Robert Whittaker vs Jared Cannonier will serve as the co-main event for UFC 254 at Yas Island, UAE. The two middleweights, ranked #1 and #2 respectively will go head to head and give their best shot. The winner of this fight will be the potential #1 contender to fight UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya for the title.
Whittaker and Cannonier are two guys who have rose to the top and are the eligible candidates for this title eliminator. Whittaker, a former champion knows how it feels at the top and will have composure leading up to the fight. On the other hand, this is Cannonier’s toughest test. With winning the fight, this will be the first time he would fight for the title in the future.
Whittaker vs Cannonier Preview
Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker knows what it takes to be on top. A former middleweight champion, Whittaker holds wins over guys like Yoel Romero(twice), Tyron Woodley and Derek Brunson to name a few. His second match with Romero was a controversial decision, with many people criticising his reign. In the next fight, Whittaker lost his belt to current champion Israel Adesanya.
Whittaker is a skilled martial artist with 9 knockouts and 5 submissions to his name. With 21 wins and 5 losses in his career, “The Reaper” will be looking forward to beat Cannonier and get a chance to take revenge from Adesanya. Whittaker last fought against Darren Till and won via decision.
Jared Cannonier is a name MMA community has started to become familiar with. In the starting of his career, Cannonier began as a heavyweight. He then moved down to lightweight and now finally at middleweight.
As soon as he dropped down to middleweight, Cannonier has fought thrice and has won all three. Not just that, Cannonier has won via TKO in all three of them, with the contest not even reaching the third round. At middleweight, Cannonier has made a name for himself, defeating the likes of David Branch, Anderson Silva and Jack Hermansson.
After his win against Paulo Costa, Adesanya himself showed the urge to fight Cannonier next and called him out. Cannonier will have to go through Whittaker first to earn a title shot.
Whittaker vs Cannonier Prediction
After his second win against Yoel Romero at UFC 225, Whittaker hasn’t been the same. He took a lot of damage which changed how he fights now. This was probably the reason why he lost to Adesanya in the first place. In his last fight against Till too, the former champion barely managed to get a win.
On the other hand, Cannonier is on a three fight win streak. Beginning as a heavyweight, Cannonier has got monstrous power in his hands that could be a defying quality for the fight. Cannonier is a physical fighter who will not drop the chance to hunt for Whittaker’s head.
The odds are in Cannonier’s favour(-115) and are at, while Whittaker(-105) comes as a minimal underdog.
Prediction: Cannonier via TKO