In most other events this fight would have made the main card, but with Saturday's stacked UFC 261 main draw, we get to see "Cowboy" Oliveira vs. "Rude Boy" Brown as the finale of the prelims.
The final bout of the four-fight preliminary card at UFC 261 on Saturday from Jacksonville, Fla., features welterweights Alex Oliveira and Randy Brown squaring off. Brown is a -165 favourite to win on the MMA odds, while Oliveira is a +125 underdog. The over-under is 2.5 rounds.
Alex Oliveira UFC 261 Odds
Kamaru Usman is the welterweight champion and of course headlines this card against Jorge Masvidal. The 33-year-old Oliveira is not ranked. He was originally scheduled to fight Brown in late February, but Brown pulled out for undisclosed reasons. Brown was replaced by Ramazan Kuramagomedov, but then Ramazan was pulled due to illness. Thus, the UFC simply opted to reschedule these two for UFC 261.
“Cowboy” Oliveira is 22-9 in his professional MMA career with one draw and two no-contests. The Brazilian started fighting in December 2011 and made his UFC debut in March 2015 as a short-notice replacement with a third-round submission loss to Gilbert Burns – who is now the No. 2 ranked welterweight contender.
Since beating Carlos Condit in April 2018, Oliveira hasn’t really fought anyone of note. He is coming off a first-round submission loss to Shavkat Rakhmonov in October. Oliveira has 12 wins by KO/TKO, five by submission and five by decision, while the majority (56 per cent) of his losses are by submission.
In the UFC, Oliveira’s fights average 9:50 and he lands 2.87 significant strikes per minute with 50 per cent accuracy and absorbs 2.18. Oliveira averages 2.41 takedowns per 15 minutes with 37 per cent accuracy and has a takedown defence of 63 per cent. He is more likely to try and get this fight on the ground.
Randy Brown UFC 261 Odds
Brown, actually born in the USA but moved to Jamaica as a toddler, is not ranked in the welterweight division, either. The 30-year-old is 12-4 in his career, which dates to 2014. “Rude Boy” began his career 7-0, including winning the welterweight title in the Ring of Combat organization and a unanimous decision victory over Matt Dwyer in his UFC debut in January 2016.
However, Brown hasn’t won more than three straight fights since. He comes off a second-round knockout loss (knee and punches) to Vicente Luque last August. Prior to that, Brown earned his lone Performance of the Night honour with a second-round submission of Warlley Alves in November 2019.
Brown has won six times by KO/TKO, four by submission and two by decision, and he has lost at least once via each. In the UFC, his fights average 10:28 and he lands 3.67 significant strikes per minute with 47 per cent accuracy and absorbs 2.80. Brown averages 1.00 takedowns per 15 minutes with 46 per cent accuracy and has a takedown defence of 71 per cent. At 6-foot-3, he will have about a four-inch height advantage on Oliveira.
UFC 261 Prediction: Oliveira vs. Brown
Oliveira by points or technical decision at +300