UFC 245 Preview: Usman vs Covington

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UFC 245 will be held at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on December 15 (AEDT) and is headlined by a UFC Welterweight fight between current champion Kamaru Usman and Interim champion Colby Covington.

To say there is bad blood between these two would be an understatement and they finally get their chance to settle their differences in the Octagon this weekend to unify the Welterweight Division.

There two other title fights taking place on the card also.

Australia’s own Alexander Volkanovski will be putting his unbeaten UFC record on the line when he attempts to steal Max Holloway’s Featherweight belt off him in the co-main event.

Amanda Nunes will be looking to defend her Bantamweight title for a record fifth time against Germaine de Randamie, a woman she has already beaten inside the Octagon back in 2013.

Also on the card is Jose Aldo first crack at Bantamweight against Marlon Moraes and Petr Yan takes on stalwart Urijah Faber.

It may have taken until December but we have arguably the best card of the year coming up on Sunday.

We have previewed every fight on the Main Card and hopefully we can steer you into a few winners.

UFC 245 Main Card

Sunday December 15 12PM AEDT

Main Event

Kamaru Usman Vs Colby Covington

UFC Welterweight Championship

The cringeworthy showboating and fake hype is over people. Kamaru Usman will finally defend his Welterweight title against the enigma of Colby Covington on Sunday in Vegas.

Usman won his strap back in March with an incredible performance against possibly the greatest UFC Welterweight of all time in Tyron Woodley.

His pressure was relentless and he dominated the fight from start to finish. That was his 14th consecutive professional win and he is undefeated inside the UFC promotion.

Like Usman, Covington has just the one career loss to his name back in 2015 however he is currently riding a winning streak of seven fights.

This includes unanimous decision wins over Demian Maia, Rafael dos Anjos and Robbie Lawler in his last three fights.

He set a new UFC record when he threw 600 strikes against Lawler, dominating the veteran with his relentless pressure. He also managed a mammoth 10 take downs to control the fight from start to finish.

Both men have an extremely similar style. Both are pressure fighters who rely on their wrestling to control fights and both men do their best work when in attack mode.

Kamaru Usman has won eight of his last nine fights by unanimous decision and Covington five of his last five. Despite this damning stat, I think both fighters styles create the perfect storm for a finish and there is plenty of value for this fight to be finished within the five rounds.

For the record, I think Covington wins the fight.

Back The Fight To NOT Go The Distance

Back Colby Covington To Win In Rounds 1, 2 or 3

Co-Main Event

Max Holloway Vs Alexander Volkanovski

UFC Featherweight Championship

Max Holloway is looking to defend his Featherweight title for a fourth time as he takes on Aussie Alexander Volkanovski in the co-main event on Sunday.

Holloway’s 13 fight win streak came to an end when he stepped up in weight to attempt to win the Lightweight title against Dustin Poirier in April. A fight he lost by decision.

The fact that he was willing to first, step up in weight and fight, and then go the distance with a killer like Poirier, tells you all you need to know about the Hawaiian.

He destroyed former champion Jose Aldo in back to back fights before rearranging the face, and career trajectory, of Brian Ortega. He then all but ended any chance Frankie Edger had of ever fighting for a title again in July at UFC 240.

He meets another beast that is on the rise in the (nugget) shape of Alexander Volkanovski who has amassed 17 wins in a row and lost just one in his professional career.

A former front row prop playing rugby league in Sydney who weighed 95+kgs, he has torn through the division and now gets his chance to be the only Australian UFC champion after Robert Whittaker lost his title in October.

This is another very interesting fight and just like the main event, both fighters rely on their pressure to wear down their opponents. Both guys are incredible strikers who are not afraid to stand in the phone booth and throw down.

I find it incredibly hard to tip against Max Holloway. He is the GOAT of the Featherweight division. He has a very solid chin and because of the fact that he throws so many punches and combinations, it makes it very hard to beat him on points.

I’ll be cheering on our Aussie hope but I can’t find a way to be betting in this one. Sit back and enjoy!

