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UFC 261: Usman vs Masvidal 2 - Apr 24 🇺🇸


Who wins and how?   

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Posted (edited)

OK then. Saturday 24th April, back on PPV. And we’re heading to Jacksonville, Florida where crowds are allowed! Sounds like a COVID outbreak waiting to happen but these people think they know best. I’ll roll with it. This is a ridiculous card as it currently stands...

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PPV MAIN CARD 
Kamaru Usman vs Jorge Masvidal - Welterweight Title

Weili Zhang vs Rose Namajunas - Strawweight Title

Valentina Shevchenko vs Jessica Andrade - Flyweight Title

Uriah Hall vs Chris Weidman 

Anthony Smith vs Jim Crute 

ESPN PRELIMS  
Alex Oliveira vs Randy Brown 

Dwight Grant vs Stefan Sekulic

Brendan Allen vs Karl Roberson

Tristan Connelly vs Pat Sabatini

ESPN+/FIGHT PASS PRELIMS
Danaa Batgerel vs Kevin Natividad 

Rong Zhu vs Kazula Vargas

Jeff Molina vs Aoriqileng 

Ariane Carnelossi vs Na Liang 

 

And yeah I know it’ll probably fall to bits. Not sure if that’ll be the final bout order. Main card looks about right to me and it’s a beauty. Not really a fan of that main event and some of the prelims are a bit cack but the card as a whole is ace.


 

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Kamaru Usman vs Jorge Masvidal 2 then. The rematch nobody was asking for. Does very little for me this. I’d much rather have seen Usman vs Edwards or Wonderboy or even the Covington rematch. But it’s happening so that’s that.

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They met back in July last year, in the main event of UFC 251 on Fight Island. Usman was supposed to defend his belt against Gilbert Burns that night but COVID had other plans and took Burns out. Masvidal stepped in on about a week’s notice and we had ourselves a new title fight. The UFC champion vs the BMF champion. From what I remember most people seemed to favour Usman but you still had divs acting like Masvidal was going to waltz in and spark Usman like he was nothing. Or like he was Ben Askren or some shit. Didn’t quite go like that.

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That’s on a loop obviously, it’s a gif. But it might as well not be on a loop. This was pretty much the whole fight. Wasn’t the best to watch but whatever. Usman just completely shut Scarface Jorge down and 50-45ed the shit out of him. It’s funny but before the fight I remember Masvidal bumsniffers acting like the short notice wouldn’t matter and going ‘nah Jorge has been training in secret, he’s ready, he’s a GANGSTA. Usman’s fucked’. After the fight it was a totally different story. ‘Yeah but he took the fight on a few days notice. With a full camp it’d be different...’ etc etc. Serious case of McGregoritis. And of course, they shat on Usman for how he fought. Balls to it. Jorge was meant to be the Baddest Mother Fucker but had no answer for Usman stamping on his toe for 25 minutes.

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The real BMF.

Since then, Usman vs Burns finally happened in February, and Usman put in one of the best performances of his career, stopping Burns in the third round. Add that to wins over Covington, Woodley, Edwards, Dos Anjos and Maia and there’s no disputing he’s one of the very best fighters in the game right now. As for Masvidal, since the loss to Usman he’s done...nothing. Well apart from kiss Trump’s arse.

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State of it. Aside from this and parading around in a pink bathrobe looking chubby as fuck, he’s done fuck all. Don’t get me wrong, I know why he’s getting this rematch. He’s got a following and he’s popular and marketable and all that. And they can spin the short notice thing last time to convince people he’s got a real chance this time. Fine. As much as I cringe at Masvidal, he is a good fighter and I’d be cool with him getting another shot if there weren’t a bunch of more worthy and interesting contenders lined up waiting for their crack at the gold. But what can you do? Usually I’d say, I hope it’s more competitive this time but in this case I don’t really. I hope Usman smashes him so bad he grows up and stops being a 36 year old man cosplaying Tony Montana. I’d rather it be a more violent and exciting squash but, honestly, I’ll be quite content if Usman just nullifies and frustrates the bollocks off him again. In fairness, I guess with a full camp Masvidal should do a bit better than last time. I don’t fancy his chances at all though and that doesn’t upset me a bit.

