On Saturday, April 19, the UFC hits primetime once again for UFC on Fox: Werdum vs. Browne, live from the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla.

Headlining one of the best top to bottom cards the UFC has had this year is a heavyweight clash between Fabricio Werdum and Travis Browne. The winner will likely be positioned for the next shot at UFC champion Cain Velasquez’s belt.

The co-main event of the evening features a women’s bantamweight tilt between Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche. Tate and Carmouche are both in desperate need of a win if either ever wants to fight for the title again.

The main card, which airs on Fox, also features a lightweight clash between explosive strikers Donald Cerrone and Edson Barboza and a middleweight bout between Brad Tavares and Yoel Romero. The action kicks off with three preliminary bouts at 3:30 p.m. ET on UFC Fight Pass, then moves to Fox Sports 1 at 5 p.m. ET for the remaining six prelim contests. Then, it’s off to Fox for the main card at 8 p.m. ET.

The MMA Corner’s Kyle Symes, Dale De Souza and RJ Gardner break down all the action in this edition of the Round Table.

MW: Yoel Romero (7-1) vs. Brad Tavares (12-1)

De Souza: This middleweight bout between Yoel Romero and Brad Tavares may not hold the potential to show us the next contender to the UFC middleweight title, but a win here can go a long way to helping one of these two men to earn a shot in the future. Both men have looked stellar up to this point, and they currently ride impressive winning streaks. After this Saturday, though, only one of these two will remain on track to challenge more of the division’s elite.

For Tavares, this bout represents a golden opportunity to show off more of what he can do. Ever since losing to Aaron Simpson at UFC 132, nobody has been able to defeat the former The Ultimate Fighter 11 standout. Thus far, he has blended in a solid striking game with a strong top-heavy game to defeat the likes of Riki Fukuda, Robert “Bubba” McDaniel and Tom Watson.

Romero brings arguably better wrestling than some of those aforementioned names, but don’t think that he’s strictly a grind-it-out type of guy. Remember, the American Top Team product owns all three of his UFC wins by a form of knockout, and he holds the distinction of being the first man to knock out Ronny Markes.

On paper, Romero has the power to finish the Hawaiian, but so did a number of Tavares’ past foes. None of them found success, and unless Romero aims for a takedown-heavy game, I don’t expect him to fare much different. Tavares takes another unanimous decision by defending takedowns and outworking Romero on the feet.

Symes: As with every contest that involves Romero, it’s a question of whether he wants to use the Olympic-level wrestling he possesses. He’s one of the more decorated amatuer wrestlers competing in the UFC today, but to this point he’s neglected that part of his skill set. You can’t really argue with the results, however, as he’s demonstrated some crazy knockout power.

Tavares’ best friend will be something he’s shown to be very good at in the past—leg kicks. If Tavares can light up Romero’s leg early on, then the Cuban won’t have the strength to push off for those knockout strikes or drive to finish a takedown. Tavares has looked pretty good recently, but it’s not like he’s beating top-tier talent. Fukuda, McDaniel and Watson are all tough guys, but they won’t be confused with title challengers anytime soon.

The same cannot be said of Romero. The guy has the makings of a superstar if he can get his mental game on track with his raw power and wrestling skills. I don’t know if this is the fight where Romero puts it all together, but I believe he’s the more skilled fighter.

Tavares will make it interesting with his activity level, but Romero adds another TKO finish to his resume.

Gardner: Romero is a lot like other high-level wrestlers in the UFC who have discovered their power. It’s a lot like a child with a new toy. Romero is a scary dude not just because of his knockout power, but because he has defeated Cael Sanderson on three occasions. For the uneducated, Sanderson is arguably the greatest wrestler in NCAA history, going undefeated at the college level and winning four national titles.

Tavares, on the other hand, is quietly riding a five-fight winning streak. With a win here, he is positioning himself for a major step up in competition and possible title-shot consideration. Although Tavares has shown flashes of being elite in his fights, he hasn’t broken through the wall separating good from great.

