The UFC is heading back to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for UFC on ESPN 2 this weekend. In the main event, Edson Barboza will be taking on Justin Gaethje in a matchup that has Fight of the Year written all over it.
Ahead of the fight, BJPENN.com reached out to several pro fighters to get their predictions. Here’s what they had to say.
Pro fighters pick Edson Barboza vs Justin Gaethje
Beneil Dariush, UFC lightweight: I am going with Gaethje. I am a big fan of his and he is a great guy, too. I was in Colorado and the guy took care of everything. He took care of my training, a place to stay and food, everything. If you ever want to meet a cool guy, Gaethje is your guy. So I think he will put the pressure on Edson and finish him.
Blagoy Ivanov, UFC heavyweight: Justin Gaethje, yeah he will win.
Alex Morono, UFC welterweight: Man, I have been such big fans of both dudes for so long. I have to go with Justin Gaethje, I have trained with him before and as a fan we can ask no more of a fighter than Gaethje. I think third or fourth round finish.
Georgi Karakhanyan, Bellator featherweight: Oh man. Edson Barboza. Gaethje brings a lot of excitement and throws crazy punches. But, if Barboza doesn’t get too hyped up, he will win.
Jordan Rinaldi, UFC featherweight: That is brutal. I’m not too sure but that will be an amazing fight. If Gaethje goes and strikes like he normally does, Barboza by KO.
Montana De La Rosa, UFC flyweight: I’m going to have to go with Gaethje.
John Makdessi, UFC lightweight: That is an interesting fight. Barboza, I have to give my hats off to him, he is a big 155’er and he is very active. People don’t understand, it isn’t just the training but the weight cutting is hard. It is going to be interesting to see who keeps the pace. If Barboza can wear Gaethje down with the kicking, I will give it to Barboza.
Drew Dober, UFC lightweight: I am going to go with Gaethje because he is one of my teammates and I see what he does in the gym. They are going to try and trade shots with each other and make that fight real exciting.
Steven Peterson, UFC featherweight: Yeah that is an incredible matchup. I have to go with Barboza. Gaethje is a banger but Barboza has that power in his kicks and I don’t think Gaethje can stand up to his kicks.
Alex Perez, UFC bantamweight: Oh shit, man that is going to be a good one. They are both are good and have solid leg kicks. Barboza has been one of my favorites but I think Gaethje goes over the top with the right hand and ends it.
Fighters picking Edson Barboza: Georgi Karakhanyan, Jordan Rinaldi, John Makdessi, Steven Peterson
Fighters picking Justin Gaethje: Beneil Dariush, Blagoy Ivanov, Alex Morono, Montana De La Rosa, Drew Dober, Alex Perez
Who do you have winning the fight between Edson Barboza and Justin Gaethje?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 3/28/2019.