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UFC Moncton: Volkan vs Smith - Oct 27


Who wins and how?   

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Saturday 27th October in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.


Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith

Michael Johnson vs Artem Lobov 

Misha Cirkunov vs Patrick Cummins

Andre Soukhamthath vs Jonathan Martinez 

Gian Villante vs Ed Herman 

Alex Garcia vs Court McGee 


Nordine Taleb vs Sean Strickland

Thibault Gouti vs Nasrat Haqparast 

Calvin Kattar vs Chris Fishgold

Sarah Moras vs Talita Bernardo 


Don Madge vs Te'Jovan Edwards

Arjan Bhullar vs Marcelo Golm

Stevie Ray vs Jessin Ayari


Not the best Fight Night we've had this year but that main event alone should be worth tuning in for and there's a few bits and bobs on the undercard. Bout order is probably wrong, I'm going off MMAJunkie's order for now. 



Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith tops this one though. Should be an explosive and violent one. Stranger things have happened but I'll be shocked if this goes anywhere near 5 rounds. 

Oezdemir hasn't fought since January when he got completely schooled and stopped in 2 rounds by Daniel Cormier. He was on a hell of a run prior to that though, having knocked out Jimi Manuwa and Misha Cirkunov in about a minute combined. We still don't know that much about him other than he hits fucking hard. He's 15-2 overall and will of course be wanting to rebound from that DC loss in style here.

Smith has had a great couple of years which have seen him rise from prelim obscurity to the Fight Night main event circuit. It's amazing what a few big finishes can do. In 2017 he showed why his nickname is 'Lion Heart' with a couple of stunning come from behind knockouts over Andrew Sanchez and Hector Lombard. He hit a brief bump in the road when Thiago Santos stopped him early this year but swiftly bounced back moving up to 205 with a pair of quick and brutal knockouts over fading legends Rashad Evans and Shogun Rua. 


This has KO written all over it. Of Volkan's 15 wins, he's got the finish 12 times. And Smith has finished 27 of his 30 career wins. These two don't fuck about. 



Arjan Bhullar vs Marcelo Golm probably won't end up being the co-main but you never know. Bhullar is a Canadian heavyweight prospect and they're aren't many of them knocking about. He's obviously of Indian descent, 32 years old, 7-1 record and trains out of AKA. So he's on the mats with the likes of Cormier, Cain, Khabib and that lot on a daily basis. He's a heck of a wrestler with a bunch of accolades including a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2010 and he made the 2012 Olympic team. DC speaks highly of him, as you'd expect of a teammate, but they go way back. Here's DC talking about Arjan back in January;

Bhullar lost for the first time in his last fight in April so we'll see how he responds to that setback here. He's in with Marcelo Golm. He's Brazilian, 25 years old with a 6-1 record. Can't say I recall seeing him which either means I haven't or he was very forgettable. 



Misha Cirkunov vs Patrick Cummins could be decent. Rarely get into Cummins fights though. He's a really good wrestler but everything he does just looks mega ugly and sloppy. Cirkunov is alright. He was considered a legit prospect at one time and submitted Ion Cutelaba and Nikita Krylov but in his last two fights he's suffered bad first round losses to Glover Teixeira and Volkan Oezdemir. He needs to get back on track here but Cummins can be awkward. 



Thibault Gouti vs Nasrat Haqparast is kind of just there. I'm not going to lie, I'm not arsed about this. Could be good but can't say I remember enough about these two to be anticipating anything here. Looking up both guys' records now, Gouti might well be in a 'loser leaves town' situation here. He's lost 4 out of his last 5. Haqparast I know only as the guy who looks like a mini Kelvin Gastelum. He's doing a bit better, 9-2, coming off a decision over Marc Diakiese. Yeah, just a card filler on paper. 



Gian Villante vs Ed Herman, fuck, what year is it again? These two feel like they've been around forever. Especially Herman. He's been around since TUF 3 back in 2006, for fuck's sake. They're both kind of just hanging on at this stage. Still capable of the odd fun brawl but they're going nowhere, harsh as that sounds. Villante just lost a plodding decision to Sam Alvey, Herman is coming off a points loss to CB Dollaway and BRUTAL headkick KO from Krylov before that. He's far gone from the young talent we saw have that forgotten war vs Kendall Grove in the finals of TUF 3 all those years ago. Could actually see this being an entertaining little ruck for what it is, given their styles. But could just as easily see a dud. 



Gavin Tucker vs Andre Soukhamthath will probably be a fun one. Tucker is a Canadian prospect who the UFC probably had really high hopes for. He's got the look and the fighting style to become a potential breakout star which the 135 division could do with. But after a successful UFC debut against Sam Sicilia, he dropped a decision in his next fight to Rick Glenn. It was Tucker's first defeat, he's still 10-1 and could certainly come back stronger. But he's 32 now so there's not bags of time. If he was heavyweight fine, but for a 135er, 32 is getting up there where you have to be starting to make some noise. Soukhamthath is no bum either. He's not a killer or anything but he's got some skills. He took the hyped Sean O'Malley the distance in March, TKO'd Luke Sanders before that, and despite having 6 losses on his record he's never been finished. 



Artem Lobov vs Zubaira Tukhugov was originally rumoured to go down at UFC 229. That would've made more sense to me as Lobov is McGregor's teammate and Tukhugov is Khabib's teammate. But here we are. Lobov's UFC career is surely hanging by a thread. He can't dine out on a couple of KOs on TUF years ago and being McGregor's buddy forever. He's got a losing MMA record now, 13-14-1, and doesn't appear to be really making any noticeable improvements. He's a tough guy, not easy to put away but he's just floundering as a one trick pony in a featherweight division full of well rounded fighters. Tukhugov is probably going to show him the door. He's 18-4 with UFC wins over Douglas Silva De Andrade and Phillipe 'The Next GSP' Nover. Most of his wins are against unknowns but he seems more polished and just like he has more tools in his box than Artem. 



