Charles Oliveira vs. Arman Tsarukyan prediction | UFC 300 1

Former champion Charles Oliveira returns this weekend for one of his toughest bouts to date, Arman Tsarukyan. It’s the Brazilian superstar’s first fight back in nearly a year after floating as a potential title challenger for Islam Makhachev, the man who took his belt.

Nonetheless, he’s stepping back into the cage to solidify his shot in an ever-competitive weight class. Both are coming off devastating knockout wins against divisional mainstay Beneil Dariush and very well may earn a title shot with a solid win.

Betting Odds

Coming off back-to-back knockouts, Arman Tsarukyan comes into this bout as a solid betting favorite.

  • Arman Tsarukyan: -215 (BetUS)
  • Charles Oliveira: +180 (BetUS)
Charles Oliveira
Charles Oliveira is an underdog before UFC 300 (Zuffa LLC)

Fight Breakdown

Although this is one of Oliveira’s toughest challenges through his long career in the UFC, his constant improvement in every fight serves as a testament to his resilience and adaptability. He’s gone from wavering and quitting midway through his fights to becoming one of the most dangerous men in the company at any given moment of the fight, regardless of what position he’s in.

He’s developed a great deal of confidence in his striking, using a taller Muay Thai stance that allows him to sit on his punches much more. It also allows him to find the Thai clinch, where he uses devastating knees to wear his opponents down or snap them down into a turtle position to take their back. He’s dangerous along the fence, where he finds slick transitions to take the back from a standing position or grind them out into a single-leg takedown.

Once he gets to the ground, he’s arguably the best in the entire UFC at finding submissions, having a deep arsenal of attacks from quite literally every position. He’s shown in recent bouts, however, that he’s most dangerous once he takes his opponents back, where he slips in chokes quicker than most fans and commentators could even realize.

Charles Oliveira vs. Arman Tsarukyan prediction | UFC 300 2
Arman Tsarukyan weighs in before UFC Fight Night (Zuffa LLC)

Arman Tsarukyan, however, is equally well-rounded, possessing one of the broadest skillsets in the entire sport. He has incredible striking with a wide array of attacks, and his devastating power makes it all the more intimidating for his opponents. He has strong kicks and knees to the body that help slow his opponents down and set up his boxing.

His ground game is equally impressive, with strong takedowns and absurd pressure. Much of this is a product of his conditioning, which has become a prerequisite for the lightweight top 5 at this point. He went five rounds at a breakneck pace against Mateusz Gamrot, a fighter known for his cardio, and has a long string of dominant unanimous decision wins that prove he’s fully capable of going hard for the entirety of the fight.

Out of all of these tools, however, his ground and pound is undoubtedly his strongest asset, which could pose a serious challenge to Oliveira’s fighting style. Oliveira is very willing to fight off his back, which often hurts him as much as it helps him in his fights. His fight with Islam Makhachev is a good example of this, where he opted to go to his guard after getting knocked down instead of scrambling to his feet, which promptly led to him losing via arm triangle. Arman is fully capable of capitalizing on this, having never been submitted and proving to be one of the most dangerous fighters in the sport if he gets to a dominant position.

Prediction and Betting Guide

As much as my heart is saying Oliveira in this one, realistically, I have to go with Arman. He’s only been stopped once, which was in his second professional fight in 2015, so it’s hard to make a case for Oliveira to win by finish. Oliveira has strong cardio, and a very well-rounded skillset with some of the most dangerous threats in the sport, both on the feet and on the ground. Still, though, he takes way too much punishment and has proven that he’s very capable of getting rag-dolled into a finished.

I’m going with Arman via UD, just because I think Oliveira will be able to weather the storm, but I’m not keen on him winning more than one round. If he does win, however, I see it being via submission, just because you never know when Do Bronx steps into the cage.

  • Pick: Tsarukyan via UD (+300 at BetUS)
  • Lines to Watch: Oliveira via Submission (+450) or Tsarukyan via KO/TKO (+130)

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