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UFC 275: Teixeira vs Prochazka - Jun 11 🇸🇬


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Posted (edited)

Still a bit of a way off yet but sod it. The UFC is finally taking a PPV outside the US again! We’re heading to Kallang, Singapore with this lot…

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PPV MAIN CARD
Glover Teixeira© vs Jiri Prochazka - Light Heavyweight Title

Valentina Shevchenko© vs Taila Santos - Flyweight Title

Zhang Weili vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk 

Jake Matthews vs Andre Fialho

Jack Della Maddalena vs Ramazan Emeev  

ESPN PRELIMS
Seung Woo Choi vs Josh Culibao

Hayisaer Maheshate vs Steve Garcia

Brendan Allen vs Jacob Malkoun

Kyung Ho Kang vs Danaa Batgerel

ESPN+/FIGHT PASS PRELIMS
Silvana Gomez Juarez vs Na Liang

Joselyne Edwards vs Ramona Pascual

 

First off, ugly arse poster. Second, take no notice of the bout order there. Obviously, we’re still 6 weeks away from this. It’ll change a bunch of times yet. I expect there’ll still be a couple of fights added. Robert Whittaker vs Marvin Vettori was meant to be on this card as well before Whittaker dropped out. So maybe Vettori will stay on the card? We’ll see. Could definitely do with another decent fight or two. This one kind of drops off a cliff after the top 3 fights but I do really like that top 3, to be fair.

 

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Glover Teixeira vs Jiri Prochazka headlines. For all the marbles. This was actually supposed to go down at 274 originally but got pushed back for whatever reason. Should be fireworks however long it goes. Doubt they’ll need 25 minutes but it’s one of those matchups where even if it does go the distance, their styles just make for chaos. They’re both too dangerous and aggressive for anything less.

Glover’s came a long way.

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Seeing him with UFC gold was both one of the least expected and most satisfying moments I can recall in all my years following this mad sport. In a dirty business full of arseholes, cretins, PED abusers, wifebeaters, racists, rapists etc, Glover’s one of the good eggs. Nobody has a bad word to say about him. The Terry Funk of the UFC. ‘Middle aged and crazy’, can take a beating and come back and is universally liked and respected. So it was a genuinely heartwarming moment to see him get that belt put around his waist back in October. He wasn’t gonna be denied that night. Usually with Glover, he’ll typically start slow, get wobbled and rocked a couple of times, then he’ll rally and get the submission or something. Against the champ Jan Blachowicz though, he was like a man possessed. Started strong and just never let up and got the sub in the second round.

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42 years old, on a 6 fight winning streak and now the UFC Light Heavyweight champion of the world. Lovely stuff. Granted, he’s benefited from timing. Jon Jones disappearing from the division, and the sport, cleared the way. Glover almost certainly would’ve never got the belt if Jones was still knocking about. But Jones was moving to Heavyweight regardless so, even if he’d been active the last 2 years, maybe 205 would’ve played out the same anyway. I do think that belt is gonna be a hot potato for a bit now though. The 205 title has historically been that way, Jones’ reign aside and to a lesser extent Chuck Liddell years ago.

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Jiri Prochazka is the next in line. The next obstacle for Glover to overcome. Jiri’s a bit of an enigma. Nobody’s quite sure how good he is yet. All we really do know is he’s Czech, the much younger man here at 29 and he’s exciting as fuck to watch. That’s about it. He’s 28-3-1 with 27 of his 28 wins coming inside the distance. Most by knockout. And he’s the former RIZIN champ. I saw a few of his pre-UFC fights and he got wins over notable names such as King Mo, Vadim Nemkov, CB Dollaway, Fabio Maldonado, Satoshi Ishii and even old ‘Ironhead’ Kazuyuki Fujita! A lot of highlight reel stuff but most of these names were past their prime and even the Nemkov win came before Nemkov was in his best form. But when Jiri signed with the UFC in 2020, there was a lot of buzz and excitement when the news broke. They didn’t give him any easy fights either. His debut was against Volkan Oezdemir on Fight Island in July 2020. And he absolutely starched Volkan in brutal fashion. Then in May last year he was put into a headline spot against Dominick Reyes who was coming off 2 unsuccessful title shots but was only one fight removed from taking Jon Jones to the wire in a razor close fight. Jiri wasn’t fucking around…

