The UFC has booked the main event for the upcoming UFC 238 card in addition to the primary event for an upcoming Fight Night occasion. Below are my thoughts on both these newly-announced bouts.
Marlon Moraes vs. Henry Cejudo The vacant UFC bantamweight title will be up for grabs when Marlon Moraes takes on Henry Cejudo in the main event of UFC 238, that is set for June 8 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois. The advertising has made the bout official.
Moraes (22-5-1) is the prior WSOF bantamweight champion and he’s appeared incredible since linking the UFC, going 4-1 complete in the Octagon including three successive first-round finishes over Raphael Assuncao, Jimmie Rivera and Aljamain Sterling in his last 3 fights. Most wanted to watch Moraes get a title shot against former winner TJ Dillashaw, however if the champ tested positive and gave up his belt it meant the UFC has to find a new opponent for him.
Cejudo (14-2) is the UFC flyweight champion and he got the call to fight for the bantamweight belt against Moraes after the Dillashaw fight fell through. Cejudo is 8-2 overall in the UFC and is now riding a four-fight win series which includes back-end wins over Dillashaw and Demetrious Johnson. He is clearly the ideal flyweight on the planet, and it will be interesting to see whether he can move up to bantamweight and eventually become a rare double champion in his new branch.
MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas has released the opening line with this particular bout. Moraes started as a -185 favorite, with Cejudo as a +145 underdog. Click the link to see more of Kalikas’ rationale for why he opened the line how he did.
Tyron Woodley vs. Robbie Lawler UFC on ESPN 4, 2 Former UFC welterweight champions Tyron Woodley and Robbie Lawler will rematch in the primary event of UFC on ESPN 4, which takes place June 29 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The news broke. This is a rematch of the pair’s previous assembly at UFC 201 in July 2016, when Woodley took the belt out of Lawler after brutally knocking him out in the initial round.
Woodley (19-4-1) is 9-3-1 total in the UFC and is coming off of a decisive five-round decision loss to Kamaru Usman that saw him drop his belt. Prior to the Usman fight, Woodley was on a seven-fight unbeaten streak and he will look to get back on the horse using another win over Lawler. If he would like to have any chance of remaining at the title picture in 170lbs, he absolutely needs to win this battle.
Lawler (28-13, 1 NC) is 13-8 all time in the UFC but has fallen on hard times as of late as he has dropped three of the final four bouts, such as a controversial submission loss to Ben Askren in her final struggle. Most guessed the UFC would reserve a rematch between Lawler and Askren, but they decided to reserve a rematch with Woodley rather than Like Woodley, if Lawler has any hopes of getting his belt back then he absolutely needs to win this battle.
The opening lineup for this particular bout has not been released yet, but it is safe to say that Woodley will be the favorite this time around believing he pumped Lawler out at the first round the last time these two met inside the Octagon.
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