Prediction for the fight Valentin Moldavsky vs Ryan Bader

After leaving the UFC in 2016, Ryan Bader was literally reborn, and was able to reach unprecedented heights in Bellator, becoming a double champion there. However, time goes by, and young talents do not stand still, because now, in the once promising top, few people believe. At Bellator 273, he will have one last chance to prove his worth as a heavyweight champion.

In opposition to him, they picked up Valentin Moldavsky, who now owns the time zone. And not in vain, the head of the promotion, Scott Cocker, called this battle a competition between a bull and a matador, because despite the significant superiority of the Russian in the coefficients, that same bull (Bader) will always have a chance to win. We, in turn, invite you to understand the question: who, and how exactly, will become a triumphant on January 30, after which they will have the opportunity to lead the heavy weight of Bellator?

Valentin Moldavsky vs Ryan Bader

Ryan Bader

The American athlete, as mentioned above, is the Bellator heavyweight champion. But he got into big sport after winning the TUF show (Season 8), although before that he had proven himself in wrestling, taking good places in the NCAA 1st division tournaments. In 2004 and 2006, Ryan received the title of All-American, and also became the champion of the Pac-10 Conference Championship wrestling match three times.

In the UFC, Bader fought back against the likes of Jon Jones, Glover Teixeira, Tito Ortiz, Lyoto Machida and more. He performed with varying degrees of success, failing to break into the TOP-3 of the light heavyweight division. But after a string of convincing Bellator victories and a Grand Prix victory, he briefly managed to establish himself as the league's double champion.


Despite the freestyle base, Bader initially relied on his stance. It is painfully primitive, but it is precisely because of this that it works great. Sweeping overhands (a favorite blow of all wrestlers), hooks at non-standard angles, and all sorts of "homemade" punches flying along an unpredictable trajectory, Ryan seasons with his physical strength, resulting in an explosive mixture of knockouts.

You can only occasionally see Dart perform a submission, and this is also not surprising, because BJJ with grappling is not the same as wrestling. That is why he competently controls his counterpart from above, he can climb behind his back, but at the same time, being from below, he does not act in the best way.

When Bader is in full control of the fight, he is able to distribute forces very intelligently, and 5 rounds for this guy is a normal distance. But the most important thing is that he manages to remain dangerous, until the very final gong.


At one time, the craving for insane exchanges with a certain frequency led Ryan to defeat. He fell into knockouts, but before that he missed the hardest blows, depriving him of stamina. Now, the champ needs much less to “dump”, and his chin is no longer able to take heavy damage - 2 knockouts in 3 extreme fights are direct proof of this. 

As many as 36 professional fights behind him, and the approaching 40 years, even for a heavyweight, are a serious indicator. Bader can get younger as much as he wants, but his reaction, speed and physical indicators, even in comparison with 2020, are seriously addicted to him.

The current form and readiness of the fighter

Last summer, Dart turned 38 years old, in the final 5 fights he won only 2 times, quickly cracking down on the demotivated Fedor Emelianenko, and the same pensioner Lyoto Machida. We admit that he also led a meeting with Cheick Kongo, but a poke in the eye decided the outcome of the fight by itself. Peak Vadim Nemkov, one might say, “didn’t feel” Ryan, and Corey Anderson turned off his light, finally banishing him from the light heavyweight category. Without a doubt, Bader will desperately defend his last title, but the chances of his victory are inexorably dwindling when assessing the dry statistics of recent times.

Valentin Moldavsky vs Ryan Bader

Valentin Moldavsky

Valentine's background in martial arts also deserves attention. He started with the Russian combat sambo championships, where he took the Russian Super Cup, won the national championship, and then ended up 3rd in Europe, after which he moved to MMA. In 2018, he returned to SAMBO, took gold in Europe and the world (twice), and is now the interim champion of the Bellator heavyweight league.

Training with Fedor Emelianenko is not in vain, because Moldavsky confidently outplays such dangerous athletes in the cage as Timothy Johnson, as well as Roy Nelson, who previously made a lot of noise in the UFC. In addition, Valentin excelled in the Rizin 2016 Grand Prix, where he managed to reach the final, but he failed to defeat the main boss, represented by Amir Aliakbari.


Despite his impressive size, Moldavsky is not a puncher. He prefers to hit from a long distance, not to aggravate the situation on the rapprochement, and even more so not to go into rash exchanges. Distance control, fast feet, as well as competent work on the ground - this is his bread.

The past in combat sambo is clearly reflected in the technique of a Russian. He is good at sweeps, works great with body balance and clearly understands how to take positions on the ground, from where you can not only control his opponent, but also deliver solid blows to him. By the way, Valentin also goes to submissions often, but they cannot be called high-quality - only 3 times in his career he won in this way.


The lion's share of fights involving Moldavsky ends with the decision of the judges. But the breakaway from the opponent by our athlete is achieved precisely in the first half of the fight, because then his cardio starts to sag every minute. Let's just say - 3 rounds, for Valentine they go well, but protracted fights become problematic.

The current form and readiness of the fighter

Moldavskiy is only 29 years old and has definitely come close to his peak. A streak of 6 victories against high-level fighters like the aforementioned Nelson and Johnson, Linton Vassell and Xavi Ayala, complete dominance and an increase in fighting skill can guarantee that Valentine will show a perfect performance in the championship fight. 

Comparative analysis

Following the traditions, let's start with anthropometry. Here the situation is debatable, since Bader is a couple of centimeters taller than his counterpart, but inferior to him in the reach by 3 cm, while having less weight. At first glance, it may seem that the base of the American will become a problem for Moldavsky, but just the same in the ground I see our athlete as the favorite, since position control will be his, and his hand work in this position is better. Ryan is good in a dominant position, and his trick is to hold the opponent's body, while submissions and ground and pound go to the Russian.

In the stand, at long range and in the clinch, Valentin will also be better, but in terms of power and unpredictability, Dart goes ahead by a considerable margin. He can throw blows from a distance, from a variety of angles, and it is very difficult to read such attacks on his part. Yes, he is inferior in mobility, and often stagnates, however, having a knockout punch in your arsenal means always keeping a chance to win in your pocket. It was previously mentioned that Moldavsky is a game player, his footwork and work for points, causes bewilderment among the opposition, but he has no right to make a mistake with Bader.

Valentin Moldavsky vs Ryan Bader Fight Prediction

It's safe to say that despite odds, age gap and other variables, Ryan Bader will be one of Valentine's most dangerous opponents of his entire career. And the fact that the fight will take place in the format of 5 rounds does not play into the hands of our fighter either. It’s hard to believe that Moldavsky will suddenly finish in the first 2-3 rounds, so you should prioritize with an emphasis on dry statistics. Considering that the odds for the Russian’s victory are not the best, it would be wiser to bet that the fight will pass its equator, since the first segment will most likely go to intelligence, and Bader has nowhere to rush, he will be able to open up in the late five minutes. And only in the second place, we consider such an option as the victory of Moldavsky. Download 1xbet to your phone and place a bet on the favorite!

Prediction: Valentin Moldavsky to win/Total over 2.5

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