UFC London tips: Best bets for Till v Masvidal
Jack Green makes his pick for Darren Till's fight against Jorge Masvidal at the O2 on Saturday night, plus two other bouts from the main card.
DARREN TILL v JORGE MASVIDAL
Saturday night’s main event in London is an opportunity for Till to get back on track after he was beaten by Tyron Woodley in a welterweight title fight in September.
The Liverpudlian lost by submission on that night in Texas, but he was beaten as soon as he ate a huge right hand from the then-champion.
Till was unbeaten in 18 fights before that defeat and had faced little trouble in terms of striking, but that blow from Woodley will surely lead him to be more cautious in this bout.
He says he’s gunning for a first-round KO, but Masvidal is a polished boxer who has 13 stoppage wins on his record.
The American came into the welterweight title picture with a TKO win over Donald Cerrone in January 2017, but back-to-back defeats to Demian Maia and Stephen Thompson have seen him drop down the rankings.
He’s not an opponent to be taken lightly, but he struggled with Thompson’s reach in their November 2017 fight and will likely face similar problems against the long, rangy Till.
After a couple of cagey rounds, the Englishman should make the most of his physical advantages and secure the win by stoppage.
Till to win by KO/TKO/DQ
LEON EDWARDS v GUNNAR NELSON
This is an interesting fight between two welterweights coming off wins over fighters who go by ‘Cowboy’.
Edwards earned his six successive victory by outpointing Donald Cerrone in June 2018, and the only fighter the Londoner has lost to since the start of 2015 is current welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
Nelson, meanwhile, bounced back from a defeat to Santiago Ponzinibbio by submitting Alex Oliveira – another Cowboy – in December.
The Icelandic 30-year-old has 13 career wins by submission and represents a huge danger to Edwards on the ground.
Nelson’s striking doesn’t often live up to his work on the mat, though, and in Edwards he faces an excellent all-round fighter who could be a title contender very soon.
The Englishman’s wrestling should help him keep this fight on the feet, where he holds a clear advantage.
He looks a good bet to earn his seventh successive win.
Edwards to win
VOLKAN OEZDEMIR v DOMINICK REYES
Reyes has been hugely impressive in his four-fight UFC stint so far, winning two bouts by TKO, one by submission and his most recent, against Ovince Saint Preux last October, by decision.
Eight of the 29-year-old’s 10 career wins have come inside the distance, and he should again use his tremendous power and athleticism to see off Oezdemir.
The Swiss former kickboxer knocked out Jimi Manuwa in July 2017 to earn a title shot, but went on to lose to Daniel Cormier in January and then to Anthony Smith in October.
Oezdemir slowed down after the first round in both of those fights and has little chance if he is unable to close this one out early on.
Reyes should boss the fight from the start and win once again.
Reyes to win
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