Category Archives: Event Previews

Fight Matrix Program- UFC on ESPN+ 20: Askren vs. Maia (10-26-2019)

21 Oct , 2019,
jcs

Welterweight (170)
[#13] Demian Maia (27-9-0, +135) vs. [#16] Ben Askren (19-1-0, -161)
Demian Maia is the All-Time #17 ranked Welterweight fighter.
Ben Askren is the All-Time #33 ranked Welterweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Demian Maia (2-1-0)
2019-06-29: W vs. [#21WW] Anthony Rocco Martin (16-5-0) via MD (29-28, 29-28, 28-28)
2019-02-02: W vs. [#66WW] Lyman Good (20-5-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:38 of round 1
2018-05-19: L vs. [#1WW/#5DD/#6P4P] Kamaru Usman (15-1-0) via UD (50-45, 49-46, 49-46)

Last 3 Fights: Ben Askren (2-1-0)
2019-07-06: L vs. [#4WW] Jorge Masvidal (34-13-0) via KO (Flying Knee) in 0:05 of round 1
2019-03-02: W vs. [#17WW] Robbie Lawler (28-14-0) via Technical Submission (Bulldog Choke) in 3:20 of round 1
2017-11-24: W vs. [#109WW] Shinya Aoki (44-9-0) via TKO (Punches) in 0:57 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Ben Askren – Win%: 59.18
Elo Favorite (Standard): Ben Askren (2077.05) [+5.49] – Win%: 50.63
Elo Favorite (Modified): Ben Askren (2060.15) [+39.18] – Win%: 54.28
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Ben Askren (2091.33) [+67.66] – Win%: 62.10
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Demian Maia 119, Ben Askren 112
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Demian Maia leads 2-1
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Welterweight (170)
[#62] Laureano Staropoli (9-1-0, +123) vs. [#63] Muslim Salikhov (15-2-0, -147)

Last 3 Fights: Laureano Staropoli (3-0-0)
2019-05-11: W vs. [#79WW] Thiago Alves (23-14-0) via UD (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
2018-11-17: W vs. [#1195WW] Hector Aldana (4-3-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2017-06-10: W vs. [#506MW] Carlos Alberto Bazan Roja (8-7-0) via TKO (Punches) in 3:00 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Muslim Salikhov (2-1-0)
2019-09-07: W vs. [#100WW] Nordine Taleb (15-7-0) via KO (Punch) in 4:26 of round 1
2018-04-14: W vs. [#149WW] Ricky Rainey (13-6-0) via KO (Punches) in 4:12 of round 2
2017-11-25: L vs. [#102WW] Alex Garcia (15-6-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 3:22 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Muslim Salikhov – Win%: 57.02
Elo Favorite (Standard): Muslim Salikhov (1746.38) [+198.69] – Win%: 71.26
Elo Favorite (Modified): Muslim Salikhov (1755.55) [+209.25] – Win%: 71.42
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Muslim Salikhov (1738.87) [+179.73] – Win%: 79.85
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Laureano Staropoli 168, Muslim Salikhov 49
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Heavyweight (265)
[#82] Ciryl Gane (4-0-0, -306) vs. [#94] Dontale Mayes (7-2-0, +245)

Last 3 Fights: Ciryl Gane (3-0-0)
2019-08-10: W vs. [#146HW+] Raphael Pessoa (9-1-0) via Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) in 4:12 of round 1
2019-05-24: W vs. [#121HW+] Roggers Souza (9-2-0) via TKO in 4:26 of round 1
2018-09-21: W vs. [#280HW+] Adam Dyczka (8-1-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:57 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Dontale Mayes (3-0-0)
2019-07-16: W vs. [#147HW+] Ricardo Prasel (10-2-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:59 of round 1
2018-11-17: W vs. [NA] Nkemdirim Oti (2-6-0) via SUB in 2:15 of round 3
2018-07-31: W vs. [#341HW+] Mitchell Sipe (4-2-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:49 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Ciryl Gane – Win%: 72.22
Elo Favorite (Standard): Ciryl Gane (1465.81) [+3.56] – Win%: 50.41
Elo Favorite (Modified): Ciryl Gane (1622.22) [+94.49] – Win%: 60.20
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Dontale Mayes (1522.67) [+6.37] – Win%: 51.23
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Ciryl Gane 77, Dontale Mayes 102
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Program- UFC on ESPN 6: Weidman vs. Reyes (10-18-2019)

