UFC 208 predictions -- Holm vs. de Randamie: Picks, fight card, odds, start time
Holly Holm and Germaine de Randamie will battle for the inaugural women's featherweight title on Saturday
When this card was initially announced, skepticism was abound. By adding a 145-pound women's title, UFC showed its potential to continue to grow, but it also showed the weakness of its "superstars."
Holly Holm, the woman who finally stopped Ronda Rousey's incredible run at 135 pounds, is a great fighter, but she's also coming off of consecutive losses. While she has the signature win of a career by stopping Rousey, she is facing the potential of becoming remembered as the Buster Douglas of MMA if she loses for a third straight time.
Meanwhile, her opponent, Germaine de Randamie, is on a two-fight win streak with consecutive knockouts.
In fact, her last loss came against current bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes, who has said she wants to pull a Conor McGregor-style move and hold two belts simultaneously.
But the biggest problem is that by adding this division, UFC is missing the best women's fighter in the world at 145 pounds: Cris Cyborg.
Even though she is currently facing a suspension for an anti-doping violation, Cyborg has dominated opponents for the last 10 years. In her two fights for UFC, she's been forced to cut down to 140 pounds and said she needed more time to recover from the weight cut, keeping her out of this fight.
If she gets cleared of the violation, she needs to be the first opponent for the winner.
Saturday's paper-per-view will also bring the return of Anderson"The Spider" Silva. Considered the best pound-for-pound fighter ever, Silva hasn't won a fight since 2012 and is 0-4-1 in his last five fights. He's fighting more for legacy instead of greatness and faces a tough test in Derek Brunson on Saturday.
Here's how the full fight card shakes out when the action begins at 10 p.m. ET with the latest odds from Bovada.
|Germaine de Randamie (-135)||Holly Holm (+105)||Women's featherweight title|
|Derek Brunson (-155)||Anderson Silva (+125)||Middleweight|
|Jacare Souza (-550)||Tim Boestch (+375)||Middleweight|
|Glover Teixeira (-210)||Jared Cannonier (+170)||Light heavyweight|
|Dustin Poirer (-450)||Jim Miller (+325)||Lightweight|
Here's how the experts at CBS Sports see this card going. Team: Matthew Coca (Digital producer), Michael Mormile (MMA producer), Brandon Wise (MMA writer/editor).
|Holm vs. de Randamie||Holm||Holm||Holm|
|Brunson vs. Silva||Brunson||Silva||Silva|
|Souza vs. Boetsch||Souza||Souza||Souza|
|Teixeira vs. Cannonier||Teixeira||Teixeira||Teixeira|
|Poirer vs. Miller||Miller||Poirer||Poirer|
Wise on why Holm wins: While on her two fight losing streak should raise skepticism, we need to look a little more close at who she fought in those bouts. She lost to a wrestler who had no intention of standing and trading (Miesha Tate) and a grinder who keeps the distance and picks opponents apart with strikes (Valentina Schevchenko). While de Randamie will be able to keep the distance with her incredible reach, both fighters want to stand and trade. Its the same trap Ronda Rousey fell into and I think de Randamie will do the same. Edge: Holm.
Mormile on why Silva wins: I know I know, Silva hasn't technically won a fight since 2012, but I believe he showed something in his fight with light heavyweight champ Daniel Cormier. That fight was on short notice against one of the best wrestlers in the game. Silva was able to land some good shots in that fight, I think the fact its a three-round fight helps him as he won't have to worry about conserving energy and can let those crazy kicks and knees fly. Brunson got caught with a head kick KO in his last fight and likes to stand and throw down. I like "The Spider's" chances of catching him with a big shot.
Coca on why Brunson wins: Anderson Silva is done. It pains me to write those words, but it's the truth. He has looked like a shell of himself in his last five fights and now he enters the octagon to face a guy with real knockout potential. Brunson got caught in his last fight, bad. For me, I look at the run he was on before that with four straight stoppages in the first round. Brunson will look to get back on the right side of a knockout and his power will be too much for Silva to deal with.
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