MMA FREE PICKS
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UFC Long Island: Ortega vs. Rodriguez
The UFC will make its return to the ABC network airwaves this weekend when they head to the UBS Arena in Elmont, New York. The main event features a high-stakes bout at 145lbs, as No. 2 ranked Brian Ortega will face No. 3 ranked Yair Rodriguez. **Take note that this card starts early with preliminary action beginning at 11 AM EST/ 8 AM PST and the main taking off at 2 PM EST/ 11 AM EST**. Set to kick things off on the main card are Lauren Murphy and Miesha Tate in a flyweight matchup, a fight that has now been rescheduled for the third time.
Miesha Tate (19-8) looks to bounce back after a unanimous decision loss to Ketlen Vieira back in November of 2021. That fight was fought at 135 pounds, and now she will try her hand in a weight class below for the first time. She has gone 1-1 since her return from retirement, with the victory coming against Marion Reneau via TKO, becoming the only woman to finish the veteran in her career. Based on what she has put out on her social media, she looks to be in terrific shape for this fight and looks like the training camp went well. I wouldn’t worry about her not making the 126lb limit come weigh-in day.
Lauren Murphy (15-5) found herself on a five-fight win streak before running into the P4P best female fighter in the world Valentina Shevchenko. To nobody’s surprise, Valentina was able to finish Murphy via TKO in the fourth round en route to another title defense. Now at 38 years of age Murphy will try to make one last run for another opportunity to capture UFC gold. It’s hard to tell where Murphy is in terms of motivation for this fight, especially with her pulling out of the last attempt with COVID-19.
Miesha Tate looks like the hungrier fighter when you compare the two at this stage of their careers. I think she will make the fight ugly and try to press Murphy up against the cage and get her to the canvas. She is also capable of being in a dogfight and can tough it out on the feet with Murphy. I like Miesha here a lot, as I feel like Murphy’s best days in the octagon are behind her. Give me the “Cupcake”.
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