 

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Weili Zhang vs Rose Namajunas. Absolutely love this fight. Feels like forever we’ve waited to see Zhang back in there but it’s probably been a good thing. That war with Joanna was the kind that you don’t want to be rushing back too soon from. This is a completely different style matchup as well so it’ll be fun to watch how they both approach it. I’m doing the full career timeline thing for this. I know both from their UFC runs but I don’t know much about their pre-UFC stuff, especially Zhang. So I’m gonna do a bit of digging.

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Weili Zhang was born in August 1989. She got into martial arts at a young age and dabbled in a bit of everything, striking and grappling, throughout her teens. She’s said that watching Donnie Yen movies was what really sparked her interest and inspired her to compete in MMA. She worked a bunch of different jobs to make ends meet and fund her MMA training before finally getting her break.

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Rose Namajunas was born in June 1992 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Lithuanian parents. She had a really rough childhood from the sounds of it. Her Dad was schizophrenic, wasn’t in her life much and passed away when she was 16. And she’s publicly said she suffered sexual abuse as a child which she still has mental health problems from. She went through a lot at a young age. In amongst the turmoil, she started Taekwondo at just 5 years old. She later got into Kickboxing, Karate, BJJ and naturally this all led her on a path to Milwaukee’s most well known MMA gym Roufusport. She was still in school at the time she started training there. She started fighting amateur MMA (going 4-0) at 18 and turned pro at 20.

2013: Both turn professional. Zhang loses her debut in November to Meng Bo by decision. Namajunas fights 3 times for Invicta. She subs Emily Kagan in her debut, then hits a sweet 12 second flying armbar on Kathina Catron to win her second bout a few months later...

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This was when Rose first got on my radar. I’d seen her before but only knew of her as Pat Barry’s girlfriend. But she was quickly making a name for herself. She suffers her first setback in July though, when she loses on points to Tecia Torres. But it was a cracking fight, especially considering they were both only 2-0 going in. I clearly remember seeing it at the time and loving that fight.

2014: Zhang bounces back in style. She fights twice and wins both by first round submission. The second fight only lasts 40 seconds. Namajunas is inactive early in the year but there was a big opportunity in the works. The UFC were introducing a Strawweight division and announced a season of The Ultimate Fighter to crown a new (and first ever) UFC champion at 115lbs. Rose was on the list.

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She did very well on the show submitting Alex Chambers, Joanne Calderwood and Randa Markos to advance to the tournament finals at the TUF Finale in December. Sadly for her, it didn’t pan out and she got choked by Carla Esparza. Still, at 22 years old, time was on her side and she was only getting better.

2015: Zhang joins a promotion called Kunlun Fight, which is where she’d stay for the bulk of her pre-UFC career from here on out. She only fights once this year and gets a first round TKO over some schmuck. Rose rebounds nicely with a standing rear naked choke finish on Angela Hill. Then in December...

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She fucks Paige VanZant up bad for almost the full 5 rounds and then chokes her out. It was a right beatdown. This was probably the fight that really put Thug Rose on the map for a lot of fans. A UFC main event against a popular name who was being hyped up and positioned as the poster girl of the Strawweight division, and Rose messed her up.

2016: Much more active year for Zhang this time. She fights 6 times and stops all 6 opponents. I’ve skimmed through the footage that’s out there from this little streak and, well...

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That’s Zhang straight murdering poor Liliya Kazak there. Just ruthless. Namajunas fights twice. She rematches Tecia Torres in April on a FOX card and gets some redemption with a points win. They’d both improved technically since their first meeting as greenhorns but this wasn’t a patch on their Invicta belter. In July she loses on points to Karolina Kowalkiewicz in a fun scrap that got FOTN. As we roll into 2017, Zhang sits at 9-1 and Namajunas is 5-3.

2017: Zhang trying to smash her own records now. She manages to top her 2016 and fights 7 times this year! She wins them all, stops 6 of them and wins 2 different promotion’s Strawweight belts. In May she batters Simone Duarte with ground and pound to win the Kunlun Fight strap.

