UFC action focuses on middleweights this weekend when contenders Jack Hemansson meets Sean Strickland in the main event of UFC Vegas 47 on Saturday night at the UFC’s APEX Facility in Las Vegas, Nevada.

With the UFC middleweight title up for grabs at UFC 271, both Hermansson and Strickland are out here to make an impression to be the next challenger. Although Hermansson is 6th in the rankings and Strickland one rank below him at no. 7, a huge victory this weekend could push the winner over the top and get the next crack at the belt.

In the co-main event, up-and-coming middleweights Punahele Soriano and Nick Maximov will take out each other with the hopes of moving up the ladder.

Let’s take a look at the UFC Vegas 47 main card and make our predictions.

“Fighting" Jack Hermansson vs Sean Strickland

Jack Hermansson is the former Cage Warriors and Warrior Fight Series middleweight champion. The 33-year old Swedish-born Norwegian fighter is the UFC’s no. 6 ranked middleweight. Hermansson joined the UFC in 2016 and has posted a 9-4 record inside the UFC Octagon. In his last bout, Hermansson defeated the highly touted Edmen Shahbazyan via decision at UFC Vegas 27.

The Joker is 22-6 with 11 knockouts and six submission wins. He is an orthodox fighter who stands 6-1 tall with a reach of 77 inches.

Sean Strickland is the no. 7 ranked middleweight in the UFC. The former King of Cage middleweight champion joined the UFC in 2014 and started his Octagon career with a 6-3 record. After losing to Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos in 2018, Strickland has won five straight bouts. In his most recent bout, Strickland defeated Uriah Hall via unanimous decision at the main event of UFC Vegas 33.

Strickland is 24-3 with 10 knockouts and four submission wins. He is 6-1 tall with a reach of 76 inches and is an orthodox fighter.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

What this boils down to really is if Hermansson can impose his grappling on Strickland. As we saw in the Shahbazyan fight, Hermansson looked too amateur on the feet and literally gave away the first round of that bout. But we saw what happened in the next two rounds when he took the fight to the mat.

Strickland may appear crazy but he has a very high fight IQ. He works behind one of the most consistent jabs in the business and beats his opponents with attrition. He methodically pushes forward while hitting from boxing range. Once he gets the feel of the fight, he starts taking calculated chances and even gets stoppages.

I think Strickland will be much better at fending off Hermansson’s takedowns than Shahbazyan and that will be the difference in this fight. Strickland does enough on the feet before getting taken down. Hermansson won’t keep him down too long. Once the fight gets back on the feet, Strickland scores with strikes again.

Prediction: Sean Strickland

“Fighting" Punahele Soriano vs Nick Maximov

Punahele Soriano fought for promotions like X-1 World Events, PFC Everett, Titan FC, V3 Fights, and Legacy Fighting Alliance before appearing in the Contender Series where he earned his UFC contract by defeating Jamie Pickett on points. Soriano won his first two UFC bouts against Oskar Piechota and Dusko Todorovic, both by knockout before dropping a unanimous decision against Brendan Allen in his last bout.

Soriano is 8-1 with 5 knockouts and 2 submission victories. He stands 5-11 tall with a 72-inch reach and fights out of the southpaw stance.

Nick Maximov appeared in KOTC, Bear River FC, LFA, and Iron Pit Productions before joining the Contender Series where he defeated Oscar Cota and won his UFC contract. Maximov scored a three-round unanimous decision win over Cody Brundage in his UFC debut at UFC 266 last September 25.

Maximov is undefeated in seven bouts with 2 knockouts and three submission wins. He is also a southpaw who stands 6-0 tall with a reach of 76 inches.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

Soriano is the prototypical Hawaiian fighter- tough, powerful, and willing to stand and bang until someone goes to sleep. Because of his natural punching power, he is usually the one that is left standing after the fights. He carries power in both hands but as a southpaw, you have to avoid that left hand.

Maximov has a solid jiu-jitsu game and a very good wrestling base. In only two UFC bouts, he’s shot for 20 takedown attempts but only completed 30% of those attempts. That shows you where he wants to take this fight. He’s shown solid ground and pound without sacrificing position and has won fights due to control time.

Maximov is a very good prospect and always knows how to take his opponent out. However, every round starts on the feet and his opponent is the superior fighter in that department. If you’re thinking of a parlay bet, it might not be wise to include Soriano. This one’s closer than what the oddsmakers are saying. Still, I’m picking Soriano to catch Maximov before the latter can take this fight down.

Prediction: Punahele Soriano

“Fighting" Shavkat Rakhmonov vs Carlston Harris

Shavkat Rakhmonov fought under M-1 Global and KZMMAF before joining the UFC. The 27-year old from Kazakhstan is a former welterweight champion at M-1 Global. Under the UFC, he has fought twice and has picked up back-to-back submission victories over Alex Oliveira and Michel Prazeres.

‘Nomad’ is undefeated in 14 bouts with 7 knockouts and 7 submission wins or a 100% finish rate. He is an orthodox fighter who is 6-1 tall with a 77-inch reach.

Carlston Harris is a veteran of international promotions like Shooto Brazil, Bitteti Combat, Immortal FC, Brave CF, UAE Warriors, before joining the UFC last year. So far, he is 2-0 under the UFC with a submission win over Christian Aguilera at UFC on ESPN 24 and a TKO of Impa Kasanganay at UFC Fight Night 192.

