Roman Dolidze will face Nassourdine Imavov in the main event on Saturday. Both fighters have to prove they can still fight at the highest level after their recent poor results. Here is our Dolidze vs Imavov prediction.
UFC Fight Night 235: Dolidze vs Imavov Prediction
Roman Dolidze Preview
Roman is a former WWFC Light-Heavyweight Champion and also a former European and World champion in grappling. His professional MMA record is 12-2-0.
He is a cold-blooded puncher and had no problems outplaying average competition like Jack Hermansson and Phil Hawes due to his counterattacks and brutal punches. Unfortunately, as soon as he met the slightly more technical Vettori, who brought pressure down on him, his usual game plan immediately went downhill.
There is nothing surprising in the odds for this bout. To defeat Imavov, Dolidze must not only change his tactics but literally rework his entire style, sharpening himself to work as number 1.
In this case, he will not allow Nassourdine to snatch points through high-speed combinations. If Roman decides to once again patiently wait for the right moment for an attacking series, he will probably lose via decision once again. Before we make our final Dolidze vs Imavov prediction, let's analyze Roman's opponent.
Nassourdine Imavov Preview
Nassourdine is a former TFL Welterweight Champion and was previously involved in boxing. His professional MMA record is 12-4-0 and his most recent bout ended in a No-Contest.
Even though Imavov failed to beat Strickland, he certainly tried to put pressure on the former champion in all 5 rounds, not allowing him to take a break. However, Sean at that time was not yet a UFC champion and was considered a completely mediocre figure in the division.
Of course, this aggressive and risky style will give Dolidze the opportunity to counterattack attack but we suspect that the aging Roman will not have time to respond to Nassourdin’s attacks, at least in most situations.
That is why Imavov will pull him apart for all 5 rounds, increasing the pace of the battle over and over again and connecting fast combinations. His main task is to get ahead on the cards as quickly as possible in order to calmly survive the championship rounds and not need a late knockout.
Roman Dolidze vs Nassourdine Imavov Prediction: Tough Fight, 99.9% Decision
After almost a year of inactivity, Roman returns to the octagon to rehabilitate himself after the defeat against Vettori. Dolidze's only chance to win here is to find a knockout. However, he has to do this as fast as possible.
Imavov may not be a cardio monster but he prefers to control the pace and if he drags Dolidze into his own game, the Georgian will be exhausted by the championship segments.
Roman will definitely not be able to reach the opponent’s speed, so he will have to risk absorbing several of his punches for the sake of a quality exchange. However, we feel like he will probably try to wait for the good opportunities and the question is whether he will ever get that chance. If he fails to connect that one finishing punch, he will definitely lose on points.
It is worth considering that Nassourdin has never lost by knockout and only once lost by submission, so it will not be easy for Roman. On the other hand, Imavov’s opposition was too soft and no one can fully imagine the true strength of this guy. His only memorable fight was against Strickland and Imavov gave him a tough time.
While both fighters have not had many decision wins in their careers yet, we feel that this bout will feature all five rounds and a decision from the judges. The odds are quite close but our final Dolidze vs Imavov prediction is for the Russian to win.
• Imavov to Win
• Imavov via Decision