Three belts are on the line to headline UFC 245 and Cageside Press has its picks set for the highly-anticipated event.
|Jason Payne (176-100)|
|Joe McDonagh (170-98)|
|Keith Shillan (132-81)|
|Gabriel Gonzalez (164-112)|
|Josh Evanoff (161-110)|
|Jay Anderson (162-114)|
|Dan Doherty (160-116)|
|Mike McClory (114-85)|
|Eddie Law (97-90)|
|Chris Prawdzik (2-2)|
|Dylan Bowker (0-0)|
The main event of UFC 245 is a grudge match for the welterweight title between champion Kamaru Usman and brash challenger Colby Covington. Usman is undefeated at 10-0 in the Octagon, systematically dominating nearly all of his opponents. Covington is on a seven-fight win streak and is a very solid 10-1 in the UFC. Seven of eleven writers believe Usman will defend his belt.
In the second of three title fights, Alexander Volkanovski will get his long-overdue shot at Max Holloway’s belt. Volkanovski has torn through his seven opponents since joining the promotion, including former dominant champion Jose Aldo. Holloway, of course, is one of the pound-for-pound greats, having won 14 of his last 15 fights. All but one writer chose the champion Holloway.
Kicking off the slate of title fights will be the greatest female fighter of all time, Amanda Nunes, taking on Germaine De Randamie in a rematch. Nunes won the first bout between the two several years ago. De Randamie is undefeated in five appearances since the 2013 clash, while Nunes has won titles at bantamweight and featherweight and is victorious in her last nine fights. All but one writer believes Nunes will notch another defense.
Marlon Moraes will welcome Jose Aldo to the bantamweight division. Moraes had his vicious run of stoppages halted by Henry Cejudo and Aldo is looking to reinvent himself after a loss to Volkanovski. All but one writer picked Moraes.
The highly touted Petr Yan will face the legendary Urijah Faber to open the main card. Yan is 5-0 since joining the UFC last year, defeating longtime contenders Jimmie Rivera and John Dodson along the way. Faber recently came out of retirement and surprisingly knocked out Ricky Simon to earn a fight with a top contender like Yan. Six of eleven writers believe in Petr Yan.