The PFL playoffs kick off this week, starting with semifinals within the light-weight and light-weight heavyweight divisions on Friday (ESPN and ESPN+, principal card at 8 p.m. ET and prelims at 6 p.m.).
The principle occasion inside Hulu Theater at Madison Sq. Backyard in New York shall be a rematch of a struggle from simply six weeks in the past, as former UFC champion Anthony Pettis takes on Stevie Ray. Ray pulled off the upset of their June assembly with a modified physique lock. Even with the loss, Pettis enters the playoffs as the highest seed within the light-weight division.
Additionally on Friday’s card, top-seeded gentle heavyweight Robert Wilkinson takes on Delan Monte. Wilkinson appeared spectacular in two fights through the common season and can attempt to carry that momentum into the playoffs.
With spots within the $1 million finals on the road, here is how I see Friday’s fights enjoying out.
Light-weight: Anthony Pettis vs. Stevie Ray
Coming off an upset win over Pettis at PFL 5 in June, Ray shall be seeking to have a repeat efficiency within the rematch. Ray must get the struggle to the mat if he needs to get back-to-back wins towards the previous UFC champion. However I do not see that taking place this time round. Within the first struggle, Pettis appeared unbelievable in Spherical 1, as he outstruck Ray from distance and was main the motion the whole approach. Search for Pettis to maintain the struggle standing to get the win and advance to the ultimate. Prediction: Pettis to win.
In a battle of teammates, Silveira should beat a fellow American Prime Workforce fighter, Akhmedov, within the first spherical of the playoffs. Akmedov has completed each of his final two opponents, whereas Silveira enters the matchup as an alternate. He obtained a highlight-reel knockout over Marthin Hamlett in his final struggle. Akmedov is explosive and bodily robust, however over time we’ve got seen his cardio fade as fights enter the later rounds. I like Silveira right here. He’s the extra technical striker, the higher wrestler, and has the cardio to push the tempo for all three rounds. Search for the Challenger Sequence product to get the win and transfer on. Prediction: Silveira to win.
Aubin-Mercier, who is thought for his wrestling, has been utilizing his putting and lateral motion recently to frustrate his opponents. Nonetheless, if he does not wrestle towards Martinez, he’ll discover himself in a little bit of hassle. Martinez is an aggressive fighter. He’s always transferring ahead and has an infinite fuel tank, which may trigger issues for Aubin-Mercier. I’m going with the underdog right here. Martinez confirmed great toughness in his struggle towards Clay Collard and virtually obtained the end. I additionally imagine his putting output could give Aubin-Mercier sufficient issues to take him out of his recreation plan. Prediction: Alex Martinez to win.
Mild heavyweight: Robert Wilkinson vs Delan Monte
Wilkinson has appeared great this season. After two dominant wins through the common season, he’s getting an incredible type matchup within the first spherical of the playoffs. Monte is a troublesome and aggressive striker, however he tends to go away himself open to get hit and he does not have floor recreation. Wilkinson, who would be the higher striker, might want to keep away from the ability of Monte and take the struggle to the bottom. From there, Wilkinson can probably get a submission. Prediction: Wilkinson to win inside the space.