It’s rare to run into a “0 Must Go” situation in the UFC, but that’s the exact scenario UFC officials decided to create by bringing in both unbeaten newcomers. Patrick has been fighting for a little over five years, taking some time off during his run, while Whiteley is fairly fresh-faced with his professional debut coming in 2010. He’s also a finisher by trade with stoppages in all seven of his victories including six in the first frame of action. Patrick has his fair of TKOs/submissions as well, but has also shown an ability to go the distance en route to victory as well. The effort should result in a well-matched affair with Whiteley’s explosiveness proving to be the difference in terms of determining a winner. / PREDICTION – Garett Whiteley def. Alan Patrick via TKO This is an important match-up for both flyweights, as each is looking to avoid a three-fight losing streak and potentially a pink-slip as a result. However, fans shouldn’t dismiss their respective abilities simply because of back-to-back stumbles. Cariaso’s grappling is some of the division’s best, while Santos has shown an ability to stop opponents with strikes or submissions. Their bout is arguably the best preliminary pairing on the card and could definitely end up producing a Fight of the Night contender. Expect Santos’ well-rounded ability to prove to be a little too much for Cariaso, earning him the judges’ favor. / PREDCITION – Iliarde Santos def. Chris Cariaso via Decision Folks who love a good grappling match should be on the edge of their seats for this showdown. Mitchell has submitted nine of the opponents he’s beaten, while Cabral is a perfect 10-for-10 in that department. That being said, neither man has a finish inside the Octagon, so an impressive outing in Brazil is definitely crucial when it comes to future opportunities. Also, Mitchell has stumbled in three of his last four fights so he’s in a “must win” position. Unfortunately for the California native, Cabral’s BJJ is a little too good for him to contend with, so outside of employing a strategy aimed at keeping things standing it’s going to be tough for Mitchell to avoid defeat. / PREDICTION – Yan Cabral def. David Mitchell via Decision Surprisingly, this fight will mark the Octagon debut for TUF 16 alumnus Araujo based on lackluster nature of the season’s contestants. With a victory earlier this year – his fourth straight – Araujo was given a shot on the sport’s biggest stage, though he definitely has a steep hill to climb in Alcantara. The 30-year old Brazilian is on a nine-fight winning streak and has the skill to score stoppages from any position. Araujo’s reliance on submissions to win should ultimately cost him, as Alcantara has never been tapped and is a solid grappler as well. / PREDICTION – Ildemar Alcantara def. Igor Araujo via TKO Unfortunately, this fight was cancelled over the weekend based on Damm dealing with some health issues. The removal of the rumble was definitely a blow to the undercard based on the energy and ability each brings into the ring. Damm’s BJJ is some of the best out there at 145 pounds, while Dias is also an excellent grappler with ever-improving stand-up. Their duel would no doubt have been fun to watch unfold, so hopefully the UFC will look at rebooking it for a future event (possibly on November 9 when the UFC returns to Brazil for UFN 32). Had they fought, chances are good Dias would have exited the Octagon with his hand raised.
When tuning in to the
UFC’s undercard offerings it’s not uncommon to see half-empty arenas filled with listless fans. However, that won’t be the case on Wednesday night when the organization sets up shop in Brazil for . The fight-friendly nation has traditionally embraced all the action in the Octagon, cheering as loudly for the first set of scrappers as the main event match-up. And, given some of the talent on display at this week’s event, they should have plenty of reason to make noise. (Photos by USA Today Sports Images) UFC Fight Night 29