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01 Mar 2018 by TSZ

MMA Preview – Cris Cyborg vs Yana Kunitskaya at UFC 222

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AT A GLANCE

When is UFC 222? Sunday 4th March, 2018 – 01:00 (UK)

Where is UFC 222? T-Mobile Arena, Paradise, Nevada

What channel is UFC 222 on? BT Sport 2

Where can I stream UFC 222? BT Sport subscribers can stream the fight online via the BT website

Are tickets still available for UFC 222? http://uk.ufc.com/event-ticket...

THE STATISTICS

THE LOWDOWN

Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino defends her featherweight crown in Las Vegas against the next UFC debutant willing to take on the feared Brazilian. It is great to see Cyborg finally headlining UFC events but she has struggled to find competition in a UFC division that hardly exists.

There are only a few fighters in the featherweight division which was only created because of Cyborg and rightly so. It is hard to argue that she is the best female fighter of all time and as she cannot cut down to the more populated bantamweight division at 135 lbs – the UFC are trying to build a division around the star.

So, up steps the next challenger, Yana Kunitskaya, who is the current Invicta bantamweight champion who many feel is just being poached and dragged up to featherweight to be another victim. She may well be another victim but she has serious pedigree that can test the dominant champion.

The Russian is experienced and comfortable fighting at 145 lbs. She has a large frame and built on a foundation of Taekwondo, she crucially possesses knockout power of her own. Although we may never see a female knockout artist like Cyborg ever again, Kunitskaya will not be intimidated by her stand-up skills and will look to counter with her own long striking.

THE PREDICTION

Kunitskaya will unsurprisingly be the heavy underdog and the bold fans may put a small bet on a shock knockout considering the powerful striking of the Russian but in all likelihood, this will be another convincing win for Cyborg.

She will start the fight in her usual scary, hunched over stance, warming up for a tirade of technical and brutal striking which she should land at ease, especially with the four-inch reach advantage.

Expect her to throw heavy and often in search for the finish which is unlikely to go the five rounds. As this is Kunitskaya’s debut there, are no UFC stats to go on so see above for a breakdown of their finishing with their knockout ability standing out as the key stat.

Winner: Cyborg via KO/TKO

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