10th April, Arena Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia.
There were some cracking fights on the prelim card, including the Fight Pass opener between Bojan Velickivic and Alession Di Chirco. If you would like to sign up for Fight Pass, which I heartily recommend, please click on the banner above and support MMA Flashback in the process.
So, how did I get on with my betting for UFC Fight Night 86?
Maryna Moroz vs Cristina Stanciu to finish in -1.5 rounds – Lose
I needed either Moroz or Stanciu to win within 1.5 rounds, which they’ve both made a habit of so far in their careers. Stanciu got close with a couple of early submission attempts and Moroz almost found a finish towards the end of the 1st round. Unfortunately there was no urgency at the start of the 2nd round and the 2:30 mark came and went without much significant action. Moroz took a unanimous decision in an entertaining fight, but no good for my bet.
Igor Pokrajac to beat Jan Blachovicz – Lose
I backed Pokrajac to win his UFC return. Unfortunately, I paired it with Moroz vs Stanciu vanishing early, so right or wrong, I don’t get paid on this prediction. The first two rounds were thrillers and they won one each. Blachovicz ground out the third round to win a unanimous decision. Solid effort by both fighters.
Tim Johnson to beat Marcin Tybura – Win
The first of four straight heavyweight bouts was not a pretty one, but Tim Johnson was able to grind out a decision win. One in the bag.
Francis Ngannou to beat Curtis Blaydes – Win
Two big scary looking dudes clashing here. Ngannou’s heavy hands are the difference and he clearly wins two rounds, completely closing Blaydes’ right eye. There was some silly confusion when the doctor clearly assessed that Blaydes couldn’t see out of the right eye and stops the fight. The referee seemed determined to ignore him and let it continue but the doctor stands his ground. Second bet of the night is a winner.
Derrick Lewis to beat Gabriel Gonzaga – Win
I was a little worried about my Lewis prediction when he found himself underneath Gonzaga early. I needn’t have been, as he found a way out and showed us all his terrifying power, knocking Gonzaga out cold. Brutal.
Ben Rothwell to beat Junior dos Santos – Lose
A masterful performance by JDS. Quicker, more accurate, better distance control and variety of strikes. Kills my third bet, but still a pleasure to watch.
Well, three of my six predictions were right, and one of my three bets won as a result. £15 staked, £23.63 returned for Ngannou and Johnson both winning, so a small profit, which is always preferable to a loss. Next up, UFC on Fox – Teixeira vs Evans.
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