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UFC 298: Alexander Volkanovski vs. Ilia Topuria 2/17/24 Fight Forecast, Picks and Analysis

UFC 298: Volkanovski vs.Topuria 2/17/24 – As the UFC Featherweight Title Bout approaches, anticipation builds for what promises to be a clash of titans at UFC 298. Alexander “The Great” Volkanovski, boasting an impressive record of 26-3-0, is set to defend his title against the undefeated challenger, Ilia “El Matador” Topuria, who enters the octagon with a flawless 14-0-0 record. This matchup not only highlights the pinnacle of mixed martial arts competition but also garners attention from fans betting on outcomes through top-tier online casinos. The stage is set for a historic battle that will take place on Saturday, February 17, 2024, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California, promising an unforgettable night of high-stakes action.

UFC 298: Volkanovski vs.Topuria 2/17/24

When:Saturday, February 17, 2024 10:00 PM ET
Where:Honda Center, Anaheim, California, USA
Stream:UFC Fight Pass

UFC 298: Volkanovski vs. Topuria 2/17/24 Odds

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Alexander Volkanovski-125Ilia Topuria -105

Main Card

Alexander Volkanovski

The incumbent featherweight king Alexander Volkanovski enters his title defense boasting an outstanding 26-3 professional record behind some of the best technical striking the division has ever seen. His 6.19 significant strikes landed per minute come at an efficient 57% accuracy and his defense is equally impressive, absorbing just 3.42 significant strikes per minute. That striking differential combined with a stout 70% takedown defense rate has allowed Volkanovski to overwhelm opponents and leave little doubt with the judges’ scorecards.

In addition to keeping fights standing, Volkanovski brings underrated offensive wrestling, attempting nearly 2 takedowns per round and converting them at a 37% clip. That well-rounded attacking approach has brought Volkanovski 9 wins by KO/TKO with another 6 by decision against top flight competition. Volkanovski will need to leverage his high volume striking and takedown defense to neutralize Topuria’s submission arsenal. Look for him to use his elite footwork to angle off strikes while mixing in timely takedowns to keep Topuria guessing. The champion has all the tools to continue his dominant title reign.

Ilia Topuria

Despite his undefeated 14-0 record, Ilia Topuria takes a massive step up in competition challenging for UFC gold at just 27 years old. His average of 4.44 significant strikes landed per minute pales in comparison to the champion’s output and Topuria’s subpar 46% striking accuracy indicates he may struggle to connect cleanly and consistently on the faster, more elusive Volkanovski.

Where Topuria does pose a considerable threat is in his lethal submission game. He attempts a whopping 2.19 takedowns per round, converting an impressive 56% of them to bring opponents into his world. Once on the mat, Topuria turns on the aggression, hunting for submissions at a breakneck pace averaging 1.5 submission attempts every 15 minutes in the cage. That finishing instinct has brought Topuria 9 submission victories already. To replicate that success against Volkanovski, he’ll need to be more judicious in striking exchanges to set up his takedown entries and grappling exchanges. If he can bring the fight to the mat and force extended scrambles, his submission savvy could earn him the upset.

Volkanovski vs. Topuria Betting Numbers

Alexander Volkanovski
Ilia Topuria
Last FightLossWin
Weight (lbs)154145
Reach (in)70″68″
Win by KO/TKO50%29%
Win by Submission12%57%
Strikes landed per minute6.11N/A
Striking accuracy59%N/A
Striking absorbed per minute2.49N/A
Striking defense62%N/A
Takedown average2.78N/A
Takedown accuracy38%N/A
Takedown defense72%N/A
Submission average0.52N/A

Volkanovski vs. Topuria Betting Picks

While the undefeated Topuria presents legitimate danger with his submission skills, the incumbent champion Volkanovski simply has too many paths to victory with his versatile skill set. Volkanovski’s technical kickboxing provides accuracy and volume that Topuria has yet to encounter, and he pairs it with an ironclad takedown defense.

Even if Topuria can sporadically notch a takedown, Volkanovski has shown enough grappling savvy to minimize damage and work back to his feet. Once standing, Volkanovski’s crisper hands and diverse kicking arsenal should allow him to pick apart Topuria from range. As Topuria begins to feel the champion’s power, expect his takedown attempts to get more desperate, allowing Volkanovski to keep things standing and accumulate damage.

The most likely outcome is Volkanovski methodically breaking down Topuria for a late stoppage, quite possibly from devastating ground and pound along the fence. If Topuria gets careless with his grappling entries, there is also danger of him walking into a fight-ending Volkanovski punch. While Topuria certainly owns fight-finishing capability himself if he grabs a limb, Volkanovski boasts far too well-rounded a skill set not to be a sizable favorite here. Be sure to get the latest free MMA prediction today for our top play in this featherweight title tilt.