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Measuring Momentum – the Dwyer Score of UFC 205: Eddie Alvarez vs. Conor McGregor

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Stephen Thompson

(Update below)

The UFC finally makes its debut in New York City with a Dwyer Score fitting of such a historic event. UFC 205 posts a huge score of +50, the highest score of 2016, and a score bettered by just one event (UFC 194, +62) in the promotion’s history. This score far exceeds 2016’s average score of +13.67 and is, amazingly, twice as high as the average score for just PPV events, +25.

Three men are tied for the honour of highest-scoring fighter on the card, as Stephen Thompson, Yoel Romero and Khabib Nurmagomedov all contribute +7. No fighter on the card contributes less than -1 to the score, with Chris Weidman, Miesha Tate, Frankie Edgar, Thiago Alves and Rafael Natal all entering the card off the back of a solitary UFC defeat. The fight on the card with the biggest momentum differential is the 8 point swing between the aforementioned Romero and Weidman.

The late removal of the fight between Tim Kennedy (-1) and Rashad Evans (-2) actually saw a 3 point increase in the event’s score and pulled the event ahead of UFC 165: Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson, in the all-time rankings.

This is the best card the UFC have ever assembled, and this score reflects that. Roll on Saturday.

The Big Contributors

Stephen Thompson +7: Currently riding a winning streak that includes victories over Robert Whittaker, Patrick Côté, Jake Ellenberger, Johny Hendricks and Rory MacDonald, Thompson is entering his first ever title shot in the form of his life. Even as a contender he’ll be the bookies’ favourite against champion Tyron Woodley, but just ask Robbie Lawler how much that matters.

Yoel Romero +7: Romero has finished Derek Brunson, Lyoto Machida and Tim Kennedy in building his current streak and his last fight saw him squeak out a controversial decision win over Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza. As impressive a UFC run as Romero has had, he has still looked beatable at times in the Brunson, Kennedy and ‘Jacaré’ fights and former champion Chris Weidman is looking to make a claim for a  title shot in a division that really is up in the air.

Khabib Nurmagomedov +7: Aside from former champion Rafael dos Anjos, Khabib’s streak doesn’t really include the calibre of opponents that Thompson and Romero have faced. The 23-0 fighter has been repeatedly booked for fights with top contenders like Donald Cerrone and Tony Ferguson, though injuries keep throwing a spanner in the works. Even a win over Michael Johnson may not be enough to see him overtake Ferguson in most people’s rankings,  but what happens next in this weight class is anyone’s guess.

Update: Following the last-minute scrapping of the bout between Kelvin Gastelum (+1) and Donald Cerrone (+3) the event’s Dwyer Score has dropped to +46. It remains the highest scoring event of 2016, though drops behind UFC 165: Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson (+47) in the all-time list. The below scores have been updated.


Last 5 Dwyer Scores

UFC 205 Alvarez vs. McGregor +46

TUFLA Finale dos Anjos vs. Ferguson +16

UFC 204 Bisping vs. Henderson II +17

UFC FN Dodson vs. Lineker +7

UFC FN Justino vs. Lansberg +8


Top 5 Dwyer Scores (all-time)

UFC 194: +62

UFC 165: +47

UFC 205: +46

UFC 178: +44

UFC 198: +43


The Dwyer Score is a simple way of assigning a numeric value to the momentum of any one event. We can do this by assigning a figure to each fighter’s current streak. A fighter on a three fight win-streak contributes +3 to an event’s score. A fighter on a two-fight losing streak contributes -2 to the score. No Contests, Draws or bouts with other promotions reset your streak to 0. If you tally up the scores for every fighter on a card (only counting UFC fights) you get a total which gives you an idea of the combined momentum of fighters heading into a specific event.

As you may imagine, pay-per-view events tend to have higher scores than Fight Nights, as fighters on longer winning streaks tend to be placed on bigger cards. For example, UFC Fight Night: Ben Rothwell vs. Junior dos Santos was a +4, whilst UFC 194: José Aldo vs. Conor McGregor was a +62.

So what does this tell us? It cannot definitively measure the quality or excitement of any one specific event, however, it does give a value for a card’s momentum that is immune to the business side of MMA promotion. Events pitting fighters at the top of their game against each other will score well, events that fast-track fighters into main card slots or push too many immediate rematches will not.

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Interviews

Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”

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Derek Brunson fought Anderson Silva back in February of this year, at UFC 208. Brunson would go on to lose the fight by controversial unanimous decision. However, the controversies didn’t stop at the questionable decision, Brunson also claims Silva was greasing during the fight. The Wilmington, North Carolina native, posted about it on Twitter a few days ago:

Speaking with MMA Latest, Brunson explained why he believes Silva was greasing during the fight. “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up. Every time I grabbed him he was just slipping out of everything, and his takedown defense was really good that night. I was definitely curious to know why he was very slippery, which I definitely think he had some kind of substance on his body. He knows I’m a wrestler obviously, he’s an old, savvy veteran, so he was definitely trying to play all the rules and be very strategic, and make it harder for a wrestler to grab him.”

Brunson is set to face Lyoto Machida come October 28, when asked about whether he was worried about Machida greasing, considering Gegard Mousasi accused him of doing so in their fight, Brunson admitted he wasn’t too worried.

Well I’m not too worried, but like I said, I put it out there because I know they’re friends and I know, obviously, that’s kind of what the guys do when they know they’re fighting a wrestler. They want to lube their body up really good to make it hard to grab hold, Anderson did a great job defending my takedowns. It’s because he was all greased up so he was able to stop a lot of them. When I grab guys in the clinch, it’s very tough for them to get away and I’m pretty good with my Greco takedown. He was pretty much pulling through my clinch when I had a tight grip on him and if you have some kind of substance on your body it’s easy to pull them.”

Neither Silva nor his management have commented on the greasing allegations. Anderson Silva makes his return against Kelvin Gastelum later this year, in China. While Brunson makes his return to the Octagon on October 28th, in Brazil, where he looks to add Lyoto Machida’s name to his impressive list of victories.

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Announcement

Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217

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UFC 217 just got even more interesting. Earlier this week, Patrick Cummins pulled out of his light heavyweight matchup with Corey Anderson due to a Staph infection. Corey “Overtime” Anderson was not happy with his opponents decision, even calling out his opponent on Instagram asking how Cummins could, “call it quits so far from fight night”.

The UFC left Anderson on the card, and he found an opponent through the magic of Twitter. Ovince Saint Preux tweeted out directly to Anderson stating:

It didn’t take long for Anderson to respond agreeing to the fight, tagging Mick Maynard and Dana White in his response.

Only a few short hours later, the fight announcement came from the official UFC twitter account.

 

This top 10 Light Heavyweight matchup should add to an already amazing card coming in November at Madison Square Garden. Saint Preux is coming off of back to back wins both due to the very rare von flue choke, he finds himself ranked #7th in the latest edition of the 205-pound rankings. Corey “Overtime” Anderson is 4-2 in his last 6 fights, but is coming off a brutal first round knockout loss to Jimi Manuwa in March.

With such a exciting fight added to this card, what do you see happening November 4th?  Will Corey Anderson bounce back and look to jump into the top 5 of the rankings, or will Ovince Saint Preux go for a third straight von flue choke? Let us know.

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Announcement

*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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