Wonderboy vs Till is a fight that I’ve been looking forward to since it was announced. This is going to be a technical stand up battle with a lot of action. This UFC Fight Night card is taking place in Liverpool, which means it will begin here in the Eastern Time Zone at 9:30am on Fight Pass. The main card gets underway at 1pm EST and the Till vs Wonderboy main event should take place around 3pm.
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Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson vs Darren Till
Darren Till is a beast, but this is an awful matchup for him. Till is going to stand and bang with Wonderboy, which is a very tall task to say the least. Till was able to overpower Cerrone in his last win, which is really the only high level win of his MMA career. Cerrone is the smaller man at welterweight and he simply couldn’t handle the constant pressure and big left hand of Till.
Wonderboy though has the best striking footwork in the game. He will be able to circle away from Till and find angles to plant and land his own offense. Counter striking is what makes Wonderboy elite. Woodley, who in my opinion tied Wonderboy twice, simply never engaged in the striking, so Wonderboy had a tough time being the initiator, especially against a fighter with the power wrestling shot that Woodley possesses. Against Till, Wonderboy does not have to worry as much about being taken down, and he should be able to get his counterstriking game going.
Also, people think Till is a huge KO machine after his Cerrone win, but the fact is he went to decision his previous three fights. Don’t get me wrong, Till has power in his hands, but I don’t think there is a very good chance that he KO’s Thompson. And if this fight stays standing and goes to points, Wonderboy is an elite point fighter on the feet. Just look at his win over Rory MacDonald. I think this will be another stand up clinic similar to the Rory fight and possibly with a KO if Till gets overaggressive once he realizes he’s down on the scorecards.
Don’t get me wrong, I think Till could be a future champ. But there are levels to this game and Till is coming up too quickly. He will take this loss and come back better.
Play: Thompson -160
Neil Magny vs Craig White
Magny is a fade for me in most of his UFC fights. I feel like he’s a fraud who should not be anywhere near the top 15 in the rankings. He’s coming off a win over Carlos Condit, but anyone with any takedown offense at all can beat this version of Condit with ease. His other recent win was over Johny Hendricks, which he won by throwing up submissions from his back because Hendricks thought lay and pray still won fights in the UFC. His two losses in his last four fights were both first round finishes to Lorenz Larkin and Rafael Dos Anjos, who each caught him with a big shot and finished the fight early. Magny does not deserve to be in the top 15 and he will be exposed soon.
The question is whether or not Craig White has enough to expose Magny in this fight and take advantage of his amazing opportunity to come into the UFC on late notice and put himself on the map with a win of the most over rated ranked fighter in the division. This is the perfect opportunity for Craig White and I think he takes advantage of it. White has strung together four straight wins in Cage Warriors after dropping down to welterweight. Each of these wins was by finish and his recent win was over a very strong fighter in Alex Montagnani. Even looking back at White’s losses at middleweight a couple years back, he lost to Oskar Piechota, who is now a 2-0 UFC fighter, and Mike Shipman who is now 11-1 and recently finished 3 straight fights in Bellator. These aren’t bad losses.
Overall, I’m not sure if White is ready for this step up in competition, but the fact is that I don’t think it’s that big of a step up to Magny. As long as White comes in to the fight in shape and doesn’t get out-cardio’d by Magny he should actually have the better offensive weapons and I see him finishing this fight when the opportunity presents itself.
Play: White +360
Arnold Allen vs Mads Burnell
I’m going with Allen in this one. He’s the brighter prospect and he’s taken over a year off since that split decision win over Makwan Amirkhani. I’m not convinced Burnell is of UFC caliber and I think Allen gets a nice win on his record and gets more active as a top prospect in the division.
Play: Allen -270
Jason Knight vs Makwan Amirkhani
Amirkhani is also back in action for the first time since that split decision loss to Arnold Allen over a year ago. He is fighting Jason Knight who has lost two straight. I think the template is out on Jason Knight and his rubber guard. He put those four nice wins together in the UFC in late 2016 and early 2017, but I think he has a lot of mileage on his chin and I expect Amirkhani to test it.
Play: Amirkhani +130
Davey Grant vs Manny Bermudez
This is a tough fight to call between a couple of great submission grapplers. Davey Grant had a lot of hype coming into the UFC from TUF 18, but his recent loss to Damian Stasiak raised a lot of questions about the Brit. That said, I think this fight is a dog or pass spot. There just isn’t enough of a sample size against quality competition to know what level Bermudez is truly at.
Play: Grant +180
Eric Spicely vs Darren Stewart
Spicely doesn’t look like much in the octagon, but he’s able to find a way to beat lower level fighters thanks to his jiu jitsu and fight IQ. I think Stewart falls into that category. Look for Spicely to find a way to get a submission in this fight and keep his UFC career alive.
Play: Spicely -208