14 Oct , 2019,
jcs

Light Heavyweight (205)
[#11MW] Chris Weidman (14-4-0, +135) vs. [#9] Dominick Reyes (11-0-0, -162)
Chris Weidman is the All-Time #18 ranked Absolute fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Chris Weidman (1-2-0)
2018-11-03: L vs. [#9MW] Ronaldo Souza (26-7-0) via KO (Punches) in 2:46 of round 3
2017-07-22: W vs. [#7MW] Kelvin Gastelum (15-4-0) via Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) in 3:45 of round 3
2017-04-08: L vs. [#6MW] Gegard Mousasi (46-7-2) via TKO (Knees) in 3:13 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Dominick Reyes (3-0-0)
2019-03-16: W vs. [#10LHW] Volkan Oezdemir (16-4-0) via SD (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
2018-10-06: W vs. [#18LHW] Ovince St. Preux (24-13-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-05-19: W vs. [#8MW] Jared Cannonier (13-4-0) via TKO (Punches) in 2:55 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Dominick Reyes – Win%: 59.23
Elo Favorite (Standard): Chris Weidman (1983.66) [+110.40] – Win%: 62.35
Elo Favorite (Modified): Chris Weidman (2005.17) [+183.36] – Win%: 69.06
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Chris Weidman (2015.71) [+189.44] – Win%: 80.24
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Chris Weidman 349, Dominick Reyes 216
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Featherweight (145)
[#9] Jeremy Stephens (28-16-0, -109) vs. [#28] Yair Rodriguez (11-2-0, -115)
Jeremy Stephens is the All-Time #17 ranked Featherweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Jeremy Stephens (0-2-0, 1 NC)
2019-09-21: NC vs. [#28FW] Yair Rodriguez (11-2-0)
2019-03-02: L vs. [#8FW] Zabit Magomedsharipov (17-1-0) via UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
2018-07-28: L vs. [#3FW] Jose Aldo (28-5-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:19 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Yair Rodriguez (1-1-0, 1 NC)
2019-09-21: NC vs. [#9FW] Jeremy Stephens (28-16-0)
2018-11-10: W vs. [#15FW] Chan Sung Jung (15-5-0) via KO (Elbow) in 4:59 of round 5
2017-05-13: L vs. [#6FW] Frankie Edgar (23-7-1) via TKO (Doctor Stoppage) in 5:00 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Yair Rodriguez – Win%: 50.63
Elo Favorite (Standard): Yair Rodriguez (1870.78) [+50.18] – Win%: 55.71
Elo Favorite (Modified): Jeremy Stephens (1825.13) [+17.61] – Win%: 51.93
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Jeremy Stephens (1845.52) [+28.92] – Win%: 55.39
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Jeremy Stephens 27, Yair Rodriguez 27
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Heavyweight (265)
[#106] Greg Hardy (5-1-0, -257) vs. [#139] Ben Sosoli (7-2-0, +203)

Last 3 Fights: Greg Hardy (2-1-0)
2019-07-20: W vs. [#161HW+] Juan Adams (5-2-0) via TKO (Punches) in 0:45 of round 1
2019-04-27: W vs. [#338HW+] Dmitry Smoliakov (9-4-0) via TKO (Punches) in 2:15 of round 1
2019-01-19: L vs. [#140HW+] Allen Crowder (10-4-0) via DQ (Illegal Knee to Grounded Fighter) in 2:28 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Ben Sosoli (2-0-0, 1 NC)
2019-08-27: NC vs. [#215HW+] Dustin Joynson (5-0-0)
2019-03-29: W vs. [#315HW+] Kelvin Fitial (15-9-2) via TKO in of round 1
2018-03-10: W vs. [*] Mike Turner (7-6-0) via TKO (Punches) in of round 3

Odds Favorite (Implied): Greg Hardy – Win%: 68.56
Elo Favorite (Standard): Greg Hardy (1406.29) [+46.25] – Win%: 55.26
Elo Favorite (Modified): Greg Hardy (1587.05) [+231.19] – Win%: 73.34
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Greg Hardy (1459.00) [+70.83] – Win%: 63.67
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Greg Hardy 90, Ben Sosoli 52
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Ranking Points for the Rizin Lightweight Tournament

10 Oct , 2019,
Richard Mann

Rizin and Bellator are not only sharing card space at the end of this year, but they are also sharing promotional tactics. This weekend Rizin will kick off an interesting lightweight tournament, which features a mix of new prospects and veterans of the game. The field runs the gambit from #211 Tatsuya Kawajiri to BJJ convert #94 Roberto “Satoshi” de Souza to Bellator regular #12 Patricky Freire.

The following chart looks like the Fight Matrix ranking history of all participants since they were first ranked by the system. An interactive version is available via Tableau Public.

Richard Mann is a regular contributor to @ESPNMMA, @FightMetric, @RotoWireMMA and @InterMat. You can follow him on Twitter at @richardamann.

