UFC 276: Fight Card: PPV Schedule, Odds and Predictions for Adesanya vs. Cannonier
Las Vegas will play host to a summer blockbuster in UFC 276 on Saturday featuring Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier and Alexander Volkanovski vs. Max Holloway 3, with the middleweight and featherweight titles on the line respectively.
The first of the two title fights is a trilogy with two epic chapters already in the books. Volkanovski has come out on top in the first two fights, but Holloway has proved worthy of another crack at the championship.
The final fight of the evening features another challenger trying to take away Israel Adesanya's middleweight crown. The Last Stylebender has become one of the best champions in the organization, but Cannonier will attempt to play Cinderella.
It's a great title doubleheader supported by several interesting fights throughout the night, creating one of the year's best cards.
Here's a look at the whole schedule and the burning questions that will impact the night's biggest fights.
UFC 276 Fight Card, Schedule and Odds
Main Card (ESPN+ PPV at 10 p.m. ET)
Israel Adesanya (c) -475 vs. Jared Cannonier +380 - middleweight title fight
Alexander Volkanovski (c) -200 vs. Max Holloway +170 - featherweight title fight
Sean Strickland -120 vs. Alex Pereira +100
Robbie Lawler -125 vs. Bryan Barberena +105
Pedro Munhoz +245 vs. Sean O’Malley -295
Preliminary Card (ABC, ESPN at 8 p.m. ET)
Brad Riddell +130 vs. Jalin Turner -150
Ian Garry -175 vs. Gabe Green +150
Donald Cerrone +160 vs. Jim Miller -190
Brad Tavares +130 vs. Dricus Du Plessis -150
Early Prelims (UFC Fight Pass at 6 p.m. ET)
Andre Muniz -320 vs. Uriah Hall +265
Maycee Barber -285 vs. Jessica Eye +240
Jessica-Rose Clark -150 vs. Julija Stoliarenko +130
Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook
Is Cannonier's Power an Equalizer?
To most objective observers, Israel Adesanya is a better overall striker than Jared Cannonier. His movement, timing and versatility make him one of the best—if not the best—striker in MMA right now.
While Cannonier isn't exactly rudimentary in his striking game, there is a difference.
The question is whether Cannonier's power can balance out the disparity in technical prowess. The 38-year-old is a former heavyweight, and that is apparent in his hands.
The Killa Gorilla is coming off a knockout win over Derek Brunson and has finishes against Anderson Silva, Jack Hermansson and David Branch on his resume. He didn't knock out Kelvin Gastelum, but he at least scored a knockdown in his decision win.
The problem is we've seen what happens when he runs into someone who brings a certain level of defensive striking. His power wasn't able to overcome Robert Whittaker. The former champion took out Cannonier, who only landed 53 strikes in the three-round fight, per UFC Stats.
The challenger can't be ruled out. He's more than just a brawler, but he has an uphill climb to overcome what Adesanya brings to the table.
Prediction: Adesanya via decision
Can Holloway Figure Out Volkanovski?
The first two fights between Max Holloway and Alexander Volkanovski have been beautifully violent games of chess.
Both fighters are incredible tacticians who excel at figuring out their opponents and exposing their weaknesses. The results have been 10 rounds of back-and-forth action.
Volkanovski has won twice, but both bouts were tightly contested, and there was a good argument the Hawaiian was the rightful winner in the rematch.
Now he gets one more shot to even the score against the Australian. After watching him wipe the floor with Calvin Kattar and triumph over Yair Rodriguez, it's hard to believe that Blessed has lost a step.
This is going to be another epic fight. Holloway's ability to adjust early, get off to a good start and stave off a rally from Volkanovski will be key.
Given how close the two fights have been, it just might be time for Blessed to shine.
Prediction: Holloway via decision
Will Sean Strickland Wrestle?
Sean Strickland might be reckless with his trash talk. "Tarzan" has drawn attention to himself with his antics, even challenging Israel Adesanya at a UFC 276 press conference.
However, inside the cage, he's shown some restraint. He's a strong striker but has also dug into his grappling bag to secure a few victories in the middle of his six-fight win streak.
He'll need to bring all of his tricks in his main card matchup with Alex Pereira.
The Brazilian is much less experienced in MMA, let alone the UFC. Pereira made his name in kickboxing, where he defeated Adesanya twice, but he's just 5-1 in his MMA career. That includes two UFC wins, but he's hardly proved himself against elite competition.
Strickland is on the precipice of getting into that category.
On the feet, Pereira presents significant challenges. However, he's been taken down in each of his previous two UFC fights.
If Strickland can be disciplined and stick to a wrestling-heavy game plan, he should win.
Prediction: Strickland via decision
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