Even though Tavares is the more skilled striker, Romero will get the better of the exchanges because of his sickening power. Add to that his ability to dictate the pace and where the fight will take place, and Romero will be hard to beat. Romero wins this one via knockout in the second round.

LW: Edson Barboza (13-1) vs. Donald Cerrone (22-6)

Symes: This really does have “Fight of the Night” or “Knockout of the Night” written all over it. Edson Barboza and Donald Cerrone are among the most entertaining fighters on the UFC roster.

Barboza has done a fantastic job of bouncing back from his loss to Jamie Varner at UFC 146. It would be easy for a rising prospect to be mentally broken after that fight, but Barboza rattled off impressive showings against Lucas Martins and Rafaello Oliveira. However, he was absolutely manhandled in the first round against Danny Castillo. If Barboza starts off slow against “Cowboy,” he may not have the chance to rally back in the second and third frames.

Cerrone is very familiar with the concept of rallying back to win fights. The former WEC title challenger had a discouraging 2013 in which he went 2-2. He looked great against Evan Dunham and K.J. Noons, but the loss to Anthony Pettis was a very poor showing and he looked off his game against Rafael dos Anjos. Cerrone said he wants to compete as many times as possible this year, and he got off to a great start in January by nearly decapitating Adriano Martins in Chicago.

The story of this fight will be whether or not Cerrone looks to utilize his ground game. He has always been an offensive-minded fighter, and his takedowns aren’t bad considering his jiu-jitsu background. Barboza holds a purple belt in BJJ, but we saw how he can be controlled by a heavy top game in his fight with Castillo. Will Cerrone look to play it smart and avoid Barboza’s dangerous striking arsenal? Considering Cerrone’s “wing it” game-planning of the past, odds are he won’t.

This will be an action-packed fight that could very easily go either way. Cerrone will start slow (as he normally does), but he will do just enough to eke out a victory by split decision.

Gardner: This isn’t just a potential “Fight of the Night” match-up. This has all of the makings of “Fight of the Year.” Cerrone and Barboza are both elite strikers, arguably two of the best Muay Thai practitioners in all of MMA. Both understand how to use distance and they are excellent in the clinch.

Where Cerrone has a clear edge is in the grappling game. Fourteen of Cerrone’s 22 career wins have come by way of submission. If this fight hits the ground, Barboza will be in a world of trouble.

Don’t expect the fight to go to the mat, though. Cerrone is always game for a stand-up battle, and that will ultimately be his demise. Barboza’s kicking game is on another level. He will batter and bruise the legs and body of Cerrone and keep the “Cowboy” from getting into any kind of groove. Cerrone will hang around for the entire fight and make it interesting, but Barboza ultimately gets the win via unanimous decision.

De Souza: I would be shocked if Cerrone wanted to take Barboza down, but only because it’s not in his style to take guys down and try to outwork them there unless he feels a submission is within reach. The same could be said for Barboza, who, by all accounts, strikes first and asks questions later.

Cerrone will indeed hold an edge when it boils down to the grappling aspect. Although he is certainly not adverse to striking, he does like to use his striking arsenal to set up his submission attempts. Of course, if Barboza commits too much to a huge knockout punch, that could give Cerrone an opening for a knockout shot of his own.

Does that mean that Barboza’s own striking should be written off? Absolutely not. Sure, we can throw question marks in a thousand directions simply because of the fact that Castillo hit him quite a bit, but the man offers plenty of threats to Cerrone beyond the topics of leg kicks and punches. After all, he tried to knock Anthony Njokuani out with a spinning wheel kick, and then went on to stick the aforementioned wheel kick on Terry Etim.

