The UFC recently declared its return to Sacramento, California, set for July 13 in Golden 1 Center. A number of fresh bouts are added to the card, and my initial thoughts on them are below.
Nicco Montano vs. Sara McMann, UFC Fight Night 155
Former UFC women’s flyweight champion Nicco Montano will go back to the Octagon as she moves upward into the bantamweight division when she chooses on Sara McMann. Montano (4-2) won TUF 26 with a choice win over Roxanne Modafferi back in December 2017 but hasn’t competed since then as a result of some USADA violation and many problems making weight. She conducted through the competition on TUF, but so far has not done anything in the UFC. Perhaps moving up in fat can help her out, but it’s difficult to say at this point. McMann (11-5) 5-5 overall from the UFC and hasn’t won a fight as a 2017 entry win over Gina Mazany. Ever since then she’s dropped back-to-back entry defeats to Ketlen Vieira and Marion Reneau and looks like a shell of her former self. This is fantastic matchmaking here and also an intriguing fashion matchup, but with bettors definitely seeking to fade McMann I would expect Montano for a slight favorite in this one.
Ryan Hall vs. Darren Elkins, UFC 155
Featherweights Ryan Hall and Darren Elkins are place to battle. Hall (7-1) won TUF 22 and has since moved 3-0 at the UFC with wins over Artem Lobov, Gray Maynard, and in his last outing, a gorgeous heel hook submission win over BJ Penn.. He hardly fights, but if he does he has showed some great potential. Elkins (24-7) is 14-6 overall in the UFC but has dropped back-to-back conflicts to Ricardo Lamas and Alexander Volkanovski. Still, he is among the toughest fighters at 145lbs there is. Although Hall is an excellent grappler, Elkins should have the ability to neutralize him, and awarded all of his success in the UFC he should be the favorite in this struggle.
Cynthia Calvillo vs. Livia Renata Souza, UFC 155
A fascinating women’s strawweight bout between Cynthia Calvillo and Livia Renata Souza can also be set for this card. Calvillo (8-1) is 5-1 in the UFC and has won back fights over Poliana Botelho and Cortney Casey since her lone career loss to Carla Esparza. Souza (13-1) is currently riding a four-fight win streak and has won both of her UFC bouts over Alex Chambers and Sarah Frota. This is a great fight between two of their best strawweights on the planet. If I had to guess, Calvillo will be a small favored due to having more UFC experience and a bigger name, but Souza absolutely is a live dog to win this fight.
Benito Lopez vs. Martin Day, UFC 155 And lastly, bantamweight prospects Benito Lopez and Martin Day are set to battle. Lopez (9-1) is 1-1 in the UFC with a decision win over Albert Morales and a submission loss to Manny Bermudez in his final outing, the initial loss of his MMA career. However, he’s only 25 and stays a top prospect in 135lbs. Day (8-3) lost a split decision to Pingyuan Liu in his UFC debut last year. Although dawn is a solid fighter, Lopez has far more upside and ought to be the preferred here.
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