Which winning streak will end?
Local favourite Charles Oliveira takes on Kevin Lee in Saturday night’s headline fight, inside Nilson Nelson Gymnasium in Brasilia, Brazil. Oliveira won’t have everything his own way, with opponent Lee looking to ride the momentum from his big KO win versus Gregor Gillespie at Madison Square Garden last November. However, the no 13-ranked Oliveira enters the Octagon® with a phenomenal six-fight win streak behind him, including a 90 second knockout victory in his most recent bout last November against Jared Gordon. Whose winning streak will come to an end?
American Kevin Lee produced a stunning knockout last time out and will be hoping to make another major statement on Saturday nightagainst Oliveira, who has the advantage of fighting on home soil. The “Motown Phenom” is best known for his great wrestling pedigree but has seen his striking evolve ten-fold. Lee’s opponent, “Do Bronx”, is a contrastingly more unorthodox striker, pressuring his opponents with an array of leg kicks and power strikes. While observers might argue this leaves Oliveira vulnerable to getting taken down, 18 of his 28 professional wins have been by submission. This promises to be a truly fascinating headline bout.
The Quiet Storm arrives
A hugely intriguing bout is also on the cards, as Randa “Quiet Storm” Markos takes on Amanda Ribas, aiming for back-to-back victories for the first time since winning her opening three career MMA bouts back in 2012. The 34-year-old Canadian– of Iraqi descent – has overcome numerous obstacles in her life up till this point, with her family having been held imprisoned during the Iran-Iraq War of the 1980s. Markos is considered to be a dominating fighter, that has the ability to ground her opponents, ensuring a favourable grappling exchange will take place.
Ribas, fighting on her own Brazilian turf – is regarded as a more refined striker with exceptional footwork and head movement that allows her to escape her opponent’s and counter well. UFC veteran Markos will be wary of Ribas’ tendency to throw jabs that tease her opponents into a reaction, leaving them vulnerable to Ribas’ trademark takedown. Brazil’s 26-year-old– who’s at the opposite end of her career to the experienced Markos – truly made her mark in the UFC® during 2019 by winning her first two bouts. She will undoubtedly rely on her notoriously powerful strikes and fast movement to make up for her inferior experience against Markos. Both athletes bring an interesting combination of stand up and ground game, which makes this bout not one to miss.
Bosnian Damir Hadzovic will be looking to cause a huge upset on Saturday night when he faces Brazilian native Renato Moicano in a lightweight bout. Despite the fact Moicano will be making his debut in the division – usually competing at featherweight – and that Hadzovic has won 9 of his last 12 bouts, the Bosnian will likely enter the Octagon as the contest’s underdog. A dual-threat, Hadzovic has legitimate knockout and submission ability, with 7 wins by KO and 3 by submission in his career to date.
Despite his relative inexperience, however, Moicano possesses proven quality and is currently ranked as the No. 7 UFC featherweight contender before making the step up to the 155lb division. Moicano has won 8 of his 11 contests and is a serious contender on the ground, with 6 of his 13 career wins coming via submission. While both men are well rounded athletes, Moicano will be determined the fight plays out on their feet, regarded as the more refined and varied striker of the pair. It all points to yet another exciting match-up on this card brimming with Brazilian flair and the many talented European challengers hoping to spoil the party.
Kevin “The Motown Phenom” Lee vs. Charles “Do Bronx” Oliveira
Demian Maia vs. Gilbert “Durinho” Burns
Amanda Ribas vs. Randa “Quiet Storm” Markos
Renato Moicano vs. Damir Hadzovic
Johnny Walker vs. Nikita “The Miner” Krylov
Bruno “Bulldog” Silva vs David Dvorak
Francisco “Massaranduba” Trinaldo vs. John “The Bull” Makdessi
Elizeu “Capoeira” Dos Santos vs. Aleksei Kunchenko
Rani Yahya vs. Enrique “El Fuerte” Barzola
Jussier Formiga vs. Brandon “The Assassin Baby” Moreno
Mayra “Sheetara” Bueno Silva vs. Maryna “Iron Lady” Moroz
Veronica Macedo vs Bea Malecki