The Bloody Elbow group has filed its predictions for UFC 231, and while everyone who wrote up something chosen Max Holloway over Brian Ortega, entire opinion is rather divided. As for the co-main occasion, things are divided as to who will prevail between Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Valentina Shevchenko. It’s excellent to have toss-up title conflicts such as these two, is not it?
Note: Predictions are entered throughout the week and collected the day prior to the event. Explanations behind every pick aren’t required and a few writers elect to not do so for their own reasons. By way of example, if Phil Mackenzie entered all his predictions on Wednesday without adding in any explanations, he has no idea if he’s going to be the only one siding with a single fighter for any specific fight.
Max Holloway vs. Brian Ortega
Anton Tabuena: This really is fairly simple to me. Barring any weird health difficulties, Max Holloway should fully run through Ortega here. Holloway is just better and a lot more dangerous than all the other folks Ortega has beaten. That is clearly still MMA and Ortega has proven that he has adequate power, but he definitely won’t pick apart someone as technically proficient as Holloway. I think this will look a lot like Ortega’s past bouts, but he will have a far worse beating and won’t have the ability to fix that magic comeback. Max Holloway by TKO.
Mookie Alexander: There is a degree of unsustainability to Ortega’s love of completing battles over winning rounds, and Holloway is a masterful rounded winner. I am obviously assuming we’re receiving the ideal edition of Max Holloway, so that’s the secret here. Ortega has grown tremendously as a striker, but up until this stage, Holloway has shown a ridiculous chin and he is probably not the person who you want to engage in a high-paced brawl with. Ortega loves the jumping guillotine, I suspect Holloway is going to be prepared for that, and he is a damn good grappler in his very own right. Takedowns are improbable on either side, and Ortega specifically has shown himself to be not particularly great at shooting down his opponents in the first location. While Ortega is extremely dangerous based on what we’ve seen out of him lately conflicts, I still trust Holloway to do more harm and prevent the timeless Ortega comeback. Max Holloway by decision.
Zane Simon: Ortega’s fight against Frankie Edgar was something of a sin. He has always been always been reckless, but that was the first time his striking style – built around a lot slicker moves and frequently a lack of fundamental ones – has looked like a complete game. He worked behind the jab, feinted, pulled out predictable answers and changed up his entries to club Frankie into unconsciousness. It was damn pretty. Additionally, it means that it is difficult to say just how much more advanced Ortega could be now. Without seeing more consistency and variety into his game, and without seeing an ability to maintain output over multiple hard hitting rounds, I have to pick Holloway. His ability to push a speed then to up that pace because his competitors tire, his capacity to modify targets in combination and open up new combinations off earlier, simpler ones, just are not abilities that Ortega has revealed yet. And Ortega still has a history of dropping rounds he has not completed the fight in. Despite Max’s health scare, the majority of the queries are on Ortega’s side and nearly all of the replies are around Holloway’s. Max Holloway by decision.
Victor Rodriguez: Neither guy is going to be seeking to take down the other, and Holloway’s clinch game is deadly. Having said that, Ortega’s been a guy I’ve counted out in so many fights, I just feel dumb picking against him. He ought to have a range drawback and Max’s frenetic pace should make this hard for him because of volume, but Ortega does not get hit that far and seems to keep finding ways to pull a rabbit from his hat. I want to pick Ortega by diving for a flying armbar in the clinch scenario, but that’s a small reckless for me personally. And while I’m still worried about the fact that we don’t know what health issues Holloway had last time, it seems that the man that wears harm well and has a more comprehensive and written approach to his attacks should be able to take over as the fight goes on and employ pressure so. Max Holloway by decision.
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