Ronaldo Souza vs. Derek Brunson UFC Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 1/27/18
Brunson vs. Souza
UFC: Sunday, January 27, 2018 (Spectrum Center)
The Line: -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
Ronaldo Souza and Derek Brunson fight Saturday during UFC on Fox 27 at the Spectrum Center.
Ronaldo Souza enters this fight with a 24-5 record and has won 58 percent of his fights by submission. Souza has won 10 of his last 12 fights and is coming off a April loss to Robert Whittaker. Souza is averaging 2.28 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 44.1 percent. Souza is averaging 3.42 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 44.4 percent. Souza is coming off his first knockout loss since 2008 and has now split his last four fights overall. The good news for Souza is that he’s never lost back-to-back fights in his career and has earned performance of the night honors in three of his last four victories. Of course, when in good form, Souza is one of the more accomplished wrestlers and grapplers in the sport, who has 17 submission victories and usually always gets the fight where he wants it. However, at 38 years old, Souza isn’t getting any younger and can be vulnerable at times with his standup. This will be Souza’s first fight in North Carolina.
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Derek Brunson enters this fight with a 18-5 record and has won 61 percent of his fights by knockout. Brunson has won seven of his last 10 fights and is coming off a October win over Lyoto Machida. Brunson is averaging 3.2 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 46.3 percent. Brunson is averaging three takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 32.1 percent. Brunson has put together back-to-back victories after back-to-back losses, and he’s fresh off a first round knockout that earned him performance of the night honors. Brunson has now produced knockouts in each of his last six victories, as his last non-knockout victory came in 2014 against Lorenz Larkin. Brunson has overwhelming punching power and great speed to go along with a 77 inch reach, three things that make him an extremely dangerous fighter standing up. Brunson has also never been submitted in his career, which is key in a fight like this one. This will be Brunson’s fifth fight in North Carolina, his birthplace.
This is going to be a fun fight and a clash of styles, as Souza wants to grapple and produce takedowns, and he almost always gets it where he wants it. However, Brunson wants a standup fight where he can unleash his power and end things at any second. Whoever, gets this fight where they want it will have the advantage. While I usually side with the guy who has the better ground game, you can’t ignore the fact Brunson is the much bigger fighter with a reach advantage of five inches. Brunson is also defending 100 percent of his takedowns and has the speed advantage to counter anything Souza tries. This fight is also in North Carolina, so the place is going to be packed with Brunson supporters.
I like Brunson to get the victory here.