UFC 245 Picks with UFC Vet Ike Vallie-Flagg

UFC Veteran Isaac Vallie-Flagg Photo by Phil Lambert

UFC 245 is this Saturday in Las Vegas. There are three Ultimate Fighting Championship belts on the line! So, I enlisted the expertise of my buddy Isaac Vallie-Flagg. Ike is a former UFC and Strikeforce lightweight contender and currently undefeated in Bare Knuckle Boxing. Ike and I fired up messenger to make some predictions on how the main card shakes out. Enjoy our no-holds-barred shit talking and our picks and predictions. 

Thomas Cunningham: Hey Ike! You wanna do UFC 245 Main Card picks with me?

Isaac Vallie-Flagg: Yeah when were you thinking?

Thomas: Nowish. On here. I’ll cut & paste it. It’ll be hilarious. The “fans” will love it. You can do it while you’re pooping if you want. No one will ever know.

Ike: Ok I have gym and then a meeting. Should be done around 8. Does that work?

Thomas: Yes. You’re the Bare Knuckle Boxing superstar!

Ike: Omg. Whatevs ha

Thomas: Btw this is how all interview things will be done in the future. I’m reinventing journalism. 

Ike: I’m into it Just got home

Thomas: This could be fun or a disaster. Who knows? haha

Ike: Like my life. Ha

Thomas: So Ike you’re a “UFC Vet” right? You were in the UFC back in the 1970s… when you had that handlebar mustache…

Ike: Yes when hair was sexy all over

Thomas: I might be thinking of Rollie Fingers…

Not Isaac Vallie-Flagg

Ike: Dude. I would rock that shit!

Thomas: No doubt! So okay…  Petr Yan (13-1) vs Urijah Faber (35-10) GO!

Ike: I think Yan [wins] but would like to see fellow old guy Faber win.

Thomas: It’s hard to tell, because we only saw Faber fight once in 2019. and he won in under a minute. So, Impressive but who knows where his skills are at now? KO power still there though. 

Ike: Yeah that’s the thing is we don’t really have  a good gauge for where he is and Yan is a killer.If I’m slow to answer, I’m making frito pie and yelling at my wife. Sorry. 

Thomas: haha. Classic. No problem.I wanna pick Faber just on his experience level and probably nostalgia.Never pick with your heart. *shrug*

Ike: Yeah same. And he’s over 40.

Thomas: Little guys age slower… like little dogs. Science! I picked Faber by 3rd rd guillotine which probably means Yan by 1st round KO.

Ike: Ha ha ha yeah every time I cheer for someone they lose and it’s not pretty. I’m bad luck.

Thomas: Moraes vs Aldo at BANTAMWEIGHT?! Aldo is a killer but my man look like Christian Bale in The Mechanic! And it’s not even weigh-in time!

Jose Aldo cutting for 135 lbs

Ike: Too much weight cut for Aldo —and Moraes is a bad dude! I hate picking against Aldo but Moraes by KO in the second.

Thomas: Same! It’s definitely gonna affect his cardio and probably his chin.

Ike: For sure his chin. Dude looks horrible man. He hated 45 don’t see why he went lower,

Thomas: No one knows. Maybe he’ll prove everyone wrong but… I don’t see it.

Nunes vs De Randamie?

Ike: Nunes.

Thomas: Yeah…. Hard to pick against the lady that stopped Cyborg, Holm, Tate and Rousey in the 1st round. All bad ass legends.

Ike: I think De Randamie might give her some issues because she has good kickboxing but Nunes is an animal. And yeah she walked through killers

Thomas: Who knew you COULD KO Cyborg?

Ike: Right?

Thomas: Holloway vs Volkanivski. I think Volky is great but I dunno that he’s Max great -if Max is on point.

Ike: Max is a G he wins everything always. Don’t feel like he gets enough credit for how good he’s gotten.

Thomas: but tbh, Volkanivski wasn’t really on my radar til he beat Mendes and Aldo. But still Holloway is Holloway.

Ike: Yeah Holloway is a different level.

Thomas: Max even gave Poirier a good fight at 155. At Featherweight…. I wonder if Conor at Featherweight would beat him nowadays.

