UFC Columbus Preview: Kai Kara-France – Askar Askarov

kai kara france

Tomorrow night there’s a sneaky good fight on the main card of UFC Columbus with huge division implications. Top flyweight contenders will battle it out as New Zealand’s Kai Kara-France (23-9) takes on the unbeaten Dagestani Askar Askarov (14-0-1).

This is a huge fight in the UFC’s flyweight division with the winner likely next for the flyweight title. For Kara-France, he’s going to be looking to pick up his third straight victory. The last time we saw him, he got the biggest win of his career.

That win came at UFC 269 when he knocked out Cody Garbrandt in the first round. It was Garbrandt’s first fight at flyweight and Kara-France showed him that he wasn’t just going to walk through the division. However, he faces an even stiffer test tomorrow night.

There are plenty of people out there who believe Askar Askarov is the best flyweight in the UFC. He’s 3-0-1 in his four octagon appearances with the lone draw coming against former champion Brandon Moreno. He’s on a three-fight win streak since that draw and destroyed Joseph Benavidez his last time out.

UFC Columbus Prediction

This is going to be a tremendous fight and it’s honestly the fight that I’m the most excited about on tomorrow night’s card. To me, this could easily be a main card fight on a PPV so fans should be excited that they are getting this fight for free.

With Kara-France, he lives up to his nickname of “Don’t Blink”. Kara-France has a ton of power and he’s incredibly dangerous with his hands. When these two are striking, Kara-France is going to have the big power advantage.

Askarov’s defensive striking is something that gives me pause. While he’s very effective, he does tend to leave his chin open on exits. If Kara-France can land his big shot, he can easily win this fight at UFC Columbus.

That said, Askarov is undefeated for a reason. He’s got a tremendous offensive grappling game and he’s very good at striking from the outside. His ability to dictate where the fight goes is something that I really like in tomorrow night’s matchup.

I think both men are going to have big moments tomorrow night. However, I think Askarov is going to be more effective throughout the fight. Expect a close decision, but expect the Russian to punch his ticket to a UFC title shot.

Prediction: Askar Askarov by Decision

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