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And she successfully defends it the following month for good measure. Then in July she crushes Ye Dam Seo in Korea to bag the Top FC gold.

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Quite a year. Rose’s 2017 wasn’t too shabby either. She headkicks then submits Michelle Waterson on FOX in April in really impressive fashion. Then in November...

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Madison Square Garden, on the same card as the big Bisping vs St Pierre fight, Rose would challenge Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the Strawweight strap that escaped her in 2014. Jedrzejczyk was trying all sorts of mental warfare and trash talk in the build up but none of it seemed to faze Namajunas. Even during the weigh in face-off when Joanna was doing all her weird Boogeywoman shite, Rose just calmly stood there mumbling something to herself. When Rogan asked her what she was saying she casually said ‘reciting the Lord’s prayer’. The whole thing was odd. In the cage though, Joanna was dominating at this time and I don’t think many fancied Rose’s chances. But it was one of those title fights where you knew the challenger would be up against it, but you also knew they’d be game. I thought Rose was getting battered. I was wrong.

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She knocks Joanna out in 3 minutes in one of the most shocking results in women’s MMA history. Even people giving Namajunas a chance wouldn’t have called it to play out like that. Joanna was (and still is) such a fantastic striker that, even as good as Rose is, I just didn’t see the striking exchanges going well for her at all. I’m a big fan of Jedrzejczyk but it was a heart warming moment seeing Namajunas with that belt.

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“It feels like a movie right now. This belt don’t mean nothing, man. Just be a good person. That’s it. This is extra. This is awesome. But let’s just give each other hugs and be nice, man. I mean, I know we fight but this is entertainment. Afterwards, it’s nothing. I feel like a normal person, man, I’m just regular. Ain’t nothing special here.” - Rose Namajunas 

It was a cool moment and Rose brought a completely different vibe to the title picture. Skilled fighter, obviously, but they’d ask her what she wanted next and she’d start getting excited about the tomatoes she had growing back home and stuff. It was a stark contrast to the intensity of Jedrzejczyk’s reign of terror but quite refreshing at the same time.

2018: The big break arrives for Zhang. After 6 wins in 2016 and 7 wins in 2017, mostly finishes and 2 title belts...it was just a matter of time until the UFC came knocking. And with them breaking into the Asian market at the time, Weili Zhang was the most obvious signing ever. One of the hottest prospects in the game and she’s Chinese. She makes her Octagon debut in August and takes a decision off Danielle Taylor. Whatever. But in her second fight in, she armbars veteran Jessica Aguilar in a round in front of a rabid crowd in Beijing. The journey begins. Namajunas has a rocky 2018. She fights only once, successfully defending her title in a rematch with Jedrzejczyk. This time it goes the full 25 minutes and Rose comes out on top again, solidifying herself as the champ beyond all doubt and proving it wasn’t luck the first time. But the whole thing was kind of soured by Conor McGregor being his usual dickhead self with the bus attack bollocks.

2019: Zhang is climbing now. She outpoints Tecia Torres in a solid but unspectacular performance in March. In May, Namajunas loses her belt in a terrifying fashion when Jessica Andrade slams her right on her head and knocks her out.

Then it’s on. Title shot time. 

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Andrade vs Zhang. It did seem a tad soon for Zhang to get the shot but it made sense. They were going back to China, Zhang was on a 19 fight winning streak and it all just lined up. Plus, whether it was promotional bullshit or what, Dana said the rest of the Strawweights wanted no part of Zhang.

“Nobody wants to fight her. She’s on a 19 fight win streak. She keeps saying ‘When do I get to fight again?’ Nobody wants to fight her. We call Jessica Andrade and she says ‘I will absolutely fight her and I’ll fight her in China”. - Dana White 

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I really wasn’t sure about this one. Andrade was a tank at 115 and while Zhang had an impressive record on paper, she was relatively unproven at this level. Nobody really knew how good or bad most of the names on Zhang’s record were so she was a real unknown quantity coming in. The fight started and...