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One of the best knockouts of 2021 easy. Reyes completely faceplanted, hasn’t fought since and I haven’t even heard any rumours of when he’s next expected to fight. Terrifying KO. Prochazka hasn’t fought since either. He was the official backup in October for the Blachowicz vs Teixeira title fight, in case either of them dropped out. But obviously wasn’t needed in the end. After that it just made sense for him to wait for the winner. And here we are. Like I said, I can’t see any way this isn’t just mayhem from buzzer to buzzer. Something is telling me Jiri is gonna land something nasty and end Glover’s reign before it gets going but it’s hard to count Glover out. I didn’t think he’d beat Blachowicz and he made it look fairly easy in the end. Fuck knows? Can’t wait for this one though.

 

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Valentina Shevchenko vs Taila Santos. Flyweight gold on the line. The Shevchenko reign of terror continues. You know what though, I do actually like this fight. Can’t see past Shev retaining again, it’s hard to pick against her on this form. But I might be wrong on this but I do think Santos is a step above the last bunch of sacrificial lambs that have been led to the slaughter against Val. We’ll see. Probably be just another annihilation now I’ve said that but I rate Santos and she’s earned a crack at it.

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What can you say about Shevchenko at this point? Just complete dominance. I’m not gonna say she’ll never lose because they all do in the end if they stick around long enough. Either because they start declining or a new contender emerges and dethrones them. Sometimes a bit of both at the same time. I don’t wanna jinx it because as we saw with Julianna Pena vs Amanda Nunes, you just can’t count on anything in MMA. I was as sure about Nunes winning that fight going in as I’ve been about any title fight, and look what happened. But there’s something different about Shevchenko. Even at her best Nunes had moments where she’d just throw down and leave herself open, and she had her flaws earlier in her career as well. With Shevchenko, she just never really looks vulnerable anywhere. And she always seems laser focused. No distractions. She’s a machine. She looked a handful in her Bantamweight days but ever since she dropped to Flyweight, she’s been an assassin in there. It’s clearly the perfect weight class for her. She’s on an 8 fight winning streak now, finished 5 of them, dominated all of them. She’s 34 years old now, so although she’s showing zero signs of slowing down, historically mid 30s is often the tail-end of the average fighter’s prime. Although, Shevchenko is far from ‘average’ and by all accounts she lives the life of a champion outside the cage. Stays in shape, always training, doesn’t blow up in weight between fights or go on the piss, I don’t think she has kids either so there’s nothing else taking her time and attention away from MMA. She’s 100% in and she’s a scary woman.

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I’m guessing Santos is gonna be dismissed as some bum going into this one. Partly because Shev’s expected to school her, which is understandable. But I honestly think she’s better than anyone Shevchenko’s defended against other than Jedrzejczyk and maybe Andrade. She’s 28 years old with a record of 19-1 with 13 finishes. The only loss being a split decision against Mara Romero Borella in 2019. I can’t remember if I saw that fight but having seen Santos fight and having seen Borella fight, I’m baffled that Santos lost to her. Maybe it was a dodgy decision or something. Whatever the case, Santos has won 4 on the trot since then - Molly McCann, Gillian Robertson, Roxanne Modafferi and in her last fight in November she dropped and choked Joanne Wood in a round. Goes without saying these are all leagues and leagues below Shevchenko. Santos is gonna be in there with a level of opposition she’s never experienced before. But there’s nobody more deserving right now. And Santos has skills. She’s still a massive underdog but a slightly more live one than the champ’s last few victims, I reckon. Still, I can’t see a scenario where Shev doesn’t leave with the belt.

