After winning a decision in 2019 on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, Jacoby earned a second UFC contract. In his second stint, “The Hanyak” is 4-0-1 with 1 TKO and 3 decision wins. In his last fight, only 3.5 months ago, Jacoby went to a draw against Ion Cutelaba.
In the UFC since 2016, Stewart has 13 professional fights but is only 5-7-2. In his last five fights, Stewart isn’t much better, going 1-3-1. Of his five UFC wins, three have come by finish and he has only been finished twice in the UFC.
Jacoby vs. Stewart Betting Odds
Jacoby enters as a -180 favorite over Stewart who is +150 on the comeback.
Jacoby vs. Stewart Breakdown
Jacoby is a large 6-foot-4 light heavyweight who uses his jab and leg reach well. With a kickboxing background, Jacoby is proficient at staying at range while unloading frequent and strong kicks. His kicks often target his opponent’s lead leg to try and limit their movement. This is a successful strategy because, despite his size, Jacoby is light on his feet and moves well. So, he looks to compromise the movement of his foe and capitalize on his movement advantage. Once his opponent’s movement is compromised, Jacoby is comfortable closing the distance a bit and hunting the chin. 9 of his 14 wins have come by KO/TKO; but, only 1 since 2015. Recently, Jacoby has shown a better fight IQ, willing to close the gap, land a combo in the pocket, and then exit before he can get tagged in return.
Speaking of fight IQ, Stewart is…lacking…in that department. The Englishman is a very physically gifted fighter; he is big, strong, and fast. On top of his natural gifts, Stewart is a solid striker who can unload real power when he connects. But, similar to Jacoby, it has been years since Stewart has won by KO/TKO. This is because he often makes a mental error, or several when fighting. He will often get in bad positions against the cage where he tries to punch his way out of trouble rather than circling or clinching. On offense, Stewart has hurt his opponent but then landed an illegal strike that nullifies his quality work. At 30 years old, Stewart still has time to turn it around and has the skills to be a solid fighter; but, his decision-making and defensive gaps pose problems.
Jacoby vs. Stewart Prediction
I’ll admit, I’ve been tricked by Stewart in the past. I’ve seen what he can do when he puts it all together in the octagon and have succumbed to thinking he can do it again. His recent record has proved me wrong. There is still the chance that Stewart’s raw gifts get him a win; but, I’m not going to get tricked again. I’m relying, and betting, on Jacoby’s consistency and skill over Stewart’s fight IQ.
Prediction: Dustin Jacoby 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.