20 UFC Prospects To Watch For This Year

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Adrian Yanez, UFC Vegas 43 Weigh-In Credit: Alex Behunin/Cageside Press

Bantamweight, Adrian Yanez (15-3)

Yanez is the most obvious choice on this list. He closed out the year in 2020 by earning a UFC contract on the Contender Series and winning his UFC debut. Yanez had a big year in 2021 going 3-0. He beat Davey Grant in a war while finishing Randy Costa and Gustavo Lopez. All four of his UFC fights have been bonus winners: he’s earned two Fight of the Night and two Performance of the Night bonuses. His boxing is some of the sharpest in the division and he has that killer instinct. Yanez is poised for a big fight this year.

Alex Pereira, UFC 268 ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

 Middleweight, Alex Pereira (4-1)

All eyes are on Alex Pereira when he fights. He’s known more as the only person to knock out UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya (in kickboxing), but has now crossed over to the UFC. A former Glory middleweight and light heavyweight kickboxing champion, he made his promotional debut last year against Andreas Michailidis. Although round one was tough on him he got back to his winning ways in round two scoring the flying knee knockout. Pereira is just such a dangerous guy every second the fight is standing. He fights fellow knockout artist Bruno Silva in March, and I heavily favor Pereira in that one.

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