Lots of Brazilian MMA talent will be on display when the Ultimate Fighting Championship heads to the Ginásio Municipal Tancredo Neves in Uberlândia, Brazil on Nov. 8 for the UFC Fight Night 56 fight card.
Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Jimi Manuwa will meet in the co-main event, while Ovince St. Preux looks to continue his ascent up the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s heavyweight division with a win against a hungry Francimar Barroso.
Here are my UFC Fight Night 56 Predictions:
Mauricio Rua vs. Jimi Manuwa
Rua (22-9-0, 19 KOs) looked like he was on his way to a second consecutive victory for the most part of his last outing, but Dan Henderson instantaneously turned things around with one of his infamous “H-Bombs.” Manuwa (14-1-0, 13 KOs) also had his share of favorable exchanges during his last fight against Alexander Gustafsson, but the Swede put him away with a vicious series of strikes early in the second round of their “Fight of the Night” winning showdown.
Both men are top end strikers, so there is a decent chance a majority of their UFC Fight Night 56 encounter will be contested standing up. Technically speaking, these two are even in the striking department, but Manuwa is the faster, stronger, more athletic fighter, which should give him a slight edge.
Jimi is also somewhat better wrestling wise, and that should be enough to nullify the fact Rua is the better man when it comes to BJJ.
Rua will enjoy home-Octagon advantage, but I doubt that will be enough to earn him a victory given his rapidly declining skills. Manuwa on the other hand shows signs of improvement each outing.
Prediction: Jimi Manuwa wins via TKO.
Ovince St. Preux vs. Francimar Barroso
Things didn’t go so well for St. Preux (16-6-0, 7 KOs) during his last outing against Ryan Bader. He lost via decision after being out grappled for 25 minutes, and he’s heading into hostile territory when he takes on Barroso (16-4-0, 8 KOs) on Nov. 8.
Barrosso is also coming of a loss, so he’ll be just as eager to get back to the winning side of things. OSP should be able to get the better of the striking exchanges, and his takedown defense should be good enough to keep this fight where he wants it.
Prediction: Ovince St. Preux wins via KO.
Ian McCall vs. John Lineker
McCall put on a dominant performance during his last fight against Brad Pickett, while Lineker scored a vicious knockout victory against Alptekin Ozkilic. Lineker’s striking is good enough to cause serious problems for McCall if he brings his A-game, but the Brazilian has been pretty inconsistent inside the Octagon. His takedown defense has been suspect at times, and it’s easy to see McCall stealing rounds with takedowns. This fight could certainly go either way, but I have to go with “Uncle Creepy” given how good he has looked against the very best MMA fighters in the flyweight division.
Prediction: Ian McCall wins via decision.
Remaining UFC Fight Night 56 predictions:
Warlley Alves defeats Alan Jouban
Juliana Lima defeats Nina Ansaroff
Cláudio Silva defeats Leon Edwards
Caio Magalhães defeats Trevor Smith
Dhiego Lima defeats Pawel Pawlak
Leandro Silva defeats Charlie Brenneman
Thomas Almeida defeats Tim Gorman
Colby Covington defeats Wagner Silva
David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 9 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter.
Don’t forget to check out my UFC Fight Night 56 Predictions FightPicks shortly before the prelims start. Up +19.38 units so far this year.