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UFC 277 Staff Picks: Julianna Peña Vs. Amanda Nunes

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UFC 277: Peña vs. Nunes is almost here, which means it’s time for our official Overtime Heroics MMA UFC 277 Staff Picks! Our writers and editors have all picked their winners for the main card, and it’s round seven of our yearlong competition to see who comes out on top!

UFC 277 Main Card

  • Light Heavyweight Bout- Magomed Ankalaev vs. Anthony Smith
  • Flyweight Bout- Alexandre Pantoja vs. Alex Perez
  • Heavyweight Bout- Derrick Lewis vs. Sergei Pavlovich
  • Flyweight Interim Title Bout- Brandon Moreno vs. Kai Kara-France
  • Women Bantamweight Title Bout- Julianna Peña (C) vs. Amanda Nunes

UFC 277 is scheduled for July 30th at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.

Two Title Fights

First of the pair of title bouts is former champion Brandon Moreno vs. Kai Kara-France in an interim title bout in the flyweight division. The interim 125-pound title bout came to fruition due to current champion Deiveson Figueiredo recovering from a hand injury.

This isn’t the first time the pair of Moreno and Kara-France have collided in the octagon. They first met at UFC 245 in December of 2019 in a three-round bout, Moreno defeated Kara-France by decision.

Since their initial fight, Moreno (19-6-2 MMA, 8-3-2 UFC) has gone 3-1-1. After fighting to a draw with Figueiredo at UFC 256 in December of 2020, an immediate rematch was made for UFC 263 in June of 2021. Moreno defeated Figueiredo via submission in the third round to become the UFC flyweight champion for the first time.

A trilogy bout was then set for UFC 270 in January with Figueiredo reclaiming the gold by unanimous decision in another close bout. An unprecedented fourth bout was in the works, but Figueiredo is still nursing a hand injury so Moreno will have to go through Kara-France Saturday to meet his rival once again.

Kara-France (24-9-1 MMA, 7-2 UFC) has gone 4-1 since losing to Moreno. Following the first bout with Moreno, “Don’t Blink” has defeated Tyson Nam (DEC), Rogerio Bontorin (KO), Cody Garbrandt (TKO), and most recently defeated Askar Askarov at UFC on ESPN 33 in March. Kara-France will be looking for his chance at undisputed gold by defeating Moreno this Saturday.

In the main event, it’s an immediate rematch when Amanda Nunes (21-5 MMA, 14-2 UFC) will look to reclaim the bantamweight title she lost to Julianna Peña (11-4 MMA, 7-2 UFC) in a stunning upset at UFC 269 in December of 2021. Peña defeated Nunes by submission in the second round. A lot of comments have been made from both sides since their initial bout and this Saturday, it’s a chance for Nunes to prove her loss was a fluke. On the other side, Peña can prove she is for real and Nunes won’t be able to make an excuse for a second consecutive title fight loss.

UFC 277 Staff Picks

WriterPeña
vs.
Nunes
Moreno
vs.
Kara-France
Lewis
vs.
Pavlovich
Pantoja
vs.
Perez
Ankalaev
vs.
Smith
Austin
Marr

(16-11)
NunesMoreno LewisPantojaAnkalaev
Bruno
Dacanay

(11-1)
NunesMorenoLewisPantojaAnkalaev
Craig
Pekios

(19-8)
NunesMorenoLewisPantojaAnkalaev
Jamie
Harkin

(20-7)
NunesKara-FranceLewisPantojaSmith
Tom
Kowalsky

(9-4)
NunesMorenoLewisPantojaSmith
Brent
Dolan

(11-6)
NunesKara-FranceLewisPerezSmith
Killian
Jauch

(6-6)
NunesMorenoLewisPantojaSmith
Justin
Gibbons

(4-4)
PeñaKara-FrancePavlovichPantojaSmith
Jordan
Wright

(3-1)
NunesMorenoLewisPantojaAnkalaev

Our staff is almost (Justin Gibbons, cough-cough) completely riding with the former champion over Peña in the main event while in the co-main, it’s 6-3 in favor of Moreno to defeat Kara-France. How do you think our UFC 277 Staff Picks will play out? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured image credit to Ultimate Fighting Championship

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