UFC Fight Night 132: Bleacher Report Main Card Staff Predictions

Steven Rondina@srondinaFeatured ColumnistJune 21, 2018

UFC Fight Night 132: Bleacher Report Main Card Staff Predictions

0 of 4

    Steve Marcus/Getty Images

    The UFC is back, and it's taking a trip to Singapore this week for a special Saturday morning Fight Night card.

    Outside an interesting main event that features the up-and-coming Leon Edwards trying to make a name off fan favorite and veteran Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone, the Fight Night 132 card is largely stacked with young Asian and Australian talent. The full card is as follows:

    Main Card (UFC Fight Pass)

    • Donald Cerrone vs. Leon Edwards
    • Ovince Saint Preux vs. Tyson Pedro
    • Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Jessica Eye
    • Li Jingliang vs. Daichi Abe

    Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass)

    • Teruto Ishihara vs. Petr Yan
    • Felipe Arantes vs. Song Yadong
    • Rolando Dy vs. Shane Young
    • Song Kenan vs. Hector Aldana
    • Shinsho Anzai vs. Jake Matthews
    • Yan Xiaonan vs. Viviane Pereira
    • Matt Schnell vs. Naoki Inoue
    • Jenel Lausa vs. Ulka Sasaki
    • Ji Yeon Kim vs. Melinda Fabian

    Naturally, the Bleacher Report staff picks team is here to break down the top-billed fights on the card and give you some serious spoilers for the event. 

    So who's coming out on top on Saturday? Read on to find out.

Li Jingliang vs. Daichi Abe

1 of 4

    Li Jingliang became instantly infamous when he eye-gouged his way out of this guillotine choke.
    Li Jingliang became instantly infamous when he eye-gouged his way out of this guillotine choke.Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

    Matt Ryder

    Jingliang has been a pretty steady player on the UFC roster for a while now, though he's coming off a loss. Abe is as well, but as you'll see in many of my picks for this event, I lean toward experience if I have to.

    Jingliang, unanimous decision

       

    Scott Harris

    Jingliang cemented his heel status in February by attempting to dig the eyeballs from Jake Matthews' head. The ref chuckled along for fun—what are you gonna do, right? But the joke was on them. Matthews won and maintained sight in both eyes! Jingliang recovers his footing Saturday by outclinching and then outslugging Abe.

    Jingliang, TKO, Rd. 3

       

    Nathan McCarter

    Not much to add here. Jingliang should be able to pick up another solid victory to extend his UFC career. Favorable matchmaking gets him back in the win column.

    Jingliang, KO, Rd. 1

        

    Steven Rondina

    I'm still feeling a bit betrayed by the whole eye-gouging thing because I was starting to turn into a fan of The Leech ahead of that fight with Matthews! That said, my judgment isn't so clouded as to believe he's not the clean favorite here. He should be able to handle Abe in convincing fashion and either take a clean decision or a stoppage in the second half of the fight.

    Jingliang, TKO, Rd. 3

Ovince Saint Preux vs. Tyson Pedro

2 of 4

    Ovince Saint Preux will try to rebound after a tough loss in his last fight.
    Ovince Saint Preux will try to rebound after a tough loss in his last fight.Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

    Ryder

    OSP is coming off a somewhat surprising loss to Ilir Latifi, one that came just as it appeared he was finally rounding into the contender most thought he could someday be. Before the loss he'd won three straight. Pedro is a promising prospect who has impressed in his young career, but it feels like Saint Preux's past strength of schedule might give him the edge.

    Saint Preux, unanimous decision

       

    Harris

    Saint Preux is like a poor man's larger man's Brian Ortega. OSP is nowhere near Ortega's skill level, but they share a propensity for producing horseshoes from dark places. Ilir Latifi used wrestling to stifle Saint Preux's power, but that was one physical specimen meeting another. Pedro is razor sharp on the ground, but he won't be able to get it there with consistency.

    Saint Preux, unanimous decision

       

    McCarter

    I'll take Pedro. Saint Preux has burned me far too many times in these spots, and Pedro looks to be a true up-and-comer who can become a divisional mainstay. OSP's inconsistencies will cost him in the eyes of the judges as Pedro does enough to score on the feet over the 15 minutes.