The x-factor concerns the big submission question. We know what Cerrone looks like in that realm, but we can really only speculate on Barboza’s MMA ground game. Common sense (and Barboza’s record) says that unless Barboza takes a page out of Anthony Pettis’ book and sticks a liver kick on Cerrone, “Cowboy” won’t be in danger of tapping to anything Barboza lands. This will be a striking clinic, and when the smoke clears, Barboza will walk out with a split decision, barely edging Cerrone out in the opening frame and clearly taking the final frame.

Women’s BW: Liz Carmouche (9-4) vs. Miesha Tate (13-5)

Gardner: Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche are both in dire need of a victory here. Both ladies are 1-2 since entering the UFC. Although it is unlikely either is on the hot seat considering the women’s division is still very thin, this remains a must-win fight for both women if either wants to stay relevant in the women’s bantamweight division.

Carmouche is hands down the better striker in this one, but Tate showed a much better striking game against Ronda Rousey in her bid for the belt. If Carmouche is able to keep this fight on the feet, she will likely get the win.

Tate, on the other hand, is the better all-around fighter and the much better grappler. As long as she can avoid Carmouche’s power and get her to the mat, Tate will have a major advantage. This fight is a coin flip. The winner will be the fighter who is able to dictate where the fight takes place.

Since Carmouche has never been great with her takedown defense, Tate should be able to get the victory. Tate via unanimous decision.

De Souza: This bout intrigues me on a number of different levels. On one hand, this bout is something that some fans of the Strikeforce days might’ve loved to see, especially after the impressive performance Carmouche put on against Marloes Coenen. On the other hand, neither woman resembles the exact same fighter they were back in Strikeforce.

One can argue that Tate stands to lose more than Carmouche, especially with a knockout, submission or lopsided decision loss. It becomes tough to really wrap our minds around it, but Tate has yet to win in the UFC. That one win in her aforementioned recent 1-2 run came in 2012 against Julie Kedzie under the Strikeforce banner. To say that Tate’s back stands against the wall is a tremendous understatement, if there ever was one.

Carmouche finds herself on similar ground, though she does have the win over Jessica Andrade to her credit. Furthermore, she shares common ground with Tate in the fact that both lasted longer against Rousey than any other women’s bantamweight that has ever fought Rousey, and there is certainly no shame in losing to the champ. Yet, that distinction only gets a person so far along the road.

When it comes down to the stylistic match-up, Tate will look to hunt for submissions against Carmouche, who does hold the type of power needed to put a woman like Tate down and out. If Tate tries to engage in a firefight with Carmouche, it will be her undoing. With her UFC career on the line, Tate will prove herself as the better fighter. “Cupcake” will secure the win by rear-naked choke in the third round after Carmouche withstands the heat for the first two rounds.

Symes: As my colleagues pointed out, both ladies are in must-win situations. The division is very thin, but neither woman will remain relevant with a loss. Both ladies have a loss to the current champ, and Carmouche has lost to Rousey’s next challenger, Alexis Davis, as well.

This fight comes down to Tate’s ability to stick to a game plan. I have no doubt that “Cupcake” will look for the takedown early and often. She’ll probably enjoy not being tossed around like a small child. After all, Carmouche won’t be hitting hip tosses on her and has struggled with defensive grappling thus far into her career.

What happens, though, when Carmouche connects with a solid punch? We’ve seen Tate forego her game plan in an effort to throw bombs that are either lobbed out there with little technique and/or little power. Dale is right—if Tate gets caught in a firefight on the feet, it won’t end well for her.

Tate doesn’t have the striking game to challenge Carmouche on the feet like Davis did, but she does hold a distinct grappling advantage. Carmouche has been tapped out before, but I think Tate will play this safe in an effort to take the win by unanimous decision.

HW: Travis Browne (16-1-1) vs. Fabricio Werdum (17-5-1)

Symes: This fight really could go either way. Fabricio Werdum finds himself in a familiar position, with most people viewing Travis Browne as the favorite in this pairing.

