INITIAL UFC 236 CARD ANNOUNCED

The UFC was extremely busy over the last week, announcing a number of new bouts for upcoming fight cards. One of those cards is UFC 236, that takes place April 13 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. Have a look at my thoughts on the primary event between Max Holloway and Dustin Poirier here, and my thoughts on the other newly-announced bouts are under.
Eryk Anders vs. Khalil Rountree, UFC 236
Added to UFC 236 is an intriguing light heavyweight bout between Eryk Anders and Khalil Rountree. Anders (11-3) is just 3-3 from the UFC and is coming from a decision loss to Elias Theodorou. He has chosen to make the move up to light heavyweight permanently rather than cutting all that weight should help him. Rountree (7-3, 1 NC) is 3-3, 1 NC from the UFC and is coming from a KO loss to Johnny Walker. While Rountree has much more experience battling as a light hearted and is a known knockout artist, I believe in Anders and believe he’s more potential than that which he is revealed in the UFC up to now. The opening line should be near a Select Celtics, however my ancient lean is towards Anders.
Paige VanZant vs. Poliana Botelho, UFC 236
Women’s flyweights Paige VanZant and Poliana Botelho will clash at this function. VanZant (8-4) is 5-3 at the UFC and is coming from a submission win over Rachael Ostovich. Botelho (7-2) is 2-1 in the UFC but lost by submission to Cynthia Calvillo in her final struggle. I’d undoubtedly prefer VanZant to get the win and based on her popularity that I would not be surprised if the lineup was massively skewed in her favor.
Wilson Reis vs. Alexandre Pantoja, UFC 236
In a rare flyweight struggle, Wilson Reis takes on Alexandre Pantoja. Reis (23-9) is 7-5 at the UFC and defeated Ben Nguyen by choice in his final bout. Pantoja (20-3) is 4-1 in the UFC and is coming off of two straight wins over Brandon Moreno and Ulka Sasaki. Reis is a solid veteran but all of the upside is with Pantoja and I expect him to be a small favorite at open. Expect the loser of the struggle to be published as the UFC cuts virtually every flyweight coming off of a loss.
Ovince Saint-Preux vs. Nikita Krylov, UFC 236
In a rematch no one asked for, Ovince Saint-Preux takes on Nikita Krylov at a light heavyweight bout. St-Preux (23-12) is 11-7 in the UFC and is coming off of a decision loss to Dominick Reyes. He’s a gatekeeper at 205lbs and is no longer a real title contender. Krylov (24-6) is 6-4 at the UFC and has been filed by Jan Blachowicz in his final bout. OSP and Krylov previously met at UFC 171 in 2014, with OSP winning by submission. I am not exactly certain why the UFC believed this rematch was necessary, but given their first fight went and how bad Krylov’s submission defense is, I would favor OSP to beat him again.
Montel Jackson vs. Andre Soukhamthath, UFC 236
And lastly, bantamweights Montel Jackson and Andre Soukhamthath meet. Jackson (7-1) lost a decision to Ricky Simon in his UFC debut but bounced back well with a submission win over Brian Kelleher. Soukhamthath (13-6) is only 2-3 in the UFC but beat Jonathan Martinez by choice in his final fight. Soukhamthath is too inconsistent to trust, and that I expect Jackson to be preferred here.
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