The UFC resumes action this weekend with UFC 258 which will be held at its Apex Facility in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In the main event, the UFC welterweight title will be on the line when champion Kamaru Usman takes on no. 1 contender Gilbert Burns. Usman and Burns were scheduled to fight each other a couple of times before but Burns’ COVID-19 infection and an Usman injury forced it to be canceled twice. With both healthy now, the fight is finally on.

In the co-main event, the highly touted Maycee Barber takes on veteran Alexa Grasso in a three-round women’s flyweight encounter. Former title challenger Kelvin Gastelum also takes on Ian Heinisch in the undercard while veterans Bobby Green and Jim Miller also square off in the main card.

Let’s take a look at UFC 258’s bouts and make our predictions:

“Fighting" Kamaru Usman vs Gilbert Burns

Kamaru Usman is the UFC welterweight champion. The 33-year old known as the Nigerian Nightmare is the no. 5 ranked pound for pound fighter in the UFC. Usman won the title by defeating Tyron Woodley at UFC 235. This former NCAA Division II All-American wrestler has made two successful title defenses against Colby Covington and Jorge Masvidal. Usman has a record of 17-1 with seven knockouts and one win via submission. He stands six feet tall with a reach of 76 inches while fighting out of the orthodox stance.

Gilbert Burns is the no. 1 ranked welterweight contender. The 34-year old Brazilian known as Durinho is a three-time world champion grappler and World Cup gold medalist. Burns heads to this fight with a six-bout winning streak and is coming off a one-sided win over Tyron Woodley in May 2020. He has a record of 19-3 with six knockouts and eight wins via submission. Burns is 5-10 tall with a reach of 71 inches while fighting out of the orthodox stance

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/12/2021

Burns has without a doubt become a very dangerous fighter with his new-found striking game. With that, he can win fights on the feet and the ground without having to worry about one department. However, Usman seems to be at another level right now. He’s looked superb in his last couple of fights. Burns has the ability to finish this fight with many submission moves but Usman’s wrestling should keep him safe. The champ uses high-volume, varied striking attack, and takedowns will be the key here.

Prediction: Kamaru Usman

“Fighting" Maycee Barber vs Alexa Grasso

Macyee Barber is the 10th ranked female flyweight in the UFC. This 22-year old from Colorado known as The Future earned her UFC contract at the Contender Series. She won her first three UFC bouts via knockout but suffered a stunning unanimous decision loss to Roxanne Modafferi in her last assignment. Barber is 5-5 tall with a reach of 65 inches and fights as a switch hitter. She has a record of 8-1 with five knockouts and two wins via submission.

Alexa Grasso is the 15th ranked female flyweight in the UFC. This former Invicta FC fighter has alternated wins and losses inside the UFC Octagon. In her last bout, Grasso defeated Ji Yeon Kim via decision in August 2020. The 27-year old from Guadalajara, Mexico has a record of 12-3 with four wins via knockout. She stands 5-5 tall with a reach of 66 inches and fights out of the orthodox stance.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/12/2021

Barber is a fighter whom the UFC seems to like a lot. Dana White sees star potential with her and she has a bright future in the promotion. She cuts off the cage very well and is always looking to let her hands go. She’s a strong fighter, especially in the clinch. And she has an 80% takedown defense. Grasso is a veteran who has fast hands and loves to throw combinations. I see Grasso trying to stick and move to avoid Barber’s power. But one way or the other, she’s going to get caught. Light out.

Prediction: Maycee Barber

“Fighting" Kelvin Gastelum vs Ian Heinisch

Kelvin Gastelum is the no. 9 ranked middleweight fighter in the UFC and the former TUF 17 winner. The 29-year old from San Jose, California fought and lost to Israel Adesanya for the UFC middleweight title at UFC 236. Including that bout, he has lost three in a row and is coming off a submission loss to Jack Hermansson. Gastelum is a southpaw who stands 5-9 tall with a reach of 71 inches. He has a record of 15-6 with six knockouts and four wins via submission.

