UFC 248: Israel Adesanya vs. Yoel Romero preview

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February 26th, 2020

The UFC world held its breath as Jon Jones narrowly defeated Dominic Reyes on Feb. 8, so it’s up to Israel Adesanya to take care of business to preserve a 2020 super fight between the promotion’s top champions.

Adesanya will have his hands full against the tough and dangerous Yoel Romero, in what should be an action-packed brawl at UFC 248 on Saturday, March 7.

UFC 248: Israel Adesanya vs. Yoel Romero odds

Israel Adesanya
Yoel Romero

Romero is a dangerous fighter

It is a cardinal sin for a fighter to overlook their opponent, especially one as dangerous as Romero, but Adesanya’s desire to land a Jones fight is part of the reason why Adesanya went out of his way to call Romero out. Although he has lost his last two fights, Romero is a dangerous fighter, who will no doubt come in top shape to upset the apple cart.

But Romero’s methodical striking technique, and difficulty adjusting to pressure, plays right into the champion’s heavy hands. We’ve seen Romero’s explosive power, but it is nowhere to be seen if he isn’t first in exchanges. Adesanya is the more accurate and active striker, and his defensive awareness prevents him from falling into any of Romero’s traps. Adesanya’s conditioning is impeccable and he should not have a problem setting a pace his 42-year-old challenger will have to follow.

Adesanya's reach is key

Coupled with a staggering, seven-inch advantage in reach, there’s no reason Adesanya should engage in close quarters with Romero, when he can easily just pick him off from the outside. Romero will have to take chances to bypass that reach, which means he is going to get a healthy serving of leather before he’s in position to take a chance. Tough as he is, Romero doesn’t have the tools to get it done.

Romero’s bravery will eventually turn to desperation, as Adesanya will chip away at him with his reach. It’ll be up to Adesanya to determine how severely he’d like to punish Romero. Adesanya will play it safe early and turn it on late, on his way to a commanding decision victory.

MMA free pick: Adesanya (-256)

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