MMA Preview – Blagoy Ivanov vs Augusto Sakai at UFC on ESPN 9

THE FACTS

When is UFC on ESPN 9? Sunday 31st May, 2020 - 00:00 start (UK)

Where is UFC on ESPN 9? UFC APEX Facility, Las Vegas, Nevada

What channel is UFC on ESPN 9? BT Sport 1

Where can I stream UFC on ESPN 9? BT Sport subscribers can stream the fight online via the BT Sport website

For viewers in the United States, the event will be shown live on ESPN+ which can you sign up to here!

Are tickets still available for UFC on ESPN 9? https://www.ufc.com/tickets

THE STATISTICS

Click here for Ewan Lavender's full UFC Form Guide

THE LOWDOWN

Blagoy Ivanov and Augusto Sakai look to poke their head out of a shallow heavyweight division as they co-main the first event at the UFC APEX facility.

Ivanov is coming off his third career loss which was a split decision against Derrick Lewis, but he was unlucky not to get the nod himself. This broke up two unanimous decision wins against Ben Rothwell and Tai Tuivasa after his loss to former champion Junior dos Santos.

Sakai is beginning to make a name for himself after a perfect start to his UFC career. After an impressive knockout of Marcos Conrado on Dana White’s Brazilian Contender Series, he earnt a debut fight against Chase Sherman and pulled off another late finish. He was then handed legend Andrei Arlovski and earnt a split decision but got back to ruthless ways with a first knockout over Marcin Tybura in his last fight.

THE PREDICTION

Sakai is a knockout artist, but Ivanov possibly has the best chin in the UFC. He has eaten everything the likes of dos Santos, Tuivasa and Lewis have thrown at him. He is one hard Bulgarian and should be able to weather the Brazilian storm and wear Sakai down with a lot of clinch work to earn another decision.

Winner: Ivanov via Decision

Striking and grappling stats sourced via FightMetric.

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