Randy Costa (+120) vs. Journey Newson (-142)
Weight Class: Bantamweight (135 lbs)
Buried on the prelims portion of the UFC Vegas 11 card is an intriguing bantamweight bout between two fighters with plenty of ceiling. Both Journey Newson and Randy Costa have had two fights in the UFC, both going 1-1, and will be looking to build.
Newson recently had a first round knockout win over Domingo Pilarte overturned due to marijuana use, but nothing truly takes away a knockout. This is on the same tier as “vacating wins” in college football, it means nothing. Before the KO, Newson lost via decision to Ricardo Ramos in his UFC debut. All told, the California native is 9-2 (not counting the Pilarte KO).
As for Randy Costa, the bout with Newson will count for just his seventh pro fight. The New England native is 5-1 overall with his lone loss coming against Brandon Davis in his UFC debut. Costa got his hand raised the second time around following a knockout victory over Boston Salmon in Costa’s hometown of….Boston.
Stylistically, these two are about as similar as their records. Both prefer to strike, though I’d give the edge to Newson on the ground. I don’t see it getting there, however. Both are also very aggressive fighters who will push the action, especially Newson.
As the line shows, this fight is essentially a pick em’. I largely seeing it breaking down to a battle of combination speed vs. raw power. For Newson to win, he will have to be leading the dance. He’s put together some great combinations in the past and will need to do that against a powerful striker such as Costa.
Ultimately, size is what I believe will decide such a close fight. Tapology has Costa’s reach advantage listed as 73 inches to Newson’s 67.5. This is significant and should be a huge factor in the fight.
I’d love to see more out of both guys, but the edge has to go to Costa in this one. I was impressed with what he did against Brandon Davis and thought he easily could have won that fight had he gotten a little bit more experience under his belt beforehand. Though Newson certainly has the tools to advance on a bigger fighter, it’s just such a tough ask against a guy with the power of Randy Costa.
I see this bout as being one of those fights where both competitors walk away with a bright future and some positive takeaways.
For a dog or bust fight and plus odds, I’m once again going to stick with the moneyline.
Prediction and play: Randy Costa moneyline (+120)