Fight Matrix Program- UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson (10-12-2019)

7 Oct , 2019,
jcs

Women Strawweight (115)
[#4/#9DD] Joanna Jedrzejczyk (15-3-0, -395) vs. [#6] Michelle Waterson (17-6-0, +304)
Joanna Jedrzejczyk is the All-Time #4 ranked Women’s fighter.
Michelle Waterson is the All-Time #37 ranked Women’s fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Joanna Jedrzejczyk (1-2-0)
2018-12-08: L vs. [#1FLY/#3DD/#2P4P] Valentina Shevchenko (18-3-0) via UD (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
2018-07-28: W vs. [#19SW] Tecia Torres (10-5-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-04-07: L vs. [#3SW/#8DD/#8P4P] Rose Namajunas (8-4-0) via UD (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)

Last 3 Fights: Michelle Waterson (3-0-0)
2019-03-30: W vs. [#20SW] Karolina Kowalkiewicz (12-5-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-10-06: W vs. [#22SW] Felice Herrig (14-8-0) via UD (29-28, 30-27, 30-26)
2018-04-14: W vs. [#18SW] Cortney Casey (8-7-0) via SD (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Joanna Jedrzejczyk – Win%: 76.32
Elo Favorite (Standard): Michelle Waterson (1653.26) [+23.75] – Win%: 52.71
Elo Favorite (Modified): Joanna Jedrzejczyk (1648.80) [+32.14] – Win%: 53.51
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Joanna Jedrzejczyk (1651.97) [+37.26] – Win%: 56.87
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Joanna Jedrzejczyk 308, Michelle Waterson 196
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Joanna Jedrzejczyk leads 3-2
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Featherweight (145)
[#35] Cub Swanson (25-11-0, +159) vs. [#37] Kron Gracie (5-0-0, -196)
Cub Swanson is the All-Time #15 ranked Featherweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Cub Swanson (0-3-0)
2019-05-04: L vs. [#33FW] Shane Burgos (12-1-0) via SD (30-27, 27-30, 29-28)
2018-08-04: L vs. [#19FW] Renato Carneiro (13-3-1) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 4:15 of round 1
2018-04-21: L vs. [#6FW] Frankie Edgar (23-7-1) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Last 3 Fights: Kron Gracie (3-0-0)
2019-02-17: W vs. [#94FW] Alex Caceres (15-12-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:06 of round 1
2016-12-31: W vs. [#211LW] Tatsuya Kawajiri (37-13-2) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:05 of round 2
2016-09-25: W vs. [*] Hideo Tokoro (34-30-2) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 9:49 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Kron Gracie – Win%: 63.16
Elo Favorite (Standard): Cub Swanson (1680.82) [+134.61] – Win%: 64.91
Elo Favorite (Modified): Cub Swanson (1734.23) [+73.56] – Win%: 57.98
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Cub Swanson (1699.78) [+96.17] – Win%: 67.58
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Cub Swanson 161, Kron Gracie 237
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
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Lightweight (155)
[#191] Thomas Gifford (15-8-0, +202) vs. [#219] Brok Weaver (14-4-0, -252)

Last 3 Fights: Thomas Gifford (2-1-0)
2019-04-27: L vs. [#115LW] Roosevelt Roberts (8-1-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-10-20: W vs. [#348LW] Christopher Brown (4-1-0) via SD ()
2018-07-28: W vs. [#300LW] Trey Ogden (12-4-0) via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in 1:04 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Brok Weaver (3-0-0)
2019-08-13: W vs. [#515WW] Devin Smyth (9-2-0) via UD ()
2019-02-07: W vs. [#1114WW] James Freeman (6-3-0) via DQ in 3:27 of round 1
2018-12-21: W vs. [#281MW] Tyler Hill (10-4-0) via Submission (Armbar) in 2:41 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Brok Weaver – Win%: 68.37
Elo Favorite (Standard): Brok Weaver (1533.11) [+31.36] – Win%: 53.58
Elo Favorite (Modified): Thomas Gifford (1485.55) [+33.47] – Win%: 53.66
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Thomas Gifford (1534.26) [+82.31] – Win%: 65.01
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Thomas Gifford 168, Brok Weaver 60
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Thomas Gifford leads 1-0
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Fight Matrix Program – UFC on ESPN+ 18: Hermansson vs. Cannonier (09-28-2019)

23 Sep , 2019,
jcs

Middleweight (185)
[#6] Jack Hermansson (20-4-0, -243) vs. [#10] Jared Cannonier (12-4-0, +194)

