Tomorrow night in the headliner of UFC 282, the vacant light heavyweight title is on the line. Former light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz (29-9) will look to regain his title as he takes on the surging Magomed Ankalaev (18-1).
Originally, these two were set to fight in the co-main event in a title eliminator. However, after Jiri Prochazka was forced to vacate his title due to a shoulder injury, these two moved up to the main event for the vacant championship.
Jan Blachowicz is looking to regain his title after he lost it to Glover Teixeira last year. Blachowicz bounced back well earlier this year when he defeated Aleksandar Rakic. However, despite being the former champion, he’s not the betting favorite tomorrow night.
That distinction belongs to Magomed Ankalaev. After losing his UFC debut in the final seconds to Paul Craig, Ankalaev has won nine straight. His last three wins have all come against former title challengers. He looks like a man primed to become champion.
UFC 282 Prediction
I think that we are going to see a lot of striking in this matchup and it’s going to be a fight that comes down to power versus technique. Make no mistake about it, Jan Blachowicz carries much more power than Magomed Ankalaev. It’s not even close.
However, Ankalaev has really good striking defense and does a great job of striking from distance. I think you’re going to see a conservative game plan from Ankalaev at UFC 282. He’s been cracked before and he knows that if he gets cracked by the former champion, he might wake up a loser.
Because of this, you’re likely going to see a slower pace at times. Ankalaev being very methodical in his approach with Blachowicz looking to land his legendary Polish Power. Ultimately, I think the technique, precision and patience of Ankalaev is going to win out. I don’t see a tremendous amount of action, but I see a points victory for the Dagestani tomorrow night.
Prediction: Magomed Ankalaev by Decision