Werdum is one of the most accomplished grapplers in not just the division, but all of MMA as well. His jiu-jitsu game is his biggest strength, and he famously used it to topple “The Last Emperor” Fedor Emelianenko in Strikeforce. Although many think of Werdum as a submission wizard, he’s not a one-trick pony. Just look at his wins over Roy Nelson and Mike Russow as proof that fighters aren’t as safe as they think they are while trading blows with Werdum.

Browne will certainly welcome the chance to trade blows with Werdum in this contest. The heavyweight contender has surged up the rankings with three straight first-round knockouts after suffering his first “defeat” at the hands of Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. All three knockouts earned the Jackson-Winkeljohn fighter “Knockout of the Night” awards as well.

The fight boils down to Browne’s athleticism and his ability to avoid being trapped by Werdum. Browne is one of the best athletes in the division, if not the best, and I expect him to be on the move to avoid Werdum’s takedown attempts in this one. Think about the type of fighters Werdum has fought since his UFC return—Nelson, Russow and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Those guys aren’t the most athletic fighters in the world, and they aren’t on the same level as Browne is at the moment. It will be a bit of a learning curve for Werdum in the early going as he looks to adjust to Browne’s speed and athleticism.

Even though Werdum has knocked Browne’s ground game based on their time training together, the Brazilian won’t simply wade in looking for a takedown…or, at least, he shouldn’t if he doesn’t want to join Gabriel Gonzaga and Josh Barnett on the “Hapa’d Victims List.”

It will be interesting to see how long Werdum chooses to stand with Browne, but I suspect we’ll see more trips from the clinch or foot-sweep attempts from the Brazilian. He’ll opt for that route, rather than expose himself to those dangerous elbows from going for a traditional single- or double-leg takedown. It’s a tough fight to call, as either man could take this one. I’ll roll with Browne. He’ll clip Werdum and pounce on the Brazilian for the TKO finish.

De Souza: There’s not a question in my mind that if Werdum beats Browne, he will see UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez down the road. But on the other side of the coin, there’s also the possibility of a bit of déjà vu, where, just like Junior dos Santos, another rising star in Browne takes Werdum out of the equation emphatically. Could that indeed happen come Saturday night?

Browne certainly does not bring what “Cigano” does to the Octagon, but he does threaten Werdum, especially when it comes to the stand-up game. Werdum packs power of his own and he can implement it in a way that slows Browne down, even if it doesn’t put him out, but nine times out of 10, Browne only needs one or two shots to put someone down. He also possesses the patience needed to ensure that he times those blows just right.

Next, consider Werdum’s vaunted ground game. It halted the near decade of destruction that held Emelianenko in high regard as one of the greatest heavyweights of all time. But months after that bout, Alistair Overeem showed what can happen when a man decides to fight smart and not play into Werdum’s game plan. Browne does impose his game on opponents very well from the top and few can do anything to halt his offense, but will he play the ground game with Werdum? Don’t be so sure, MMA fans.

Werdum might be as susceptible to a powerful top game as any Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu phenom, but that does not mean that Browne will try to control Werdum on the ground. If anything, this fight will play out much as when Werdum faced Bigfoot. In other words, Browne gets going early, but Werdum hurts Browne more significantly as the fight wears on, ultimately getting a unanimous decision win.

Gardner: I’ll echo Kyle and Vince on the sentiment that this fight could go either way. If Browne can stay on his feet, he has the advantage. If Werdum gets it to the mat, then the advantage shifts to him. This fight really is a classic striker vs. grappler match-up.

It’s not just Browne’s knockout power that his opponents have to worry about. There are also his height and reach. At 6-foot-7, Browne is a monster. His long limbs maintain distance and create great leverage in the clinch. Browne, who is currently riding a three-fight winning streak, is hot, confident and motivated.

Standing across the cage from Browne is one of the best grapplers to ever compete in MMA. Werdum is also riding a three-fight winning streak. In his last outing, he was able to submit another legend in Big Nog. Werdum has shown a lot of growth lately in the stand-up game, so he is no longer a one-trick pony in the cage by any means.

