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Gian Villante vs. Sam Alvey UFC Fight Night 131 Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 6/1/18

Alvey vs. Villante

UFC: Friday, June 1, 2018 (Adirondack Bank Center)

The Line: -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: FS1

Gian Villante and Sam Alvey fight Friday during UFC Fight Night 131 at the Adirondack Bank Center.

Gian Villante enters this fight with a 16-9 record and has won 63 percent of his fights by knockout. Villante has split his last 12 fights and is coming off a January win over Francimar Barroso. Villante is averaging 4.22 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 44.1 percent. Villante is averaging 0.63 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 24.1 percent. Villante is coming off a tight split decision victory in which both fighters landed 74 strikes. Villante, who has been up and down the last several years, looks for back-to-back victories for the first time since 2014-15. Everybody knows what they’re getting when fighting Villante, as he’s a powerful striker with 10 knockout victories under his belt and landing a high percentage of his significant strikes when standing up. Five of Villante’s last eight wins have come by knockout, and he defends a high percentage of takedowns, so you almost have to fight him at his game. Villante can wrestle and has never been finished on the canvas, but he has a clear advantage when able to stand up, using his power, kickboxing background and athleticism. This will be Villante’s third career fight in New York, his birthplace. 

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Gian Villante vs. Sam Alvey UFC Fight Night 131 Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 6/1/18

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Sam Alvey enters this fight with a 32-10 record and has won 59 percent of his fights by knockout. Alvey has won six of his last eight fights and is coming off a February win over Marcin Prachnio. Alvey is averaging 3.05 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 46.1 percent. Alvey is averaging 0.11 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 25 percent. Alvey is fighting for the second time this year and is coming off a first round knockout in which he landed just 14 total strikes. It was Alvey’s high heavyweight debut and one of his more impressive recent results. Alvey is a well conditioned fighter who has seen 18 of his fights end in decision, and he has a strong wrestling background despite scoring just one takedown on the UFC level. Alvey is also a polished striker who has pop in both hands, as he showed in his most recent bout. Alvey has a chance to win at least two fights each year since becoming a professional MMA fighter 10 years ago. This will be Alvey’s first career fight in New York.

Both of these guys are extremely good at defending takedowns and make their bread and butter behind their knockout power, so we could see an old fashioned standup brawl until somebody falls. If that’s the case, I have to give the edge to Villante, who is slightly the bigger fighter with the longer reach and has more variety to his strikes with his background in kickboxing. Alvey does have the stronger chin and enters this fight in better form, but this style fight is what Villante is used to and usually excels at. 

I’ll back the New Yorker in New York.

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