UFC Fight Night 145 Odds, Preview & Picks

Posted by Derrick Harper on February 21, 2019 in

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) hits O2 Arena in Prague, Czech Republic, this Saturday (Feb. 23, 2019) with a pair of top-ranked Light Heavyweight contenders on tap as Thiago Santos squares off with fellow striking specialist Jan Blachowicz. UFC Fight Night 145 main card will also feature veteran Stefan Struve against Brazilian knockout artist Marcos Rogerio Lima and John Dodson against surging prospect Petr Yan.

UFC Fight Night 145 will feature seven “Prelims” under card matches this time. Let’s take a look at the first two fights below alongside the latest MMA Odds.

UFC Fight Night 145 Odds, Preview & Picks

Prazeres vs. Naurdiev

Michel Prazeres (26-2) assembled a six-fight win streak in UFC’s Lightweight division, but his repeated inability to make the weight forced him to move back to 170 pounds. He narrowly defeated Zak Cummings in his return, then demolished Bartosz Fabinski in 62 seconds last November. “Trator” is six inches shorter and 15 years older than “The Austrian Wonderboy.”

Ismail Naurdiev (18-2) scored 11 consecutive finishes in under two rounds after his first professional defeat, only to lose a hard-fought decision to The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): “Brazil” veteran Ismael “Marmota” de Jesus in 2017. He rebounded with a pair of first-round knockouts, one a wheel kick knockout and the other a 36-second stomping. He steps in for Ramazan Emeev on short notice.

Naurdiev is a terrific young talent, a 22-year-old boasting a terrific wrestling pedigree to go along with his high-flying striking offense. That said, his issues with “Marmota” are worrying. The Brazilian exposed Naurdiev’s issues fighting off the back foot and also managed to drain his gas tank with fairly rudimentary pressure. Prazeres isn’t as big as de Jesus, but he offers a similar blend of aggression and physicality.

Prazeres’ wrestling skills nullify the threat of Naurdiev’s kicks, forcing him to rely on his unspectacular hands. Said hands aren’t enough to get Prazeres’ respect or slow down his takedowns, so expect “Trator” to recreate “Marmota’s” efforts with power hooks and brutal grappling.

Teymur vs Fishgold

Daniel Teymur racked up six first-round victories to earn a contract in 2017. He’s yet to taste victory in the Octagon, however, gassing out in his debut against Danny Henry and tapping to Julio Arce 11 months later.

Chris Fishgold (17-2-1) choked out Adam Boussif for the Cage Warriors Lightweight title in 2016 and successfully defended it three times, including two successful defenses in the span of two months. This led to a debut against Calvin Kattar, who put Fishgold away with punches late in the first.

Chris Fishgold is on the main card of UFC Fight Night 145.

He stands three inches taller than Teymur at 5’8.”

I’m on the fence on whether to write Teymur off as a bust yet; Henry went on to squash one of my top prospects in Hakeem Dawodu and Arce is a damn good fighter in his own right. Still, it’s hard to have faith in a guy with cardio problems against someone in Fishgold who both pushes a furious pace and has the wrestling skill to drag him out of his comfort zone.

Teymur needs the early knockout to win this fight, which is certainly feasible, but it’s unlikely that he lands it before the Brit scores at least one takedown, though, and Teymur doesn’t have the gas tank to survive the grappling wringer Fishgold can put him through. Teymur starts strong, but fades from pressure down the stretch and ultimately taps to a choke.

Enjoy the fights!