(All stats according to UFC’s Record Book and Fight Metric as of July 17, 2020 and only include active athletes in their respective division unless noted otherwise)
Main Event: Deiveson Figueiredo vs Joseph Benavidez
Key Stats: 1.09 knockdowns per 15 minutes (3rd all-time among FLW), 52.5% significant strike accuracy (3rd all-time among FLW), 2.36 submissions per 15 minutes (1st all-time among FLW)
What It Means: Deiveson Figueiredo is a savage finisher in a fashion that is unique in his weight class. He walks forward and is more than willing to take a strike to give a heavier one, and once he rocks his opponent, he is adept at finishing with ground-and-pound or with slick jiu-jitsu and submission skills. His power and threats on the ground can often suffocate an opponent.
Key Stats: 5 knockout wins (1st all-time among FLW), 3.99 strikes landed per minute (5th all-time among FLW), 17 total fights (1st all-time among FLW)
What It Means: No other flyweight has more Octagon experience than Joseph Benavidez, and throughout his career, he has shown a propensity for landing the power shot. Moreover, his best skill might come in the grappling department. Few flyweights can scramble at the level Benavidez can, making him a hard puzzle to figure out in the Octagon.
What to Look For in the Fight: The first matchup showed a bit of each fighter doing what he does best. Benavidez darted in and out throwing heavy combinations, but Figueiredo had more significant moments, including a deep armbar attempt in the first round that Benavidez scrambled to escape and the finishing strike in the second round. What adjustments Benavidez makes now that he felt Figueiredo’s power and what Figueiredo changes after seeing Benavidez’s speed and well-rounded attack makes the difference in the rematch.
Co-Main Event: Jack Hermansson vs Kelvin Gastelum
Key Stats: +2.57 striking differential (1st all-time among MW), 5.13 strikes landed per minute (3rd all-time among MW), 27.1% control time
What It Means: Jack Hermansson is an aggressive human being. Five of his UFC wins have come by first-round finish. He likes to swarm his opponents with his high-paced, rangy striking, and if the chance presents itself, he’ll pounce on a rocked foe to lock up a submission.
Top Finishes: Kelvin Gastelum
Top Finishes: Kelvin Gastelum
Key Stats: 0.8 knockdowns per 15 minutes (6th), 3.75 strikes landed per minute, 62% takedown defense
What It Means: Kelvin Gastelum fights like he knows he can end the fight in the blink of an eye. Methodical and patient in his approach on the feet, Gastelum only needs a quick window to shatter his opponent’s equilibrium with his deceptively long arms and quick combinations. His strength and technique allow him to keep fights upright as he sets traps to capitalize on with devastating results.
What to Look For in the Fight: Has Hermansson recovered mentally from his stoppage loss to Jared Cannonier last September? The fact that “The Joker” requested this bout says yes, but he’s in with a bull in Gastelum, one hungry to snap his two-fight losing streak in emphatic fashion.
Other Fights to Watch (Grant Dawson vs Nad Narimani)
Key Stats: 5.09 takedowns per 15 mintues, 48% takedown accuracy, 3.48 strikes landed per minute
What It Means: Grant Dawson lets everyone know he wants to take them down. So far, it’s proven his best path to victory. He says he has better striking than people realize, but first, they need to fend off the strong Nebraskan when he shoots for the takedown. When he gets to ground, he actively seeks to pass and submit and is physically imposing as he works there.
Key Stats: 75% takedown defense, 2.64 takedowns per 15 minutes, 3.8 strikes landed per minute
What It Means: Nad Narimani can mix it up well, leaving no certain avenue in which an opponent should take advantage. He likes to neutralize his opponent’s strengths and take the fight where they’re not comfortable in order to get the win.
What to Look For in the Fight: Expect Grant Dawson to shoot for a takedown early to test Nad Narimani’s defense. If Narimani defends well, the track records on the feet are a bit more even. Dawson predicts a second-round submission, but Narimani isn’t a slouch in the grappling department, either, and could very well take advantage if Dawson is over-aggressive.
*Haven’t competed in UFC long enough to qualify in the UFC Record Book
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