compete on the first season of Dana White’ Tuesday Night Contender Series. “Baby K” earned his contract by knocking out Ryan Spann just :15 seconds into their  fight with some brutal elbows from clinch. Roberson finished Darren Stewart by Submission in his official debut at UFC Norfolk, then fell to Cezar Ferreira via Arm-Triangle Choke, but rebounded in November 2018 against Jack Marshman at UFC 230 in Madison Square Garden, and improve his UFC record to 2-1.  Roberson will be moving up in weight and in competition to face the former Light Heavyweight title contender, Teixeira. While Glover has gone 3-3, alternating wins and losses over his last six fights, Teixeira has only lost to the elite, so this is a big opportunity for Roberson to prove his meddle. Glover will be looking to bounce back from a decision loss to Corey Anderson in July at UFC Hamburg. 

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction

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: Roberson via Second Round KO 

D’Bo’s Picks: Teixeira via Decision 

 #8 Dustin Ortiz (+200)  vs. #2 Joe Benavidez (-240) 2

Two Flyweight contenders with some history are set to meet again as Joe Benavidez (26-5-0) takes on a surging Dustin Ortiz (19-7-0). Dustin Ortiz has won three straight and four of his last five bouts, highlighted by first round finishes of Hector Sandoval (:15 seconds) and Matheus Nicolau Pereira. A win over Benavidez could certainly put Ortiz in title contention. The pair first met inside the Octagon at UFC Fight Night Austin in November 2014, with Joe Benavidez earning the unanimous decision win.  After missing all of 2017 due to a knee injury, Joe Jitsu lost a narrow split decision to Sergio Pettis in his return to the Octagon at UFC 225 in July 2018. Benavidez was able to bounce back and get back into the win column at the Ultimate Fighter Finale in November, finishing Alex Perez via First Round TKO.  Benavidez does hold a split decision win over current Flyweight champion Henry Cejudo from 2016, so I can definitely see the winner of Benavidez-Ortiz 2 being rewarded with a title shot. 

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction

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: Ortiz via Decision 

D’Bo’s Picks: Benavidez via Decision 

Paige Van Zant (-155) vs. Rachael Ostovich (+135)

Both Paige Van Zant (7-4-0) and Rachael Ostovich (4-4-0) come into their Flyweight bout this weekend looking for a fresh start in the new year. Ostovich was unfortunately in the headlines for all the wrong reasons, as a news, and police report in late November that detailed Ostovich had been a victim of domestic violence and beaten by her husband, Arnold Berdon. To the surprise of many, Ostovich declared weeks later that she would in fact remain on, and compete on the UFC Brooklyn card. Ostovich is 1-1 in the UFC, winning in her debut via Armbar, but most recently losing via Submission to Montana De La Rosa at the Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale in July 2018. In what will surprisingly be only her second Octagon appearance since December 2016, Paige VanZant is happy to be healthy and looking forward to competing once again. VanZant required two surgeries to repair a broken right arm that she suffered attempting a spinning back fist in her last fight against Jessica-Rose Clark at UFC St. Louis in January 2018. After starting off 3-0 in her UFC career, Paige has now lost three of her last four bouts. I expect both ladies to leave it all in the cage, with the hopes of having their hand raised Saturday night. 

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction

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 Ostovich via Second Round Submission 

D’Bo’s Picks: Ostovich via Decision 

Yancy  Medeiros (+420) vs. #15 Gregor Gillespie (-555)

“The Best Fisherman in MMA” Gregor “the Gift” Gillespie (12-0-0) plans to stay undefeated and continue on climbing the Lightweight rankings by earning a win over his next  opponent, veteranYancy Medeiros (15-5-0,1NC). Medeiros saw a three fight win streak come to an end in his last bout, losing via TKO to longtime friend Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC Austin in March 2018. Medeiros will be dropping to 155 pounds, utilizing a plant based diet to hone in on his nutrition and energy levels. Yancy will face a tough test in challenging the Gift, one of the most decorated wrestlers to ever compete inside the Octagon— a 4 time All- American with 152 victories in addition to winning the. 2007 National Championship. Gregor hones his craft at Bellmore Kickboxing on Long Island in pursuit of greatness.  Gillespie will continue to climb the ladder, putting the top ten in the Lightweight division on notice. 

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction

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: Gillespie via Third Round Submission 

D’Bo’s Picks: Gillespie via Second Round Submission 

Greg Hardy (-500) vs. Allen Crowder (+400)

Former NFL Defensive End Greg Hardy (3-0-0) will try to make a statement in his official UFC debut against Allen Crowder (9-3-0,1NC) in what promises to be a violent Co-Main Event.  You do not often see a fighter with only three professional fights  fill a slot in a UFC Co-Main Event, better yet, in their promotional debut. Hardy participated twice on the Contender Series in 2018, and once more at XFN 352,scoring brutal one minute knockout wins over Austen Lane, Tebaris Gordon, and Ray Jones. The UFC has been criticized for signing Hardy, who was arrested in 2014 on charges of assault and domestic violence, and then further vilified for putting Hardy on the same card as recent domestic abuse victim. Allen “Pretty Boy” Crowder plans on serving up a slice of karma and derailing the Hardy hype train. Crowder also won his contract via the Contender Series, but was knocked out by Justin Willis in his official debut at UFC 218 in December 2017. Pretty Boy had won four straight by TKO before stumbling in his debut. One of these guys is going to sleep. 

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction 

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: Hardy via First Round KO 

D’Bo’s Picks: Crowder via Decision 

MAIN EVENT— UFC Men’s Flyweight Championship 

 TJ Dillashaw (-200) vs.  {C} Henry Cejudo (+170)

TJ Dillashaw (16-3-0)hopes to join the elite company of the “Champ,Champs” alongside Conor McGregor, Daniel Cormier, and Amanda Nunes, as the fourth fighter in UFC history to simultaneously hold titles two separate weight classes. Dillashaw drops down to challenge the newly crowned Flyweight champion “The Messenger” Henry Cejudo (13-2-0)for his title. Cejudo improves his UFC record to 7-2, by dethroning and ending the historic title reign of the P4P GOAT, Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson via Split Decision at UFC 227 in August. Cejudo will be carrying the weight of the division on his shoulders, as many have come to think a Cejudo loss may signal the end of the Flyweight division. Since losing a split decision to Joe Benavidez in 2016, the former Olympic Gold Medalist responded with consecutive wins over Johnson, Sergio Pettis, and Wilson Reis. TJ Dillashaw closed the book on his lasting feud with former stablemate Cody Garbrandt, reclaiming the Bantamweight belt at UFC 217 via Second Round TKO, and punctuating the end of their rivalry with a First Round KO in their rematch at UFC 227 in August 2018. In his last fourteen Octagon appearances, Dillashaw is 12-2, with his losses both coming by split decision. Killashaw has the opportunity to cement his legacy as the best Bantamweight ever with a convincing win over another top notch opponent. This Superfight should live up to the hype, which I believe is not receiving enough attention. I believe Dillashaw will find a way to outsmart and catch Cejudo to become the next UFC “Champ,Champ”!

Danny’s Crystal Ball Prediction

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: Dillashaw via Second Round KO 

D’Bo’s Picks: Cejudo via Decision 

Share your thoughts and predictions with us in the Comments section below, and enjoy the fights! 

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One Comment

  1. Love the picks… here are mine

    Teix by decision
    Ortiz 2nd round sub
    Ostovich by decision
    Gillespie by decision
    Crowded 1st round KO
    Dillashaw 4th round TKO

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