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Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang - 3/2/19 UFC 235 Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang
Date & Time Saturday March 2, 2019, 10:30 PM (EST)
Location
T-Mobile Arena
Paradise, Nevada
The Line
The Line: Zhang -137 / Torres +123 -- Over/Under:
TV Channel
PPV
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MMA | Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Tecia Torres and Weili Zhang fight Saturday in UFC 235 at the T-Mobile Arena.

Tecia Torres enters this fight with a 10-3 record and has won 90 percent of her fights by decision. Torres has split her last six fights, and she’s coming off a July loss to Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Torres is averaging 4.44 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 49 percent. Torres is averaging 0.83 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 17 percent. Torres is coming off back-to-back losses, but they came against respectable fighters in Jedrzejczyk and Jessica Andrade, and she held her own in both decisions. Torres has seen 12 of her 13 career fights end in decisions, so she’s well conditioned for the laugh haul and has shown her toughness when engaging in combinations. Torres is primarily a striker who relies on her background in taekwondo, so it’s a lot of leg kicks and compact, accurate strikes. At some point I’d love to see Torres get a little more comfortable on the canvas and add some balance to her attack, but she lands enough clean strikes over the course of a fight to where she has the edge if the bout goes to the judges. Torres is very technically sound and does things the right way. This will be Torres’ fourth career fight in Las Vegas.

Weili Zhang enters this fight with a 18-1 record and has won 50 percent of her fights by knockout. Zhang has won her last 18 fights, and she’s coming off a November win over Jessica Aguilar. Zhang is averaging 4.74 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 49.3 percent. Zhang is averaging 0.95 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 22.5 percent. Zhang is now 2-0 under the UFC banner and is coming off a first round submission in which he produced two takedowns and 126 strikes in such a short time. Zhang hasn’t lost since her pro debut back in 2013, and she’s finished 16 of the bouts during this 18-fight winning streak. Zhang has a complete fighting style, as she has a background in kickboxing and is just as effective with her knees, and she has a forward, aggressive approach in her standup where she unleashes combinations. Zhang uses her athleticism for her ground game and has ended two of her last three fights via the armbar. When gaining top position, Zhang isn’t afraid to drop relentless elbows and finish the fight. This will be Zhang’s second career fight in the United States.

This is going to be a fun fight between two women who let their hands go and land accurately. The problem is Zhang is aggressive and powerful with her attacks, while Torres impresses the judges with an accurate approach and has far less pop. Power usually wins these sort of fights. Zhang also has a clear edge if this fight goes to the canvas, as she’s effective at finding submission holds and is relentless with her ground and pound if on top. I enjoy Torres’ approach and she’s crisp with her stand up, but she doesn’t have much that’s going to scare Magnum and is outclassed in terms of power and wrestling.

I hate to be so chalky with this card, but Zhang should end up winning her 19th straight fight.

Pick:
Weili Zhang

Randy Chambers has been with Sports Chat Place since 2014 and covers everything from the NFL to WNBA and tennis. Nobody works harder in this business in terms of content produced and amount of sports covered. Formerly a lead college football writer with Bleacher Report and has had his work featured at Fox Sports, CBS Sports and various other outlets.

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