Ike: I don’t think Conor could make featherweight anymore ha

Thomas: True. He living large! Literally and figuratively.

Ike: Yeah both ha.

Thomas: So, Everyone’s fave MAGA heel lol Colby Covington vs the champ Kamaru Usman… I think a lot of people have trouble not letting their hate of Colby influence their opinion. But it’s an interesting match-up.

UFC 245: Usman vs Covington

Thomas: Might not be exciting but it’s interesting

Ike: Even if I thought Covington was going to win, I wouldn’t pick him. I think he is vile.

Thomas: He’s trying to get paid… but I still think he’s a dick even if it’s an act.

Ike: I know Colby is good and I’m picking strictly on my hate for Colby. [People] think his gimmick is cute but it’s disgusting and loathsome… And I don’t like how he acts all tough till someone really pulls his card.

Thomas: Yeah. Masvidal might kill him in front of a 7-11 one of these days,lol

Ike: Ha ha ha yeah. I like Masvidal a lot. Dude backs up everything he says.

Thomas: Plus he’s super fun to watch.

Ike: Yep.

Thomas: I mean I think Colby is a one trick pony but man, it’s a good trick. Pressure and control. But he’s never gone against someone with Usman’s skills. I’m thinking he might really wear himself out doing that to Usman by mid-fight.

Ike: Yeah I think he will and seems like all the ATT [American Top Team] guys aren’t in hurry to help Colby.

Thomas: He’ll keep coming forward but he’ll be losing intensity as the fight goes on. I’m guessing he wins 1st 2 rounds and then Usman wins the last 3. Who knows though? Hard to count a guy out that never stops coming forward like that. He controlled Robbie Lawler for 5 rounds… but again he was fading somewhat by the end.

Ike: I hope Usman hurts him early on and controls him and knocks him out.  But Covington is very good at what he does.

Thomas: Yeah. I hope so too… just cause it’s not the most entertaining style to watch… and y’know the whole MAGA shtick… 

So, you agree with all my picks. Uh oh. haha

Ike: Yeah I do! ha

Thomas: I appreciate you doing this, my man.

Ike: No problem, man. I’m happy to do it.

Thomas: Surprise bonus round: Conor vs Cowboy! I have no idea what you’ll say! haha

[Ike and Cowboy are friends and teammates at Jackson-Wink in NM]

Ike: Ha ha ha cowboy by KO. Always ride with Cowboy no matter what!

Thomas: I think it’s a bad match up for Cowboy but I’m rooting for him and I think he’s got a good shot since it’s at 170.

Ike: I hope [Cowboy’s] chin stays strong and that he moves his head. I think Conor punches very hard and understands range very well.

Thomas: Word is Conor wants Masvidal. Which… why would you want that?! lol

Ike: Right. Both fights Cowboy and Masvidal are good money fights.

Thomas: Cowboy has also been way more active which I think helps him. He’ll be loose and ready. Cowboy by headkick KO!

Ike: Yes!

Thomas: or Conor by left… Everybody talking submission. I don’t think it goes to the ground.

Ike: Conorsteps to a little angle backwards and throws a hard straight left. He caught [Dustin] Poirier with it and a few others. He steps backwards, power side just out of range and he’s got long arms so guys overcommit, miss and he makes them pay.

Thomas: I hope Cowboy is making some decent money for that fight. Fuckin’ Dana lol

Ike: I hope so also.

Thomas: You still training grappling and shit or just striking now?

Ike: Mostly to all boxing with a touch of grappling just because

Thomas: Just in case you get offered an MMA fight? Or can’t you take one under Bare Knuckle contract?

Ike: Yeah I can and if I could I would take one just for shots and giggles.

Thomas: Shots! Wrestling joke!

Ike: Ha god damn autocorrect

Thomas: Feel free to use that one in the gym…

Ike: I will. ha.

Thomas:“Lets do some wrestling just for shots and giggles”

Ike: Dad jokes.

Thomas: Are THE BEST JOKES! Alright Ike, I’ll let ya get going. 

Thanks again and it was awesome catching up!

You can follow Ike on Twitter and Facebook @IKEVF.