Last 3 Fights: Jack Hermansson (3-0-0)
2019-04-27: W vs. [#8MW] Ronaldo Souza (26-7-0) via UD (49-45, 48-47, 48-47)
2019-03-30: W vs. [#18MW] David Branch (22-6-0) via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in 0:49 of round 1
2018-12-15: W vs. [#45MW] Gerald Meerschaert (29-11-0) via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in 4:25 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Jared Cannonier (2-1-0)
2019-05-11: W vs. [#17MW] Anderson Silva (34-10-0) via TKO (Leg Injury) in 4:47 of round 1
2018-11-03: W vs. [#18MW] David Branch (22-6-0) via TKO (Punches) in 0:29 of round 2
2018-05-19: L vs. [#9LHW] Dominick Reyes (11-0-0) via TKO (Punches) in 2:55 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Jack Hermansson – Win%: 67.56
Elo Favorite (Standard): Jack Hermansson (2095.81) [+327.88] – Win%: 81.73
Elo Favorite (Modified): Jack Hermansson (2110.72) [+344.92] – Win%: 81.91
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Jack Hermansson (2049.01) [+235.32] – Win%: 85.46
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Jack Hermansson 154, Jared Cannonier 140
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
.

Welterweight (170)
[#18] Gunnar Nelson (17-4-1, +110) vs. [#30] Gilbert Burns (16-3-0, -136)

Last 3 Fights: Gunnar Nelson (1-2-0)
2019-03-16: L vs. [#5WW] Leon Edwards (18-3-0) via SD (29-28, 29-27, 28-29)
2018-12-08: W vs. [#28WW] Alex Oliveira (20-7-1) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 4:17 of round 2
2017-07-16: L vs. [#8WW] Santiago Ponzinibbio (27-3-0) via KO (Punches) in 1:22 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Gilbert Burns (3-0-0)
2019-08-10: W vs. [#42WW] Alexey Kunchenko (20-1-0) via UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
2019-04-27: W vs. [#643LW] Mike Davis (7-2-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 4:15 of round 2
2018-12-08: W vs. [#46LW] Olivier Aubin-Mercier (11-5-0) via UD (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Gilbert Burns – Win%: 54.75
Elo Favorite (Standard): Gilbert Burns (1933.83) [+39.94] – Win%: 54.55
Elo Favorite (Modified): Gunnar Nelson (1959.08) [+41.29] – Win%: 54.50
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Gunnar Nelson (1939.74) [+34.77] – Win%: 56.50
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Gunnar Nelson 196, Gilbert Burns 49
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
.

Light Heavyweight (205)
[#28] Ovince St. Preux (23-13-0, +186) vs. [#31] Michal Oleksiejczuk (16-2-0, -233)
Ovince St. Preux is the All-Time #43 ranked Light Heavyweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Ovince St. Preux (1-2-0)
2019-04-13: L vs. [#16LHW] Nikita Krylov (25-7-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:30 of round 2
2018-10-06: L vs. [#9LHW] Dominick Reyes (11-0-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-06-23: W vs. [#49LHW] Tyson Pedro (7-3-0) via Submission (Straight Armbar) in 2:54 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Michal Oleksiejczuk (3-0-0)
2019-04-20: W vs. [#75LHW] Gadzhimurad Antigulov (20-6-0) via KO (Punch) in 0:44 of round 1
2019-02-23: W vs. [#41LHW] Gian Villante (17-11-0) via TKO (Punches) in 1:34 of round 1
2017-12-30: W vs. [#33LHW] Khalil Rountree (8-4-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Michal Oleksiejczuk – Win%: 66.67
Elo Favorite (Standard): Michal Oleksiejczuk (1766.10) [+154.14] – Win%: 66.91
Elo Favorite (Modified): Michal Oleksiejczuk (1784.37) [+132.79] – Win%: 64.14
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Michal Oleksiejczuk (1745.40) [+91.39] – Win%: 66.83
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Ovince St. Preux 168, Michal Oleksiejczuk 161
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Program – UFC Fight Night 159: Rodriguez vs. Stephens (09-21-2019)

16 Sep , 2019,
jcs

Featherweight (145)
[#9] Jeremy Stephens (28-16-0, -107) vs. [#27] Yair Rodriguez (11-2-0, -116)
Jeremy Stephens is the All-Time #17 ranked Featherweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Jeremy Stephens (1-2-0)
2019-03-02: L vs. [#8FW] Zabit Magomedsharipov (17-1-0) via UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
2018-07-28: L vs. [#3FW] Jose Aldo (28-5-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:19 of round 1
2018-02-24: W vs. [#7FW] Josh Emmett (15-2-0) via KO (Elbows) in 1:35 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Yair Rodriguez (2-1-0)
2018-11-10: W vs. [#13FW] Chan Sung Jung (15-5-0) via KO (Elbow) in 4:59 of round 5
2017-05-13: L vs. [#6FW] Frankie Edgar (23-7-1) via TKO (Doctor Stoppage) in 5:00 of round 2
2017-01-15: W vs. [#378LW] B.J. Penn (16-14-2) via TKO (Punches) in 0:24 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Yair Rodriguez – Win%: 50.95
Elo Favorite (Standard): Yair Rodriguez (1891.65) [+71.05] – Win%: 58.05
Elo Favorite (Modified): Yair Rodriguez (1834.66) [+9.57] – Win%: 51.05
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Yair Rodriguez (1846.70) [+7.41] – Win%: 51.41
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Jeremy Stephens 203, Yair Rodriguez 315
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
.