No Bet

Main Card

Amanda Nunes Vs Germaine De Randamie

UFC Bantamweight Championship

Amanda Nunes is the greatest women’s Mixed Martial Artist of all time. There is no disputing that now.

She became the first woman to hold two belts simultaneously when she defeated Cris Cyborg this time last year and she is looking to defend her Bantamweight title for a record fifth time when she takes on Germaine de Randamie this weekend.

She seemingly has no flaws in her game and she has become a brutal knock out artist. Her head kick and TKO win against Holly Holm in July was vicious and proved just how dangerous she can be.

Germaine de Randamie has won every single fight she has contested since her last loss, to Nunes, back in 2013.

She is not a very active fighter, having only fought once a year since 2013, however her record speaks for itself.

She was the UFC’s inaugural Featherweight champion however she was stripped of the title amid concerns she was ducking Cris Cyborg. Something we certainly do not blame her for!

Germaine de Randamie is used to fighting larger women and she gets that here in Amanda Nunes.

It’s hard to see Nunes losing a fight the way she has dominated in recent times and I can’t see her losing this one either.

Back Amanda Nunes To Win @ $1.33

Marlon Moraes Vs Jose Aldo

UFC Bantamweight Championship

Jose Aldo is having his first fight at Bantamweight inside the UFC and he will face Marlon Moraes on Sunday in Vegas.

Aldo defended his Featherweight title a record seven times before he lost it to Conor McGregor back in 2015. He then regained it against Frankie Edgar only six months later.

It was a tough road back to the belt after he initially lost the belt again to Max Holloway and then failed in a rematch however wins over Jeremy Stephens and Renato Moicano gave everyone hope of an unlikely rise again.

Alexander Volanovski put an end to his challenge at Featherweight and he now finds himself fighting at the lighter weight. Some have had their say after photos were released of Aldo looking a little unhealthy however we will find out just how much the weight cut has taken it’s toll on Sunday.

Marlon Moraes entered the UFC on a 13 professional win streak however he lost his initial challenge against Raphael Assuncao via a split decision.

He went on to win his next four straight including a rematch against Assuncao in February this year.

He got his chance at the Bantamweight strap against Henry Cejudo in June and more than held his own when the fight was on the feet.

He was held down for large chunks of the fight and I actually thought the referee stopped the fight early.

This is a tough ask for Jose Aldo and the fact of the matter is that he just isn’t the same fighter that he once was.

Whilst I understand the decision to drop down a division I think he has chosen a very tough opponent in Moraes. A decision that will back fire.

Back Marlon Moraes To Win

Petr Yan Vs Urijah Faber

UFC Bantamweight Championship

This is a classic example of an up and comer being thrown to an experienced stalwart.

A move the UFC has used for years and this will be a really good test for Petr Yan who takes on Urijah Faber to open the Main Card.

Urijah Faber is a veteran of the sport having fought for the Bantamweight title on three separate occasions at UFC 132, UFC 149 and UFC 199. He lost all three fights.

He retired after his win over Brad Pickett in his home town of Sacramento in 2016 however flipped on this in July when he returned with a win over Ricky Simon.

Petr Yan has tasted defeat just once in his 14 fight professional career and he is undefeated in five fights in the UFC promotion.

He has decision wins over John Dodson and Jimmie Rivera at his last two however this is his toughest test to date.

This is not going to be an easy fight for Yan however I have him winning the fight by decision.

Back Petr Yan To Win By Decision

Geoff Neal Vs Mike Perry

UFC Welterweight Championship

Ketlen Vieira Vs Irene Aldana

UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship

Matt Brown Vs Ben Saunders

UFC Welterweight Championship

Chase Hooper Vs Daniel Teymur

UFC Featherweight Championship

Brandon Moreno Vs Kai Kara France

UFC Flyweight Championship

Jessica Eye Vs Viviane Araujo

UFC Women's Flyweight Championship

Punahele Vs Oskar Piechota

UFC Middleweight Championship