 

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Zhang Weili vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk 2 is ***WAND’S ONE TO WATCH*** here, an easy choice. Absolutely buzzing for this fight. A rematch of what’s surely the consensus greatest women’s fight in MMA history. And regardless of gender, it’s up there for me in that upper bracket of great fights and personal favourite fights. For me it sits right up there with Robbie Lawler vs Rory MacDonald 2, Dan Henderson vs Shogun Rua 1, Mark Hunt vs Bigfoot Silva 1, Chuck Liddell vs Wanderlei Silva and so on. A stone cold classic. I’ll definitely be doing my usual thing of revisiting the first fight and reviewing it in here at some point before this rematch. Looking forward to that. Think I watched it back once since it originally aired, probably a few months after it happened. It went down in March 2020 at UFC 248…

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Crazy fight. I remember the overwhelming majority opinion going in was that Zhang was gonna just roll right over Joanna. I never got that at the time. Joanna was a former dominant champion, had proven herself time and time again as one of the best in the game. And despite being champ, Zhang hadn’t really been tested at the highest levels aside from the Jessica Andrade fight which lasted less than a minute. I don’t know if it was a case of people just buying into the Zhang hype or if it was wishful thinking because a lot of people dislike Joanna. Either way, it was all a bit silly. People were acting like it was an outrageous prediction to pick Joanna, or even just to say it was gonna be competitive. Pretty much every opinion I saw was forecasting Zhang to win with ease. Of course, that wasn’t how it went down. It was back and forth all the way, both got hurt multiple times, neither would back down and both just gave it everything for the full 25 minutes. Joanna’s head swelling up like the Elephant Man was horrifying.

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She hasn’t fought since. A full 2 years out of the game. It was probably wise to take a break, to be honest. Between Kickboxing and MMA, she’s been fighting around 20 years now. But I don’t really know what to expect out of this rematch. The extended layoffs can go either way. We’ve seen fighters come back rusty but we’ve also seen guys like Brian Ortega and Calvin Kattar come back refreshed and put on career best performances after big spells of inactivity. From what I’ve seen, she’s been training fairly regularly in her time away so it’s not like she’s been sat on her arse watching Netflix for 2 years. But I don’t know where she’s been at mentally and there was a spell not long after the Zhang fight when she was hinting at just retiring. Obviously she’s changed her mind. Apparently she’s signed a new 6 fight contract. She also said she’d be up for this being 5 rounds but as far as I know it’ll be a 3 rounder. Not sure why because Dana himself was asked recently and seemed to like the idea of it being 5 rounds. Let’s be honest, if Robbie Lawler vs Nick Diaz 2 and Leon Edwards vs Nate Diaz got the 5 round treatment, a rematch of one of the best fights in UFC history deserved that kind of billing as well, right? Whatever. I’m well up for this. Not expecting it to match the first fight. It’s unrealistic and frankly unfair. But I don’t see any way it isn’t another really entertaining battle.

 

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Jake Matthews vs Andre Fialho is a late addition to the card and one I’m all over. Really adds some much needed depth and quality to the undercard on this one. I’ve really became a fan of Fialho in the short time he’s been on the UFC roster. He came in and fought Michel Pereira on short notice in January. Lost on points but it was such a fun fight. One of those performances from a late substitute where you’re instantly won over and looking forward to seeing them again after a proper training camp. We didn’t have to wait long. He put Miguel Baeza away inside a round in April. Then he turned right back around and brutalised Cameron VanCamp with this nasty left at UFC 274 in May…

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Another first round knockout. He also got POTN bonuses for those Baeza and VanCamp fights. He immediately said in his post-fight interview that he wanted on the 275 card and here we are. I said after his last fight that I can see all these quick turnarounds backfiring at some point but maybe he’s one of those guys who does better when he stays mega active. If you keep knocking opponents down in a round, I guess you can fight every month. At first glance this feels like a bit of a step up. Matthews has been around a while, fought some names, beat Diego Sanchez and Li Jingliang etc. But he’s also been inactive for over a year coming off that submission loss to Sean Brady. Never been sure what to make of Matthews really. I think he was looked at as one of Australia’s best prospects a while ago but it hasn’t really panned out. He’s still only 27, which is mad, seems like he’s been around forever. But I just don’t see him ever quite getting over that hump. And coming back against an active, aggressive, surging big hitter like Fialho just feels like bad news for him to me.

