UFC 269: Oliveira vs Poirier - Predictions - 12/11/21


Charles Oliveira vs Dustin Poirier

I think I’ve said this in the past few main event breakdowns but this one is also a tough one to call. That’s because we’ve seen both fighters struggle and triumph over their respective careers and both seem poised to exploit the other fighter’s weaknesses. In the striking department, both are excellent but I give the edge to Poirier here. Oliveira has been walking guys down lately and that’s not something I see working well against Poirier, who has power in both hands from the southpaw stance. And if he lets Poirier lead the dance then it very well could look like round 1 of the Chandler/Oliveira fight.

Oliveira does have a really clean route to victory however and that’s in the grappling. When we look at “Do Bronx”, the one attribute that jumps out is of course his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He holds the record for most UFC submission victories. The one thing that often gets overlooked however is he’s an excellent wrestler. You don’t rack up those kinds of submission numbers without finding ways to get it to the mat and I’ll tell ya, if the champion comes into this one looking to take Poirier down, he’s going to do it. “The Diamond’s” takedown defense is just fair and it’s ripe for exploitation here.

Of course, this does come with a bit of danger as Poirier has a solid guillotine and Oliveira has tapped to that submission more than once (keep that in mind when making prop bets as an inside the distance would be much safer than just KO). And if he plays the long game, maintaining control and trying to rack up rounds, then the advantage will shift to Poirier who seems to get better as the fight goes on. I’m ultimately going to side with Poirier as there’s a very good chance he catches Oliveira cold in round 1 or takes over late with superior durability.

Prediction: Dustin Poirier

Amanda Nunes vs Julianna Peña

I always look at these fights that are hugely lopsided and hope to find a path to victory for the underdog. In this situation, Amanda Nunes is better in every conceivable discipline and fight metric. For Pena to score the upset, we would need Nunes to take this fight for granted and not train as hard as normal. After watching the embedded series, this doesn’t look like the case as she looks fast and strong as hell. This isn’t her first fight as a Momma Bear so I doubt that factor is going to play a role

Prediction: Amanda Nunes by whatever way she wants.

Geoff Neal vs Santiago Ponzinibbio

Going to side with Ponz here to get it done. Another close one though. Two power punchers who throw every strike with full power should end this fight in the first round. But those types of matches make it to the judges just as often. Probably won’t be much grappling here. Honestly Neal is the better fighter and I can certainly forgive him for being flummoxed by Stephen Thompson. But that Neil Magny fight was awful. Combined with his recent issues with the law and I’m just going to take a flyer on Ponzinibbio to get the W.

Prediction: Santiago Ponzinibbio

Kai Kara-France vs Cody Garbrandt

Many unknowns here with Cody dropping to 125 for the first time. He dipped into his wrestling background last time out against Font. That aspect of his game has been largely absent during his UFC tenure. It makes me think he’s going to take that route here against Kara-France which should prove successful. Most times when a fighter drops down a weight class they will perceive that they have a strength and size advantage. Yes Kara-France has an excellent takedown defense percentage but he hasn’t been tested much in that realm. And Bontorin showed us a potential easy way to beat Kara-France with his 10-8 round 1 drubbing last time out.

Prediction: Cody Garbrandt

Raulian Paiva vs Sean O'Malley

This is just a really bad matchup for Paiva. The UFC continues to serve up fighters for O’Malley to style on. I expect a KO here.

Prediction: Sean O’Malley


Josh Emmett vs Dan Ige

I like Emmett here to outstrike Ige on route to an entertaining, high output decision. Both guys should have their moments though and this could end up in split decision territory.

Prediction: Josh Emmett

Dominick Cruz vs Pedro Munhoz

Munhoz’s leg kicks could prove really problematic for Cruz but he’s just such a straight forward, predictable fighter. I doubt he’s going to be able to keep up with Cruz’s awkward style and if that’s the case, I expect Munhoz to make no adjustments for the entire 15 minutes. Give me Cruz.

Prediction: Dominick Cruz

Augusto Sakaivs Tai Tuivasa

Two heavyweights trending in the opposite directions. I highly doubt Sakai avoids Tuivasa’s power for the full 15. I’ll take the Australian to make it his fourth KO finish in a row.

Prediction: Tai Tuivasa

Jordan Wright vs Bruno Silva

Bruno Silva should dismantle Wright here despite the argument to be made that Wright is the more technical striker. I just like Silva’s one shot power and the fact there will be no grappling threat to keep him honest.

Prediction: Bruno Silva


Quick picks in bold

André Muniz vs Eryk Anders

Erin Blanchfield vs Miranda Maverick

Alex Perez vs Matt Schnell

Ryan Hall vs Darrick Minner

Randy Costa vs Tony Kelley

Gillian Robertson vs Priscila Cachoeira

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Donnie Vee

Ever since renting my first UFC VHS at my local video store, I’ve been in love with the sport of MMA. I’ve watched every single fight that has ever taken place under the UFC banner over the past 25 years. Once I started doing incredibly well in fantasy leagues, I realized I could utilize my skills in fight analytics to make a profit on betting. My obsession with researching every aspect of a fight gave me a real edge in finding value. Since then, it's been one profitable year after the next. Watching your favorite sport is good, but getting paid while watching your favorite sport is better.