This match-up is reminiscent of Browne’s fights with Gonzaga and Barnett. Both men were adequate on the feet and very talented on the ground, and both were knocked out with elbows while attempting takedowns against Browne. This fight ends in the same fashion. Browne via first-round knockout.

Preliminary Card
HW: Derrick Lewis (9-2) vs. Jack May (7-0)

De Souza: Derrick Lewis has not been officially defeated since 2011. The last time he competed against an undefeated heavyweight, he finished him in two rounds. Jack May presents an interesting challenge because his game plan is, very simply, to knock someone out. That is evident in his undefeated record, which only holds one decision along with six wins by some form of knockout. Both men will throw hard leather, but Lewis will not be denied his opportunity to shine. He will come through with a mid-first-round TKO win.

Gardner: It is pretty safe to assume someone will get knocked out in this bout. Lewis and May are big heavyweight powerhouses who look to end fights early and often. May is a beast at 6-foot-8, and that reach could create some issues for Lewis. However, Lewis should be able to close the distance and get on the inside. Lewis wins this via first-round knockout.

Symes: At his size, May is indeed a monster. It’s not only the length that Lewis will have to overcome, but also the five inches of difference in height. Although May is an interesting talent given his physical attributes, Lewis has faced a number of talented fighters in his career. That experience pays off as Lewis wins by TKO.

FW: Mirsad Bektic (7-0) vs. Chas Skelly (11-0)

Gardner: Mirsad Bektic and Chas Skelly are a pair of undefeated, intriguing prospects in the featherweight division. Bektic is the better on the feet, whereas Skelly is the more skilled grappler. Although both fighters have bright futures in the sport, this fight will be the springboard to bigger and better things where the winner is likely thrown into the fast lane. Skelly has faced better competition and has more experience, but Bektic has “future star” written all over him. Bektic wins this one via unanimous decision.

Symes: Skelly, as my colleague suggests, appears to be the better grappler when examining the two men’s resume. I like the fact that Skelly has gone 3-0 in Bellator, because, despite the number of jokes made about the promotion across the MMA landscape, it remains the No. 2 MMA promotion in the world. Skelly’s ground game will make this interesting on the judges’ scorecards, but Bektic will do enough damage to sway the judges. Bektic by split decision.

De Souza: Bektic has been on every MMA fan’s radar because of how much potential this kid has to make some incredible noise in the featherweight ranks. Skelly is a young gun who trains with UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks and finished three of his last five within the distance. Bektic is the favorite, but Skelly will shock quite a few people when he does enough to get the better end of a unanimous decision.

FlyW: Dustin Ortiz (12-3) vs. Ray Borg (6-0)

De Souza: In the minds of many, Dustin Ortiz should be coming off a win over John Moraga, not a loss. On Saturday, he will look to halt the momentum of the undefeated Ray Borg. Borg added to his reputation as a submission specialist when he recently submitted Nick Urso. Borg will make waves in the flyweight ranks sooner, rather than later, but Ortiz seems like too much, too soon. Ortiz by TKO in the second round.

Symes: Given how shallow the flyweight division is, both guys have the chance to vault up the rankings with an impressive showing here. Borg is making his UFC debut, and Ortiz will look to have his hand raised after dropping a split decision to Moraga. Ortiz will come out with plenty of motivation after that decision loss and put Borg away early by TKO.

Gardner: Ortiz turned a lot of heads in his fight against John Moraga, despite the controversial loss. Ortiz took Moraga to the limit and won the fight in the eyes of many. This will be a very steep hill for Borg to climb. The UFC newcomer has never faced a fighter on the level of Ortiz. When you factor in the nerves and anxiety of fighting in the UFC for the first time, you get a recipe for disaster. Ortiz wins this one via first-round TKO.

