UFC Fight Night 102 Preview & Predictions

There are a pair of UFC events this weekend and everything will be starting off with UFC Fight Night 102 on Friday Night. The event will be headlined by a top fifteen heavyweight division clash as Derrick Lewis faces Shamil Abdurakhimov. Also, Francis Ngannou faces Anthony Hamilton and TUF 19 Champion Corey Anderson looks to pick up another win.

Main Card

Main Event

UFC Heavyweight Division Fight

Derrick Lewis (16-4-0-1NC) vs. Shamil Abdurakhimov (17-3-0)

Lewis will be competing in his first UFC main event and he will be doing so while on the strength of a four fight winning streak. Abdurakhimov will also be competing in his first main event, he has defeated Anthony Hamilton and Walt Harris thus far in his UFC run. Lewis is riding the aforementioned four fight winning streak, with notable wins coming over Gabriel Gonzaga and Roy Nelson. Prior to signing with the UFC in 2015, Abdurakhimov defeated a pair of UFC veterans in Jeff Monson and Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou.

Prediction: Abdurakhimov has the kickboxing skills to keep Lewis guessing for a little while, but Lewis eventually swarms and destroys Abdurakhimov with strikes for a late first round finish.

Co-Main Event

UFC Heavyweight Division Fight

Anthony Hamilton (15-5-0) vs. Francis Ngannou (8-1-0)

Hamilton has rotated wins and losses thus far throughout his UFC run, with his last fight being a win over Damian Grabowski at UFC 201. Ngannou is currently undefeated under the UFC banner, defeating Luiz Henrique, Curtis Blaydes and Bojan Mihajlovic. Hamilton is also a former Maximum Fighting Championships, Rumble On The Ridge and Cage Sport Heavyweight Champion. Ngannou has only seen one of his nine professional fights go to a decision and ironically, that decision is the only loss Ngannou has suffered as a pro.

Prediction: Hamilton has the skills to put anybody to sleep, but Ngannou is going to have a massive reach advantage and he knows how to use it, Ngannou catches a swinging Hamilton with a counter strike or two to put him out in the first round.

UFC Light Heavyweight Division Fight

Corey Anderson (8-2-0) vs. Sean O’Connell (17-8-0)

Anderson has won three of his last four fights in the UFC, with some notable wins coming over Fabio Maldonado and Tom Lawlor. O’Connell will be entering the fight on a two fight losing streak, having dropped those fights to Ilir Latifi and Steve Bosse. Anderson was the light heavyweight winner of the UFC Ultimate Fighter 19, where he defeated Matt Van Buren in the finals. O’Connell’s last victory in the UFC came over Anthony Perosh at UFC Fight Night 65, the fight would be the final time Perosh would compete before retiring.

Prediction: This one is going to be a slug fest for as long as it lasts, but Anderson is better at mixing up his strikes and he finishes O’Connell in the second round.

UFC Light Heavyweight Division Fight

Saparbek Safarov (8-0-0) vs. Gian Villante (14-7-0)

Safarov will be making his UFC debut in this fight, but his last win before coming to the promotion was a win over UFC veteran Rodney Wallace. Villante has rotated wins and losses in his last four UFC appearances, with his last fight being a loss to Ilir Latifi at UFC 196. Safarov has only seen one of his eight professional MMA fights go past the first round, that fight was the aforementioned win over Rodney Wallace. Villante will be competing on his first “fight night” card in over two years, his last appearance was a win over Sean O’Connell at UFC Fight Night 43.

Prediction: Safarov is coming into this fight as a late replacement and he has had about a week’s time to prepare for the fight, Villante uses his superior boxing to pick apart Safarov for a second round TKO win.

Preliminary Card Quick Picks

Justine Kish over Ashley Yoder

Brian Camozzi over Randy Brown

Joe Gigliotti over Gerald Meerschaert

Trevor Smith over Andrew Sanchez

Tiago Trator over Shane Burgos

Frankie Perez over Marc Diakiese

Keith Berish over Ryan Janes

Juliana Lima over JJ Aldrich

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