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New champion. And 42 seconds is all it took. China had their first UFC champ. MMA fans lost their fucking minds over this win. Suddenly Zhang was unbeatable and unstoppable. It was a great win and very impressive. Not taking that away from her. But there was some right goofy chat and overrating her around this time. Based almost entirely off a 42 second fight no less!

2020: Zhang makes the first defence of her title in March at UFC 248. She’d be up against the former champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk. I remember all sorts of crazy talk going into this one. Joanna was making shit jokes about this new thing called COVID, fans were talking like Zhang was going to just walk through Joanna with ease and rubbishing any talk of it possibly being competitive at all. This was a total squash match in the eyes of most MMA fans. Except it wasn’t. It really wasn’t.

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A barmy fight. One of my favourites in years. I love it. For me, this fight is up there in that bracket of really special fights along with epics like Lawler vs MacDonald 2, Shogun vs Hendo 1, Hunt vs Bigfoot 1 etc. I probably wouldn’t rank it higher than them but it’s right up there. Definitely the FOTY last year. Just beautiful violence. What wasn’t beautiful though...

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Her head swelled up faster than @jimufctna24 watching Horiguchi highlights. It was fucking gross but it just added to the overall drama. Zhang got the split decision but I can’t even remember how I had the fight scored. Just got completely swept up and lost in the mayhem. I’ll have to watch it again soon. It’s due a revisit. Adesanya and Romero shat the bed going out after this madness. To be fair, I don’t think they could’ve followed it no matter what they did. Namajunas also only fought once in 2020, and it was sweet revenge. She beat Jessica Andrade on points at UFC 251 in July. It was a really entertaining fight and one of Rose’s best performances for me.

2021: And here’s where this collision course has been leading to. Really interesting clash of styles. I still kind of feel like we don’t know enough about Zhang but maybe that’s just because we haven’t seen her in over a year now. It’s funny, the hype went mad after she steamrolled Andrade but, for me, she showed much more of what she’s about in the war with Jedrzejczyk. That told us what she’s made of more than any 42 second mauling ever will. If they’re both at their best then I’d lean towards Zhang retaining. What Namajunas brings though, is that x-factor. She’s a bit wild and unpredictable at times but she’s definitely got the technique as well. I don’t think she’s ever going to be the type of fighter who goes on a long winning streak because she tends to put herself in harm’s way a lot and sometimes it backfires. But she’s got the skills where on any given night I genuinely think she’s got the tools to beat anyone. Great fight.

 

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Valentina Shevchenko vs Jessica Andrade rounds out the title fight triple header. Really like this. Yeah, Andrade’s chances aren’t great but who does have a great chance against Val at Flyweight right now? At least with Andrade, she’ll go for it and make it exciting, which is more than you can say for some of Shev’s recent challengers.

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Huge fan of Shevchenko. She’s such a badass. Love her whole aura and attitude. Sometimes fighters try to force that Ivan Drago style stoic killer persona and it just seems so try hard. With Val it comes across 100% authentic. She’s an assassin and she’s in her absolute prime now. In her Bantamweight days she was impressive enough, taking Nunes the distance twice in close fights, beating Holm etc. But as soon as she dropped to Flyweight it was a wrap. It was clear she’d found her weight class and she’s been schooling bitches ever since. Sometimes it’s brutal like the Jessica Eye knockout or when she bludgeoned Priscila Cachoeira. Other times it’s a drawn out methodical display of technical dominance. With Andrade, I’d lean towards brutal. Andrade only knows how to fight one way. It’s cost her at times and paid off other times. I’ve called her the female John Lineker on here before and I stand by it. She’s a little buzzsaw and so entertaining to watch. Former Strawweight champ herself, bodied Chookagian, sparked Kowalkiewicz, slammed Namajunas into the shadow realm. She’s nobody to overlook. But unless she lands some perfect bomb early on, I just see Val being too slick for her, picking her apart and dismantling her. Should be fun while it lasts regardless.