WW: Jordan Mein (27-9) vs. Hernani Perpetuo (17-3)

Symes: Where in the world has Jordan Mein been? Well, he has been on the shelf for nearly a year after the loss to Matt Brown. Up until that point, he was thought of as a top prospect. He’ll regain that status when he finishes Hernani Perpetuo by TKO.

Gardner: For only being 24, Mein has fought a ridiculous number of times in his MMA career. This fight will be the 37th of his young career. In many ways, the one-year layoff since his loss to Brown is a good thing. Sometimes you need to step away to focus on refining your skills and getting healthy. Perpetuo will be game, Nova Uniao fighters always are, but I agree with Kyle. Mein gets the win via another first-round TKO stoppage.

De Souza: Did somebody say “sweep” yet? If not, then allow me to do so. Far be it from me to ever doubt a Nova Uniao product, because that camp does produce some frightening talent, but Mein wants to remind the world that he never left. His intent will show against Perpetuo. Mein returns to form with a first-round TKO win.

MW: Caio Magalhaes (7-1) vs. Luke Zachrich (13-2)

Gardner: Caio Magalhaes has won back-to-back fights since dropping a hard-fought decision to Buddy Roberts in his UFC debut. This young man splits time between two of the best camps in all of MMA—Nova Uniao and American Top Team. Luke Zachrich is a talented and tough fighter, but both of his career losses have come by way of submission. Magalhaes is an extremely skilled grappler, and he wins this one via first-round submission.

De Souza: Out of a handful of recently signed guys, the ones that draw the biggest concerns are the ones who endured the brunt of their losses by submission. Zachrich is one such guy, and I’m inclined to agree that Magalhaes will submit him here. Let’s get specific: Magalhaes locks up the neck and forces the tap due to a guillotine choke.

Symes: If RJ and Dale are suggesting that Zachrich is a tailor-made opponent for Magalhaes, then they’re right. I’ll make it a sweep for Magalhaes, who has worked with some quality training partners. Zachrich will take a round and make it to the second before tapping the canvas.

FW: Estevan Payan (14-5) vs. Alex White (9-0)

Symes: Estevan Payan desperately needs a win here. Two straight losses are bad news for anyone, but especially for a prelim-level of fighter. I don’t normally like picking guys who take fights on short notice, but it’s clear that Payan has struggled with UFC competition. The new kid, Alex White, by way of submission.

De Souza: I want to believe that Payan will turn things around, but I’ll have to agree with Kyle. Payan has gone through some serious battles, including a fairly recent decision loss to Jeremy Stephens, and let’s not forget the spinning back fist Yahir Reyes threw his way back in Bellator’s early days. White cannot be expected to pull the spinning back fist from out of his back pocket, but he will have a chance to at least grind out a decision win. Expect him to attempt a few good submissions along the way.

Gardner: I, too, have to side with White. Payan has lost two in a row and he got a tough draw here in UFC newcomer and undefeated prospect. Payan will be able to fight out the submission attempts of the youngster, but he will get caught and finished with strikes. White wins via third-round TKO.

LW: Pat Healy (29-18) vs. Jorge Masvidal (25-8)

De Souza: For the life of me, I can’t call many Pat Healy fights, and this fight with Jorge Masvidal is no different. Both men suffered unanimous decision defeats in their previous bouts—Healy’s loss came to Bobby Green and Masvidal’s came against Rustam Khabilov. Healy will look to impose his will on Masvidal, but Masvidal will answer it somehow and either finish the fight or take a unanimous decision.

Gardner: Whenever I think about Masvidal, the first thing that comes to mind is that sick inverted triangle-choke Toby Imada was able to pull off on him. As Dale suggested, it’s just tough to get a read on either of these guys. One day, they look like world-beaters. And the next, they look like gatekeepers. Healy, having lost two in a row, is in more need of a win here, and I think he gets it. Healy takes home the unanimous decision.

