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Strickland vs. Imavov Prediction: UFC Fight Night 217 Betting Odds and Picks

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After its biggest year to date, the Ultimate Fighting Championship returns with the first event of the new year and it will be one of the smaller non-PPV events – UFC Fight Night 2017: Strickland vs Imavov. The original main event was supposed to be different but due to an injury, Gastelum had to withdraw from the fight and Strickland accepted it on short notice. Nonetheless, this should be an amazing match and we have prepared our analyzed predictions.

UFC Fight Night 2017: Sean Strickland vs Nassourdine Imavov Predictions

Sean Strickland Preview

Sean is a 31-year-old American fighter. He joined the UFC nine years ago and in just four years, he fought 10 times, winning seven of his matches. Unfortunately, in 2018, he suffered a terrible motorcycle accident and took two years off the stage to recover. Strickland returned in late 2020 in a fight against Jack Marshman and won it via unanimous decision. After that, he followed up with four more wins until he failed against the current champion – Alex Pereira in July 2022. Strickland got knocked out in the 1st round.

Strickland is a basic kickboxer. He works great as the first number, constantly moving forward and throwing out simple but effective combinations. According to statistics, Sean more than 2 times interrupts the opponent in terms of the number of accented punches. This speaks of his incredibly high performance.

Sean's main drawback is that he is too pragmatic. Judges may give a more aggressive opponent the win if they consider that Strickland's punches do not provide enough penetrating, stopping, and cumulative effect.

Nassourdine Imavov Preview

Nassourdine is a 26-year-old fighter from France. He made his UFC debut in 2020 against Jordan Williams, whom he defeated via unanimous decision. But in the second fight in the promotion, Nassourdine lost by a majority vote to Phil Hawes. Imavov closed the controversial defeat in July 2021, finishing in the 2nd round of Jan Heinisch.

Imavov is a universal fighter. On the ground, Nassourdine is dangerous due to the base of his Dagestan wrestling and good BJJ skills, thanks to which he won 5 out of 11 victories by submission. In the standing position, he has aggressive pressing, throws a large number of punches, and has knockout power.

Imavov is a spirited fighter. After losing 2 rounds to Hawes, he rallied in the 3rd and almost knocked out his opponent. Phil escaped only due to the fact that he clung to the net with his fingers. The referee had to deduct a point from the offender after he ignored the instruction several times not to grab the net. One of the judges assessed the 3rd five-minute period in the battle between Hawes and Imavov as 10-8 in favor of the Frenchman.

Strickland vs Imavov Preview

Nassourdine will avoid the American's attacks by firing at him at medium range. This is important because Nassourdine will not run to finish off an opponent until he feels that the right moment has come. But the problem is that Sean has a similar style. He is fast, technical, and pragmatic. He always comes up with a game plan that he follows thoroughly no matter the cost. He avoids heavy exchanges and distributes his strength well throughout the entire matches, including 5-rounders. This should be a long and technical fight.

Fast, technical, and pragmatic, Sean will avoid cuts with a straight-line opponent and prefer to shoot him at a medium distance.

UFC Fight Night 217 Co-Main Event: Dan Ige vs Damon Jackson Quick Preview

Dan is a versatile fighter. In the standing position, he relies on boxing skills, throws aim combinations, and can work as 1st or 2nd number. On the ground, he relies on freestyle wrestling and BJJ. Dan can control medium fighters quite well and has dangerous submissions in his arsenal.

Because of his versatile skillset, Ige has no outstanding skills. He can do everything but at an average level. In the standing position, Dan has no mobility and acts monotonously, and low takedown performance prevents him from implementing his BJJ skills.

Damon Jackson is the former champion of the LFA organization and he joined the UFC with a 9-0 record. He is a strong wrestler with incredible BJJ skills, so most of his victories have come through submissions. His weakness is boxing where he has almost no skills. Almost all of his defeats were via knockout.

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