UFC Fight Night Sat December 15, 2018: Lee vs Iaquinta 2 is on deck for this weekend, as we move towards the highly-anticipated UFC 232 card and the return of Jon Jones. This Saturday, Kevin Lee will get a second shot at Al Iaquinta at UFC on Fox 31 at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. That’s the focus of this week’s episode of The Fighter’s Take with Hollywood Joe Tussing.
The Fighters Take with Hollywood Joe Tussing – Al Iaquinta vs Kevin Lee Fight PODCAST:
Listen to The Fighters Take with Hollywood Joe Tussing – Al Iaquinta vs Kevin Lee Fight Preview PODCAST on Soundcloud:
While this Lee vs Iaquinta 2 is a rematch between Lee and Iaquinta, the two fighters haven’t clashed since 2014. Iaquinta won that bout, handing Lee the first loss of his MMA career. However, this bout could be quite different this time around.
“Al Iaquinta from the first fight, is pretty much the same Al Iaquinta we’re getting in this fight, just a few years older,” says Tussing. “Kevin Lee is now a more seasoned fighter. He was just a young kid when they fought the first time. He’s starting to get into the prime of his career and he’s looked outstanding”.
Lee has looked good in recent bouts as he’s won six of his last seven. The lone loss was to Tony Ferguson, who is viewed as one of the best fighters in the Lightweight Division. Lee is ranked as the No. 4 fighter in the division. As for Iaquinta, he is coming off a loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov but had actually won five straight before that. The challenge is that he hasn’t really fought anyone of note with wins over a struggling Diego Sanchez, Jorge Masvidal, who had eight career losses at the time, and Joe Lauzon, who has since lost six of nine. That’s part of why we see Lee as a sizable favorite at -305 for the rematch even though Iaquinta won the first meeting between the teams.
Other Main Card Fights
The other two fights covered on The Fighter’s Take podcast are the Sergio Pettis-Rob Font clash and the Dan Hooker-Edson Barbosa battle.
The Pettis-Font showdown will pit two fighters who both need a win to get back on track as each has lost two of their last three. Pettis is probably lucky to even have a win in that stretch as it was a narrow split decision.
“Pettis is very resilient, a very tough kid,” says Tussing on the podcast. “He’s not really a finisher, though. He only has three KO’s and three submissions in his career. On December 15th, he’s stepping in with a very powerful 135-pounder in Rob Font.”
Font is 15-4 in his MMA career with seven wins by knockout and four by submission, so he does have a strong track record of finishing fights. He’s a -180 favorite for this bout.
Lastly, for the Barbosa-Hooker fight, it’s one of the closest on the card in terms of the betting odds. Hooker clocks in as a -120 favorite while Barbosa is on the board at +100. Hooker has won four in a row and is ranked No. 14 in the division while Barbosa, who is ranked No. 5 in the division, has lost back-to-back fights to Lee and Nurmagomedov.
While every other fight on the UFC on Fox 31 card shows a significant favorite, this is the closest showdown in terms of the betting lines.
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