 

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Jack Della Maddalena vs Ramazan Emeev. OK, looking forward to this one and it’s got nothing to do with Emeev. It’s all about Maddalena, who’s making his second Octagon appearance here. He’s Aussie, 25 years old and 11-2 with 10 finishes. His losses were his first 2 pro fights as well, so he’s on an 11 fight winning streak. Love that. Proof that you can get off to a disastrous start in MMA and still turn things around. He made his UFC debut in January and put Pete Rodriguez down in 3 minutes.

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He looked great. And to be fair to Rodriguez, he took the fight on short notice and was game as fuck himself. Maddalena was just that bit too sharp for him though. Looks a solid prospect and it was one of those UFC debuts that instantly makes you take notice and look forward to seeing more. Not predicting he’ll be champ or anything, it’s all early days and the Welterweight division is no joke. But first impressions are good. I like this matchup as well. I’ve never been particularly impressed by Emeev. He’s not very exciting to watch and I can’t say any of his fights have been especially memorable. But he’s 20-5 and durable. The kind of opponent who Maddalena should be in with at this stage of his career. On paper Emeev shouldn’t be easy to put away so we’ll hopefully get to see Maddalena get more cage time here and answer some questions.

 

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Seung Woo Choi vs Josh Culibao. Can’t say I give much of a shite. Choi got a TKO win over Julian Erosa last year, which was pretty impressive but aside from that, he hasn’t been much to write home about. He’s 10-4 now and got throttled by Bruce Leroy last time out in October. And Culibao I barely remember at all. He’s 27, Australian and 9-1-1. He’s had 3 fights in the UFC and it couldn’t have been more of a mixed bag. A TKO loss in his debut, then a draw against Charles Jourdain, then he finally got that elusive first Octagon win with a decision over Shayilan Nuerdanbieke last May.

 

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Hayisaer Maheshate vs Steve Garcia. Not a single clue on this. Never heard of this Maheshate chap and his name is gonna be a ballache to spell going forward. Looking him up on Sherdog, he’s 6-1 with 3 knockouts and got a decision win in his last fight on DWCS in November. That’s about all I can find on him. Garcia’s had a couple of UFC fights already. Dropped a decision to Luis Pena in his debut in 2020 but got a TKO win over Charlie Ontiveros in 2021. I vaguely recall that Ontiveros fight being a lot of fun actually but that’s all I’ve seen of Garcia.

 

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Brendan Allen vs Jacob Malkoun. It’ll probably be worth watching for Allen. I’ve always got time for his fights ever since that belter he had with Kyle Daukaus a couple of years ago. Tremendous fight which got overshadowed because Dustin Poirier and Dan Hooker decided to go out and have a FOTY contender later the same night. Allen’s been a bit up and down since, and actually got stopped by pillow hands Strickland at one point. But he’s also got a submission win over Kevin Holland, a decision in another cracking fight against Punahele Soriano and he did us all a favour and subbed Sam Alvey in his last fight in February. Hopefully he gets another win here and can finally start building some kind of consistent run. He’s still only 26 so he’s got some time. Bit fuzzy on Malkoun. He’s also 26, Australian with a 6-1 record. Teammate of Robert Whittaker, I think. Got blitzed in 18 seconds by Phil Hawes in his UFC debut but has bounced back with decisions over Abdul Razak Alhassan and AJ Dobson since.

 

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Kyung Ho Kang vs Danaa Batgerel. No strong feelings on this really but it might be alright. Don’t remember much about Kang though. He’s 17-9-0-1 and coming off a points loss to Rani Yahya in November. He’d won his 3 previous fights but hadn’t fought since 2019 so maybe he was feeling the cage rust in that Yahya fight. Nothing really stands out about his record but I did notice he has 2 nicknames listed on his Wikipedia page. ‘Mr Perfect’ and ‘Typhoon’. Got to be a 90s WWF fan, hasn’t he? Batgerel I’m a bit more familiar with. Usually pretty good to watch. He’s 12-3 and had rattled off 3 stoppage wins before running into Chris Gutierrez in March and nearly getting decapitated by a spinning backfist. Bit surprised to see him back so soon after a knockout like that, to be honest. Hopefully he gets back to winning ways here. Quite like him.

