A four fight winning streak in Fury FC brought Villanueva to the UFC in May 2020. Unfortunately, he lost in his debut via 2nd round TKO to Chase Sherman.
Three months later, Isaac returned to the octagon and lost via 1st round TKO due to a doctor’s stoppage against Jordan Wright.
Villanueva would sit out the rest of 2020 before returning in January 2021 where he picked up his first UFC win by defeating Vinicius Moreira via 2nd round KO. Five months later, Isaac found himself back in the losing column with a 2nd round KO loss to Marcin Prachnio.
15 of his 18 pro wins have come via TKO/KO. He’s 3-1 when going the distance and has 11 stoppage defeats.
Nicolae Negumereanu started off his MMA career going 9-0 before joining the UFC in the spring of 2019. He would end up losing his debut via unanimous decision to Saparbek Safarov.
It would be 27 months before Negumereanu would return to the octagon. He made his second trip inside the octagon in June 2021 and defeated Aleksa Camur via split decision. These two UFC fights are the only times that Negumereanu has gone the distance.
Nine of his 10 pro wins have come via stoppage with six by way of TKO/KO. He’s 1-1 when going the distance.
Here we have a finisher in Negumereanu taking on a fighter who’s often getting finished. I don’t see this bout going the full 15 minutes (-250). It’s a toss-up as to whether or not we will see it go Over or Under 1.5 rounds. Let’s take the Over just to be on the safe side.
As for the winner, Negumereanu is going to smash Villanueva and win this fight via TKO. Isaac has six TKO/KO losses, which is 50% of his professional defeats.
Nicolae Negumereanu vs. Isaac Villanueva –Negumereanu (-210)
Over 1.5 rounds (-120)
Fight ends inside the distance (-250)
Negumereanu wins inside the distance (+195)
Negumereanu wins via TKO/KO (+220)
Dwight Grant vs. Francisco Trinaldo
Dwight Grant (+105)
Francisco Trinaldo (-125)
Over (-155)/Under (+125) 2.5 rounds
This bout was originally scheduled for Dwight Grant to take on Gabriel Green. However, Green was forced off the card and Francisco Trinaldo agreed to take the fight on one month’s notice.
Nicknamed “The Body Snatcher,” Dwight Grant comes into this contest having gone 3-1 in his last four bouts and posting a 3-2 overall record inside the octagon.
Grant parlayed a six fight winning streak, which included one bout for Bellator in November 2016, into an appearance on DWCS in June 2018 where he beat Tyler Hill via 2nd round KO.
He made his octagon debut in December 2018, but came out on the wrong side of a split decision against Zak Ottow. Grant would bounce back with two straight wins before a 1st round KO loss to Daniel Rodriguez in August 2020.
His most recent contest came in April 2021 where he beat Stefan Sekulic via split decision. Seven of his 11 pro wins have come via TKO/KO. He’s 4-2 when going the distance.
Grant’s quest to evolve as a fighter has brought him to sparring sessions with athletes like Cain Velasquez. He learned the difference between weight classes, but it also taught him about speed and being patient. These are aspects that he’s incorporated into his own fighting style:
“Personally, for me, growing up I used to watch Boxing and I would ask my uncle, grandfather ‘why are they punching so slow, we were watching these guys before and they were going fast, these guys are going slow.’ Part of it is size but also because they don’t have to. They understand positioning and speed and they’re like ‘I don’t gotta hurry up right here, I’m not in a position where I have to make a big move, it’ll come when it comes.’ Learning that now, especially dealing with different weight classes and different sparring situations is a big factor.”
The 43-year old Francisco Trinaldo has been with the UFC for nine years and has compiled a record of 16-7 inside the octagon. Most recently, he’s gone 3-1 in the UFC with wins over Bobby Green, John Makdessi, and Jai Herbert.
The one loss over that span was to Muslim Salikhov in his last fight. Trinaldo lost via unanimous decision. 14 of his 26 pro wins have come via stoppage with nine by way of TKO/KO. He’s 12-5 when going the distance.
All seven of Grant’s stoppage victories have come via TKO/KO. But, Trinaldo has never been stopped by TKO/KO before. With that said, I see this bout going Over 2.5 rounds (-155) and the full 15 minutes (-140).
For Grant, five of his last nine bouts have gone the distance. Trinaldo has gone the distance in six of his last eight contests.
As for thew winner, I like the toughness and durability of the UFC veteran Francisco Trinaldo to win this fight via unanimous decision.
Dwight Grant vs. Francisco Trinaldo –Trinaldo (-125)
Over 2.5 rounds (-155)
Fight goes the distance (-140)
Trinaldo wins via decision (+250)
Alex Caceres vs. SeungWoo Choi
Alex Caceres (+250)
SeungWoo Choi (-290)
Over (-210)/Under (+170) 2.5 rounds
One thing I’ve learned about Alex Caceres over his UFC career is to never count out “Bruce Leroy.” Case in point, Caceres is 13-10 overall inside the octagon and at one point he was 9-10 having lost four of six fights over a three year period from 2016 to 2019.
