UFC & MMA Betting

Dvalishvili vs Cejudo Prediction: One Last Chance for Triple C



This could be the last time we see Henry Cejudo in the Octagon. He announced that if he loses on Saturday, it will be his last fight. But we feel that it is too early to write this legend off. Here is our Dvalishvili vs Cejudo prediction.

UFC 298: Dvalishvili vs Cejudo Prediction

With nine wins in a row, Dvalishvili has established himself as a formidable contender at 135, defeating and neutralizing former champions Petr Yan and Jose Aldo in his last two bouts. In 2023, Cejudo completed his three-year retirement from the sport by returning to challenge Aljamain Sterling for the bantamweight title and was defeated by a split decision after an extremely close contest.

Merab Dvalishvili Preview

Merab Dvalishvili has won his last nine fights in a row after starting his UFC tenure with two consecutive losses. In August 2022, he defeated Brazilian Jose Aldo by unanimous decision. Before that, he defeated his compatriot Marlon Moraes, and American Cody Stamann. His most notable triumph remains the recent win over the former champion – Petr Yan. The 33-year-old Georgian has 16 wins (three by knockout) and four losses. Dvalishvili is second in the division rankings.

Merab's main strength is BJJ and he also has experience in sambo and hapkido. He has a black belt in judo. Initially, Merab started with the Georgian wrestling ‘Chidaoba', which he practiced in his native country.

Merab is used to shocking his opponents with quick bursts from the very first seconds of the fight. And he clearly borrowed this game plan from his friend Sterling. But it’s unlikely that this will work against Henry, who copes well with such pressure and is also capable of instantly responding in a standing position due to his hand speed.

If Dvalishvili wants to win, then this time he should be a little smarter and not rely only on his excellent cardio. On the contrary, the best thing he can do is to start working as number 2, wearing down Henry with counterattacks.

Henry Cejudo Preview

Cejudo is an Olympic champion in freestyle wrestling. The American has been performing in the UFC since 2014 and is a former UFC Flyweight and UFC Bantamweight double champion. During this time, Henry suffered only three defeats. In his last fight in May 2023, he lost to Aljamain Sterling after he decided to put an end to his retirement.

In total, the 37-year-old Cejudo has 16 wins (eight by knockout) and three defeats.

As an Olympic champion, Henry is clearly very good in wrestling but he also has a yellow belt in Shotokan. He has been involved in wrestling since childhood, thanks to the influence of his older brother. Unlike his opponent, he has also improved his striking and this will be a huge advantage in the coming fight.

Henry's main problem in the battle against Sterling was not a loss of form, but a banal underestimation of the enemy's strength. Cejudo spent too long looking for his favorite close range and this is not always effective when you have such a tall opponent.

Naturally, in the fight with Merab, “The Messenger” will no longer have such a problem. Cejudo will patiently endure all of Merab’s lateral attacks and, if possible, will move in a circle, leaving the line of attack. Then he will deliberately wait for the opponent at the net as if inviting him to make the 1st pass.

At this moment, Henry will try to close the lock on his back and will hold Dvalishvili in an uncomfortable half position for a long time, straining his shoulders and back with his weight.

Merab Dvalishvili vs Henry Cejudo Prediction: Cejudo Will Not Retire on Saturday

Let's look at some statistics that can help us make the best Dvalishvili vs Cejudo prediction. Merab has landed an average of 4.46 significant strikes per minute during his UFC career, as well as 6.55 successful takedowns per 15 minutes. On the other end, Henry lands an average of 3.93 significant strikes per minute and has had 2.07 takedowns on average.

In defense, Merab has stopped 79{7977e81067aa52767c5a045b6a52bbfc36ac9a3ee7fc87b6a1495c50622a5d53} of the takedowns while Henry's stats are even more impressive – 83{7977e81067aa52767c5a045b6a52bbfc36ac9a3ee7fc87b6a1495c50622a5d53}. Merab absorbs an average of 2.41 significant strikes per minute next to Cejudo's 3.15.

We suspect that the bookmakers went a little too far giving Dvalishvili such an advantage in odds. Don't forget that Cejudo lost the fight to Aljo by a close split decision.

That being said, pay attention to Henry's timing, control, and counter-strikes against Sterling. Of course, he was very careful and did not allow himself any risks. And in many ways, he lost precisely because of the mistakes of his game plan and underestimating the opponent’s pressure, but certainly not because of a sharp drop in form.

Now imagine that Henry will respond in the same style to Merab’s reckless attacks, repeatedly punching him back or taking an advantageous position on the ground. If Dvalishvili cannot shake the former champion, wear him down, or outplay him at a distance, then he will clearly find himself in a dead end.

Considering that the fighters are unlikely to submit each other, much less beat each other on the stand, we assume that the fight will reach at least the third round.

• Over 2.5 Rounds
• Cejudo to Win

Vlad is a former amateur MMA fighter. After a series of injuries, he found a different way to connect with the sport and its fanbase - through writing. He's been covering everything-UFC for over 5 years on various platforms and has been part of the team at NYFights since early 2022.