UFC Wichita (UFC Fight Night 146) Occurs Saturday, March 9 in Intrust Bank Arena in Wichita, Kansas.
The card formerly was shown to be headlined by heavyweights Derrick Lewis and Junior dos Santos, and over the weekend a few new preliminary bouts were added to the card, through ESPN. The new spells are recorded below, together with my initial reactions to these, in the modern edition of MMA odds and ends.
Tim Means vs. Niko Price, UFC Fight Night 146
An exciting welterweight matchup between Tim Means and Niko Price is place for UFC Fight Night 146. Means (28-10, 1 NC) is 10-7, 1 NC from the UFC and is coming from a TKO win over Ricky Rainey that snapped a two-fight split decision losing skid. At 34 he’s begun to age but showed in the Rainey battle his remarkable abilities continue to be topnotch. Price (12-2, 1 NC) is currently 4-2, 1 NC in the UFC and is coming off of a fast TKO loss to Abdul Razak Alhassan that was a disappointing follow-up to his barbarous KO win over Randy Brown in the summertime. What a fantastic battle this is involving Means and Price because it’s a battle between two guys who will finish the fight on the feet and on the floor. I can see this one going either way, and this might be a surprise to people who’ve been following me for years, but I’d really slightly lean towards Cost here just because of his age advantage and the fact Means was in so many wars. The opening line must be close, but I’d probably peg Cost as a small favorite in the open.
Alex Morono vs. Zak Ottow, UFC Fight Night 146
Welterweights Alex Morono and Zak Ottow will even meet with this card. Morono (15-5, 1 NC) is 4-2, 1 NC at the UFC and defeated Kenan Song in a”Fight of the Night” functionality his last time out. Ottow (17-6) is 4-3 in the UFC and is coming from a split decision win over Dwight Grant. This is a really evenly-matched connection between two guys in the middle of the pack at 170lbs who’ve so far been inconsistent in their UFC livelihood. I’ve been slightly more impressed by Morono inside the Octagon so I’d prefer him just a bit here, but on paper it is a close matchup and that I expect the opening line to be close a Select’em.
Louis Smolka vs. Matt Schnell, UFC Fight Night 146
And finally, Louis Smolka and Matt Schnell will proceed up to bantamweight and compete on this card. Smolka (15-5) lately made his return to the UFC using a submission win over Mudaerji. All-time Smolka has a 6-5 record in the UFC and is now riding a four-fight win streak overall in MMA. Schnell (11-4) is 2-2 at the UFC and conquered Naoki Inoue and Marco Beltran in his past two outings. Though Schnell has appeared better lately, Smolka is the talented fighter and is more proven fighting 135lbs. I would have to favor Smolka to win this fight, along with the fact it is not taking place at flyweight is another sign the division is going to be shut down this season.
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