    Pedro, unanimous decision

       

    Rondina

    Pedro could be legit, but the body of work isn't there to convince me to pick him over a top-10 staple like OSP. This is a great chance for him to break out, but I'll need to see it before I believe it.

    Saint Preux, unanimous decision

Jessica-Rose Clark vs. Jessica Eye

3 of 4

    Jessica-Rose Clark will look to gain more momentum following her win over Paige VanZant.
    Jessica-Rose Clark will look to gain more momentum following her win over Paige VanZant.Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

    Ryder

    Clark is streaking, while Eye, despite winning her UFC flyweight debut, has been skidding out of control as the owner of a 1-5 stretch dating back to 2014 before that win. Rose-Clark doesn't have great stopping power in the stand-up or ground games, and Eye is durable enough to withstand. I think she's going to continue her new flyweight life with a win.

    Eye, unanimous decision

       

    Harris

    This is Eye's second fight of 2018 after missing two years because of a hiatus and a string of bad luck. It's also her second as a UFC flyweight. She has a volume-striking approach, but what do you know? So does Clark. According to statkeeper  FightMetric, Clark has the edge in both striking output and accuracy. But hold the phone. Eye is a veteran who will stay poised in the "eye" of the storm, if you will. Good wrestling and a great jab carry the Clevelander to a mild upset victory.

    Eye, unanimous decision

       

    McCarter

    Matthew mentioned Eye's downturn, but that is a very misleading stat. Eye was a former No. 1-ranked flyweight who moved up and suffered defeats to some of the best bantamweights in the world. The only stain during that run was the confusing performance against Bethe Correia. Eye wants to prove she is still at the top of the flyweight game, but her last outing gave us more questions than answers.

    I'm very tempted to go with Clark, but I am going against my better judgment. Eye's boxing should still be a bit better than Clark's, and her wrestling will give her something to fall back on if Clark's output creates problems. It'll be close, but Eye emerges as the next contender for the winner of Nicco Montano vs. Valentina Shevchenko.

    Eye, unanimous decision

       

    Rondina

    I think you're all a bit too high on Eye. Yes, she was undersized at 135 pounds; yes, she faced some stiff competition; and, yes, she came out on the bad end of a couple of split decisions, but she didn't chance her way into her 2-5 (1) Octagon record. I'm not saying Clark is a worldbeater, but Eye has struggled against all levels of UFC competition at this point. That won't change here against somebody on a solid hot streak.

    Clark, unanimous decision

Donald Cerrone vs. Leon Edwards

4 of 4

    Leon Edwards will look for the biggest win of his career in Singapore.
    Leon Edwards will look for the biggest win of his career in Singapore.Suhaimi Abdullah - Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

    Ryder

    I believe I said this right before Darren Till smashed him to pieces, but Cerrone tends to beat guys that he should beat. Often, he does it swiftly and impressively. I don't see anything on the resume of Edwards to suggest he has the tools to dispatch "Cowboy," so I'm taking the vet.

    Cerrone, submission, Rd. 2

       

    Harris

    I'm afraid Cerrone's slide continues in Singapore. Cowboy is all offense in all phases; that won't get it done against a more powerful and well-rounded foe in Edwards, who can use wrestling or brawling to gain the advantage. Cerrone is getting craftier as he attempts to stop the spiral, and he'll win again before he's gone, but OddsShark has Edwards as the favorite for a reason.

    Edwards, TKO, Rd. 2

       

    McCarter

    I was hoping to be the lone person to take Edwards here, but I see Scott is being a party pooper. I'm favoring the younger guy being put in a spot to shine against a popular vet. This is Edwards' chance to get more recognition. He'll stop Cerrone and prove that Father Time shows no favoritism.

    Edwards, TKO, Rd. 2

       

    Rondina

    Yeah, Cerrone is past his prime, but let's not forget that he's not on a three-fight skid anymore. He returned in February and pasted a solid youngster in Yancy Medeiros. Is Edwards better than Medeiros? Maybe! But I'd bet the difference isn't so huge as to result in a different outcome.

    Cerrone, TKO, Rd. 2