 

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Silvana Gomez Juarez vs Na Liang. Curtain jerk fodder here and I’m not expecting much from it. Juarez is 10-4 and has gone winless in her first 2 trips to the Octagon. She came in on a bit of a win streak but she’s been armbarred inside a round by both Loopy Godinez and Vanessa Demopoulos in her last couple of fights. That’s all I’ve seen of her. And the only time I’ve seen Liang was her UFC debut last April against Ariane Carnelossi. She lost by TKO but it was actually a real unexpected gem of a fight. For that reason alone I’m hoping she picks up a win here. The UFC roster at the prelim level can do with all the exciting fighters it can get.

 

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Joselyne Edwards vs Ramona Pascual. Yeah not expecting much from this. I do have hazy memories of Edwards looking good in her UFC debut against Wu Yanan but it’s all been downhill since then. She’s coming into this fight off back-to-back decision losses to Karol Rosa and Jessica Rose Clark. Pascual’s Filipino, 6-3 and lost her UFC debut to Josiane Nunes. To be fair, she jumped in on late notice for that and if nothing else she showed she’s tough as fuck. Nunes is a heavy hitter and Pascual took it for the full 15 minutes somehow.

 

So yeah, all about the top 3 there. But I am looking forward to seeing Jack Maddalena and Brendan Allen back in there and hopefully they’ll add at least one more semi decent name like a Vettori fight or something. Wonder what time this’ll air over here as well being in Singapore?

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Edited by wandshogun09
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Strange old PPV card this.

Not sure if the lay off is a good or bad thing for Glover at this point, but im favouring Jiri by something violent. Unless Glover takes a real safety first approach and tries to get Jiri down and can control him on the ground, i see Glover being sent into possible retirement here.

 

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Fialho is a gangster. At a time that so many fighters can go on multiple fight runs and not get noticed, Fialho came in last minute, lost, but got back on the horse and is forcing people to pay attention through what he's doing with his performances and eagerness to fight, respect.

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Glover’s planning to call it a day this year. I know everyone’s on the Jiri Prochazka bandwagon these days but I’d love to see Glover go out on top. It’s so rare it happens so it would be refreshing to see one of the sport’s true babyfaces leave on a high note. 

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Still thinking Jiri is the smart pick here, and Glover is probably gonna have to take some damage early on, but if he drags this past round 2 we may see Glover grind this out. Jiri rarely gets out of the first round.

 

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Aye that's a good main card replacement there. 

The fight listed number seven in the graphic. For a second I genuinely thought that said Meisha Tate. "Wait, something's gone seriously wrong here."

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Been looking forward to revisiting this one.

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Zhang vs Jedrzejczyk 1 went down in March 2020 at UFC 248. Just as COVID was starting to really go in dry on the world. We didn’t know it at the time but this would turn out to be the last card in front of fans for almost a whole year.

Zhang had won the title in her fight before this, blitzing Jessica Andrade in just 42 seconds. She made history with that win, becoming the first ever Chinese UFC champion. She was on a long winning streak coming in and had risen up the ranks quickly in the UFC. And the hype train went into overdrive after the Andrade win. To the point the majority of the MMA world were completely counting Jedrzejczyk out of this fight. She’d been the dominant champ a few years earlier but the losses to Namajunas and Shevchenko had people thinking she was a bit of a spent force. That combined with the buzz around Zhang and this was being talked about as if it was a mismatch. It’s been mostly forgotten now but I remember it well. Everywhere I looked, it was about 90% ‘Zhang by murder’ and acting like anyone claiming it would even be competitive was an idiot. It was stupid. At this point there were still a lot of unanswered questions on Zhang. She looked legit but hadn’t faced anyone the calibre of Joanna yet.

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Zhang Weili© vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk - UFC Strawweight Title

UFC 248: Adesanya vs Romero

March 7th 2020

Las Vegas, Nevada 

There’d been a bit of shite talked in the build up. Mostly Joanna trying to get in Zhang’s head. I remember she made a joke about COVID, which is shitty enough in itself but the fact her opponent was Chinese and the virus was absolutely ravaging her country at the time made it even worse. I’ve always been a huge fan of Joanna’s fighting but this was a really cunty move. Anyway, commentators are the usual PPV team of Anik, Rogan and Cormier. Buffer with the intros and we’re off.