 

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Uriah Hall vs Chris Weidman 2. The rematch! I’m guessing most won’t even know these guys fought before. I completely forgot myself, to be honest. They met way back in September 2010. It was before the UFC came calling for either of them and took place in the Ring Of Combat promotion based in New Jersey. Hall was 4-0 at the time and was already the ROC Middleweight champion. Weidman was just 2-0. Both just prospects at this time but Weidman did have a little bit of hype already because Matt Serra and Ray Longo were bigging him up to anyone within earshot. And with their gobs, that covers some distance.

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Weidman knocked Hall out in 3 minutes to become the new ROC champ. You know the rest. Weidman hit the big stage first, made his UFC debut in 2011 and won 5 in a row before shocking the world and ending the reign of Anderson Silva to become UFC Middleweight champion in 2013. Hall got on TUF that year, scored some highlight reel knockouts and had everyone buzzing to the point Dana White was calling him ‘the next Anderson Silva’. But he lost to Kelvin Gastelum in the finals. And that kind of set the tone for his UFC career. He’d show little sparks of brilliance and there were nights when he looked absolutely spectacular. But for every one of them there seemed to be two nights where he just couldn’t pull the trigger. Weidman fizzled out rapidly after the Rockhold mauling in late 2015. He’s 15-5 now and 2-5 in his last 7. Crazy considering he looked every bit the future of 185 at one point. He finally got a win last time, beating Omari Akhmedov on points. Hall’s finally managed to find a bit of consistency and string some Ws together recently. He comes in off 3 straight wins and scored what will probably go down as his career defining victory in October when he stopped Anderson Silva in The Spider’s final Octagon appearance. Funny old fight. Both have had high highs and crushing lows and you never really know which versions of both are going to show up. I don’t see either getting into the title mix or causing any bother at the top of the division at this stage. I quite like the matchup actually though.

 

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Anthony Smith vs Jim Crute is currently set to open up the main card. Should be a lively way to kick off the PPV. Smith’s never really in a dull fight. He’s been through the meat grinder though. Even most of his wins, he had to walk through fire and pull out a comeback late on. Tough as they come but for a 32 year old, he hasn’t half got some miles on him. He’s 34-16 now and had a rough as fuck 2020 between that nutcase invading his home, then the beating from Glover, then the loss to Rakic. Just the worst. He did end it on a positive note though, his quick submission over Devin Clark in November was much needed. Crute’s one of the least talked about of the new breed 205ers but he looks promising. 25 years old, BJJ black-belt and 12-1 in MMA with 9 finishes. Aside from getting Peruvian necktied by Misha Cirkunov a couple of years ago, he’s been perfect. He’s stopped Paul Craig, Sam Alvey, Michal Oleksiejczuk and Modestas Bukauskas so far. Nothing earth shattering but he looks good. When this fight was announced, Twitter was full of ‘RIP Smith’ type shit. You know how they get, always over dramatic. I could see Crute winning but I certainly wouldn’t count old Lionheart out. Crute’s shown potential but this is his big step up fight. He’s never been in with someone as experienced and durable as Smith so it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out. Should be exciting however long it lasts.

 

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Alex Oliveira vs Randy Brown. This is a nice little piece of matchmaking. Oliveira’s a crafty, scrappy, tough sod. His fight with Yancy Medeiros from a few years back has been his career highlight for me. He lost but it was such a fantastic fight, a real forgotten gem. He’s also notched wins over the likes of Carlos Condit, Tim Means, Will Brooks and KJ Noons. Not too shabby. He’ll never break into the contender pool, especially in a division as deep as Welterweight, but he’s proven to be a solid gatekeeper and I don’t mean that as a knock. He’s coming into this one off a stoppage loss to rising prospect Shavkat Rakhmonov on the Khabib-Gaethje undercard in October. Brown’s had a bit of a hot and cold run in the UFC. He’s shown flashes of real talent but struggled at times too. He’s 12-4 and got put away by Vicente Luque last time out but has wins over Warlley Alves, Bryan Barberena and Mickey Gall. I’d fancy Oliveira to win this. I just think he’s got too many tricks for Brown but you never know. Decent fight.

 

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Dwight Grant vs Stefan Sekulic. Don’t know really. I like Grant. I remember thinking he had some serious potential at one point but then a big spell of inactivity slowed his roll. His knockout against Carlo Pedersoli is still a favourite of mine though...

