Alexander Volkanovski Style & Form
Alexander Volkanovski is the UFC Featherweight champion and the best-ranked fighter in the same division. Volkanovski holds an MMA record of 22 wins and one defeat. He won the Featherweight title in December 2019 against fan favourite Max Halloway.
In his last five fights in the UFC, Volkanovski was victorious in all bouts and has high profile victories over Jose Aldo and Max Halloway (2). At 32 years of age, Volkanovski is at the prime of his career, and another title defence would cement his fighting legacy as one of the best to ever do it.
His fighting style is very complete, with almost no weaknesses. Volkanovski is an elite striker and has the ability to dominate opponents with his volume and power. Volkanovski holds 11 KO/TKO wins in his career, three of which were in the UFC. His grappling is also at a very high level, with a brown belt in BJJ under Joe Lopez.
Brian Ortega Style & Form
Brian Ortega is currently ranked third in the UFC fighter rankings, with Max Halloway holding on to second place. Ortega holds an MMA record of 15 wins and one defeat. The only defeat in his UFC career came against, you guessed it, Max Halloway. Halloway was the better striker throughout the fight, and eventually forced a doctor’s stoppage in the fourth round.
In his last five fights, Ortega has four victories and the aforementioned loss. However, he recovered nicely after the defeat with an impressive unanimous decision victory over Chan Sung Jung. With that, Ortega earned himself another shot at the Featherweight title.
His fighting style is more oriented towards grappling, but he is also very capable of finishing fights with his striking. Ortega holds KO/TKO victories over Clay Guida, Frankie Edgar and Thiago Tavares. His grappling is at an elite level, and Ortega holds a black belt in BJJ under Rener Gracie, along with seven submission victories in his MMA career. It’s safe to say that anyone training with the Gracie family is going to have elite grappling.
Volkanovski vs Ortega Prediction
Alexander Volkanovski is the favourite coming into this one, with 1.62 odds to win, whilst Brian Ortega is available at 2.50.
Volkanovski is the better stand-up fighter in this one, whilst Ortega is the better grappler. Ultimately, it depends on whether you think the fight will stay up, or if one of them will try and go for a takedown.
I don’t think that Ortega will be able to get a submission here simply because his opponent isn’t just a kick-boxer. Volkanovski is a very well-rounded fighter and knows how to dictate the flow of his fights, which is exactly why he is the defending champion.
Alexander beat Max Holloway twice, albeit they were both close fights. Meanwhile, Ortega was dominated by Halloway in his second-to-last fight. This will definitely be a difficult test for the champion, but I think he has what it takes to put away Brian Ortega.
Prediction: Volkanovski to win by KO, TKO or disqualification at 5.00 odds. Stake: 4/10