The upcoming bout I am most excited for besides UFC 284's main event (which stars Alexander Volkanovski and Islam Makhachev) is the UFC fight night Vera vs. Sandhagen.
Marlon 'Chito' Vera is quickly becoming one of my favorite fighters in the UFC and has done so not because of his fighting ability, but because of the person he is. 'Chito' seems like a down-to-earth dude. He loves his family and his home country of Ecuador. He is respectful to everyone he comes across and he has some real swag when it comes to clothes--but when that cage is locked his mentality switches to eat or be eaten and it is incredibly inspiring. Although my allegiance lies with
the Ecuadorian knockout artist, I have not let that sway my feelings about Cory Sandhagen. Cory seems like an awesome guy as well and has an insane onslaught of spinning attacks and peculiar angles. He can scrap. He has lost two of his last three, but to the likes of Petr Yan and TJ Dillashaw, both who are mainstays in the 135 division. This is undoubtedly a title eliminator. The last two people who have fought Corey Sandhagen have gotten title shots after and this time will be no different. Bantamweight might be the most entertaining division in the UFC right now. After Suga Sean's win over Petr Yan in Abu Dhabi, he claimed his next fight would be for the title. But the UFC is allegedly making Aljo vs. Cejudo for the strap. The idea is that Suga will fight the winner of that. My guess would be that the winner of Suga's championship bout would go on to fight the winner of Sandhagen/Vera. There are endless possibilities in the bantamweight division and 2023 will be a year in which the division will see a lot of drama and excitement.
Cory Sandhagen recently said in an interview that Chito's style was not one that was reliable. That is that he has slow early rounds and picks it up in the later rounds looking for a finish and I'd be lying if I said it wasn't a valid point.Although I am sure that Chito's gameplan will change when it comes to the 'Sandman.' Sandhagen nor Chito have been finished in the UFC and I am sure neither of them plan on the first time being Feb. 18th. I hate that there will not be a crowd for the fight because it is sure to be a banger. If the fight goes the distance my bet would be that Sandhagen holds on. But if a finish is in the cards, I've got Chito.
Written by Joe Gee
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