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UFC 252 predictions — Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic: Fight card, odds, expert picks, prelims, date

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UFC 252 predictions -- Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic: Fight card, odds, expert picks, prelims, date

Title fights don’t get much bigger than this. Two of the most accomplished fighters in UFC history are set to square off for the third time in the main event of UFC 252 when Stipe Miocic faces Daniel Cormier. Each fighter has scored a knockout in the previous two meetings with Miocic getting the upper hand in the last bout. Now, the two will look to settle the score in the grudge match.

Miocic set the record for most consecutive heavyweight title defenses at three before Cormier scored the shocking first-round knockout in 2018. Cormier, a former light heavyweight and heavyweight champion in his own right, has stated he will retire win or lose on Saturday after a decorated MMA career.

But there’s plenty of depth to be found beyond the main event of the evening. There’s a pair of veterans looking to add one more win to the resume when Jim Miller and Vinc Pichel link up in the preliminary main event. In Miller’s case, a win moves him closer to topping Donald Cerrone’s mark for most victories in UFC history. Plus, a few rising stars get their chance to shine as Sean O’Malley takes on Marlon Vera in the co-main event and Jair Rozenstruik faces former champ Junior dos Santos in a heavyweight contest.

Can’t get enough UFC? Subscribe to our podcast State of Combat with Brian Campbell where we break down everything you need to know in the Octagon, including a complete preview of UFC 252 with Hall of Famer ‘Suga’ Rashad Evans below.

Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride. Let’s take a closer look at the rest of the card with the latest odds from William Hill Sportsbook.

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UFC 252 fight card, odds

  • Daniel Cormier -115 vs. Stipe Miocic (c) -105, heavyweight championship
  • Sean O’Malley -300 vs. Marlon Vera +230, bantamweights
  • Jairzinho Rozenstruik -135 vs. Junior Dos Santos +115, heavyweights
  • Herbert Burns -280 vs. Daniel Pineda +230, featherweights
  • Merab Dvalishvili -240 vs. John Dodson +200, bantamweights
  • Vinc Pichel -130 vs. Jim Miller +110, lightweights
  • Virna Jandiroba -310 vs. Felice Herrig +250, women’s strawweights
  • TJ Brown -155 vs. Danny Chavez +130, featherweights
  • Livia Renata Souza -170 vs. Ashley Yoder +145, women’s strawweights
  • Parker Porter -120 vs. Chris Daukaus +120, heavyweights
  • Kai Kamaka III vs. Tony Kelley, featherweights

With such a massive main event on tap, the crew at CBS Sports went ahead with predictions and picks for the main card. Here are your pick makers: Brent Brookhouse (Combat sports writer), Brian Campbell (Combat sports writer), Matthew Coca (producer), Jack Crosby (editor) and Michael Mormile (producer).

UFC 252 picks

Miocic (c) vs. Cormier Cormier Miocic Miocic Miocic Cormier
O’Malley vs. Vera O’Malley O’Malley O’Malley O’Malley O’Malley
Rozenstruik vs. dos Santos dos Santos dos Santos Rozenstruik Rozenstruik Rozenstruik
Burns vs. Pineda Burns Burns Burns Burns
Dodson vs. Dvalishvili Dvalishvili Dvalishvili Dodson Dodson Dodson

Campbell on why Cormier will win: If Cormier is able to shake off nagging injuries and get into five-round championship shape once more, this is his fight to lose. He’s simply better in every category save for stamina and top-end power and has more ways to win. Should DC give Miocic an avenue for victory, the underrated defending champion will take it. But if this trilogy becomes more tense and technical than the first two, it plays more into Cormier’s hands, particularly if he can do a better job mixing in takedowns and sticking to the game plan. 

Brookhouse on why Miocic will win: Cormier is 41, more than a year older than when he had originally planned to retire. Miocic also has to be thinking constantly about how digging to Cormier’s body completely changed their first meeting. With Cormier’s stamina already a potential issue, Miocic can sap Cormier early with body work and also open up shots to the head as Cormier brings his hands down to defend the body, very similar to how things played out to end the second fight between the two. That said, this is as hard a pick as any fight in recent memory, which is a product of how truly elite these two men are.

Campbell on why O’Malley will win: Vera is too dangerous and versatile to imagine O’Malley cutting through him with the ease that Anderson Silva did in his UFC debut against Chris Leben. With that said, however, we still don’t know just how great O’Malley really is. That’s what makes this fight so intriguing. Expect Vera’s all-action pace to force O’Malley to have to lean on his intangibles in ways he never has before and prove he can make adjustments against one of the division’s toughest outs. If “Sugar” Sean really is for real, he will do just that. Every step up to now, he has played the part perfectly. 