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Round 1: Not much of a feeling out process here. Both seem to have a sense of urgency about them right from the off. Joanna lands the first big shot of the fight…

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Sweet right that snaps the champ’s head back. Hasn’t deterred her from swinging for the fences though. But Joanna’s looking the sharper or the two early and landing some nice stuff. As the round goes on, Zhang starts to get into it more. She’s landing more and seems to have grown in confidence in the exchanges. Joanna’s trying to play the matador to Zhang’s bull. They’re both connecting but, as solid a start to the round as it was for Joanna, I think Zhang nicked it in the second half on aggression. Zhang 10-9 for me in a really good opening round.

Round 2: They’re straight to business again. No messing about. Rogan’s doing my head in already, doing his usual thing of latching onto a narrative and harping on that, and only that, for ages. This time it’s that he thinks Zhang’s power is the difference in the exchanges and that Joanna is struggling with it. Not even saying there isn’t truth to that but for a chunk of this fight, pretty much every time he speaks it’s some variation of that opinion. We get it Joe, fucking hell man. Now they’re clinched up and he’s banging on that Zhang has the advantage there as well. Joanna’s doing fine defending though. They both land hard strikes in the clinch - Joanna with knees to the body, Zhang with elbows.

Huge right hand by Zhang! 

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Joanna’s wobbly on her feet, somehow stays upright but gets kicked in the tits for her troubles. Zhang tries a takedown that goes nowhere and Joanna’s recovered and returning fire.

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Christ. Again, Zhang just ate that, it was right on the jaw. Her only saving grace there was that it was more the toes connecting. If it was the ball of the foot or the heel that most likely would’ve been some Chandler vs Ferguson shit. Right at the end of the round they go to clinch and clash heads. Joanna’s throwing knees, Zhang takes her down right on the buzzer. Another quality round. Another close one too but again I’m leaning towards Zhang 10-9. Razor close.

Round 3: Back at it. Man, the pace here is relentless. They haven’t slowed down at all. Zhang with a big left hook but Joanna stays in the firing line and lands a left of her own. Joanna finding more success now. She’s been chewing up Zhang’s left leg with kicks from round one and now she’s really finding a home for the left hand from the southpaw stance. Joanna switching lefty seems to have thrown the champ off a bit here and she’s getting picked apart. Zhang switches to grappling and gets a brief takedown against the fence but JJ’s back up quickly. Zhang catches a kick and answers with a punch…

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A good shot but nothing major, right? Well believe it or not, that punch is what started off the grotesque swelling on Joanna’s forehead. You see punches like that all the time and they don’t usually turn fuckers into John Merrick. Within seconds of it landing, Rogan’s pointing out the swelling and it just keeps getting worse. Joanna’s still outlanding her though, with kicks and punches. Another round in the books. Jedrzejczyk 10-9 there. Despite the damage Zhang caused with that one punch, this was a clear round for Joanna for me. Clearest round by either so far.

Onto the old championship rounds.

Round 4: Deep in the fight now and both are still going full pelt. Zhang’s upped the aggression this round and she’s going for the kill.

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Neither are giving an inch here. It’s just striking exchange after striking exchange and there’s so many times when they’ll land at the same time. Or one connects with a big strike then the other immediately answers. Seriously, these rounds are hard to score. I remember thinking at the time that I struggled to score it because I was swept up in the moment but even now, over 2 years later, I feel like 2 of the first 3 rounds could’ve gone either way.

Fucking hell

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“That was right on the bump! It was right on that thing on her forehead. Right on the bump, Joe!” - Daniel Cormier

Zhang’s having a much stronger round than she did in the 3rd. Joanna just won’t fuck off though and she keeps landing those left hands. Another round done. Probably the best round so far as well that. Zhang 10-9.

