Gaethje, Branch Make Title Defenses at WSOF 33
Justin Gaethje doesn't go by "The Highlight" for nothing. At 16-0 with 13 wins by knockout, Gaethje has become the posterboy of the World Series of Fighting. Lots of MMA betting enthusiasts have made bank putting action on him.
He has fought nine bouts under their banner. His first came in March 2013 at WSOF 2, when he used his aggressive clinchwork to rip a cut into Gesias Cavalcante's forehead, which would see the bout stopped before the first round's end.
Since, Gaethje has won the WSOF lightweight title, beating Richard Patishnock in 69 seconds with strikes, and defended it against the likes of Nick Newell, Melvin Guillard, Luis Palomino, and Brian Foster. The NCCA division I wrestler is an all-out mauler in the cage and the star fighter of the best promotion outside of the UFC or Bellator.
His opponent at WSOF 32 will be Ozzy Dugulubgov, a strong contender who has surged between through inactivity over the years. He is 3-0 in his most recent bouts, his lone WSOF loss in six appearances coming by split decision.
His position is well earned and he will certainly try to make the best of it. Some MMA betting fans may think that Gaethje's striking will be the difference, although Dugulubgov has shown himself to be the complete package as of late.
This show features a second championship bout as two former UFC fighters face off in David Branch Vs. Vinny Magalhaes.
A Gracie Jiu-Jitsu product, Branch has unexpectedly resurfaced as an elite mixed martial artist with eight wins in WSOF which have seen him earn and retain the promotion's 185 and 205-lb titles. The latter is at stake in this bout.
He has been a dominant fighter, handling the likes of Paulo Filho, Justin Taylor, Yushin Okami, and Clifford Starks to overwrite a lousy 2-2 tenure before he was dropped by the UFC.
Best known as the runner-up on The Ultimate Fighter Season 8, Magalhaes is a submission specialist who is looking to mimic Branch's turnaround. The Brazilian is 2-0 in WSOF and unbeaten since being cut by the UFC for the second time in August 2013.
Branch himself has admitted that 205-lbs is not his weight class -- stating after defeating Starks that he plans to relinquish his title and focus on defending at 185-lbs soon. Is Magalhaes more than he can chew? With a solid jiu-jitsu game and smothering style, it can't be overlooked even if Branch is the better fighter. Check the sportsbook for current odds.
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