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RDA to halt Rocky’s rise? Get UFC on ESPN 4 tips

Leigh Copson 18 Jul 2019
Rafael dos Anjos (credit:USA TODAY Network/SIPA USA/PA Images)

Rafael dos Anjos v Leon Edwards predictions & Grey Hardy v Juan Adams predictions for UFC on ESPN 4 on Saturday, July 20. Will Rafael dos Anjos slow down Leon ‘Rocky’ Edwards’ rise up the welterweight ranks, and will controversial former NFL star Greg Hardy improve his professional MMA record to 5-1 against fellow heavy-hitter Juan Adams? Read on for our free predictions and betting tips for UFC on ESPN 4.

Rafael dos Anjos v Leon Edwards

Leon Edwards did not enjoy the best of starts to his UFC career as he went 2-2 in his first for fights, but since that loss to Kamaru Usman in December 2015 he has been on a tear and ‘Rocky’ is now on the brink of catapulting himself into the top 10 in the welterweight division. The 27-year-old Jamaican-born Brit is currently enjoying a seven-fight win streak that includes notable wins over Donald Cerrone and Gunnar Nelson, and if he can make it eight-in-a-row on Saturday night he will claimed the biggest scalp of his career so far.

Standing opposite Edwards in the cage will be former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos, who has established himself as a top talent in the 170lb division since making the step up just over two years ago. RDA made the leap after suffering back-to-back losses in the lightweight ranks and he made a flying start to life in his new weight class by reeling off three straight victories, a run that included a victory over former welterweight champion Robbie Lawler. His momentum was cooled by a couple of defeats last year, but there was certainly no shame in losing to two elite-level talents in Colby Covington and Kamaru Usman, and he rebounded in style to stop Kevin Lee back in May to ensure he remained a top-five ranked fighter. Dos Anjos will now look to retain that position in a fight in which he has very little to gain and everything to lose – so can he?

The bookmakers have made Edwards a slight favourite and it is somewhat understandable. The talented striker boasts a massive height and reach advantage over dos Anjos that could help him pick apart the Brazilian in the stand-up game, and as an overall packaged he is a well-rounded fighter. However, RDA is even more well-rounded and when you look back at his record you will see that the Brazilian’s struggles and defeats have tended to come against high-level wrestlers that pressured him throughout. Edwards does not fit that mould. That is why I am backing dos Anjos to get the win here and maintain his place among the top five in the welterweight division. 

Greg Hardy v Juan Adams

Greg Hardy bounced back from his disqualification loss to Allen Crowder by blazing through Dmitry Smolyakov in 135 seconds last time out, but make no bones about it his opponent on the night was not there to fight, and afterwards he was publicly mocked by UFC president Dana White.

Juan Adams insists he will come to fight on Saturday night and I believe he will – this is a man whose five professional wins have all come via strikes. I would not be shocked to see him score an upset either, but more than anything that is down to Hardy’s questionable temperament. When he was taken past the first round for the first time in his career he lost his discipline and it resulted in a DQ loss.

That being said I do have to go with Hardy for this one. Take away his controversies of the past and this is a beast of an athlete with an improving takedown defence and dynamite power in his hands. All four of Hardy’s wins so far have come inside the first round and I expect more of the same here as these two men swing for the fancies and the former Dallas Cowboy comes out on top.

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RDA to halt Rocky’s rise? Get UFC on ESPN 4 tips

Rafael dos Anjos v Leon Edwards predictions & Greg Hardy v Juan Adams predictions for UFC on ESPN 4 on Saturday, July 20.

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