UFC 274 will see Lightweight Champion Charles Oliveira defending his title against Justin Gaethje in the main event. It promises to be one of the most entertaining title bouts in recent times. With both Oliveira and Gaethje pursuing an early finish, it is sure to be an enthralling contest between the two well-matched opponents.
Along with Islam Makhachev, Charles Oliveira has the longest active win streak in the 155lbs division (10 wins in a row). He has 6 wins via submission and 3 victories via KO/TKO in his last 10 fights. It proves Oliveira is not just reliant on his grappling anymore; his striking has also evolved with time and it is evident by the results.
Justin Gaethje is called The Highlight for a reason. Ever since his debut in the UFC, Gaethje has been a must-see fighter. The 33-year-old has bagged 10 post-fight bonuses in only 9 fights in the organization. His relentless pressure and striking make him a very dangerous opponent for the champ. Oliveira has shown a knack for getting hit frequently in the early rounds of his fights. With his power, Gaethje can certainly take advantage of that and secure a quick KO victory.
So the question ultimately becomes, who will emerge victorious at the end of the event this Saturday? Here are some of the predictions from a few current and former UFC superstars.
Georges St-Pierre predicts the outcome of Charles Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje
Freelance MMA journalist, James Lynch always puts together predictions from fighters whenever there is a big event around the corner. He did the same for the Lightweight title bout at UFC 274. Let’s have a look at what fighters have to say about the contest.
First on the list is Georges St-Pierre. He is a former two-division UFC champion and a legend of the sport. While speaking to Lynch, he commented on the upcoming PPV main event. He seemed to have a hard time picking a winner. Georges explained,
“It’s hard to tell. I mean it could go either way. The way I see it is, Oliveira got more tools in terms of how he can win the fight. But Gaethje never can count him out. He’s just so durable and he hits so hard!”
After being asked if he had $500 to bet on either fighter, who will he choose? The Rush simply said, “I wouldn’t bet on that fight man.”
Jan Blachowicz and Cory Sandhagen make their picks for UFC 274
“Oliveira, he got something you know. He fights himself and he’s a true champion, Oliveira.”
However, top-ranked Bantamweight contender, Cory Sandhagen believes Justin Gaethje will dethrone Oliveira to become the new undisputed Lightweight Champion. According to him, Gaethje will secure the stoppage if the fight stays on the feet. He added,
“I think Gaethje is gonna be able to keep the fight standing and I think Gaethje is gonna be able to hit him really hard and probably knock him out.”
Alexander Volkanovski has his money on Charles Oliveira
The UFC Featherweight Champion Alexander Volkanovski is siding with Charles Oliveira at UFC 274. Although he does take Justin Gaethje’s threat into consideration, the Aussie ultimately picked the champ because he thinks Oliveira is just the better fighter overall. He said,
“I’m gonna have to go with Charles Oliveira. That’s a tough one man. Because you can obviously see it going both ways. I think it’s gonna be a bit of a firefight… I think the fundamentals on Charles’ end might get him over the line”
It seems like Charles Oliveira is clearly the popular choice amongst the elite fighters to win this Saturday. Who do you think will win the fight? Will Oliveira continue his dream run? Or can Justin Gaethje overcome the odds and become the 12th man to hold the undisputed 155lbs belt? Let us know your pick in the comments below.