Harris has an overall record of 17-4 with 5 knockouts and 5 submission victories. He is an orthodox fighter who stands six feet tall with a reach of 76 inches.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

Harris took the long route to get to the UFC. Now that he’s here, he’s making good use of the small window he still has left. So far, so good. The Brazilian has heavy hands on the feet and is a slick submission artist on the mat. He also wins fights by dominating from top position and also has valuable cage experience fighting outside the UFC.

Rakhmonov’s Combat Sambo skills make him good at striking, wrestling, and submissions. So far, the former M-1 champion has looked impressive and has not shown any weaknesses, if there are any. Although he still has a lot to prove, he surely looks like a legit title threat right now.

I think Harris has the skills to make this a good fight. In the end, the Eastern European Combat Sambo specialist will have more than enough in the bag to produce another stoppage.

Prediction: Shavkat Rakhmonov

“Fighting" Sam Alvey vs Brendan Allen

Sam Alvey is a veteran who competed for promotions like Bellator, King of the Cage, and MFC. He was also a contestant at The Ultimate Fighter 16 tournament. The 35-year old from Waterford, Wisconsin was the former MFC middleweight champion who joined the UFC in 2014. It’s been a struggle in the UFC for Alvey who is winless in his last seven bouts with six losses during that span.

He is 33-16 with 19 knockouts and three submission losses. Alvey is a southpaw who stands 6-2 tall with a reach of 75 inches.

Brendan Allen is the former Legacy Fighting Alliance middleweight champion. The 26-year old from Beaufort, California joined the UFC via the Contender Series where he recorded a submission win over Aaron Jeffrey to earn his UFC contract. He is 5-2 in the UFC with wins over the likes of Kevin Holland and Punahele Soriano.

Allen has a record of 17-5 with five knockouts and nine submission wins. He is 6-2 tall with a reach of 75 inches and fights out of the orthodox stance.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

Alvey needs to rid of that Mr. Nice Guy image and start beating up his opponents. He’s also a fighter who takes too long to shift gears and oftentimes, he waits too long before he starts letting his hands go. In order to beat Allen, Alvey needs to throw the entire arsenal early on and overwhelm his opponent.

The key for Allen here is to avoid Alvey’s big counter left hand and to grind him out with grappling. Alvey has solid takedown defense but with persistence, Allen can take this fight to the mat where it will be easier to win.

Prediction: Brendan Allen

“Fighting" Tresean Gore vs Bryan Battle

Tresean Gore is a newcomer to the sport. He fought twice under the National Fighting Championship and once for the Alabama Fighting Championship before joining the UFC. Gore choked out Christian Echols in his most recent bout last October 2020. He will be making his UFC debut in this bout.

Gore is 3-0 with one knockout and one submission win. He is a switch hitter who is six feet tall and has a reach of 75 inches.

Bryan Battle is a veteran of Fight For It, Showcase MMA, and HRMMA before joining the UFC last year. The 27-year old from Charlotte, North Carolina is submitted Gilbert Urbina in his UFC debut last August 28, 2021.

Battle has a record of 6-1 with one knockout and four submission losses. He is 6-1 tall with a reach of 77 inches and is an orthodox fighter.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

Gore is a physical talent. He is quick on the feet, with fluid kicks from a distance. He hunts for big power shots when his opponents try to close the distance. Meanwhile, Battle is a good grappler. He grinds his foes down with takedowns and then loves to go for the neck.

By the way, it looks, this is a striker vs grappler matchup. However, with Gore the faster man and the naturally bigger fighter, Battle is going to have issues getting his takedowns. What I see is Gore applying the pressure early. If Battle can weather the early onslaught, perhaps he can grind this fight down in the last two rounds.

But that’s tough to ask. Gore looks like he can go with his pace for three full rounds and he is an excellent striker. I say Gore picks Battle apart on the feet and wins on points. Or, if Battle tries to take his chances, he might end up eating the knockout punch.

Prediction: Tresean Gore

“Fighting" Julian Erosa vs Steven Peterson

Julian Erosa is the former CageSport featherweight and lightweight champion. The 32-year old from Seattle, Washington was a contestant at TUF 22 where he lost to Artem Lobov in the semifinals. Erosa also knocked out Jamall Emmers at the Contender Series. He dropped his first three UFC assignments but is 4-1 since then.

Erosa has a record of 26-9 with 11 knockouts and 12 submission wins. He is 6-1 tall with a reach of 74 inches and is a southpaw fighter.

Steven Peterson is a veteran of Bellator MMA and Legacy Fighting Alliance. The 31-year old from Redondo Beach, California was the inaugural LFA bantamweight champion and had a failed appearance at the Contender Series in 2017 where he lost to Benito Lopez. He started 1-3 in the UFC but has won his last two bouts.

Peterson is 19-9 with five knockouts and eight submission wins. He is 5-10 tall with a reach of 70 inches and is an orthodox fighter.

What are the Moneyline Odds?






Odds from BetOnline as of 02/04/2022

Erosa is an off-beat kickboxer who has nice jiu-jitsu skills. The latter gives him a shot at winning fights, even when momentum is against him. Peterson is a pure grinder. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt isn’t as dominant with his wrestling but he’ll keep pressing forward until he’s able to turn the tide.

I can’t see why Peterson won’t be able to land his takedowns. However, I also don’t think he can put Erosa on the ground too long. I think most of this fight will be spent on the feet, where Erosa holds a sizable advantage. Unless he gets caught by a big right hand, Erosa should strike from distance and win on points.

Prediction: Julian Erosa

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