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UFC 197 predictions

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The return of the arguable top pound-for-pound fighter alive takes place Saturday as Jon Jones returns to the Octagon after nearly a year and a half off. He’ll contend for the light heavyweight title while the flyweight champ also puts his title up for grabs.

What: UFC 197: Jones vs. St. Preux

Where: MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada

When: Saturday, the three-fight Fight Pass preliminary card starts at 6:30 p.m. ET, the four-fight Fox Sports 1 preliminary card starts at 8 p.m. and the five-fight pay-per-view card kicks off at 10 p.m. ET.

Jon Jones vs. Ovince Saint Preux

Will the time off hurt or help Jon Jones? I’d argue the latter. There’s no substitute for regular competition, but Jones had a chance to work on his craft for 18 months while letting injuries heal. That’s very rare in mixed martial arts. He might be rusty at first and OSP is super dangerous with explosive strikes, but if Jones times his entries into tie-ups correctly and works from the outside as methodically as he can, this is his fight to lose.

Pick: Jones

Demetrious Johnson vs. Henry Cejudo

If Cejudo is to win, he has to show us something he hasn’t yet. He clearly has the ability to win a round or perhaps a number of rounds, but so does DJ. This fight could be close and perhaps even back and forth in terms of who wins rounds, but from the tape we’ve seen to date, Johnson has more ways to win. He’s better at managing distance, scoring in all phases of the fight and has much more MMA competitive experience. Cejudo should never be counted out, but he’ll have to rise to the occasion in a way he never has before in his fighting career to make this work.

Pick: Johnson

Anthony Pettis ….View full article

Source:: mma fighting