UFC Fight Night 137 - Sao Paulo Breakdown
When is UFC Fight Night 137? Sunday 23rd September, 2018 - 01:00 start (UK)
Where is UFC Fight Night 137? Ginasio do Ibirapuera, Sao Paulo, Brazil
What channel is UFC Fight Night 137 on? BT Sport 2
Where can I stream UFC Fight Night 137? BT Sport subscribers can stream the fight online via the BT Sport website
Thiago Santos vs Eryk Anders
This is not the main event we expected in Sao Paulo but the fans will be licking their lips nonetheless. Glover Teixeira was originally scheduled to fight Jimi Manuwa but pulled out with an injury and was replaced with Thiago Santos, another superb match-up, but then Manuwa pulled out with Eryk Anders stepping up to the plate. So, two light heavyweight powerhouses have been replaced by two middleweight powerhouses.
Santos and Anders have both fought as recently as August when they bounced back from losses and it is no wonder they are fan-favourites as they not only step up to fight anyone, they come to fight and leave nothing behind so stylistically, this should produce fireworks.
These natural finishers are unlikely to last the five rounds, especially stepping in at short notice, and as they only have two submission wins between them, we can expect a knockout finish. Which way it goes will be tough to call as they both have ferocious power, in particular the sledgehammer kicks of Santos and the monstrous left hand of Anders - and it will be a case of who lands first.
Winner: Anders via KO/TKO
Alex Oliveira vs Carlo Pedersoli Jr.
Carlo Pedersoli Jr. makes his second UFC appearance and has been handed the very dangerous Alex Oliveira after a very impressive debut against Bradley Scott. Pedersoli is only 25 years old and is a big prospect in the welterweight division, but this will be a real test of his talents as Oliveira has had 12 UFC fights and only lost three of them.
Both these men are electrifying strikers but are also very dangerous on the mat. They both have the confidence to finish the fight anywhere but they will both look to inflict early damage on the feet.
Oliveira will take confidence from the fact Pedersoli took a lot of damage from Scott and took him to a close decision. Pedersoli also tired in that fight which will play into Oliveira’s hands who likes to mix in several takedown attempts with his striking.
Winner: Oliveira via Decision
Sam Alvey vs Antônio Rogério Nogueira
A light heavyweight showdown between two veterans. Sam Alvey has only lost two of his last nine fights and looks rejuvenated since moving up to light heavyweight and you could say Antônio Rogério Nogueira is also rejuvenated after some time off. However, almost two years away from the cage may be too much time off.
The legendary Brazilian is going to have to shake off any ring rust as Alvey has been in good form and with less weight to cut he has even more power in his hands and at the ripe old age of 42, there are only so many strikes to the dome Nogueira can afford to eat.
This is a very tall order for Nogueira who has all the class, especially on the floor as a pioneer of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, but Alvey has the speed and power to shut out his comeback.
Winner: Alvey via KO/TKO
Renan Barao vs Andre Ewell
Andre Ewell makes his UFC debut against the former bantamweight king Renan Barão and as he names himself ‘Mr Highlight’, we should be in for a show in Sao Paulo. He is on a four-fight winning streak but Barão will be the toughest assignment of his career so far.
Barão is clearly not the fighter he used to be. Before he lost his title to TJ Dillashaw in 2014 he was 33-1 (1) and has since gone 2-5. He is coming off two decision losses and if he loses against a debutant there will be some serious questions asked.
We all know how well-rounded Barão is, who has proven his finishing ability throughout his long career. However, if he is not confident and lets Ewell settle, he may get a taste of his own medicine. Ewell is a dangerous striker and finisher who needs to attack early to unsettle the Brazilian.
Barão has never lost three in a row and although it won’t be an easy night for him, he has all the class and experience to edge out a win.
Winner: Barão via Submission
Randa Markos vs Marina Rodriguez
Marina Rodriquez makes her UFC debut after a great performance on Dana White’s Contender Series – knocking out Maria de Oliveira. In fact, she has compiled a reputation as a fearsome strawweight striker as she has racked up 11 wins without tasting defeat.
However, the unbeaten Brazilian has not tasted high calibre competition and even though Randa Markos has a more unflattering record, she has fought among the very best strawweights in the world for the majority of her career. This standard has made it hard for her to string two wins together but she will have to bounce back again from her loss to Nina Ansaroff.
If this fight is going to finish before the bell it is likely to be due to a knockout by Rodriguez who is the more powerful striker. She will look to dominant Markos with her size advantage and find a home for her dangerous hands.
We can expect Markos to arrive to Brazil in great shape as always and rely on her output to pressure with strikes and takedowns, but this fight will come down to how well Rodriguez can utilise her reach as she is going to have to keep Markos at a distance to prevent a grinding defeat.
Winner: Markos via Decision
Striking and grappling stats sourced via FightMetric.