The UFC is in Los Angeles for UFC 227, but the company made a few big announcements at the 25th anniversary press conference.
The biggest one is that October’s UFC 229 will feature Khabib Nurmagomedov defending his lightweight crown against former champion Connor McGregor.
All fighters made weight for tonight’s fights.
Kenai Andrews checks in with his thoughts on the card.
FIGHT PASS EARLY PRELIMS (6:30PM ET/3:30PM PT)
MARLON VERA (10-5-1) VS. WULIJI BUREN (10-5-0)
Andrews: Vera has lost his last two fights, so he needs a win badly. Buren has a single fight in the octagon and it was a loss. The experience of Vera should prevail here.
Andrews Prediction: Marlo Vera via UD
DANIELLE TAYLOR (9-3-0) VS. WEILI ZHANG (16-1-0)
Andrews: Taylor is welcoming Zhang to the octagon. Zhang’s record and finish rate looks impressive but until she does similar things in the UFC, I have to go with “Dynamite.” But once again, Taylor will have to find a way to get inside with the height and reach disadvantages.
Andrews Prediction: Danielle Taylor via UD
ALEX PEREZ (20-4-0) VS. JOSE TORRES (8-0-0)
Andrews: Perez has done well since DWCS. But I like Torres got the slam KO in his debut octagon bout. If “Shorty” can keep the fight standing, his aggressiveness could land him another finish. The thing is Perez will looking to grind this one out.
Andrews Prediction: Jose Torres via TKO
TSN 5 PRELIMS (8PM ET/5PM PT)
MATT SAYLES (6-1-0) VS. SHEYMON MORAES (9-1-0)
Andrews: The two have a combined one fight of octagon experience. Sayles has a good finish rate but is coming from the DWCS, while Moraes will be smarting from an anaconda choke loss. II’ll go with the striking and aggressiveness of “Robo.”
Andrews Prediction: Matt Sayles via TKO
RICARDO RAMOS (11-1-0) VS. KYUNG HO KUNG (13-7-0, 1NC)
Andrews: Can Ramos keep the fight standing and keep Kung from racking up another submission ? Ramos used some impressive elbows in his last fight, but will eke out a decision here.
Andrews Prediction: Ricardo Ramos via UD
RICKY SIMON (10-1-0) VS. MONTEL JACKSON (6-0-0)
Andrews: Simon has more experience, but I have to with the upset here. “Quik” will bag another finish after some early trouble.
Andrews Prediction: Montel Jackson via TKO
#9 PEDRO MUNHOZ (15-3-0, 1NC) VS. #14 BRETT JOHNS (15-1-0)
Andrews: Johns will have a big seven-inch reach advantage, yet likes to take the fight to the ground. Munhoz is solid, but Johns gets the submission here.
Andrews Prediction: Brett Johns via submission
MAIN CARD (10PM ET/7PM PT)
#13 THIAGO SANTOS (17-5-0) VS. KEVIN HOLLAND (13-3-0)
Andrews: Holland is coming from the DWCS and gets a seasoned veteran who just had a four fight win streak snapped. Holland is the younger and bigger guy, but I’m going with the experience of Santos.
Andrews Prediction: Thiago Santos via TKO
POLYANA VIANA (10-1-0) VS. JJ ALDRICH (6-2-0)
Andrews: Can Viana get past Aldrich’s wrestling and get the fight to the ground? I think she does despite some early problems.
Andrews Prediction: Polayana Viana via submission
#5 CUB SWANSON (25-8-0) VS. #10 RENATO MOICANO (12-1-1)
Andrews: A good fight. If the fight goes to the ground, Moicano should have the advantage. Swanson has more experience, and should be able to keep the fight standing long enough for the win.
Andrews Prediction: Cub Swanson via UD
DEMETRIOUS JOHNSON (27-2-1) VS. #1 HENRY CEJUDO (12-2-0)
Andrews: Cejudo will have some improvements since the last bout, but assuming Demetrious is on form, it should be another win for Mighty Mouse.
Andrews Prediction: Demetrious Johnson via TKO
TJ DILLASHAW (15-3-0) VS. CODY GARBRANDT (11-1-0)
Andrews: Still a close fight on paper. Cody has the power to end the fight with one punch, while the movement and versatility of Dillashaw can make it a long night for Garbrandt. TJ was close to being finished in the first fight but then came back to win. TJ will overcome the big punch again and grind Cody out to retain.
Andrews Prediction: TJ Dillashaw via UD