Polish light heavyweight Marcin Prachnio began his UFC career with three straight knockout losses. Since then, he’s rattled off back-to-back wins, one decision, and one finish. Philipe “Monstro” Lins, 36, is three years older than Prachnio but has one fewer professional fight. The once heavyweight, now making his 205 debut, is 0-2 in the UFC with one loss by finish and the other by decision.
With both fighters having several question marks to their game, the near pick’em odds are no surprise.
- Prachnio: -125
- Lins: +105
Prachnio has made a career by getting into fast and exciting firefights. Four of his five UFC fights have ended inside of six minutes. Typically, Prachnio will march forward and look to swing big while standing toe to toe with his foe. These big swings are often telegraphed and inaccurate; but, they do have solid power. Unfortunately for him, Prachnio’s windmill punching approach has not proved successful in the UFC. With three first-round knockout losses in the UFC, Prachnio will often initiate the brawl but rarely finish it. His looping shots are easy for accomplished strikers to see, block, evade, and counter. Then, because of his over-extended shots, Prachnio’s chin is exposed and he can be dropped. Recently though, in back-to-back fights, Prachnio’s strikes have tightened up a bit and his chin has proved more reliable. Still, his style is a risky endeavor.
On paper, Lins moving from heavyweight to light heavyweight is a smart move. Up at heavyweight, Lins often had the advantage in hand speed and footwork; but, his lack of power, compared to other heavyweights, put him at a significant disadvantage. So, moving down a weight class should mean his hand speed and footwork can match other lower-level 205’ers while his power might now be an advantage. However, Lins being 36 worries me. Specifically, I’m worried about the weight cut and his durability after the cut. If he can cut effectively and is able to withstand heavy shots, the move could prove positive. This is because, as stated above, Lins has impressive hand speed and tends to land with some heat, especially when using his check hook. He uses a snapping jab and solid leg kicks to manage range while he floats laterally around the outer edge of the octagon. Typically, Lins looks to bait his opponent into swinging while he moves, then, he looks to counter with a fast combination and exit on his bike. Lins struggles, though, when someone can cut off the cage, trap him in a corner, stop his movement, and tee off against a stationary target. Lins did not have a heavyweight chin and these exchanges often left him on the canvas.
At 36, Lins could lose this fight before he even steps on the scales for weigh-ins. The weight cut could make him fragile, slow, and an easy target for the wild but relentless Prachnio. That being said, I side with Lins here. I think his hand speed, movement, and countering ability will be a perfect recipe for Prachnio’s linear and overeager striking. Lins counters with a combination inside of five minutes.
Prediction: Lins by first-round KO/TKO
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.