Stevie Ray vs Jessin Ayari will hopefully be a fight that sees Ray get back on the winning track.  He was starting to pick up some steam a year or so ago with wins over Joe Lauzon and Ross Pearson but he's since lost his last couple of fights and got finished viciously by Paul Felder. Ayari is 16-4 and this will be his lightweight debut. He lost to Darren Till in his last fight in May 2017 but managed to take Till to a decision. So he's no walkover. The drop to 155 might really benefit him. 



Sarah Moras vs Talita Bernardo I'm neither here nor there on but I'm going to touch on every fight here so sod it. Moras was on the Rousey vs Tate season of TUF back in 2013. She's only fought four times since, going 2-2. She lost to Jessica Andrade in 2015 but survived to a decision. She also holds a TKO win over Julianna Pena early in both their careers. Bernardo is 5-3 and has lost both her UFC outings so far against Irene Aldana and Marion Reneau. She's probably a goner with another L here. 



Nordine Taleb vs Sean Strickland will most likely be entertaining enough prelim fodder. Taleb will be over with the Canadian crowd as always and he's usually in good scraps. Strickland kind of the same thing, minus the being Canadian bit. He's only really lost to quality fighters and he's derailed the likes of Luke Barnatt, Alex Garcia and Tom Breese over the years. 



Alex Garcia vs Court McGee I'm not sure what to make of. Garcia is a guy you look at and think 'fucking hell'. He's a bit like a young Hector Lombard. And when you watch him fight there are spells where he looks like someone worth getting excited about. For whatever reason though, it just doesn't seem to come together results wise. He's been on a win one, lose one run for a while now. He's looked a beast at times (KOing Mike Pyle, subbing Salikhov) but like a limp dick in other fights. Court McGee is a scrapper but rarely fights these days. He had some really fun forgotten fights years ago with Robert Whittaker and Josh Neer but he's definitely slowed down the last few times I've seen him. Garcia should probably beat him but he's so hit and miss, fuck knows. 



Don Madge vs Te'Jovan Edwards is a bit of a mystery on this card. Both are making their UFC debuts here but I'm oddly intrigued enough about these two that this is ***WAND'S ONE TO WATCH*** for this card. Shame it probably won't make the televised bit. Madge is South African, 7-3 record, former EFC lightweight champion, finished his last 4 opponents and has apparently trained with Cyborg. Edwards is Yank, 6-1, was on Dana's Contender Series and has won his last five by KO/TKO, three of them in under a minute. Two newcomers looking to make a big first impression right out the gate. I like it. 


It's undeniable this is a weak card on paper but the main event is quality and digging deeper on the undercard there's some stuff to like there as well. 

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Probably for the best. There's no point in risking fanning the flames of this shit for a card like this. 

Drop the fight, match both guys up with non-riot related opponents in a few months or whatever once the initial storm has died down a bit.

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Yeah that's a great fight for Johnson to try and get back on the horse. He's miles better than Artem. If he can't beat him then it'll say much more about Johnson currently than it will about Lobov's ability.

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fucking hell, ive only just seen the finish to the Smith/Shogun fight for the first time. Thats one of those ones where you just sort of sit back and say 'that was bad'. Smith is nasteh.

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Is Artem Lobov the worst fighter since Thomas Ramirez?


Yes, Gareth. That's the answer to that question. Fuck me, he's fighted like someone keeping their finger on the haymaker button on Fight Night 3. I imagine half the front row have pneumonia from the wind behind the silly punches he threw. Then getting tagged and laughing, loudly, obviously. How Michael Johnson didn't thrash him is shocking.


Fucking hell, Lobov would have struggled in cage rage. 

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I watched the main card and haven't seen any of the prelims. By the sound of things, I made the wrong choice. 

Court McGee, Gian Villante and Andre Soukhamthath all with less than flattering decision victories. I don't get the love I've see for Villante Vs Herman. I thought it was like watching two men wading in treacle. Slow, sloppy, and not very exciting. Both men tried hard but Herman hasn't anything left in the tank and Villante was never very good to begin with.

Cirkunov looked good dominating Patrick Cummins. Michael Johnson made tough work of beating Artem Lobov. Thank God he put it to Lobov in the third round, making the decision decisive, rather than a close third round and having to sweat the possibility of Artem getting the nod. 

Anthony Smith played a blinder with the come from behind victory in the main event. He was in danger a few times during this fight, but he stuck in there until Volkan was tired and he out-willed him. This is a lovely streak that Lionheart is putting together here. Fair play on calling for the title shot, but he may need a Jan Blacowicz or Latifi depending on what happens in the Jones/Gusty fight. If Gusty wins, I'd be rebooking him right away against Jones again. 

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Only just got around to this. Smith vs Volkan was all kinds of fun. Loved it all from buzzer to buzzer and thought Smith’s post-fight interview was really good as well. Fuck me though, he’s granite tough but he’s going to end up like Stefan Struve and Joe Lauzon if he keeps this up. Aside from the quick blowouts over a knackered Shogun and Rashad, he’s had to come back from the brink in almost every other fight I think I’ve seen him in. It makes him mega exciting to watch and his gutsiness is admirable, but bloody hell he takes his lumps getting there. 

Artem has got to be gone now surely. And of the prelims I thought Nasrat Haqparast stood out in his performance. Not much else of note really. 

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skipped this but happy to see Anthony Smith get the win. Hes one of those guys that just seems to have been popping up on shows forerver, so its nice to see him putting it all together so far into his career.

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