After being discovered on “Dana White Lookin’ for a Fight,” Brown has fought 11 times in the UFC and is coming off an impressive first-round submission win his last time out. Meanwhile, Gooden, four years younger than Brown, is 18-6 professionally but only has three UFC fights. In that time, he is 1-2 with two decision losses and a first-round knockout win in his last fight.
Brown vs. Gooden betting odds
Brown enters as a solid favorite over Gooden on Saturday night.
Brown vs. Gooden breakdown
Brown entered the UFC with a lot of hype and high expectations. Unfortunately, he hasn’t yet delivered in the way the UFC hoped. This is largely because of his inconsistencies. One fight, like the last one, he’ll look like a world-beater with the size, speed, and technique needed to climb the welterweight rankings. But, in other fights, like his fights against Luque and Price, Brown disappoints. When he’s on, he has a variety of offensive tools at his disposal. His power is impressive and only improved by his athleticism. Brown strikes well at range, mixing in quick kicks and punches directed toward his opponent’s whole body. Then, in tight, especially the clinch, Brown can land heavy knees as looks for an opening to get the back and eventual choke. His offensive prowess has led to 6 knockout and 5 submission wins. Brown’s primary struggle comes defensively, specifically in the pocket where his range is nullified and he is still too far away to grapple. In this dangerous area where some fighters excel, Brown struggles and has been knocked out twice.
Gooden also struggles with getting hit and getting hit cleanly. He has a problematic negative strike differential, absorbing, on average, 7.5 significant strikes per minute. Unlike his opponent, Gooden has shown a solid chin. So, while he is hit often, he has only been knocked out once. On offense, Gooden plots forward and swings big looking for the knockout. He has finished 8 fights this way. As he plots, Gooden pumps out a lot of volume to disguise his power punch fairly well; but, that power shot is his primary, and maybe only, tactic. When he lands the big shot, he can end the fight quickly. But, when his opponent has the footwork to evade, the wrestling to negate, or the chin to absorb Gooden’s shots, he struggles.
Brown vs. Gooden prediction
Brown has burned people in the past, getting knocked out in fights that fans and betters anticipated would be a closer matchup. But, in those cases, Brown was young and put himself in dangerous positions; or, more recently, faced fighters with real power. While Gooden has knockout finishes, I don’t think he has the same power that has put Brown away in the past. Therefore, Brown should be able to withstand the big shots and dominate everywhere else. Brown is the more technical and athletic striker and the more dangerous grappler. I prefer Brown in parlays rather than predicting how he’ll win because Gooden is tough; but, I do expect him to win.
Prediction: Randy Brown by finish
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.