Geoff Neal

Handz of Steel

USA

Fighting at UFC 269
WelterweightUFC
October 11, 2021
Neal is scheduled to face Santiago Ponzinibbio in a welterweight fight set for Dec. 11 at UFC 269, Brett Okamoto of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
There's no question the biggest matchup on the UFC 269 card will be the fight between Leon Edwards and Jorge Masvidal, but this bout should also gather decent attention as well. Neal has gone 0-1 this year and enter this bout after dropping his last two fights, against Stephen Thompson and Neil Magny, both via unanimous decision. Neal owns a 13-4 record in his career and has gone 5-2 at the UFC level.
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Second straight defeat
WelterweightUFC
May 8, 2021
Neal lost to Neil Magny via unanimous decision (28-29, 28-29, 27-30) at UFC on ESPN 24 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
Seemingly in decent position to rebound from his main event loss to Stephen Thompson last December, Neal was unable to get on track against one of the welterweight division's most consistent performers in Magny. Neal has proven to be a big-time power puncher, but there have been concerns regarding how he will generate offense if those power punches aren't landing, and those concerns have proven valid over his past couple fights. Neal's output drops when is struggling, and he was outworked by Magny here. The other major concern is that Neal has struggled against better competition over the course of his career. He will find himself in a must-win situation his next time out.
Next fight coming May 8
WelterweightUFC
April 7, 2021
Neal is set to take on Neil Magny in a welterweight fight at UFC Fight Night on May 8, Brett Okamoto of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Neal and Magny are both coming off recent losses. It was Neal's first loss at the UFC level, while Magny's defeat broke a three-fight winning streak, so both fighters will be looking to get right come May. This is a fight that's long been coming, given that Neal and Magny were initially set to face off August of 2020 before a health scare derailed things.
Overwhelmed by Stephen Thompson
WelterweightUFC
December 19, 2020
Neal lost to Stephen Thompson via unanimous decision (45-50, 45-50, 45-50) at UFC Fight Night on Saturday in Las Vegas.
ANALYSIS
A five-rounder against one of the best kickboxers in MMA history was simply too much for Neal to overcome. Blessed with a significant power advantage over Thompson, Neal was simply unable to make up for the massive gap in technical skill between the two men. Neal got off second in virtually all the striking exchanges between the two. He also had all sorts of difficulty stringing together combinations. Every time Neal returned fire, Wonderboy was seemingly gone. Neal is unquestionably talented, but this appeared to be a bad matchup for him on paper, and it played out that way inside the Octagon, as well. The loss is Neal's first in his first half-dozen UFC bouts.
Moved to headliner on Dec. 19
WelterweightUFC
December 1, 2020
Neal's fight versus Stephen Thompson on Dec. 19 has been promoted to the main even, MMAJunkie.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Neal and Thompson have taken the headlining spot on the card due to Leon Edwards testing positive and feeling the effects of COVID-19, resulting in the fight versus Chimaev being scratched from the card. Neal has a perfect record through his first six fights in the UFC ranks and takes on the ageless Thompson, who picked up a win over Vincente Lugue in his last bout.
Slated to return
WelterweightUFC
November 4, 2020
Neal (infection) is being targeted to take on Stephen Thompson (hand) in a welterweight matchup at a UFC event scheduled for Dec. 19.
ANALYSIS
Neal was expected to fight at the end of August, but a life-threatening infection forced him to withdraw from his matchup against Neil Magny. His last fight came in December of 2019 when he defeated Mike Perry via TKO in 90 seconds at UFC 245, bringing his record under the UFC banner to 5-0. Thompson defeated Vincent Luque via unanimous decision at UFC 244 in November of 2019, but he broke both of his hands during the fight and has been sidelined since. Thompson has a slight edge in reach, but the two are even in height.