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Lightweight UFC prospects will square off inside the Octagon in London when Paddy Pimblett and Jordan Leavitt square off on Saturday night. Can Paddy "The Baddy" stay true to his word and take care of Jordan Leavitt in the cage? Ben Rajavuori answers.

Paddy Pimblett vs. Jordan Leavitt Prediction: Can Paddy The Baddy Take Care of Leavitt at UFC London?

Lightweight UFC prospects will square off inside the Octagon in London when Paddy Pimblett and Jordan Leavitt square off on Saturday night. Paddy "The Baddy" Pimblett has quickly become one of the biggest fan-favorites on the UFC roster for his personality and crazy fight style, but Jordan "Monkey King" Leavitt feels he is destined to derail the hype train on his own turf.

Pimblett will have the crowd chanting loudly in his favor, as the fighter born in Liverpool will be fighting an American. Bets on the fan favorite have quickly steamed the line on Paddy up to -260 in some places. Can Paddy "The Baddy" stay true to his word and take care of Jordan Leavitt in the cage?

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Paddy Pimblett vs. Jordan Leavitt Prediction

From a resume standpoint, this is both fighters' biggest tests to date. Pimblett is 2-0 in the UFC but has fought mostly cans up to this point. Leavitt isn't a substantial step-up, but he is probably the best competition Pimblett has faced yet.

Likewise, this is a step-up for Leavitt, and he is facing a top prospect in the lightweight division. Leavitt is 3-1 in the UFC, and his lone loss was to Claudio Puelles. Many people are high on Pimblett at this point, and if he can take care of Leavitt easily, he should be looking down the barrel of a ranked opponent next.

Paddy is a strong fighter inside the octagon, and he uses his strength in grappling exchanges to reverse his opponent or stave off takedown attempts, and this will be a useful trait against someone like Jordan Leavitt. Leavitt is predominantly a grappler who has an unrefined striking game to this point.

Leavitt does have one knockout inside the UFC over Matt Wiman, but his main path to victory is using his submission skills. Paddy has not been subbed in 16 fights, but Leavitt is also the best grappler he will have faced thus far in his career. Therefore, I think Paddy will look to keep this fight standing and make Leavitt uncomfortable striking with him.

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There is one major flaw that has stuck out in Paddy's game to this point, and it is his striking defense. Paddy has never been knocked out, and it appears to have gotten to his head. In both of his UFC fights, he has left his chin high and hands low in striking exchanges, a big no-no in the UFC.

Even though neither of his low-level UFC opponents could knock him out, both Luigi Vendramini and Kazula Vargas touched Paddy up pretty good, with Vendramini even rocking him a little bit. If Paddy is fighting ranked lightweights soon, he will have to learn to keep his chin tucked and hands higher when he is trading combinations, or he will be put out quickly. It probably won't cost him in this fight against someone like Jordan Leavitt, but any ranked lightweight on the roster can expose his flaw.

This line feels inflated by the name. Paddy has quickly built a following because of his personality and presence on social media. Often, fighters popular on social media will have inflated lines because they have many more bets flowing in on them from the public, moving the line in their favor. Pimblett should rightfully be the favorite here, but I'm not sure he has earned a -260 price tag in a fight like this when he hasn't been truly tested yet.

This is a fight Paddy should win, as his strength should allow him to keep this a striking affair, in which he will have the advantage. Paddy has finished 14 of his 18 wins, and the London crowd should give him an extra adrenaline boost, as it did in his last fight. I will take the under here because Paddy will either finish Leavitt on the feet, or Paddy will leave his chin too high again and get caught for it.

Paddy Pimblett vs. Jordan Leavitt Pick

2U Play: Paddy/Leavitt Doesn't Start Round 3 @ -134 (Bet $134 to win $100)

*Odds available at Fanduel at time of publishing*

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Article Author


Ben Rajavuori is a handicapper out of Minneapolis, MN. He has been creating sports content for almost four years now and is an expert in all things NFL, MLB, NBA, UFC, and NCAAB. Ben thrives on diving deep into statistics to find the best angle on every bet. You can follow him on Twitter @WeBeatTheSpread.


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