Women Strawweight (115)
[#11] Carla Esparza (14-6-0, +123) vs. [#14] Alexa Grasso (11-2-0, -147)
Carla Esparza is the All-Time #49 ranked Women’s fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Carla Esparza (1-2-0)
2019-04-27: W vs. [#22SW] Virna Jandiroba (14-1-0) via UD (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
2018-09-08: L vs. [#5SW/#10DD] Tatiana Suarez (8-0-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:33 of round 3
2018-06-09: L vs. [#8SW] Claudia Gadelha (17-4-0) via SD (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Last 3 Fights: Alexa Grasso (2-1-0)
2019-06-08: W vs. [#19SW] Karolina Kowalkiewicz (12-5-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-05-19: L vs. [#5SW/#10DD] Tatiana Suarez (8-0-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:44 of round 1
2017-08-05: W vs. [#15SW] Randa Markos (9-7-1) via SD (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Alexa Grasso – Win%: 57.02
Elo Favorite (Standard): Carla Esparza (1609.37) [+79.39] – Win%: 58.97
Elo Favorite (Modified): Carla Esparza (1652.02) [+142.16] – Win%: 65.07
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Carla Esparza (1647.25) [+143.88] – Win%: 75.20
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Carla Esparza 147, Alexa Grasso 105
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
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Flyweight (125)
[#9] Brandon Moreno (15-5-0, +132) vs. [*] Askar Askarov (10-0-0, -156)
Brandon Moreno is the All-Time #29 ranked Flyweight fighter.
Askar Askarov is the All-Time #40 ranked Flyweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Brandon Moreno (1-2-0)
2019-06-07: W vs. [#43FLY] Maikel Perez (6-2-0) via TKO in 1:54 of round 4
2018-05-19: L vs. [#4FLY] Alexandre Pantoja (21-4-0) via UD (29-27, 30-26, 30-26)
2017-08-05: L vs. [#6FLY] Sergio Pettis (17-5-0) via UD (49-46, 48-46, 48-46)

Last 3 Fights: Askar Askarov (3-0-0)
2018-05-05: W vs. [#19FLY] Rasul Albaskhanov (9-3-0) via Technical Submission (Guillotine Choke) in 1:59 of round 2
2017-04-22: W vs. [#108BW] Anthony Leone (17-9-0) via Submission (Twister) in 2:49 of round 3
2016-10-22: W vs. [#92FLY] Jose Maria Tome (39-8-0) via Submission (Brabo Choke) in 1:57 of round 5

Odds Favorite (Implied): Askar Askarov – Win%: 58.57
Elo Favorite (Standard): Askar Askarov (1740.01) [+123.15] – Win%: 63.71
Elo Favorite (Modified): Askar Askarov (1725.45) [+138.20] – Win%: 64.68
Glicko-1 Favorite (Adj): Askar Askarov (1724.32) [+121.27] – Win%: 71.90
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Brandon Moreno 106, Askar Askarov 504
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Program – UFC Fight Night 158: Cowboy vs. Gaethje (09-14-2019)

9 Sep , 2019,
jcs

Lightweight (155)
[#4] Donald Cerrone (36-12-0, +159) vs. [#5] Justin Gaethje (20-2-0, -193)
Donald Cerrone is the All-Time #16 ranked Lightweight fighter.
Justin Gaethje is the All-Time #36 ranked Lightweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Donald Cerrone (2-1-0)
2019-06-08: L vs. [#2LW/#4DD/#8P4P] Tony Ferguson (25-3-0) via TKO (Doctor Stoppage) in 5:00 of round 2
2019-05-04: W vs. [#8LW] Al Iaquinta (15-5-1) via UD (49-45, 49-45, 49-46)
2019-01-19: W vs. [#9LW] Alexander Hernandez (11-2-0) via TKO (Head Kick and Punches) in 3:42 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Justin Gaethje (2-1-0)
2019-03-30: W vs. [#12LW] Edson Barboza (20-8-0) via KO (Punch) in 2:30 of round 1
2018-08-25: W vs. [#34LW] James Vick (13-4-0) via KO (Punches) in 1:27 of round 1
2018-04-14: L vs. [#3LW/#7DD] Dustin Poirier (25-6-0) via TKO (Punches) in 0:33 of round 4

Odds Favorite (Implied): Justin Gaethje – Win%: 63.04
Elo Favorite (Standard): Justin Gaethje (2106.90) [+53.58] – Win%: 56.09
Elo Favorite (Modified): Justin Gaethje (2054.74) [+44.19] – Win%: 54.82
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Donald Cerrone 98, Justin Gaethje 168
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Donald Cerrone leads 3-2
.

