The Dagestani is one of the UFC’s brightest prospects at 205 pounds and has risen to no.7 in the UFC light heavyweight rankings. His opponent will be another veteran who is currently ranked seventh in the promotion’s 205-pound rankings.
But the spotlight in this contest will be on Ankalaev as he continues his rise in the UFC rankings.
Ankalaev has been nearly spotless inside the UFC octagon. After he was submitted by Paul Craig as a massive -800 betting favorite in his UFC debut, the 29-year old has won six straight bouts, including four via knockout. Ankalaev has opened and closed as the betting underdog in all of those six bouts, and he has not entered fight night with odds longer than -200.
In his most recent bout, Ankalaev scored a unanimous decision win over no. 9 light heavyweight Nikita Krylov, passing the first big test of his UFC career and moving into the Top 10 in the UFC’s light heavyweight rankings. Ankalaev has a record of 15-1 with 9 knockouts.
In 2016, Ankalaev won the World Championship Fighting Akhmat light heavyweight title by defeating current UFC lightweight Maxim Grishin. He successfully defended the belt against Wagner Prado in 2017. Two fights later, Ankalaev joined the UFC.
Prochazka Sleeps Oezdemir
Oezdemir heads to this fight having lost three out of his last five bouts, and four of six if you include his TKO loss to Daniel Cormier at UFC 220 when he challenged for the UFC light heavyweight title. Known as No Time, Oezdemir has not fought since UFC 251 where he suffered a second-round knockout loss to Jiri Prochazka in the latter’s UFC debut.
The 31-year-old Swiss fighter started his UFC career on a high note. Oezdemir won three straight bouts against Ovince Saint Preux, Misha Cirkunov, and Jimi Manuwa in 2017, doing so as a betting underdog by an average of -283 at the best UFC betting sites. Meanwhile, Oezdemir was the betting favorite during his losses to Prochazka (-200) and Anthony Smith (-275).
Oezdemir has a record of 17-5 with 12 knockouts and one submission loss. He has two losses via knockout and two via submission and is 5-4 overall in his UFC career. With the way the UFC has been firing fighters recently, Oezdemir may be in a must-win situation here to keep his job.
Steve Richardson started writing content online in 2013 and has yet to slow down. Since joining our team at GamblingSites.org, he has covered sports, casino news, gambling laws, and much more! ...
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