UFC Fight Night: Rozenstruik vs Sakai- Santiago Ponzinibbio vs Miguel Baeza: Prediction and Analysis

Published 06/01/2021, 11:30 PM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JANUARY 15: Santiago Ponzinibbio of Argentina poses on the scale during the UFC weigh-in at Etihad Arena on UFC Fight Island on January 15, 2021 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


An explosive fight has been called up between Santiago Ponzinibbio and Miguel Baeza for the main card of UFC Vegas 28. Both men are well-credentialed heavy hitters in the division, making their bout a ‘Fight of the Night’ contender. Additionally, there’s plenty on the line for the winner given their fringe placement outside the rankings.

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The welterweight division is one of the most active divisions in the UFC currently, much in part due to Kamaru Usman. ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ has already defended his strap twice in 2021 while some contenders haven’t fought in months to save their spot. Usman’s high activity rate means unforeseen opportunities could be created for those fighters who have put together some wins.

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UFC Fight Night: Santiago Ponzinibbio vs Miguel Baeza

Gente Boa’ made his return to UFC action back in January at UFC on ABC 1 after 3 years on the sidelines. A stream of devastating injuries set back Ponzinibbio, who was riding a 7-fight win streak before returning against Li Jingliang. However, octagon jitters seemed to plague the Argentinian who suffered a first-round stoppage.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JANUARY 17: (R-L) Santiago Ponzinibbio of Argentina punches Li Jingliang of China in a welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at Etihad Arena on UFC Fight Island on January 17, 2021 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Ponzinibbio has shown championship promise during his rise in the UFC. He will be keen to let it come to the fore against Baeza. He has the ability to march down his opponents with reckless abandon and drop bombs for three rounds. Chiefly, it’s his speed that allows him to get into range. However, he’ll have to be wary of Baeza’s countering ability.

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‘Caramel Thunder’ Baeza: On his way to 11-0?

Miguel Baeza, undefeated in his career at 10-0, has begun actualizing his position in the UFC’s welterweight division. He’s coming off an arm-triangle submission win over Takashi Sato in his last outing and defeated Matt Brown before that. Etching a win over Santiago Ponzinibbio would be another step in the right direction towards gold.

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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – NOVEMBER 28: (R-L) Miguel Baeza punches Takashi Soto of Japan in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night at UFC APEX on November 28, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Despite the fact that he’s young in his MMA career, Miguel Baeza is as crafty as they come. The 28-year-old doesn’t discriminate with his offense and looks to mount submissions off the cage. The aforementioned scrap is a pick-em in some fans’ minds. It will boil down to who can land the heavier blows later on in the fight.

Prediction: Santiago Ponzinibbio to claim a third-round TKO win

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Darryl Pinto

1641 articles

Darryl Pinto is a senior MMA writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his graduate degree in Mass Media (with a specialization in Journalism) out of Xavier’s College and has a year's experience in his current role. Darryl specializes in predictions, reporting, and covering UFC events live.

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