You may not recognize a lot of the fighters on the UFC on Fuel 2 Prelims but believe me when I say there are going to be fireworks. Most of the names below are first time UFC fighters and a large portion of them come from the untapped European MMA market. This is the first time the UFC has really dipped in to the talent of the continental European countries and it should produce amazing results.
Below is a short breakdown of the six prelim fights and my predictions.
Papy Abedi (8-1, 0-1) vs. James Head (7-2, 0-1) – Abedi was thrown to the wolves in his UFC debut and was submitted by Thiago Alves in what was not much of a fight. Head started his UFC career almost the same exact way but at least made it to round three in his debut. Both fighters should be hungry and it is tough to pick someone to win this one but I am going with my gut and taking James Head here. Prediction: James Head by Decision.
Simeon Thoresen (16-2-1, 0-0) vs. Besam Yousef (6-0, 0-0) – This is a fight that should have the crowd on their feet early. Thoresen, from Norway, will take on hometown fighter Besam Yousef. Both are highly touted European prospects but Thoresen should take this one based on his skill set. Prediction: Simeon Thoresen by Submission.
Cyrille "The Snake" Diabaté (17-8-1, 2-2) vs. Tom DeBlass (7-0, 0-0) – I am personally looking forward to this fight. "The Snake" is a 6'6 striker from France; DeBlass is a 5'11 Ricardo Almeida jiu-jitsu student from New Jersey. Diabaté can be submitted and Tom has never had his striking tested like it will be this weekend. It's going to be good and I am taking DeBlass for the upset. Prediction: Tom DeBlass by Submission.
Yoislandy "Cuba" Izquierdo (6-0, 0-0) vs. Reza Madadi (11-2, 0-0) – This match brings two more new fighters to the UFC. Reza Madadi hails from Sweden and comes in riding a 6 fight win streak, including victories over Carlo Prater and Rich Clementi. Cuba is new to the game and has KO power but I do not think he will be able to hang in this one. Prediction: Reza Madadi by Decision.
Francis Carmont (17-7, 1-0) vs. Magnus Cedenblad (10-3, 0-0) – Francis Carmont has fought all over Europe and comes in to this fight off of a stunning upset of Chris Camozzi. Magnus is another Swedish prospect and is riding a 7 fight winning streak. This is a tough fight to pick but I am going with Carmont because of his experience with tougher competition. Prediction: Francis Carmont by KO.
Jason Young (8-5, 0-2) vs. Eric Wisely (19-7, 0-1) – These two combatants will most likely be fighting to keep their UFC jobs but it's going to be an exciting fight! I am taking Eric Wisely based on his experience. Prediction: Eric Wisely by Decision.
That's all for now. Check back tomorrow for Main Card preview and predictions.
The Facebook portion of this card begins at 12:30pm ET/9:30am PT (approx.) Saturday, April 14th.
Article by Joe Santeusanio