An incredibly anticipated middleweight title bout headlines UFC 243 and Cageside Press has its picks set for the Australian card.

Staff Writers
Tafa vs. De Castro
Jumeau vs. Lima
Tuivasa vs. Spivak
Iaquinta vs. Hooker
Whittaker vs. Adesanya
Jason Payne (152-75)
Keith Shillan (109-59)
Ryan Fortune (107-61)
Heath Harshman (144-83)
Jay Anderson (142-85)
Josh Evanoff (135-87)
Dan Doherty (136-91)
Gabriel Gonzalez (135-92)
Mike McClory (91-63)
Eddie Law (86-76)

UFC 243 is headlined by the biggest fight possible in the Australian region. New Zealanders Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya will square off for the middleweight title in the massive Marvel Stadium. Whittaker has yet to defend his title officially, but is undefeated since 2014. Adesanya has yet to lose in his career, going 17-0. Seven of 10 writers believe Whittaker will defend his title.

In the co-main event, Dan Hooker will fight on home turf against Al Iaquinta. Hooker has won five of his last six and rebounded from a tough loss to Edson Barboza with a huge KO against James Vick. Iaquinta suffered his first non-title loss since 2014 in his last fight, falling to Donald Cerrone. Six of 10 writers sided with Iaquinta.

Tai Tuivasa squares off with Sergey Spivak in a heavyweight tilt. Tuivasa started his UFC run at 3-0 but has lost both of his fights since then. Spivak started his career at 9-0 but lost quickly in his promotional debut to Walt Harris. Tuivasa was unanimously picked.

Dhiego Lima looks to make it three-in-a-row when he takes on Luke Jumeau at UFC 243. Lima is 3-5 in the Octagon across two stints, but has recently strung together wins over Court McGee and Chad Laprise. Luke Jumeau has won eight of his last nine and is 2-1 since signing with the UFC. All but one writer picked Lima.

Opening up the UFC 243 main card is another heavyweight bout between undefeated newcomers Yorgan De Castro and Justin Tafa. De Castro won via leg kick TKO on the Contender Series to improve to 5-0 and earn a contract. Tafa is 3-0 with a trio of knockouts. Tafa was unanimously picked by the Cageside Press staff.


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