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Christ almighty. He beat Alan Jouban after that but then just disappeared for over a year. He finally returned in August last year and got stopped by Daniel Rodriguez. But 1) he got messed about with a last minute switch of opponent, 2) Rodriguez is dangerous at the best of times and 3) like I said, Grant had been out a year. I’m hoping he can get back in the win column here. At 36, he hasn’t really got time to fuck about. Sekulic is making his second trip to the Octagon here. I have zero memory of his first. He lost a decision to Ramazan Emeev on a Moscow card in 2018 apparently. A quick search tells me he’s 29 years old, Serbian and has a record of 12-3 with 9 finishes.

 

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Brendan Allen vs Karl Roberson. Should be a good one. I’ve really liked what I’ve seen of Allen so far. Think he’s got the tools to go quite far. He’s 15-4 and just lost to Sean Strickland in November but I still think he’s got a lot of potential. Before that loss he was on a 7 fight winning streak which included a submission over Kevin Holland (which has kind of been forgotten for some reason), a TKO over Tom Breese and a points win over Kyle Daukaus in a tremendous fight that only missed out on FOTN because Poirier and Hooker knocked the shite out of each other the same night. On top of that he’s a BJJ black-belt and he’s not long turned 25. Roberson’s alright, he’s had his moments. Solid wins over Ryan Spann, Darren Stewart and Jack Marshman. He also went the distance with the legendary Jerome Le Banner in a Kickboxing bout back in 2015. Yeah, JLB was well past the peak by that point but it still looks good on any fighter’s CV. Good fight. I’d expect Allen to get back on track here though.

 

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Tristan Connelly vs Pat Sabatini. Don’t really know much about these two. Only seen Connelly fight once but it was an entertaining one in which he surprised a lot of people by beating Michel Pereira and kind of exposing some of his flaws. He’s on a 5 fight streak now but that Pereira win was in September 2019 and he’s been inactive since for some reason. So fuck knows now. He’s 35, Canadian and 14-6 with all but one of his wins ending inside the distance. Kind of looking forward to seeing what he’s got here. The Pereira fight was fun but a bit of a weird one, as Pereira’s fights usually are. Sabatini is 13-3 with 11 finishes, mostly subs, and was the Cage Fury Featherweight champ. Still none the wiser on him really but that’s about the extent of the info I can find on him. 

 

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Danaa Batgerel vs Kevin Natividad. I’ve seen both of these guys before but can’t say I remember any of it. Doesn’t necessarily mean they’re bad, there’s just so many fights on now that a lot of these prelimers just mush together in my memory. Batgerel’s from Mongolia with an 8-2 record. He’s 2-2 so far in the UFC but comes into this one off a first round knockout over Guido Cannetti last March. Natividad is 9-2 and got stopped in his UFC debut by Miles Johns. Filler fight, not arsed but it might pleasantly surprise us.

 

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Rong Zhu vs Kazula Vargas. Not a clue on this Rong Zhu chap. He’s only 21 years old, Chinese and has a record of 16-3 with 15 finishes. He’s the Lightweight champ for a promotion called WLF and he’s on a 10 fight streak as well. Not the worst of starts to a young career. Vargas is Mexican, 35 years old and 11-4 with 10 inside the distance. He got a couple of wins in Combate Americas before signing with the UFC but it hasn’t worked out so far. He’s 0-2 on the big stage and got himself disqualified for an illegal knee against Brok Weaver last time out. Hopefully there’s no controversy here, quite looking forward to seeing Zhu.

 

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Jeff Molina vs Aoriqileng. Never seen either but I’ve heard good things about Molina. He’s 8-2 with 7 of his wins coming inside the distance. Last fought on Dana’s Contender Series. I’ve read a few times that he’s supposed to be a bit of a beast and I’m sure our resident DWCS watcher @Zebra Kid Markbacked that up when Molina was originally set to debut a few months back. Aoriqileng is popping his Octagon cherry. He’s 18-6 and at a quick glance, the only name I recognise on his record is Kai Kara-France, and he beat Aoriqileng in 2017. He’s on a little win streak now but I don’t know any of the guys he’s beaten. Fuck knows? He’s nicknamed ‘The Mongolian Murderer’ though, for what that’s worth. More new blood for the ever improving Flyweight division.