Round 5: And they’re at it again! Jesus fuck. Just trading punches and kicks non-stop. Both have been hurt, both refuse to go down, Zhang’s beat up, Joanna’s got a head like Ant McPartlin, and now Rogan’s saying Joanna just took a punch which made her “nose go crooked”. This is brutal. They must’ve knocked years off each others careers in this fight.

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Every time I think one of them is pulling ahead, the other one clobbers them. Joanna absolutely cracks Zhang with a hard left hook that seems to have her reeling for about a nanosecond before she’s swinging haymakers again. Nuts. Even in the final minute, after 24 minutes of GBH both ways, they’re still going all out to try and finish.

Last 10 seconds…

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Fuck! I don’t remember that at all. Zhang looks shaky for a second but, once again, bullrushes forward trying to make something happen. They’re out of time though. Somehow it’s gone the distance. Yet again another close one but I felt like Joanna got that one.

So overall I’ve got it 48-47 for Zhang. I think that’s how I had it at the time as well.

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Winner - Zhang Weili by split decision.

Fucking amazing fight. Holds up to my memories of it. No problem with the decision but I honestly wouldn’t have had an issue with Jedrzejczyk getting the nod either. I could see how a couple of those rounds could’ve been scored either way. If I watched it again tomorrow, I can’t say for certain I’d score it the same as I did today. A lot of times Zhang landed the more eye catching shots but it felt like Joanna landed in higher volume in a bunch of the exchanges. I’ve seen twats go ‘no way Joanna won, look at her head’. But that’s obviously not how it works and that lump was caused by one punch. Whatever, this was such a great fight. Fight fans like to throw the word ‘classic’ around willy nilly but this was every bit a classic. I think I said in the opening post that I’d rank it right up in that bracket of all time great fights alongside Lawler vs Rory 2, Hendo vs Shogun 1, Hunt vs Bigfoot 1 etc. I meant it when I typed that but you never know how you’ll feel watching a fight back later. After the rewatch here though, I stand by it. Definitely the best women’s fight in MMA history but I think it deserves to be ranked among the best full stop, regardless of gender. If you never saw it, do yourself the favour. It’s up on YouTube for free but I don’t know how long for.

Anyway, they’ve weighed in now. Part 2 is on.

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I don’t really know what to expect out of this rematch tomorrow night. I’m looking forward to it but I’m not expecting it to live up to the first fight. Should still be exciting though. There are a couple of x-factors this time that could change things. Joanna’s layoff for one. She hasn’t fought since the war against Zhang the first time. So 2 years out of the game. We’ve seen that can be good or bad depending on what the fighter has been doing in their time away. She could be rusty or it could be just what she needed to rest and heal up. She’s stayed in the gym consistently as far as I’ve seen. Another factor to consider is this is a 3 round fight this time. Would’ve been cool to see another 5 rounder but given Joanna’s layoff I get it. Makes me wonder if they’ll try to go at an even higher pace here, somehow, knowing they’ve got 2 less rounds to play with. I think you kind of have to favour Zhang at this moment but if Joanna’s coming back for the right reasons and she’s healthy and up for it, I wouldn’t be shocked if she got the win either. They showed last time they’re so evenly matched, if they both come in on point it could be another war. Albeit a condensed one this time.

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Love this fight. It’s not the most loaded PPV card ever but there are some cracking fights on there. I think I’m looking forward to this one more than any of them though. Even Glover vs Jiri. 

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Brilliant stuff wand. i'm not expecting it to come anywhere near too the levels of the first, they have pretty much impossible expectations to live up too.  I wouldn't be surprised to them take the Fight of the Night honours though.

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I don't know why my brain plays tricks on me but earlier this week when I realized it's in Singapore I thought we would get a better start time here in the uk but of course that's not the case.

Quite looking forward to this ppv tonight although I stand by the point it's not the strongest ppv in a good while however you can't help but get interested in the last 3 fights on the main card 

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Yeah when it was first announced for Singapore I thought it might be on earlier as well but it’s the usual 3am main card start time. I wish they’d do a stretch of shows on Fight Island again. Gets them away from the Apex for a bit and I could get used to a few 8pm main cards again. 

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