UFC Wichita (UFC Fight Night 146) Occurs Saturday, March 9 at Intrust Bank Arena in Wichita, Kansas.
The card previously was revealed to be headlined by heavyweights Derrick Lewis and Junior dos Santos, and over the weekend a couple new preliminary spells were added into the card, through ESPN. The new spells are recorded below, together with my first reactions to these, in today’s version of MMA odds and ends.
Tim Means vs. Niko Price, UFC Fight Night 146
An intriguing welterweight matchup between Tim Means and Niko Price is set for UFC Fight Night 146. Means (28-10, 1 NC) is 10-7, 1 NC in the UFC and is coming off of a TKO win over Ricky Rainey that snapped a two-fight split decision losing skid. At 34 he’s started to age but revealed from the Rainey battle his remarkable abilities are still top notch. Price (12-2, 1 NC) is currently 4-2, 1 NC at the UFC and is coming from a quick TKO loss to Abdul Razak Alhassan which has been a disappointing followup to his brutal KO win over Randy Brown in the summer. What a great battle this is involving Means and Price because it is a struggle between two men who will finish the battle on the feet and on the floor. I can see this one going either way, which might be a surprise to those who’ve been after me for years, but I’d actually slightly lean towards Price here just because of his age advantage and the reality Means was in numerous wars. The opening line must be shut, but I’d probably peg Cost as a small favorite in the open.
Alex Morono vs. Zak Ottow, UFC Fight Night 146
Welterweights Alex Morono and Zak Ottow may even meet with this card. Morono (15-5, 1 NC) is 4-2, 1 NC at the UFC and defeated Kenan Song in a”Fight of the Night” functionality his last time out. Ottow (17-6) is 4-3 in the UFC and is coming off of a split decision win over Dwight Grant. This is a really evenly-matched bout between two guys in the middle of the pack at 170lbs who have so far been inconsistent in their UFC careers. I have been slightly more impressed with Morono within the Octagon so I’d favor him just a bit here, but on paper it’s a close matchup and that I expect the opening line to be close a Select’em.
Louis Smolka vs. Matt Schnell, UFC Fight Night 146
And finally, Louis Smolka and Matt Schnell will move up to bantamweight and compete with this card. Smolka (15-5) recently forced his return to the UFC with a submission win over Mudaerji. All-time Smolka includes a 6-5 record from the UFC and is currently riding a four-fight win streak complete in MMA. Schnell (11-4) is 2-2 in the UFC and conquered Naoki Inoue and Marco Beltran in his last two outings. Although Schnell has looked better recently, Smolka is the talented fighter and is more proven fighting at 135lbs. I’d have to favor Smolka to win this battle, and the fact it is not taking place at flyweight is just another indication the branch is going to be shut down this season.
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