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Hall vs Silva: A swan song for one of MMA’s original GOATs

Story of the Card: UFC Fight Night Silva vs. Hall is a swan song card for one of MMA’s greatest fighters. Anderson Silva, aka The Spider, is a legend. The one time middleweight champ is responsible for literally millions of teenagers attempting to throw front kicks in their bedrooms after watching the UFC. Silva is in the GOAT discussion and this will be his final fight at 45 years of age. Silva’s opponent is 36 year old Uriah Hall. Hall is a physical specimen who was at one time thought to be a true contender for the belt. He has always been inconsistent and never really put it all together in his UFC career but he is incredibly talented.

In the co main event we’ve got Bryce Mitchell who is a stud inside the cage and a hilarious personality outside of it. He takes on Andre Fili at 145lbs. MMA nerd king Kevin Holland continues to be super active during the pandemic. Holland takes on Makhmud Muradov, a tough veteran from Uzbekistan. In the main card curtain jerker you’ve got Bobby Green taking on Thiago Moses.

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Bobby Green vs Thiago Moses

Bobby Green is an MMA veteran in the truest sense of the word. Green has improved steadily in his career and now is a well rounded tough out for literally anyone in the division. Green can wrestle which should come in handy against Thiago Moses. Moses is 25 years old and on the heels of a incredible comeback victory against Michael Johnson.

A jiu jitsu specialist, Moses certainly put himseslf in position for a big fight by beating Johnson however I’m not so sure that’s a good thing. Moses has struggled in his UFC tenure, he was losing the Johnson fight for the majority of it. I think he’s earned this fight via beating Johnson but I think Green is the better fighter and barring a miracle submission from Moses I think Green uses his slick striking to take this one comfortably.

The Pick: Bobby Green to win -265 on FanDuel.

Number to Know: February 2nd, 2013- That’s Bobby Green’s debut in the UFC, he won with Submission of the night honors and I think his experience leads to another win here.

Kevin Holland vs Makhmud Muradov

Kevin Holland has truly blossomed during the Covid Pandemic. The lanky middleweight has been incredibly active and wildly entertaining. Holland talks incessantly in his fights, sometimes to talk smack to his opponents, sometimes to correct their technique or narrate the fights stream of consciousness style. In this fight he takes on Uzbekistan’s first UFC fighter Makhmud Muradov. Muradov is heavy handed and has two knockouts in the UFC under his belt.

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I think Holland has shown over the course of 2020 massive improvement and he’s becoming a legitimately good fighter. Holland despite being thin for the weight class is incredibly durable. He went a full five rounds with Thiago Santos and his only loss in his last five fights was a submission. I think Muradov needs to get the knockout to win this fight and I think Holland’s reach advantage and improved striking are enough to ensure he won’t. Holland is the hero we deserve in 2020 and I think he keeps rolling in this fight.

The Pick: Kevin Holland to win -170 at PointsBet

Number to Know: 0 percent – 4 fights for Holland this year alone. I think he’s showing rapid growth and being this active will keep him improving. Fight number 5 in 2020 is a victory for Holland.

Bryce Mitchell vs Andre Fili

Bryce Mitchell is a stud. Few prospects at 145 lbs are as exciting to me as Bryce Mitchell, better known by his nickname Thug Nasty. The Arkansas born country boy already has garnered a lot of attention in his career. Mitchell is undefeated in his last 13 fights and is coming off an absolute shellacking of Charles Rosa in his last fight. Bryce owns one of two twister submissions in UFC history and is downright nasty on the ground. His striking always looks to be improving and if he can get Fili to the ground this one should not be close.

Andre Fili is a talented fighter coming off a split decision victory in his last fight. Fili is a creative striker who has shown flashes his whole career. The problem is it’s hard for Fili to get the fight he wants, often times he’s content to engage in the fight his opponent wants to fight and against Mitchell that’s a disaster. I think this matchup is very favorable to Mitchell and the UFC would love to have Mitchell blossom into a full on star so I think it’s very likely Mitchell get’s the W here. My pick is Mitchell by Submission.

The Pick: Bryce Mitchell to win. -165 at PointsBet Sportsbook

Number to Know: -13 straight fights as a pro where Mitchell has emerged victorious. The guy is talented and extremely confident.

Anderson Silva vs. Uriah Hall

A swan song for what many still consider MMA’s Michael Jordan. Anderson Silva is a legend. Silva was lightyears ahead in the striking department when he entered the UFC and for years seemed unbeatable. He’s older now and the MMA metagame has caught up with him but he’s still a tough out at 45 years old. Uriah Hall is a veteran as well at 36 years old. Uriah Hall is a physical freak, just looking at him is enough to let you know he’s got power and speed.

However Hall has always struggled to utilize his immense physical potential. Hall is frustrating, he owns one of the UFC’s most celebrated KO’s over Gegard Mousasi but in the rematch he was thoroughly dominated. He’s got tantalizing gifts but hasn’t really shown the temperament or inclination inside the cage to use them. He’s a competent fighter and much less shopworn than Silva. I think he should be able to win this fight fairly easily but I think it’s unlikely he gets the finish. Silva is a master puppeteer in the cage. Anderson has always controlled the pace of a fight beautifully, lulling opponents to sleep and dictating the action. I don’t think it will be enough to win but I think Silva makes it competitive via his veteran savvy and this fight goes to decision.

The Pick: Hall to win for -225

Top Prop: Fight goes the distance. Silva is a master of pace and controls the octagon beautifully. I think he relies on his veteran savvy to make it to the final bell in this one.

Number to Know: 3. Number of decision losses in Anderson’s last. And you could argue (many do) that he lost to Brunson as well. Silva will always be a legend but there’s little evidence that he can beat top tier middleweights anymore.

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