Unfortunately, Tony Ferguson once again will not get his title shot against UFC lightweight champ Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 249. But it doesn’t mean he won’t have a chance at walking away with another gold interim title, should he get pass the wild man Justin Gaethje. The style match-up is a guaranteed firework show, when you look at how their styles and how they match-up. Gaethje only knows forward and Ferguson is always on attack mode. Strap in for our Ferguson vs Gaethje Picks.
Tony Ferguson’s Path to Victory
There is more than one path for Ferguson to win the interim title (again). Should it go to the ground, his creativity with submissions is far exceeding what we’ve seen from Gaethje in the past. Though I don’t expect Gaethje to follow him to the ground on his own volition. I suspect this will be a stand-up brawl with spin attacks on both sides. If that’s the case, it may be who is more accurate, and who is more creative. I give creativity to Tony, however striking accuracy goes to Justin. And between those two factors, I’d give the edge to creativity. Ask any fighter and they will tell you, the hardest strikes are the ones you don’t see coming. That’s Tony’s path to a finish.
Justin Gaethje’s Path to Victory
“The Human Highlight” can stop the fight at any second with his heavy and accurate hands (55% striking accuracy) and ferocious leg kicks. Ironically Gaethje also has one of the most prestigious wrestling backgrounds in the sport, yet he refuses to leverage his grappling abilities in exchange for a “controlled chaos” approach standing. He is creative and relentless, but he doesn’t want to lean on a five-round stamina match with Ferguson. He needs to do what he does best; make it a stand-up war and catch Tony in an awkward transition, as others have. It only takes one mistake by Tony (who is known to take damage) to end it with knees and pinpoint, speedy hooks.
UFC 249: Fergson vs. Gaethje Picks and Prediction
Two of the most violent finishers in any division are going to war and you’d be a fool to say either is a lock. On paper this is Tony’s fight to lose. He’s been in camp preparing for the biggest fight of his career. Gaethje is no stranger to pulling upsets however. So when in doubt, you need to go to the numbers and the numbers far exceeding in favor of Ferguson earning a second interim title.