 

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Ariane Carnelossi vs Na Liang. Haven’t seen much of Carnelossi. She’s 28, from Brazil and is 12-2 with 9 finishes. Lost her MMA debut against Amanda Ribas in 2014 then went on a 12 fight winning streak before getting stopped on cuts by Angela Hill in her UFC debut in 2019. Not sure why she was inactive throughout 2020 but whatever. ‘Dragon Girl’ Liang is making her UFC debut here. She’s 24 years old, 13-4 and has won her last 4 fights. Bit of a finisher as well it seems. Hasn’t beat anyone that good and her most notable fight to date is her submission loss to Juliana Velasquez in Bellator back in 2017, Velasquez has since gone on to become Bellator’s Flyweight champion. So not an overly impressive record but she’s still young and she’s on the right track now. Maybe there’s some potential for both of these two but I can’t say I’m too fussed with this one.


 

That’s 261 then.

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Edited by wandshogun09
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For me the whole build up to the main event was a terrific example of how marketing can do wonders for your career. Masvidal, a guy who's never really been more than a solid mid-level fighter who

BMF. Broke a Man’s Face.

OK then. Saturday 24th April, back on PPV. And we’re heading to Jacksonville, Florida where crowds are allowed! Sounds like a COVID outbreak waiting to happen but these people think they know best. I’

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I think a lot of this Main Event hangs on the hype Masvidal can bring, The Fight island hype was the biggest hype for a UFC PPV not featuring an Irishman I can remember, I can remember some bloke at work asking me who do I think would win? And I was like, I didn't even know you watched MMA?

 

Masvidal just has that cult following, he's the 'casuals dream'; Famous Knockout, Footage of him backyarding and he has a pro wrestling persona. If you watch UFC 3/4 times a year, he's a fighter you can instantly gravitate to .

 

And that's why he's here. I honestly don't even think he has a puncher's chance, Ben Askren summed it up to me when he said "I made you famous" and he really did. From there he had Diaz calling him out, Dana seized the opportunity.

 

For what it is worth I'm not a  Masvidal hater, actually quite the admirer because he's one of lifes chancers, he see's an opening and takes full advantage of it.

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I really like Usman and consider him to be in the top 3 fighters on the planet. 

But I can't get excited over him fighting Masvidal again. It's probably going to be another 50-45/49-46 tonking in Usman's favour. In other words, a completely needless rematch, which will only serve to bolster the bank balances off all involved.

The alternative scenario. which would probably be Masvidal somehow winning by knockout, is even more depressing. I don't want Masvidal to be champion. His shtick isn't the worst in MMA by a long way, but it still does nothing for me personally.

Edited by jimufctna24
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Aye, I agree with the Boss there.
Initially I was thinking a grind out decision win for Usman, but the more I think of this, and the more I think of how nonchalantly and smugly Masvidal is approaching literally everything in general now, I think Usman gets the job done before it goes to the cards to prove a point.
Usman takes his role as a fighter and representative seriously and with pride, whereas Masvidal seems to be just resting on his laurels, and even more perplexlingly, wearing beanie hats sitting on top of his ears.

Edited by Scott Malbranque
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1 hour ago, Guy Bifkin said:

I think I'm probably out here on my own as far as the UKFF goes but I hope Masvidal somehow wins.

i'm with you Bifkin, ive been riding the Masvidal train a long time.

Unfortunately i can't see him winning much here. Maybe take the opening round or something but i expect Usman to dominate. Only way i see Masvidal losing this is if Usman fights outside of his comfort zone to try proving a point.

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I am fully on the Masvidal train along with you guys. I love the guy and I am so excited for this show. The live fans, the stacked card, everything about it just makes me giddy.

I have no confidence in him getting the job done but between now and when the fight is I am going to talk myself into thinking he can get the job done.

This card is so stacked. I love it.

Live fans!

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