MMA Preview – Henry Cejudo vs Sergio Pettis at UFC 218

Date: Saturday 2nd December

Location: Detroit, Michigan

Venue: Little Caesars Arena

These two contenders are extremely talented but are fighting in a division with a dimmed spotlight. This is partly thanks to Demetrious Johnson who has cleaned out the division with relative ease, earning his tag of the best ‘pound-for-pound’ fighter in the world. With fans only seemingly interested in Johnson and super fights, contenders are starving for attention but the winner should be in line for a shot at the flyweight king.

For Cejudo, that would be his second chance after losing convincingly at UFC 197. The former Olympic wrestler was truly humbled as Johnson out-grappled him and ended the fight with a flurry of strikes, delivering Cejudo’s first professional loss. He then went on to lose a narrow decision against Joseph Benavidez but put on his best career performance in his last outing, knocking out Wilson Reis.

Sergio Pettis has quietly gone about his business, collecting wins with four on the trot going into this fight. He has evolved from a tremendous Taekwondo and Kickboxing base and his exciting style along with being a new opponent for Johnson would be more appealing for the fans.

The key stat in this one is the takedown accuracy of Cejudo and takedown defence of Pettis. Although Cejudo looked superb on the feet against Reis, Pettis’ stand-up skills are a level up and so he may have to call upon his wrestling in order to take him down. The grappling exchange could easily be where this bout is won or lost.

Striking and grappling stats sourced via FightMetric.