Light Heavyweight (205)
[#8] Glover Teixeira (29-7-0, -120) vs. [#16] Nikita Krylov (25-6-0, -105)
Glover Teixeira is the All-Time #21 ranked Light Heavyweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Glover Teixeira (2-1-0)
2019-04-27: W vs. [#44LHW] Ion Cutelaba (14-4-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 3:37 of round 2
2019-01-19: W vs. [#57MW] Karl Roberson (8-2-0) via Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) in 3:21 of round 1
2018-07-22: L vs. [#7LHW] Corey Anderson (12-4-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Last 3 Fights: Nikita Krylov (2-1-0)
2019-04-13: W vs. [#28LHW] Ovince St. Preux (23-13-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:30 of round 2
2018-09-15: L vs. [#6LHW] Jan Blachowicz (24-8-0) via Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) in 2:41 of round 2
2018-05-19: W vs. [#87HW+] Fabio Maldonado (25-13-0) via KO (Punch) in 3:33 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Glover Teixeira – Win%: 51.57
Elo Favorite (Standard): Glover Teixeira (1890.90) [+87.72] – Win%: 59.89
Elo Favorite (Modified): Glover Teixeira (1923.08) [+94.18] – Win%: 60.16
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Glover Teixeira 140, Nikita Krylov 154
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 3 win(s) against common opposition.
.

Middleweight (185)
[#14] Uriah Hall (14-9-0, +138) vs. [#24] Antonio Carlos Jr. (10-3-0, -166)

Last 3 Fights: Uriah Hall (2-1-0)
2018-12-29: W vs. [#157MW] Bevon Lewis (6-2-0) via KO (Punch) in 1:32 of round 3
2018-07-07: L vs. [#1MW] Paulo Henrique Costa (13-0-0) via TKO (Punches) in 2:36 of round 2
2017-09-16: W vs. [#25MW] Krzysztof Jotko (21-4-0) via TKO (Punches) in 2:25 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Antonio Carlos Jr. (2-1-0)
2019-05-18: L vs. [#20MW] Ian Heinisch (13-2-0) via UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
2018-04-14: W vs. [#30MW] Tim Boetsch (21-13-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 4:28 of round 1
2017-10-28: W vs. [#100MW] Jack Marshman (23-9-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 4:30 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Antonio Carlos Jr. – Win%: 59.76
Elo Favorite (Standard): Antonio Carlos Jr. (1791.06) [+74.70] – Win%: 58.45
Elo Favorite (Modified): Antonio Carlos Jr. (1803.75) [+16.36] – Win%: 51.79
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Uriah Hall 259, Antonio Carlos Jr. 119
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Program – UFC 242: Khabib vs. Poirier (09-07-2019)

2 Sep , 2019,
jcs

Lightweight Championship (155)
[#1/#3DD/#7P4P] Dustin Poirier (25-5-0, +313) vs. [#3/#7DD] Khabib Nurmagomedov (27-0-0, -411)
Dustin Poirier is the All-Time #11 ranked Lightweight fighter.
Khabib Nurmagomedov is the All-Time #9 ranked Lightweight and #44 ranked Absolute fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Dustin Poirier (3-0-0)
2019-04-13: W vs. [#1FW/#1DD/#5P4P] Max Holloway (21-4-0) via UD (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
2018-07-28: W vs. [#27WW] Eddie Alvarez (30-7-0) via TKO (Punches) in 4:05 of round 2
2018-04-14: W vs. [#5LW] Justin Gaethje (20-2-0) via TKO (Punches) in 0:33 of round 4

Last 3 Fights: Khabib Nurmagomedov (3-0-0)
2018-10-06: W vs. [*] Conor McGregor (21-4-0) via Submission (Neck Crank) in 3:03 of round 4
2018-04-07: W vs. [#7LW] Al Iaquinta (15-5-1) via UD (50-44, 50-43, 50-43)
2017-12-30: W vs. [#11LW] Edson Barboza (20-7-0) via UD (30-25, 30-25, 30-24)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Khabib Nurmagomedov – Win%: 76.86
Elo Favorite (Standard): Dustin Poirier (2341.89) [+4.39] – Win%: 50.50
Elo Favorite (Modified): Khabib Nurmagomedov (2283.16) [+24.95] – Win%: 52.73
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Dustin Poirier 147, Khabib Nurmagomedov 336
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Khabib Nurmagomedov leads 2-0
.