Campbell on why dos Santos will win: At 36, the former champion has looked at times in recent years like the end could be near only to right the ship and win a big fight. His three-fight win streak two years ago, which included a stoppage of Derrick Lewis, was a reminder that he’s still got it. But what happens should he be knocked out for the third straight fight when he takes on the savage Rozenstruik on Saturday? Given his opponent’s still raw skills, this is a fight JDS very much can win by boxing on the outside and patiently relying on his technique. It may get dicey at times, but there’s enough at stake for him to keep hope alive that there’s still plenty left in the tank. 

Who will win UFC 252, and how exactly will each fight end? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed picks on every fight on Saturday’s card, all from the accomplished expert who’s up over $20,000 and has nailed 16 of the last 18 UFC main events.

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No Name Boys join supporters of Hajduk Split in Guimarães

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No Name Boys join supporters of Hajduk Split in Guimarães

No Name Boys join supporters of Hajduk Split in Guimarães

Several members of Benfica’s “Nameless Boys” cheerleaders will be involved in the disrespect shown by Hajduk Split fans on Tuesday evening in the historic center of Guimarães. According to what Porto Canal has learned, after a few minutes of chaos, a group of more than 100 people boarded five Portuguese-registered buses in the direction of the city of Porto.

On VKI, where the group was intercepted, new chaos began. Near the Paranhos junction where the buses stopped, dozens of supporters fled on foot as the authorities tried to intercept them.

In a conversation with SIC Notícias, a witness who was in a bar in the center of Guimarães at the time of the “invasion” of Hajduk Split supporters assures that there were Portuguese in the group. According to Marta Mendez, phrases such as “Guimarães is ours” and “let’s go through this burning city” were heard.

The closeness between the Hajduk Split cheerleading team and the Nameless Boys from Benfica is well known. There are embodied supporters in social networks guaranteeing support for Croats.

“We will definitely be there with our brothers” and “everyone is ready for an invasion” are some of the published comments.

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A BOLA – Benfica with an atypical pre-season but no Super Cup excuse (women’s football)

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A BOLA - Benfica with an atypical pre-season but no Super Cup excuse (women's football)

It is on the field number 1 of the Benfica campus in Seixal that the official women’s national football season will begin this Wednesday at 17:30, when Benfica hosts Braga for the Super Cup.

This season, the top four players from the last BPI league will compete for the trophy, facing each other in a semi-final system, followed by the final scheduled for the 26th at 20:30 in Leiria.

Philippa Patao announced the match at the José Martins Vieira Stadium in Almada. “We can count on a prepared team or trying to do our best given the somewhat atypical pre-season we’ve had. Since we are at Benfica, there are no excuses, we have done everything possible to ensure that the entire squad is at the same level, in the same form. They did a great job, they were flawless,” praised the coach.

“We will fight and I am sure they will give a great answer in the first official competition. The main challenge for our players is to understand that they will have to adapt a lot more to the game, it depends a lot on their understanding of the game itself and the involvement that is going on. We will also do our job to convey as much information as possible. In the end, this is a good test of the adaptability they can have in the game,” he stressed.

Philippa Patao considers this semi-final to be “a good challenge and also a moment of growth”. “For our part, we should focus more on who we are, on our principles and dynamics, and then try to adapt that in the game. We are very focused on getting trophies, although we know that even in terms of timing it is not ideal, given that we have Champions League qualification ahead of us, but it is a great goal.

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“We want to win everything, so we have to do everything to win. We usually tell these players that if they want to win and be happy for Benfica, they will have to fight for Benfica on the pitch as well. That’s where we need our biggest strength, the fans who are sure to give us another push when needed. I know that game time is not attractive, but I am sure that these girls deserve it,” she assured with conviction.

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A BOLA – Esgayo support wave (Sporting)

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A BOLA - Esgayo support wave (Sporting)

Ricardo Esgayo has become the main target of criticism from Sporting fans, who even before the end of the game with Braga (3: 3) invaded the right-back’s social networks.

Criticism aside, it was the insults, posted even on personal photos, that prompted the defender to deactivate his Instagram account and later Facebook, the social network that yesterday hosted Núcleo do Sporting da Nazaré, Ricardo’s birthplace. Esgayo joined the wave of support for the athlete.

“We are with you! We know that in good times and bad, no one wants everything to go well, more than you. like Mr. [Rúben] Amorim, we believe in you. We support all our athletes at all times, in wins, losses and draws. The strength of Ricardo Esgayo, keep working and believing! Sporting fans from Nazaré and Núcleo Sporting Clube de Portugal da Nazaré are with you,” wrote Núcleo.

In addition to Núcleo, Ugarte also responded to criticism of Esgayo on the social network Twitter. “How easy it is to criticize without showing your face. How easy it is to hide behind an anonymous account. At least have the courage to use your account,” the Uruguayan midfielder wrote, and even Thiago Thomas, who is now at Stuttgart, reacted to the episode: “2022 and they still think it is.”

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