With UFC Fight Night 235 just a couple days away, a Brown vs Salikhov prediction that we feel certain about is that this fight will take place entirely on the feet — and will produce enthralling action.
Although these two fighters are at different stages in their careers, both Randy Brown and Muslim Salikhov will be entering the octagon on Saturday night looking to prove that they can compete with the world's best welterweights, and perhaps kickstart their run to title contention.
While cementing their status as true contenders is still a few fights away, our Randy Brown vs Muslim Salikhov prediction is that a fan-friendly finish for either of these fighters will work wonders for ascending the 170-pound UFC rankings.
UFC Fight Night 235: Brown vs Salikhov Prediction
Randy Brown Preview
Randy “Rudeboy” Brown — a Jamaican fighter with a 17-5 professional record, which includes six KO and five submission victories — responded from a devastating submission loss at UFC 284 in Australia last year with a decision win against Wellington Turman in June 2023.
Yet, considering what Brown has been saying to media lately, it seems that he has gleaned valuable lessons from wins and losses alike; all of which he'll take into the octagon with him on Saturday.
"My ability to learn, my ability to evolve, and my openness and willingness to accept information is what makes me have this confidence."— UFC News (@UFCNews) February 1, 2024
Randy Brown (@TouchNgo_) plans to take everything he's learned in his @UFC career into the Octagon at #UFCVegas85🔊🆙
Fight Card Preview ⤵️:
Brown's striking-heavy style is the byproduct of his extraordinary body type for the welterweight division. Not only is Brown a whopping six feet, three inches tall, but his insane 78 inch reach is what really gives him a visibly unfair advantage while striking.
Per his usual game plan, our Brown vs Salikhov prediction is that Brown will be looking to pepper Salikhov with his jab constantly throughout the 15 minute fight. The eight inch reach advantage Brown will have should make it extremely difficult for Salikhov to enter range — especially if Brown can complement his jab with a teep kick and other leg attacks.
If Brown can effectively manage distance throughout the bout — and not put him himself in too much danger — “Rudeboy” has an excellent chance at earning a decision victory.
Muslim Salikhov Preview
Muslim “King of Kung Fu” Salikhov — a Russian fighter with a 19-4 professional record, which includes 12 KO and three submission victories — must be champing at the bit to finally put his hands on Randy Brown, after Brown had to pull out of their initial December fight date due to an undisclosed illness.
Well, Salikhov will be getting his wish granted in short order.
Salikhov's seemingly endless array of aesthetically pleasing punch and kick combos — the result of his years training Kung Fu — makes any fight of his must-watch. And while he did stumble in his last bout, Salikhov has never lost two straight fights in his professional career — and surely doesn't intend to start now.
Due to the aforementioned reach disadvantage that Salikhov will have to deal with on Saturday, our Brown vs Salikhov prediction is that the “King of Kung Fu” will need to both start and finish his offense with kicks, and be willing to absorb strikes so that he can inflict damage of his own.
There is simply no way of getting around the fact that Brown will almost certainly be able to jab Salikhov at will. That being said, Salikhov is the more powerful puncher by far — and if he can manage to get Brown against the cage, negate that reach, and unleash his Kung Fu prowess, Salikhov could earn himself a massive victory.
Randy Brown vs Muslim Salikhov: Brown's Reach Wins Out
Our official Brown vs Salikhov prediction is that Randy Brown will win the fight by decision.
Brown has entered both scheduled bouts against Salikhov as around a -250 favorite because of two things: his aforementioned reach advantage, and his age. While Salikhov has maintained his striking speed in the octagon, the 39 year old's chin has visibly declined in recent fights. Although we don't believe Brown will knock Salikhov out, we think he'll be able to land enough damaging strikes to take Salikhov off of his game; which should earn Brown a decision victory — currently available at +120.
Salkiohv's striking aptitude is always something to behold, however. And we wouldn't be surprised if one of his flashy kicks or tight punching combinations can get Brown against the fence — which is where Salikhov's best chances of finishing Brown will reside. Because we can see a scenario where this happens, taking Salikhov by knockout — currently available at +450 — is another bet we'd advise keeping an eye on as we get closer to Saturday.
We expect this bout to be a supremely exciting affair, in what looks to be an action-packed UFC Fight Night 235. Yet, perhaps Brown might surprise us, and showcase some of the grappling that he has in his toolbox, but rarely needs to use in order to find victory.
Either way, this fight is can't miss for the MMA community.