UFC 234: Whittaker vs. Gastelum staff picks and predictions
The Bloody Elbow team has made its predictions for UFC 234, also it’s a clean sweep for Robert Whittaker to shield his middleweight title by beating Kelvin Gastelum, while everyone is backing Israel Adesanya over Anderson Silva from the co-main event. In other words, congrats to Gastelum and Silva on their wins on Saturday.
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Note: Predictions are entered throughout the week and collected the day prior to the event. Explanations behind each choice aren’t required and some writers elect not to do so for their own reasons. For instance, if Phil Mackenzie entered all his predictions on Wednesday without adding in any explanationshe has no idea if he is going to be the only one siding with a single fighter for any specific fight.
Robert Whittaker vs. Kelvin Gastelum
Anton Tabuena: 2 prior welterweights fighting for the middleweight belt. Will this convince people that extreme weight reduction actually isn’t worth the trade off in performance? Probably not, but this should be an entertaining bout either way at the least. I think this is going to be closer than that which the odds state, but I believe Whittaker is just slightly better just about everywhere, so he must take this. Robert Whittaker by choice.
Mookie Alexander: Gastelum has a chance . He has strong hands, insane durability — maybe not that Whittaker’s durability is to be scoffed at by any means — and excellent cardio. But he is not likely to have the ability to take Whittaker down (or at least maintain him ), and Whittaker has way more depth to his attacking striking. His leg kicks in particular can slow Gastelum down, and I believe he cuts better angles and mixes up his attack choice and targets more effectively than Kelvin. It’ll be a close fight through the opening couple of rounds but Whittaker will come on strong in the following rounds and get the win. Robert Whittaker by conclusion.