Yet, in the summer of 2019, Caceres appeared to have turned things around by beginning a four fight winning streak that leads him into this weekend’s contest.
Caceres defeated Steven Peterson, Chase Hooper, Austin Spring and most recently Kevin Croom during this streak. Three of those four wins came via unanimous decision. The lone stoppage victory came against Austin Springer via 1st round submission.
“I started MMA in hopes of fighting in the UFC one day. When I was still fighting in Muay Thai, me and my family would often sit down to watch the UFC and slowly it made me want to transition to MMA and give it a shot. So I retired from Muay Thai, went to serve my mandatory Korean military requirements, and as soon as it ended, I went straight to find an MMA academy nearby to start my dream of making it to the UFC one day.”
Choi made his dream come true in the spring of 2019 when he debuted in April of that year. Unfortunately, he would lose that bout to Movsar Evloev via unanimous decision. His second fight resulted in a submission defeat to Gavin Tucker.
Despite starting 0-2 inside the octagon, Choi didn’t give up. He would turn things around by the end of 2019 and begin a three fight winning streak that brings us to this weekend’s contest.
Over that stretch, SeungWoo defeated Suman Mokhtarian, Youssef Zalal and Julian Erosa. The first two wins came via unanimous decision. However, in his most recent outing, Choi would defeat Julian Erosa via 1st round KO in 97 seconds.
Six of his 10 pro wins have come via TKO/KO. He’s 4-1 when going the distance.
I think that the oddsmakers are overlooking Caceres in this contest. If he can get the fight to the mat then “Bruce Leroy” has a real shot at winning. Yet, that’s easier said than done.
More than likely, this bout is going Over 2.5 rounds (-210) and the full 15 minutes (-185). Once with the judges, I see Choi picking up the decision victory due to his striking advantage.
Choi has gone the distance in three of his last five contests. Caceres has gone the distance in five of his last seven bouts.
Alex Caceres vs. SeungWoo Choi –Choi (-290)
Over 2.5 rounds (-210)
Fight goes the distance (-185)
Choi wins via decision (+100)
Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Jocelyn Edwards
Jessica-Rose Clark (-140)
Jocelyn Edwards (+120)
Over (-350)/Under (+275) 2.5 rounds
This is the only women’s fight on the main card and the third of three female bouts for the entire event. It features the return of fan favorite Jessica-Rose Clark who hasn’t competed in 13 months.
Clark joined the UFC four years ago and started off with two wins. She beat Bec Rawlings in her octagon debut via split decision then followed that up with a unanimous decision win over Paige VanZant.
Unfortunately, the winning came to a halt as she then dropped two fights in a row to Jessica Eye and Pannie Kianzad both via unanimous decision.
Clark’s last bout came in September 2020 where she beat Sara Alpar via 3rd round TKO. However, “Jessy Jess” would suffer a torn ACL in that fight and require surgery that sidelined her until the summer of 2021.
Fully healed, Clark looks to get back to her winning ways. Five of her 10 pro wins have come via stoppage with three by way of TKO/KO. She’s 5-6 when going the distance.
Joselyne Edwards made her UFC debut in January 2021 and beat Yanan Wu via unanimous decision. Unfortunately, she would lose in her next fight which was three weeks later when she suffered a unanimous decision defeat to Karol Rosa.
Both of Edwards UFC fights were on short notice. This upcoming bout against Clark was initially booked in July, so she’s had over three months to prepare for it.
Eight of her 10 pro wins have come via stoppage with five by way of TKO/KO. She’s 2-2 when going the distance.
I believe this bout will go Over 2.5 rounds (-350) and the full 15 minutes (-275). For Edwards, she’s gone the distance in three of her last four bouts. For Clark, she’s gone the distance in 11 of 16 pro fights including eight of her last nine fights.
As for the winner, I’m taking Clark to pull out the decision victory in what should be a competitive matchup between these two bantamweights.
Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Jocelyn Edwards –Clark (-140)
Over 2.5 rounds (-350)
Fight goes the distance (-275)
Clark wins via decision (+140)
Grant Dawson vs. Rick Glenn
Grant Dawson (-340)
Rick Glenn (+280)
Over (-145)/Under (+115) 2.5 rounds
According to UFC betting sites, this co-featured bout has the highest disparity in betting odds for the UFC Vegas 41 main card.
Rick Glenn might be five years older than Dawson, and considered the veteran of the two, but he’s only been in the UFC three years longer than Grant has. Furthermore, he only has two more UFC fights than Dawson does.
A big reason for that is the fact that Glenn needed hip surgery and was out for over two years. He returned to the octagon in June 2021 and beat Joaquim Silva via 1st round KO in just 37 seconds. Prior to that, his last fight was a November 2018 decision defeat to Kevin Aguilar.
Glenn is 4-3 inside the octagon and has alternated between wins and losses. 16 of his 22 pro wins have come via stoppage with 12 by way of TKO/KO. He’s 6-4-1 when going the distance.