Ian Heinisch is the former Legacy Fighting Alliance interim middleweight champion who also fought for WSOF. The 32-year old from Denver, Colorado is the no. 15 ranked middleweight contender who also appeared in the Contender Series. Heinisch is coming off a win over Geral Meerschaert at UFC 250. Prior to that, he lost back to back fights to Derek Brunson and Omari Akhmedov. Heinisch is 5-11 tall with a reach of 72 inches and is an orthodox fighter.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/12/2021

Heinisch has a formidable Muay Thai attack that cannot be taken lightly. However, Gastelum is coming off bouts against Darren Till and Israel Adesanya so he’s seen the best striking there is in this division and what Heinisch brings shouldn’t intimidate him at all. Sure, it’s possible that all the wars he’s been through have taken something from Gastelum. But given what his opponent offers, this looks like the perfect opportunity for him to bounce back to the winning column.

Prediction: Kelvin Gastelum

“Fighting" Julian Marquez vs Maki Pitolo

Julian Marquez is a veteran of Bellator and Combate Americas. He joined the UFC via the Contender Series. This 30-year old from Kansas City in Missouri lost his UFC debut to Alessio Di Chirico via a split decision. Known as the Cuban Missile Crisis, Marquez has a record of 7-2 with six knockouts and one win via submission. He stands 6-2 tall with a reach of 72 inches and is an orthodox fighter.

Maki Pitolo competed for Bellator and also had stints with Victory FC and Cage Fury FC. This 30-year old from Honolulu, Hawaii joined the UFC via the Contender Series. Pitolo is just 1-3 in his UFC career and has lost his last two bouts. In his last assignment, Pitolo lost a decision to Impa Kasanganay in August 2020. He has a record of 13-7 with seven knockouts and three wins via submission. Pitolo is an orthodox fighter who stands 5-10 tall with a reach of 75 inches.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/12/2021

Pitolo is a dangerous striker but he’s been beaten by KO, submission, and decision. Marquez has the tools to beat Pitolo but he’s been out for quite some time. Unless ring rust has changed Marquez completely, this should be a fight that he dominates. Marquez has more talent and upside. He should be able to outwork Pitolo anywhere this fight goes. I think he lands something that stuns Pitolo and then finishes him on the ground.

Prediction: Julian Marquez

“Fighting" Bobby Green vs Jim Miller

Bobby Green is the former King of Cage lightweight and junior welterweight champion. This 34-year old from San Bernardino, California also fought for Tachi Palace Fights, Strikeforce, and Affliction. Green joined the UFC in 2013 and won his first four bouts. However, he’s been just 4-6-1 since then and is coming off a loss to Thiago Moses. Green has a record of 27-11 with eight knockouts and nine wins via submission. He is an orthodox fighter who stands 5-10 tall with a reach of 71 inches.

Jim Miller is one of the longest-tenured fighters in the UFC. The 37-year old from New Jersey has been in the UFC since 2008. While he’s never challenged for a UFC belt, this former Cage Fury Fighting Championships lightweight champion and USKBA welterweight champion has fought the likes of Dustin Poirier, Anthony Pettis, Dan Hooker, Diego Sanchez, and Charles Oliveira. Miller has a record of 32-15 with 18 knockouts and 10 wins via submission. He stands 5-8 tall with a reach of 71 inches and is a southpaw fighter.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/12/2021

It’s remarkable how these two veterans have avoided fighting each other when both have been in the UFC for a long time now. Miller is at his best when he’s on the mat and there’s no question if he keeps this fight down, he’s got a chance to beat Green. However, Green has a 72% takedown defense which should help him stay on his feet. That suggests we’ll have a striking match where Green has the advantage. Miller is tough to knock out and he will likely go the distance but it will be green dictating the terms of this fight.

Prediction: Bobby Green

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