Menu Close

UFC 299 Main Event: O’Malley vs. Vera

UFC 299 Main Event: O’Malley vs. Vera

UFC 299 MAIN EVENT: O’MALLEY VS. VERA – This weekend is the perfect example of the UFC looking to put together fights with more of a storyline rather than who deserves the title shot. Not many fans will dispute it as they include fighters that are fan favorites, but it does become frustrating when there are clear number one contenders. That’s a story for another article.

Sean O’Malley looks to successfully defend his bantamweight title for the first time after winning it back in August.

Marlon Vera aims to go 2-0 against the current titleholder while realizing his championship aspirations.

Will the smooth striking style of O’Malley be enough to retain the title? Or will Vera’s ability to come on late be enough to snatch gold? Read on to see how I believe this rematch will shake out and how we can earn some dollars too.

Hey, while you’re at it, click here to check out our Godzilla Wins Daily Staff Picks!


Sean O’Malley

Although O’Malley was popular from his Contender Series performance, especially with all the love he was getting from Snoop Dogg, he has evolved into one of the better fighters in this talent-stacked bantamweight division.

After going to a decision in his first two fights with the promotion, he started delivering on highlight-reel knockouts. He eventually ran into Marlon Vera, his opponent this weekend, who was able to take advantage of an injury O’Malley suffered in the fight.

However, since then, O’Malley has delivered on four knockout wins and one decision over former champion, Petr Yan.

What makes O’Malley so special is the wizardry he shows with his striking. His ability to set traps and spring them on unsuspecting opponents has given us so many memorable knockouts.

From the Eddie Wineland starching to his championship-winning knockout over Aljamain Sterling, he is a special striking talent. His ground game is slowly improving, but if anyone was to try putting him in an uncomfortable spot, that would be the way to do it.

It will be interesting to see him showcase his grappling chops as he continues his championship reign.

Marlon Vera

Vera came off the Ultimate Fight Latin America season back in 2014. Although he did not win the show, he was still given an opportunity to compete in the promotion.

He had a bumpy start but managed to put together a three-fight winning streak that earned him a shot at fan favorite John Lineker.

Vera would go on to lose his next two fights then put together a five-fight winning streak leading into the Covid era. He was handed some big-time opportunities like facing Jose Aldo, Frankie Edgar, Rob Font, and Dominick Cruz.

He has come up short in some of the biggest fights he’s had, but luckily the most important victory came back in August 2020 when he defeated Sean O’Malley. 3.5 years later, he can reap the fruits of that labor by earning this title shot just due to O’Malley’s disgruntled feelings regarding the result of the fight.

One of the strongest fighters in championship rounds, Vera has a knack for coming on hot late in fights. Many applauded his efforts in three-round fights, but seeing his ability to turn up the volume and heat in rounds four and five has made him even more dangerous.

His fights against Rob Font and Dominick Cruz are perfect examples of that. He loves using combination striking, forward pressure, and his endless cardio to break opponents and drown them. He has an active jiu jitsu game when he finds himself on the mat, but he much prefers to strike with his opponents to try and finish them.

The Pick

The intriguing aspect of this fight is that O’Malley loves to put his opponents away with his power.

The issue with that is Vera has never been knocked out. Not just never knocked out, but he has never been knocked down over nearly 10 years with the UFC, competing against some of the heaviest hitters that the division had to offer.

Will O’Malley’s ability to set traps and capitalize on them be the reason Vera suffers his first knockout loss? I’m not willing to bet on it.

I’m leaning with the over most in this matchup, although small sprinkles on late Vera props would not be a bad idea to hedge. Especially when you’re getting +1400/+1600/+1800 on R3/R4/R5 for Vera, not a bad shot.

However, I believe it will be the tactical approach and overall MMA game of O’Malley that will allow him to dictate the pace and where the fight takes place. From his patience striking approach to landing takedowns and getting control time, I expect O’Malley to put the optics in his favor for him to win this fight on the scorecards.

Over 4.5 -145

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *