Michael Graves vs. Bojan Velickovic UFC 201 Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 7/30/16
Velickovic vs. Graves
UFC: Saturday, July 30, 2016 (Philips Arena)
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Michael Graves and Bojan Velickovic fight Saturday night on UFC 201 at the Philips Arena.
Michael Graves enters this fight with a 6-0 record and has won 50 percent of his fights by knockout. This will be Graves’ third fight since 2015, and he’s coming off a April win over Randy Brown. Graves is averaging 1.69 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 56.7 percent. Graves is averaging six takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 52.9 percent. Graves has lived up to the hype so far, as he’s now 2-0 in UFC and just gave Rude Boy his first career loss. Graves has been a takedown machine and has won two of his last three fights by submission. We knew Graves has knockout striking power coming into the UFC, but his wrestling and grappling is impressive for a 25-year-old. This will be Graves’ first fight in Atlanta.
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Bojan Velickovic enters this fight with a 14-3 record and has won 57 percent of his fights by submission. Velickovic has won five straight fights and is coming off a April win over Alessio Di Chirico. Velickovic is averaging three significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 33.3 percent. Velickovic is averaging one takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 20 percent. Velickovic shined in his UFC debut after giving Di Chirico his first loss by unanimous decision. Velickovic has been on quite a roll lately and would love to make another statement in this match. Velickovic is a grinder at heart who is at his best when grappling and has a decent wrestling game as well. The concern is that Velickovic doesn’t have a great striking attack, so he’ll need to get this fight on the canvas in order to have a shot.
I really like Graves and his potential. And while he hasn’t beaten any worldbeaters up to this point, he’s still 6-0 and has finished five of his six victories. I’m also not sure Velickovic will be able to handle the versatility of Graves, as the American can hold his own on the canvas as well as striking. This is a fight where Velickovic may not have the advantage with the takedowns.
I look for Graves to remain undefeated.