One of more anticipated fights from the UFC‘s second trip to Fight Island headlines tomorrow night’s fight night. Top bantamweight contenders Marlon Moraes (23-6-1) and Cory Sandhagen (12-2) will try to take another step towards a UFC bantamweight title fight.
The UFC‘s bantamweight division has turned into arguably the deepest and most exciting division for the promotion. Any of the top ten fighters paired against each other would get UFC fans excited for the matchup. And, there are a ton of top guys just outside the top 10.
This matchup is so fascinating on a number of levels. Marlon Moraes is trying to get back on the right track after his last two performances. Yes, he technically won his last fight at UFC 245. However, the majority of people watching felt Moraes lost to Jose Aldo.
On the other side of the cage is Cory Sandhagen. Sandhagen was one win away from a UFC bantamweight title fight before getting demolished by Aljamain Sterling back at UFC 250. The fight wasn’t even remotely competitive as Sandhagen was submitted in 88 seconds.
Prior to that loss, Sandhagen had won his first five fights in the UFC. Sandhagen looked like a future champion, but the loss caused some doubts. However, Moraes has doubts of his own after his last two performances inside the octagon.
UFC Fight Island 5 Main Event Prediction
This is such a good fight because both men are so evenly matched. If you’re looking for the more explosive fighter, you would want to look at Marlon Moraes. There is no place that this fight will go that Moraes won’t feel comfortable.
His all around skills are what led him to a UFC title shot back at UFC 238. Moraes has explosive power on the feet, and he’s very technical with everything that he does. However, Moraes does have a tendency to fade a little as the fight goes on.
You could make the argument that Sandhagen is just as well rounded as Moraes. Sandhagen has very slick striking and despite his last performance, he’s very good on the ground. There is one area where Sandhagen as a big advantage.
Sandhagen is a much larger man than Marlon Moraes. His frame is much bigger, and he just looks like the bigger man. If you ask me, I think he needs to lean on that size in this one. Maybe try to engage in some clinch work early to tire Moraes out.
When it comes to the prediction I’m torn. On one hand, I think Moraes is going to get the best of Sandhagen early on. I think Moraes will have something to prove. However, the longer the fight goes, Sandhagen can end up with the advantage. I think this is the fight of the night, but I’m going to lean Moraes in an absolute war.
Prediction: Marlon Moraes by Unanimous DecisionÂ