Grant Dawson was originally booked to fight Diego Ferreira on October 2nd, but Ferreira was forced to pull out of that fight due to an injury. Instead of waiting until December to fight Diego, Dawson took this bout against Glenn.
Dawson detailed his thinking behind taking this fight and what his plans are following UFC Vegas 41:
“They were originally gonna rebook us for Nov. 13 and then Diego said he needed more time and said he would like the fight in December. I can’t wait until December, I’ve got puppies to feed, I’ve got a girlfriend, I just bought a new house, I need to fight. Also, I want to stay active. I like fighting, I enjoy fighting, and I want to fight. Barring no injuries against Richard Glenn, I’m gonna call out Diego for December immediately. As far as I know, he’s still interested in the fight, I’m still interested in the fight and when you have two contestants that are interested in a fight there’s really no reason not to make it. So my thought process is I beat Richard and then I call out Diego, and I get Diego in December.”
An 11-1 start to his MMA career led Dawson to DWCS in August 2017 where he beat Adrian Diaz via 2nd round submission. Since then, Dawson has gone 5-0 inside the octagon and comes into this weekend’s contest eight straight fights.
Grant has defeated Julian Erosa, Michael Trizano, Darrick Minner, Nad Narimani and Leonardo Santos over that streak. His most recent bout came against Leonardo Santos in March 2021 where he won via 3rd round KO.
15 of his 17 pro wins have come via stoppage with 11 by way of submission. He’s 2-0 when going the distance.
Dawson is a finisher, but his opponent Glenn is a tough out. Yet, Glenn does have two submission defeats which could open the door for Dawson to pull out the submission win.
With that said, I think the safe play is for this bout to go Over 2.5 rounds (-145) and go the full 15 minutes (-125). Glenn has gone the distance in seven of his last eight bouts.
Take Dawson to win via unanimous decision and finally crack the Top 15 rankings for the lightweight division.
Grant Dawson vs. Rick Glenn –Dawson (-340)
Over 2.5 rounds (-145)
Fight goes the distance (-125)
Dawson wins via decision (+130)
Paulo Costa vs. Marvin Vettori
Paulo Costa (+130)
Marvin Vettori (-150)
Over (+100)/Under (-130) 4.5 rounds
The main event of the night features a Top 5 middleweight clash between #5 Marvin Vettori and #2 Paulo Costa. Additionally, it features two men who lost to Israel Adesanya in their last bouts.
Speaking of Adesanya, he gave his preview for this fight:
“He (Vettori) can take a lot of punishment, I’ll give him that. I would say his best method of victory is just taking Costa to deep water by grappling him, stalling, and just making making him work… I feel like Costa can just do what he does: just bull rush him, bulldoze him, but be careful of the takedowns because Vettori’s gonna try that, time that, and take him down.”
For Costa, the loss to Adesanya in September 2020 was the first of his pro career and it came via 2nd round TKO. It also dropped his UFC record to 5-1.
Prior to the Adesanya fight, Costa had defeated Yoel Romero via unanimous decision. That was the first and only time that Paulo has gone the distance. Prior to that, Costa had 12 stoppages with 11 by way of TKO/KO.
Vettori is now 7-3-1 inside the octagon with two of those losses coming to Israel Adesanya. The first loss to Israel came via split decision in April 2018. The second loss came just five months ago. In between those two bouts, Marvin won five straight fights.
11 of his 17 pro wins have come via stoppage with nine by way of submission. He’s 6-5-1 when going the distance.
Vettori made the following comments about this main event clash:
“He’s good in some areas of the striking,” Vettori said. “He definitely has a pop in his punch, and he definitely can crack. But I feel like, in general, as an MMA fighter, I’m superior. Even as a striker, I’m superior. I’m gonna give the fans what they want. I want to knock this guy out, loud and clear. My mind is ready, my body is ready, and my spirit is ready, and I’m just ready to go.”
Vettori is clearly the better grappler between the two. And I expect that to be the deciding factor for this fight.
Adesanya hit the nail on the head when he said the Marvin would try to take Costa into the deep waters. Paulo will bull rush Vettori and try to overwhelm him with his brute power and strength.
I believe that Marvin will show patience and eventually land a takedown or two. Once on the mat, I fully expect Vettori to control the action and not let Costa back up.
I see Vettori winning this bout, but I can’t decide between a late round stoppage or a decision. Vettori has gone the distance in 12 of his 22 pro bouts including nine of his last 10 fights. I just don’t have a lot of confidence in Costa going the full 25 minutes.
With that said, I’m leaning towards this bout ending inside the distance (-135) and Under 4.5 rounds (-130). There’s a decent chance that this fight doesn’t even see the 5th round (-120).
I’m also leaning towards the scenario of Vettori picking up the stoppage most likely via submission after some ground and pound.
Paulo Costa vs. Marvin Vettori –Vettori (-150)
Under 4.5 rounds (-130)
Fight ends inside the distance (-135)
Vettori wins inside the distance (+285)
Vettori wins via submission (+550)
Fight doesn’t start round 5 (-120)
As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...
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