UFC Vegas 32 Predictions: “Sandhagen vs Dillashaw” Undercard Preview at the Start of the “Prelims”
Two of the bantamweight division’s most dynamic forwards lock in this Saturday (July 24, 2021) when peerless contender Cory Sandhagen welcomes former champion TJ Dillashaw back to the Octagon after a 2.5-year absence ( details here). This is far from the only bantamweight attraction on display, as Aspen Ladd will face The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winner Macy Chiasson and Kyler Phillips will look to continue his ascent at the expense of Raulian Paiva.
Before all of that, however, there are seven “Prelims” undercard fights to sift through. Let’s dig in …
135 pounds: Julio Arce vs. Andre Ewell
Julio Arce (16-4) brought the Ring of Combat Featherweight title in his “Contender Series” appearance, which saw him dismantle Peter Petties en route to a second round stop. He went on to take three of five wins in the Octagon, both of those losses coming by split decision.
It will be his first fight in over 20 months and his first bantamweight fight since losing to Brian Kelleher in 2016.
Andre Ewell (17-7) started his UFC run with an upset decision against former champion Renan Barao, and although he lost two of his next three, he got back on track with two wins. consecutive. This sparked a clash with Chris Gutierrez, who used powerful low blows to wear out Ewell and claim a decisive victory.
It will benefit from an inch of height and five inches of reach on Arce.
I believed in Ewell early on, even (recklessly) beating Nathaniel Wood and Marlon Vera, but he just didn’t pull off the way I wanted him to. As impressive as he can be when he shoots all the cylinders and plots sharp volleys of punches, he has struggled to consistently control the standing position or deny his opponents’ eliminations.
That’s bad news against Arce as beyond having the versatile kickboxing to stand on despite the reach disadvantage, he’s a grappler skilled enough to drag Ewell across the mat if things get hairy. Barring serious rust issues, Arce’s technical skills and all-around attack should lead him to a comfortable decision-making victory.
Prediction: Arce via unanimous decision
125 pounds: Sijara Eubanks vs. Elise Roseau
Sijara Eubanks (6-6) had an impressive run on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 26 as a flyweight and won her first two UFC fights at 125 pounds before weight reduction issues forced her to progress. She has since amassed a 2-4 bantamweight record, entering the cage this Saturday following decision losses to Ketlen Vieira and Pannie Kianzad.
“Sarj” is an inch taller than Elise Reed (4-0) at 5’4. “
Reed’s long amateur career saw her scoring five saves en route to a 7-1 record before turning pro in 2019. After a first win at Bellator, she took her talents to Cage Fury, where she won and twice defended his Strawweight title.
She replaces Priscila Cachoeira with less than a month’s notice.
Going back to Flyweight, or at least trying, won’t cure Eubanks’ ailments. She just hasn’t developed the strike to take advantage of her punching power and her struggle is too inconsistent to bring her legitimately world-class ground game to face the best competitions.
She should still be too much for Reed, though. Despite being a formidable attacking forward, Reed’s shaking defense seems ripe for exploitation by the much bigger ‘Sarj’ and even a completely drained Eubanks should be able to lean on his bread and butter. As long as Eubanks isn’t fully DOA after her last war on Libra, she struggles her way to a comfortable victory despite Reed’s best efforts to get rid of her back.
Prediction: Eubanks via unanimous decision
115 pounds: Diane belbita vs. Hannah goldy
Romania’s Diana Belbita (13-6) earned a four-game winning streak on her Octagon debut, which saw her relinquish a decision to Molly McCann of Liverpool in Boston. “Warrior Princess” returned to action nine months later, starting strong against Liana Jojua before slapping an armband halfway through the first round.
His 10 professional finishes include six knockouts.
Hannah Goldy (5-1) relied on a high-volume hitting attack to defeat Kali Robbins on “Contender Series,” then operated her first octagon less than two months later. Miranda Granger proved more difficult to resolve, overtaking Goldy en route to a decisive victory.
It marks her first fight in nearly two years, as she pulls out of a planned clash with Loma Lookboonmee and two separate reunions with Jessica Penne.
It really comes down to Goldy getting into the cage. If it’s the nimble and ultra-active counterattacker who put Robbins back together, she’ll be circling around Belbita. If she’s as shy as she was against Granger and just as easy to intimidate into the fence, Belbita’s raw aggressiveness may be enough to lead her to victory.
I’m going to give Goldy the benefit of the doubt and say the Octagon’s nervousness got in her way. It might be a little optimistic, of course, but Belbita throwing a winnable fight in favor of diving in Jojua’s wheelhouse makes me think even an inferior Goldy can trouble her and take her down. In the end, Goldy sticks out and pushes his way to a wide decision victory.
Prediction: Goldy via unanimous decision
There are three more UFC Vegas 32 “Prelims” undercard fights to preview and predict, including a heavyweight crossroads game and an intriguing clash of middleweight prospects. Same time tomorrow, Maniacs!
remember that MMAmania.com will provide live, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 32 fight map here, starting with ESPN /ESPN + The ‘preliminary’ matches, which are scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining primary card balance on ESPN /ESPN + at 7 p.m. ET.
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