UFC Vegas 17: Geoff Neal vs. Stephen Thompson Picks and Predictions

UFC Vegas 17: Geoff Neal vs. Stephen Thompson Picks and Predictions Photo by Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Stephen Thompson vs. Geoff Neal

Saturday, December 19, 2020 at 7:00 PM (UFC APEX)

The Line: Geoff Neal -118 / Stephen Thompson -102 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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Geoff Neal and Stephen Thompson face off on Saturday in a welterweight bout for the main event of UFC Vegas 17 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. 

Geoff “Handz of Steel” Neal comes into this game with a 13-2 record overall and since coming into the UFC he has won all six of his fights. Neal has had a long layoff though and his last fight came all the way back in December of 2019. In that fight, Neal faced off with Mike Perry and it didn’t take him long to finish the fight. 1:30 into the fight, Perry was knocked out by Neal. Each of Neal’s last two wins have come by his fists. Neal comes into this game averaging 6.04 significant strikes per minute while absorbing 3:57 significant strikes per minute. Neal is also averaging 0:85 successful takedowns every 15 minutes and he is accurate on 50 percent of his takedown attempts. Neal also stops 92 percent of his opponents' takedown attempts. In this fight Neal is probably going to need to take a punch but he is going to need to his his power early. 

On the other side of this matchup is Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson who comes into this game with a 15-4-1 record overall and after losing two fights in a row, he finally got a victory in his last one. Thompson faced off with Vicente Lugue in November of 2019 and he was able to win that fight by unanimous decision. Thompson outstruck his opponent 138-77 and there was really no doubt that he had won. Thompson comes into this one averaging 3.93 significant strikes per minute while their defense is giving up 2.73 significant strikes per minute. Thompson wants to keep the fight on the feet and he is also stopping 78 percent of his opponents' takedown attempts. Thompson won’t be trying to finish this fight by submission. 

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Stephen Thompson looked good in the last game, but he has been inconsistent and this is a fight that Neal should have no issue getting the job done in. Back Neal to get the job done on the money line. 

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

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