UFC 209: Tyron Woodley vs Stephen Thompson 2
UFC 209: Tyron Woodley vs Stephen Thompson 2.
UFC 209 Woodley versus Thompson 2 takes place on Saturday, March 4 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Check out the earlier fights on the UFC 209 Main Card before getting to the three top fights including the main event between Woodley and Thompson.
LandoVannata (9-1-0) vs David Teymur (5-1) – Both guys land a lot of strikes on average per minute. Vannata lands 5.54 per minute while Teymur lands 4.98 per minute. The difference is that Teymur has more striking power than Vannata appears to have. Vannata’s one loss was to Tony Ferguson. I think Vannata uses Teymur’s eagerness against him.
Prediction: Vannata over Teymur via 3rd-Round KO
Igor Pokrajac (25-13-0) vs Ed Herman (24-13-0) – Herman is more capable with his takedowns than Pokrajac. Not only that, but Pokrajac has gone 0-5-0 with a No Contest in his last 6 battles. It’s hard to see Pokrajac picking it up against Herman in this fight.
Prediction: Herman over Pokrajac via 2nd-Round KO
Todd Dufee (9-3) vs Mark Godbeer (11-3) – Dufee hasn’t fought at UFC since July of 2015. In that battle, Frank Mir knocked out Dufee in Round 1 by out striking Dufee 16 to 9. This is only Godbeer’s second fight at UFC. I think he makes a name for himself by knocking out Dufee in the first round.
Prediction: Godbeer over Dufee via 1st-Round KO
14 Darren Elkins (22-5) vs 13 Mirsad Bektic (11-0) – Elkins rides a 3-fight win streak into UFC 209. He won all three fights via decision. Bektic KO’ed Lucas Martins at UFC Fight Night 2015. He submitted Russell Doane in Round 1 at UFC 204 this past October. I like Bektic’s versatility.
Prediction: Bektic over Elkins via 3rd-Round Submission
3 Alistair Overeem (41-15-0) vs 7 Mark Hunt (12-11-1)
Hunt’s last fight wasn’t fair to the New Zelander. It’s no wonder that Lesnar out struck Hunt 51 to 13, and provided 4 takedowns and 4 passes, to Hunt’s 13 strikes and 0 passes and 0 takedowns at UFC 200. It was almost expected thatLesnar would fail the after-fight drug test…which he did. UFC’s new ownership group forced Dana White to declare the battle a non-contest.
That’s fair to Hunt. He finds himself up against it versus old pro Alistair Overeem. A man who has 56 MMA fights on his record can never be called soft. Overeem had no answer for Heavyweight Champ Stipe Miocic at UFC 203 this past Sept. 10. I expect things to turn out differently for Overeem at UFC 209.
Alistair has more of a ground game than Hunt does. Not only that, but Overeem’s 8-inch reach advantage should keep Hunt’s striking power at bay.
Prediction: Overeem over Hunt via 3rd-Round KO
Interim Lightweight Title
1 KhabibNurmagomedov (24-0-0) vs 2 Tony Ferguson (23-3-0)
The winner of Nurmagomedov vs Ferguson takes on Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor in the second half of 2017. McGregor versus either Nurmagomedov or Ferguson should make for an excellent battle. This might be the hardest fight on the entire UFC 209 card to handicap. Nurmagomedov and Ferguson match up well.
Ferguson is the more aggressive fighter. He lands 5.23 strikes per minute on average. Also 48% of his wins have come either via KO or TKO. Nurmegomedov only lands 3.82 strikes per minute. But, Nurmegomedov has a 6.14 takedown average while Ferguson prefers to fight standing up.
Ferguson does have a ground game. To beat the undefeated Nurmegomedov, Ferguson must use his 6-inch reach advantage and keep Nurmegomedov from slamming him to the ground. I think that’s going to be tough.
Prediction: Nurmegomedov over Ferguson via 5th-Round unanimous decision
Main Event – Welterweight Championship
C Tyron Woodley (16-3-1) vs 1 Stephen Thompson (13-1-1)
These two threw down at UFC 205 Alvarez vs McGregor this past November. Woodley versus Thompson 1 got the nod for Fight of the Night. The reason is because the two warriors battled to a draw.
The rematch could be another draw. That’s how well these two match up. Although Woodley out struck Thompson 61 to 43, Thompson got the better of Woodley in many of the exchanges. I also believe that Thompson is the hungrier fighter.
The rematch will be close again. My gut tells me that Thompson does just enough to garner the win via decision. I like Thompson to control the fight from the outset with Woodley connecting while looking shaky while connecting.
Thompson wins the rematch.
Prediction: Thompson over Woodley via 5th-Round Decision
Event: UFC 209: "Tyron Woodley vs Stephen Thompson 2"
Date: Saturday, March 4, 2017, on pay-per-view (PPV)
Location: T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Last night at UFC 209, Tyron Woodley sort of defeat Stephen Thompson.
Across the whole fight, Thompson threw maybe a dozen strikes with real damage potential. He may have deserved to win, but it still was not an impressive performance.
None of this criticism of the decision really lets Thompson off the hook, either. Thompson talked a lot about letting his hands go in the lead up to this match, but he never really did that. Thompson may have been more consistently active than his opponent, but long periods of time still passed where Thompson chose to feint rather than strike.
Feints are important, but so is actually scoring.
For example, Woodley scored his single takedown in the third round and was tired as hell when he returned to his feet. Rather than ramping up the pressure when his foe was least dangerous, Thompson remained patient and picked at small shots. Had he instead jammed a hard body kick into Woodley’s mid-section — the wrestler was far too tired to take another shot — it really could’ve lead to something.
Alister Overeem vs Mark Hunt
Darren Elkins vs Mirsad Bektic
Todd Duffee vs Mark Godbeer
We have the Live Lines for UFC 209 Take the time to look at the odds of all the fights including the one between Tyron Woodley vs Stephen Thompson 2. There are more lines available at the Fighting Live Odds.