UFC 262’s lone bantamweight bout is slated to take place on the main card when Matt Schnell takes on Rogerio Bontorin. Both fighters previously competed at flyweight and are looking for newfound success up a weight class.
Schnell enters the contest having won five of his six previous bouts, including first-round submissions over Louis Smolka and Jordan Espinosa. His combatant Bontorin has come up short in his last two outings, but before that, he won three straight, including a contract-earning submission on the Contender Series.
**Per the UFC, Rogerio Bontorin forfeits 20% of his purse due to weighing in over the bantamweight limit. Matt Schnell vs Rogerio Bontorin will officially take place at a catchweight.**
Matt Schnell (15-5, 5-3 UFC)
“Danger” appeared on The Ultimate Fighter in 2016 after securing the interim flyweight belt at Legacy FC. Following the show’s conclusion, Schnell was awarded the elusive UFC contract. After debuting at bantamweight in a losing effort to Rob Font, the American Kickboxing Academy trainee moved back down to the flyweight division. He suffered another opening-round knockout defeat, but to his credit, he bounced back to win four straight and ultimately save his job. The 31-year-old enters UFC 262 fresh off a split-decision victory over Tyson Nam back in January.
Rogerio Bontorin (16-3 1NC, 2-2 UFC)
Unlike his upcoming opposition, UFC 262 will serve as Bontorin’s official bantamweight debut. The Brazilian debuted professionally in 2013 and over the span of six years he amassed a solid resume over several different promotions. Bontorin made his long-awaited UFC debut in 2019, handing Magomed Bibulatov his first defeat. Back-to-back losses to Ray Borg and Kai Kara-France forced made his decision to move up easy. The 29-year-old faces a do-or-die scenario when he steps into the octagon at UFC 262, especially after having trouble on the scale.
Matt Schnell vs Rogerio Bontorin Breakdown
Schnell possesses a black belt in Karate as well as a purple belt in BJJ, and he stands 5’8″ with a 72.5″ reach. Meanwhile, Bontorin has his black belt in Jiu-Jitsu to accompany his 5’5″ frame and 67″ reach. Both men stand orthodox with Schnell owning the speed/precision edge and Bontorin having the power advantage.
Look for Schnell to try and keep this fight at distance using his sizeable reach advantage. He utilizes a wide-ranging striking arsenal that he’s able to offer from his preferred range. If and when his opponent does shoot for a takedown, however, “Danger” is more than willing to attack submissions from his back. His long legs allow him to throw up triangles from unexpected angles and positions.
Expect Bontorin to use his powerful hands to set up his takedown attempts. Moreover, once he gets ahold of opponents he is normally the stronger of the two, which will likely be the case again at UFC 262. He’s adept at picking up and slamming his opposition, which leads to him gaining heavy top position.
The fact that Schnell has the edge in the striking department to go along with his willingness to fight from his back makes him a poor matchup for the Brazilian. The most difficult fighters to face are the ones who are comfortable no matter where the fight ends up, and Schnell will fit that bill at UFC 262. It won’t be easy to beat a desperate Rogerio Bontorin, but this matchup favors the American competitor.
Who do you see winning Matt Schnell vs Rogerio Bontorin at UFC 262? Leave your thoughts and prediction in the comment section!
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