A battle of hard-hitting, top 10-ranked UFC Featherweights, are set to square off in a highly anticipatory fight with top-5 stakes at hand. The challenger, #9 ranked Dan Ige, holding a professional record of 15-4, will look to get back in the win column against the long-awaited return of #7 ranked Josh Emmett, holding an impressive record of 16-2. Both men have an affinity for violence and a seemingly strong passion to put their opponent to sleep. The result is a fireworks show you do not want to miss!
Order UFC 281
Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira is tonight! Watch every UFC 281 fight here.
- Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira
- Carla Esparza vs. Zhang Weili
- Dustin Poirier vs. Michael Chandler
Emmett vs. Ige betting odds
Currently, Josh Emmett is a relative favorite of -165, an implied 63% win rate over Dan Ige.
- Emmett: -164
- Ige: +135
Emmett vs. Ige breakdown
Ige is a prototypical Hawaiian fighter that loves to throw hands and is willing to get hit to land one of his own. Furthermore, he is no stranger to getting into wars that results in winning “Fight of the Night Bonus”, as implied by his “50k” nickname. In his most recent bout, a loss to the Korean Zombie, Ige looked to be slightly outclassed by the former title challenger, but displayed a strong chin once again, having absorbed a total of 31 strikes per round without succumbing to what would be his first stoppage loss as a professional fighter. This durability accompanied by having extremely fast and heavy hands makes for a challenging fight for anyone who elects to stand and box with him. Even though Ige does have skills on the mat, he is far from a severe danger threat in that area of fighting. This lack of significant threat joined by a recent inability to combat the takedown, affording 4 takedowns on the last 6 attempts against fighters who are not known for their wrestling acumen – the Korean Zombie and Calvin Kattar – displays a path to victory for his opponent, particularly for an opponent who can match the impressive speed-power combination with the hands. Moreover, of those same two aforementioned fights against non-wrestlers, Ige was 0 of 13 for his own takedown attempts. Although the shots taken in those fights indicate a willingness to expand his MMA game beyond a boxer alone, Ige will need to show an improved skillset in grappling to climb the rankings of one of the deepest divisions within the UFC.
Emmett is one of the most dangerous men in the UFC Featherweight division, largely due to the unworldly power he possesses in his hands. In his last fight, a war against perennial top 15 fighter, Shane Burgos, Emmett had a complete ACL tear in round 1 and battled back to win via decision in a Fight of the Night performance. The decision win is impressive in its own regard without any injury given Burgos is a formidable boxer with an impeccable chin. The mindboggling, jaw-dropping conclusion from this fight is that Emmett was able to land 2 knockdowns of his opponent without an attached ACL joint in his knee. Pound-for-pound, I am unsure if there is a more impressive display of power in recent memory. The scary part for his opponent, both current and future, is that Emmett is fully recovered from his knee injury and has skills exceeding power alone. Perhaps his best secondary skill set as a fighter is doing a fantastic job utilizing his lead hand as a weapon of quickness, ultimately allowing his power backhand to land at an impressive clip. The jab to the overhand right is a combination of beauty when implemented properly, and Emmett is someone who has shown the ability to do so effectively, having won his last 3 fights, 2 of which by TKO/KO. Lastly, although Emmett has shied away from utilizing skills outside of striking alone, he does have a strong background in grappling, having wrestled in college along with having won a world championship in the blue belt no-gi division. This background in grappling parlayed with an impressive power-puncher on the feet is an impressive and dangerous combination to have as a fighter. So long as he maintains patience and does not rush in to then, get clipped on the feet, Emmett should continue to climb the rankings of the Featherweight division.
Emmett vs. Ige prediction
If Ige can weather the early storm of Emmett, this fight should be an all-out war. I believe both men possess the ability to end the fight at any moment, but ultimately, the fighter who integrates an alternative threat beyond hands alone should secure the win. This belief for an alternative attack has me extremely excited for this fight, as Ige has had a recent struggle landing the takedown and Emmett has not utilized his grappling acumen for quite some time. Although I am excited to see either man successfully utilizing their grappling, the amount of unknowns in this department has me reverting back to backing the fighter who I believe not only has the higher ceiling but also, the fighter who has the greatest danger threat in this matchup.
Bet: Emmett; sprinkle Emmett KO at a +250