Winnipeg, Canada, will host its second-ever UFC event this weekend as the city prepares for UFC on FOX 26: Robbie Lawler vs. Rafael dos Anjos.
Lawler and dos Anjos headline what is sure to be a thrilling card filled with premium mixed martial arts action. “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler will be looking to make it two wins in a row by defeating “RDA”. Lawler most recently competed against Donald Cerrone at UFC 214 and won the contest via unanimous decision after a powerful first round. The win was the first for Lawler after he was defeated by Tyron Woodley at UFC 201.
Dos Anjos is a fighter who is quickly climbing the UFC’s welterweight division. After making the jump up a weight class, dos Anjos has looked terrific with dominant performances against Tarec Saffiedine and Neil Magny. “RDA” is truly something else now that he doesn’t have to drain his body with a bad weight cut down to the 155 lbs limit.
Ricardo Lamas will face Josh Emmett in the co-main event. Emmett is stepping up on short notice after Jose Aldo filled in for Frankie Edgar just recently. This serves as a huge jump up in skill-level for Emmett, who despite his 12-1 record, has yet to face an opponent of Lamas’ capabilities. Lamas has picked up two fantastic stoppages against Charles Oliveira and Jason Knight to start another win streak in the UFC.
Just before that, Santiago Ponzinibbio will compete with Mike Perry in a heavy-handed welterweight duel. Both Ponzinibbio and Perry are in blazing hot form right now with the former making it five in a row after an impressive first round stoppage victor of Gunnar Nelson. Perry, on the other hand, has bounced back after losing to Alan Jouban to score two consecutive wins via KO/TKO.
And to kick-off the main card, Glover Teixeira and Misha Cirkunov will stand toe-to-toe in an important light heavyweight battle between two fighters looking to redeem themselves. Teixeira was just torched by Alexander Gustafsson in Sweden and will need to get a win here if he wants any kind of momentum. For Cirkunov, he had always looked like he was going to be a serious threat to the top contenders in the division but then he was destroyed by Volkan Oezdemir in just 28 seconds on that same card in Sweden.
Predictions and Best Bets
Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Mike Perry
This is a match-up that could go either of two ways. Either Ponzinibbio or Perry will land cleanly and finish the fight so early that we still don’t get a good understanding of what they can really do, or the two might just slug it out to a bizarre decision.
If we are backing someone to get an early finish, it has to be Mike Perry. Perry has natural ‘brawler insinct’ and can turn even the most technical of fights into straight-up slugfests. Yes, Alan Jouban picked him apart from the outside but Ponzinibbio isn’t a replica of Jouban.
We’re not underrating Ponzinibbio and his power. Rather, this is a very close fight between two heavy-hitters. This time, we’ll be taking the underdog.
Bet: Mike Perry to win
Odds: +164 ($2.64 or 41/25)
UFC on Fox 26 fight card
UFC on Fox 26 begins on UFC Fight Pass from 4:00 pm ET (9:00pm GMT) on Saturday, December 16.
FOX (8:00 pm ET / 1:00 am GMT)
- Robbie Lawler (-102) vs. Rafael dos Anjos (-105)
- Ricardo Lamas (-260) vs. Josh Emmett (+226)
- Santiago Ponzinibbio (-180) vs. Mike Perry (+164)
- Glover Teixeira (+133) vs. Misha Cirkunov (-137)
FS1 (5:00 pm ET / 10:00 pm GMT)
- Jan Blachowicz vs. Jared Cannonier
- Julian Marquez vs. Darren Stewart
- Chad Laprise vs. Galore Bofando
- Tim Elliott vs. Pietro Menga
- John Makdessi vs. Abel Trujillo
- Alessio Di Chirico vs. Oluwale Bamgbose
Fight Pass Prelims
UFC Fight Pass (4:00 pm ET / 9:00 pm GMT)
- Jordan Mein vs. Erick Silva
- Nordine Taleb vs. Danny Roberts