Symes: This is a battle of some of the most inconsistent fighters in recent memory. Healy and Masvidal can indeed look like title challengers one card and prelim fighters the next. In a pure toss-up, Healy’s mental toughness will propel him to victory in this one. Healy by decision.

WW: Thiago Alves (19-9) vs. Seth Baczynski (19-10)

Gardner: It has been over a year since Thiago Alves last entered the cage. That may be an issue in this fight against Seth Baczynski. Baczynski is a well-rounded gamer who could pose some potential problems for the former title challenger due to his height and reach advantage. Once Alves shakes off the ring rust and figures out the distance, though, Baczynski will be in a world of trouble. Alves wins this one in impressive fashion via second-round knockout.

Symes: Wow, Alves in the Octagon! I think you have to blow the dust off the tapes from the last time he competed. Hopefully the time away has been good for him and he’s been able to work on increasing his cardio to go along with being massive for 170 pounds. Baczynski is a finisher, but he will be biting off more than he can chew in this one. Alves works a more technical game plan en route to a decision win.

De Souza: I remember back when Alves was supposed to fight guys like Siyar Bahadurzada and such. Now, he’s on a preliminary card against Baczynski. That is nothing to scoff at, but it does raise concerns about cage rust. Still, I, too, anticipate that we will see “The Pitbull” do what he does best. In classic Alves fashion, he will knock out Baczynski inside of the second round.

LW: Rafael dos Anjos (20-6) vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov (21-0)

De Souza: Khabib Nurmagomedov’s dominance in the UFC thus far might actually be scarier than anything we’ve seen before, save for maybe Wanderlei Silva’s face-offs. The guy puts all of his skills together so well, and the truly frightening thing about the kid is that we probably have not yet seen his best. The same can be said for Rafael dos Anjos. Outside of the controversial win over Evan Dunham, which many scored in favor of Dunham, dos Anjos has looked like a man finally fighting up to his full potential. Although he has played spoiler to Donald Cerrone and Mark Bocek in the past, dos Anjos faces a different puzzle altogether in attempting to spoil Nurmagomedov’s ascent. Unless Nurmagomedov takes dos Anjos extremely lightly, “The Eagle” will put dos Anjos on the ground at will, eventually securing a second-round submission win.

Symes: Can I ask who made the choice to put this on the prelim? They should probably take some time off to get their head on straight. Regardless, this fight could very well determine who gets the next title shot in the lightweight division. Dos Anjos is on a roll, but he should’ve lost that fight to Dunham and his win over Cerrone could very well be attributed to Cerrone not being himself. Dos Anjos has the skills to test Nurmagomedov and prove if “The Eagle” really is a legit contender. Nurmagomedov will pass that test and stamp his way to a future title shot. He will put on a takedown clinic and wear dos Anjos down en route to a decision win.

Gardner: Dos Anjos is on the best run of his career right now. He has won five straight and is coming off an impressive victory over Cerrone. But as good as dos Anjos is, Nurmagomedov is better. At 21-0, Nurmagomedov is destined for a UFC title shot. He is more than deserving of the praise. Other than looking to finish more, there is nothing bad you can say about what Nurmagomedov brings to the cage. This fight has the potential to steal the show, but I don’t see Nurmagomedov letting dos Anjos get into a groove. Nurmagomedov wins this decisively by way of a decision.

About The Author

RJ Gardner
Features / Editorial Manager

RJ Gardner has been a fan of the world of martial arts and MMA from a very early age. He grew up training and competing in Tae Kwon Do, earning the rank of second-degree black belt and certified instructor before focusing his efforts on football and wrestling. RJ's passion for MMA blossomed in high school where he was coached by former UFC fighter, Ted Williams, and was teammates with former UFC contender, Joe Stevenson. RJ has been covering MMA since 2007 and has had work featured on Bleacher Report, CNNSI, CBS Sports and UFC.com. RJ is also a Petroleum Transportation Operations Manager during the day.