With all that has been going on in the MMA world this week, UFC 197 has been somewhat overshadowed, despite featuring the number 1 and 2 pound for pound fighters in the world. However, the fact that the weigh-ins have now taken place should mean that all eyes are firmly on Las Vegas and not elsewhere.
The main event sees the long-awaited return of Jon Jones, although not against Daniel Cormier as originally planned. Following an injury withdrawal from the UFC light heavyweight champion, Ovince St Preux stepped in and the bout will now be an interim title match. Whichever man prevails will no doubt be the next challenger for Cormier’s belt when the champion is healed. The story heading into this fight, however, is definitely all about Jon Jones first fight for over a year after numerous troubles in his personal life, resulting in him being stripped of his UFC title.
After weighing in, the underdog St Preux had this to say. “This is the opportunity of a lifetime. I’m telling you, I’m going to make the most of it tomorrow night.”
His opponent, Jon Jones, took a moment to show his appreciation to the crowd, stating “Man, thank you all for being here. I love you guys so much.” He also added a promise that sounded rather ominous for St Preux. “I promise to give you guys the best performance ever tomorrow night.”
The co-main event sees the only flyweight champion in UFC history and #2 pound for pound fighter, Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson taking on Henry Cejudo in a match that has been touted as the most serious threat to the dominant champion’s title reign ever since the latter made his UFC debut in 2014. In a division often criticised by fans for being void of credible challengers, this is a title bout that, on paper at least, promises to be the most competitive in UFC flyweight history.
Cejudo stated that, in order to win this fight, he has to “Fight with heart, fight with passion.” Before promising “You’re gonna see the best Henry Cejudo you’ve ever seen.”
The champion put what he has to do to win simply. “It’s gonna be a great fight. I’m gonna go out there and do my thing.”
Outside of the big two fights for the night, UFC 197 also has a trifecta of what should be fascinating fights completing the main card. For most, the highlight is the lightweight match between two of the best strikers in the division in Edson Barboza and former UFC lightweight champion, Anthony Pettis. Elsewhere, rapidly rising middleweight Robert Whittaker challenges Rafael Natal, while two featherweight prospects in Yair Rodriguez and Andre Fili collide.
The preliminary portion of the card is, as ever, split between UFC Fight Pass and televised prelims. Sergio Pettis makes UFC 197 a family affair for the Pettis family when he takes on Chris Kelades and the first ever UFC women’s strawweight champion, Carla Esparza, returns after a long injury lay off. The featured UFC Fight Pass prelim is in the heavyweight division as Walt Harris takes on the latest, and most controversial, signee of the popular “Lookin’ For a Fight” series, Cody East.
All fighters successfully made weight at the first time of asking.
The full weigh-in results are as follows:
UFC 197 Main Card
- Jon Jones (205) vs Ovince St Preux (205) – UFC Interim Light Heavyweight Title
- Demetrious Johnson (125) vs Henry Cejudo (125) – UFC Flyweight Title
- Anthony Pettis (156) vs Edson Barboza (155)
- Robert Whittaker (185.5) vs Rafael Natal (186)
- Yair Rodriguez (145.5) vs Andre Fili (146)
UFC 197 Preliminary Card (Fox)
- Sergio Pettis (126) vs Chris Kelades (126)
- Danny Roberts (170.5) vs Dominique Steele (171)
- Carla Esparza (116) vs Juliana Lima (115)
- Glaico Franca (156) vs James Vick (155)
UFC 197 Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass)
- Walt Harris (255.5) vs Cody East (245.5)
- Marcos Rogerio de Lima (205) vs Clint Hester (205)
- Efrain Escudero (155.5) vs Kevin Lee (156)
Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”
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:
Just make sure you don’t put cooking oil all over your body like Anderson did so it’ll be easy to grab ahold of you @lyotomachidafw 👌
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) October 17, 2017
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.
Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217
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:
— Ovince Saint Preux (@003_OSP) October 19, 2017
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.
Fight News update!!
— UFC (@ufc) October 19, 2017
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.
*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results
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)
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)
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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