The Bloody Elbow staff has made its predictions for UFC Moscow, and the majority of us are going with Zabit Magomedsharipov to beat Calvin Kattar in the main event. No one is daring to pick Greg Hardy over Alexander Volkov in the co-main, unsurprisingly.
Note: Predictions are entered throughout the week and collected the day before the event. Explanations behind each pick are not required and some writers opt not to do so for their own reasons. For example, if Phil Mackenzie entered all of his predictions on Wednesday without adding in any explanations, he has no idea if he’s going to be the only one siding with one fighter for any given fight.
Note 2: We are looking at a new predictions format, and that means only having descriptions on our picks for the top 2-4 fights on smaller UFC events such as this one.
Zabit Magomedsharipov vs. Calvin Kattar
Anton Tabuena: This feels like a showcase fight to me, and while Kattar has the tools to test him, I still expect Zabit to impress and win big in his home country. Zabit Magomedsharipov by Submission.
Mooke Alexander: I don’t agree with Anton. This is not a showcase fight and is in fact a very dangerous fight for Zabit. Kattar is the better boxer and he has serious power in his hands. What I do believe actually hurts Kattar is the fact that it’s three rounds and not five. Magomedsharipov’s cardio is not that great and people who put a pace on him can slow him down. What I can’t get past is how Kattar will handle Zabit’s grappling prowess early on, and Zabit does have much more diverse striking than Kattar’s boxing-heavy approach. What I believe most likely happens is Zabit starts strongly, Kattar finds his range as Zabit fades and his takedowns become more desperate, but it’ll be too late to turn the fight around. Zabit Magomedsharipov by unanimous decision.
Zane Simon: There are some real questions here, just how much better pressure footwork than Jeremy Stephens do you need to get to Zabit Magomedsharipov? And does Kattar have that. If so, even Kyle Bochniak showed that relentlessness and durability can wear Zabit down. But, Zabit has also shown, especially in early rounds, that he’s a very difficult fighter to solve and track down, just because of his speed and creativity. Over 5 rounds, Kattar very likely could have found the answer. With only 3? Zabit Magomedsharipov by decision.
Staff picking Zabit: Nick, Mookie, Anton, Dayne, Zane
Staff picking Kattar: Stephie, Phil
Alexander Volkov vs. Greg Hardy
Anton Tabuena: Not sure why the UFC (and some media members) seem to desperately want to promote Hardy so much despite being terrible both inside and outside the cage, but this will likely be the end of his winning streak. Of course, this is still heavyweight and crazy things can happen — just look at Volkov’s last fight — but I believe Hardy will just be completely out of his depth here. Volkov won’t have an edge in power here, but that’s something he won’t necessarily need to get a finish as he’s the far superior striker. Alexander Volkov by TKO.
Mookie Alexander: Volkov is good. Greg Hardy is not. Alexander Volkov by KO, round 2.
Zane Simon: There’s zero reason Volkov shouldn’t win this, except that it’s heavyweight, and Hardy is huge. Otherwise, Hardy hasn’t shown anything to suggest that he’s going to go after Volkov after the first round. So, as long as Volkov doesn’t just get instantly sparked, he should be fine as the much higher workrate, more technical, better cardio’d fighter. Alexander Volkov via TKO.
Phil Mackenzie: Hardy has, to be fair, modestly improved over his time in the UFC, albeit from an extremely low base of nothing but athleticism. Alexander Volkov by TKO, round 3
Staff picking Volkov: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Hardy:
Zelim Imadaev vs. Danny Roberts
Mookie Alexander: This should be a wild fight but man am I feeling foolish for picking Danny Roberts. His consistent inability to stick to a gameplan and go haywire with sloppy strikes could lead to him getting sparked out there. But Imadaev is hardly any better from a technical standpoint, so I think it’s a matter of who lands the harder strikes first, and who is the more capable finisher. Danny Roberts by KO, round 1.
Zane Simon: There’s no reason that Danny Roberts can’t win this. Imadaev is kind of a technical mess. A fighter used to walking through fairly undersized competition with sheer aggression. But, Imadaev does hit hard, and puts together some fairly creative offense. And his bout with Max Griffin showed that he can keep a pace and will fight hard through adversity. Roberts is more technical everywhere, but he has trouble controlling fights anywhere, and his habit of planting his feet and swinging hard leaves his fairly suspect chin exposed. If Imadaev can just keep in the bout, I get the feeling he’ll find his moment to put Roberts away. Zelim Imadaev by KO.
Phil Mackenzie: I guess I’ll join Mookie with extreme trepidation. Roberts combines some Blackzilians-level decision making with a shaky chin and not cast-iron wrestling. But fighters still typically need to be a bit more... specialized, I guess Danny Roberts by unanimous decision
Staff picking Imadaev: Nick, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane
Staff picking Roberts: Mookie, Phil
Ramazan Emeev vs. Anthony Rocco Martin
Mookie Alexander: This is gonna be an ugly grind. Ramazan Emeev by unanimous decision.
Zane Simon: Martin’s become a much slicker counterpuncher over the years, but that also means he does a lot of waiting on and backing away from opponents. Against a hard-nosed pressure fighter who loves to clinch grind, that feels like a terrible matchup for Martin’s style, especially given his suspect takedown defense. Ramazan Emeev by decision.
Phil Mackenzie: I really want to pick Rocco here but if he has a consistency it’s that he beats blitz fighters on the counter (Matthews, LaFlare) but struggles when people just wade into the clinch. Ramazan Emeev by unanimous decision
Staff picking Emeev: Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Martin: Nick
Rest of the Card
Shamil Gamzatov vs. Klidson Abreu
Staff picking Gamzatov: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Abreu: Dayne
Magomed Ankalaev vs. Dalcha Lungiambula
Staff picking Ankalaev: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Lungiambula:
Rustam Khabilov vs. Sergey Khandozhko
Staff picking Khabilov: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Khandozhko:
Roman Kopylov vs. Karl Roberson
Staff picking Kapylov: Anton, Dayne
Staff picking Roberson: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Zane, Phil
Abubakar Nurmagomedov vs. David Zawada
Staff picking Nurmagomedov: Nick, Mookie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Zawada: Stephie
Pannie Kianzad vs. Jessica-Rose Clark
Staff picking Kianzad: Dayne, Zane
Staff picking Clark: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Phil
Grigorii Popov vs. Davey Grant
Staff picking Popov: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Staff picking Grant:
Ed Herman vs. Khadis Ibragimov
Staff picking Herman: Anton
Staff picking Ibragimov: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Alexander Yakovlev vs. Roosevelt Roberts
Staff picking Yakovlev:
Staff picking Roberts: Nick, Mookie, Stephie, Anton, Dayne, Zane, Phil
Who wins the UFC Moscow main event?
This poll is closed