Lightweight (155)
[#9] Paul Felder (16-4-0, +148) vs. [#11] Edson Barboza (20-7-0, -178)
Paul Felder is the All-Time #48 ranked Lightweight fighter.
Edson Barboza is the All-Time #28 ranked Lightweight fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Paul Felder (2-1-0)
2019-02-17: W vs. [#35LW] James Vick (13-4-0) via UD (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-07-07: L vs. [#26WW] Mike Perry (13-5-0) via SD (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
2017-12-02: W vs. [#6LW] Charles Oliveira (27-8-0) via TKO (Elbows) in 4:06 of round 2

Last 3 Fights: Edson Barboza (1-2-0)
2019-03-30: L vs. [#5LW] Justin Gaethje (20-2-0) via KO (Punch) in 2:30 of round 1
2018-12-15: W vs. [#15LW] Dan Hooker (18-8-0) via KO (Punch to the Body) in 2:19 of round 3
2018-04-21: L vs. [#34WW] Kevin Lee (17-5-0) via TKO (Doctor Stoppage) in 2:18 of round 5

Odds Favorite (Implied): Edson Barboza – Win%: 61.36
Elo Favorite (Standard): Edson Barboza (1925.38) [+18.77] – Win%: 52.14
Elo Favorite (Modified): Paul Felder (1927.84) [+18.80] – Win%: 52.06
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Paul Felder 202, Edson Barboza 161
Previous Match-up Record: Edson Barboza leads 1-0-0
Wins Against Common Opposition: Edson Barboza leads 2-1
.

Lightweight (155)
[#20] Islam Makhachev (17-1-0, -303) vs. [#61] Davi Ramos (10-2-0, +239)

Last 3 Fights: Islam Makhachev (3-0-0)
2019-04-20: W vs. [#41LW] Arman Tsarukyan (14-3-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
2018-07-28: W vs. [#54LW] Kajan Johnson (23-13-1) via Submission (Armbar) in 4:43 of round 1
2018-01-20: W vs. [#26LW] Gleison Tibau (34-13-0) via KO (Punch) in 0:57 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Davi Ramos (3-0-0)
2019-05-18: W vs. [#149LW] Austin Hubbard (10-3-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-11-10: W vs. [#262LW] John Gunther (7-1-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 1:57 of round 1
2018-05-12: W vs. [*] Nick Hein (14-5-0) via Submission (Face Crank) in 4:15 of round 1

Odds Favorite (Implied): Islam Makhachev – Win%: 71.82
Elo Favorite (Standard): Islam Makhachev (1988.98) [+199.29] – Win%: 71.31
Elo Favorite (Modified): Islam Makhachev (1950.59) [+145.50] – Win%: 65.41
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Islam Makhachev 140, Davi Ramos 112
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: No common opposition or both are winless against common opposition.
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Fight Matrix Program – UFC Fight Night 157: Andrade vs. Zhang (08-31-2019)

27 Aug , 2019,
jcs

Women Strawweight Championship (115)
[#1/#3DD/#2P4P] Jessica Andrade (20-6-0, -174) vs. [#5/#8P4P] Weili Zhang (19-1-0, +144)
Jessica Andrade is the All-Time #19 ranked Women’s fighter.

Last 3 Fights: Jessica Andrade (3-0-0)
2019-05-11: W vs. [#2SW/#6DD/#6P4P] Rose Namajunas (8-4-0) via KO (Slam) in 2:58 of round 2
2018-09-08: W vs. [#18SW] Karolina Kowalkiewicz (12-5-0) via KO (Punch) in 1:58 of round 1
2018-02-24: W vs. [#19SW] Tecia Torres (10-5-0) via UD (29-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Last 3 Fights: Weili Zhang (3-0-0)
2019-03-02: W vs. [#19SW] Tecia Torres (10-5-0) via UD (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-11-24: W vs. [#32SW] Jessica Aguilar (20-8-0) via Submission (Armbar) in 3:41 of round 1
2018-08-04: W vs. [#28SW] Danielle Taylor (10-5-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Jessica Andrade – Win%: 60.77
Elo Favorite (Standard): Jessica Andrade (1918.46) [+166.98] – Win%: 68.20
Elo Favorite (Modified): Jessica Andrade (1882.30) [+122.44] – Win%: 63.09
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Jessica Andrade 112, Weili Zhang 182
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
.

