With an 11-2 record and undefeated in the UFC, Hawes enters Saturday night looking to extend his win streak. While Hawes is looking for his eighth win in a row, Winn only has nine professional fights. Of those nine fights, Winn has won seven of them with four knockouts and three decisions.
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
Hawes vs. Winn betting odds
Hawes opened as a solid favorite but the line has grown more and more throughout the week.
- Hawes: -320
- Winn: +260
Hawes vs. Winn breakdown
Hawes finally got a shot at the UFC later in life. After an emphatic knockout in Dana White’s Contender Series, Hawes has made his UFC run count. His last two wins were against Daukaus and Imavov, both of which have fought against ranked opponents recently. In his wins, Hawes has shown good power in his strikes, an improved gas tank, increase in volume, and quality grappling and wrestling. Hawes’ best attribute is his versatility and ability to read his opponents. In a fight where he feels he has the striking advantage, we’ve seen him stalk forward, pick his shots, and land heavy. In other fights, where he realizes he might be at a speed disadvantage on the feet, Hawes called on his college wrestling background to grind his opponent down. Hawes has the skill and mindset to crack the top 15, despite getting a later start in the UFC.
Winn, similarly to Hawes, also entered the UFC a little older than most. But, unlike Hawes, Winn entered the UFC with some hype. He has been a disciple of Daniel Cormier and has trained under DC’s tutelage for years. Unsurprisingly, this training has resulted in Winn being a solid wrestler. Additionally, on the feet, Winn has powerful and heavy hands that he often rips to the body of his opponent. However, Winn is only a 5’6 middleweight; so, he often struggles to close the distance and implement his wrestling or body shots. When he can implement either strategy, Winn has been successful. But, when stuck at range, Winn has struggled.
Hawes vs. Winn prediction
Hawes has the clear advantage in height and reach, the ability and IQ to keep the fight at range, and a solid wrestling base to fall back on should Winn successfully close the distance. Both men have real power and solid chins, but, also, cardio issues. So, predicting how this fight ends is challenging. Picking a winner though, is clearer.
With the edge in so many areas and Winn’s struggles against lengthy strikers, I like Hawes here; but, I prefer him in parlays rather than straight. Because of the impressive power of Hawes and the poor gas tank of each man, he could get a finish. However, I have to respect Winn’s chin until I see a reason not to.
Prediction: Hawes by decision
Michael Pounders is a high school English Teacher, a boxer himself, and is a fan who loves, gambles on, and nerds out about all things MMA.