Welterweight (170)
[#23] Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos (21-5-0, -289) vs. [#81] Jingliang Li (16-5-0, +234)

Last 3 Fights: Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos (3-0-0)
2019-03-09: W vs. [#43WW] Curtis Millender (17-5-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:35 of round 1
2018-09-22: W vs. [#745WW] Luigi Vendramini (8-1-0) via KO (Flying Knee and Punches) in 1:20 of round 2
2018-05-12: W vs. [#55WW] Sean Strickland (20-3-0) via KO (Spinning Wheel Kick and Punches) in 3:40 of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Jingliang Li (2-1-0)
2018-11-24: W vs. [#164WW] David Zawada (16-5-0) via KO (Kick to the Body) in 4:07 of round 3
2018-06-23: W vs. [#275WW] Daichi Abe (6-4-0) via UD (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-02-10: L vs. [#86WW] Jake Matthews (14-4-0) via UD (30-26, 30-26, 29-28)

Odds Favorite (Implied): Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos – Win%: 71.27
Elo Favorite (Standard): Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos (2026.99) [+302.89] – Win%: 79.96
Elo Favorite (Modified): Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos (1991.70) [+231.53] – Win%: 73.37
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos 175, Jingliang Li 280
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos leads 1-0
.

Flyweight (125)
[#21] Kai Kara-France (19-7-0, -317) vs. [#32] Mark De La Rosa (11-2-0, +237)

Last 3 Fights: Kai Kara-France (3-0-0)
2019-02-09: W vs. [#60FLY] Raulian Paiva (18-3-0) via SD (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
2018-12-01: W vs. [#116FLY] Elias Garcia (6-2-0) via UD (30-25, 30-26, 30-25)
2018-03-04: W vs. [#1200BW] Xiaoyu Shi (7-4-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in ? of round 1

Last 3 Fights: Mark De La Rosa (2-1-0)
2019-03-30: L vs. [#50BW] Alex Perez (22-5-0) via UD (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
2018-11-10: W vs. [#70FLY] Joby Sanchez (12-5-0) via SD (29-28, 30-27, 28-29)
2018-07-14: W vs. [#116FLY] Elias Garcia (6-2-0) via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in 2:00 of round 2

Odds Favorite (Implied): Kai Kara-France – Win%: 71.92
Elo Favorite (Standard): Kai Kara-France (1699.81) [+134.01] – Win%: 64.85
Elo Favorite (Modified): Kai Kara-France (1631.62) [+105.62] – Win%: 61.36
Days Since Last Pro Fight: Kai Kara-France 203, Mark De La Rosa 154
Previous Match-up Record: No previous match-ups.
Wins Against Common Opposition: Even: Both have 1 win(s) against common opposition.
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The Lineal Strawweight title will be on the line at Rizin 18

14 Aug , 2019,
Richard Mann
, , ,

 

Basically all lineal titles and number-one rankings are aligned with the UFC titles these days. However, there are a few key exceptions. One of those exceptions is the lineal strawweight title, which will be on the line at Rizin 18 this weekend.

#1 SW Haruo Ochi enters the event as the top-ranked fighter in the division, which Fight Matrix defines as 121.9 lbs and below. His opponent for the night will be UFC veteran #3 SW Jarred Brooks, who previously made a name for himself on the strawweight scene before moving up to flyweight to fight in the UFC.

Ochi dropped to strawweight in 2015 after competing at higher weight classes. In 2017 he captured the Deep strawweight title with a victory over Kanta Sato. A year later he picked up the biggest win of his career over #11 SW Mitsuhisa Sunabe at Rizin 13. In the process he took over the number-one spot at strawweight and claimed the lineal title. Sunabe had been undefeated since 2011 and was the strawweight King of Pancrase.

Brooks was a nationally ranked high school wrestler who was never really able to make it work on the collegiate level. Instead, he launched an MMA career in 2014. In his eight professional fight, he defeated veteran #23 SW Junji Ito and entered the strawweight rankings at number three. He fought once more in the division, scoring a victory over Jun Nakamura under the Pancrase banner, before moving up to flyweight to sign with the UFC. During his run in the UFC, he went 2-2 with victories over #31 FLW Eric Shelton and #34 FLW Roberto Sanchez. The promotion then released him as part of their ill conceived and ultimately unsuccessful plan to eliminate the flyweight division.

Considering the issues that the flyweight division has had getting over in the U.S., it seems unlikely that the strawweight division will ever really make a ton of headlines. However, the WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO all sponsor multiple boxing divisions under 125 pounds, so there is still a chance that the strawweight division could flourish on the international scene.

Richard Mann is a regular contributor to @ESPNMMA, @FightMetric, @RotoWireMMA and @InterMat. You can follow him on Twitter at @richardamann.