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UFC Goiania’s Fighter to Watch: The Reinvention of Charles Oliveira

Steven Cavagnino

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When a main event as dynamic as Carlos Condit vs. Thiago Alves comes around, it’s hard to pick between the two men for fighter to watch. Both men were former title contenders, one is a former interim champion, both are top 15 in the welterweight division, and both are devastating strikers who have highlight reel knockouts. It’s a toss up between the two.

That’s why I’m not picking either.

Look down the card one more fight to the featherweight co-main event and you’ll find a fight with an interesting story line, one that might not be getting the attention it deserves. Nik Lentz and Charles Oliveira are two of the featherweight and lightweight division’s most experienced fighters. Both men have ventured into dual weight classes and have been fighting in the UFC for over 5 years. They have had similar career paths, finding some success at lightweight, only to lose to the top of the division and eventually decided to cut down to 145 pounds.

The interesting part about this fight, though, is that in 2011, these two men fought each other at 155 pounds. In this fight Oliveira was getting the best of Lentz both on the feet and on the ground. After one round Lentz seemed to be letting this fight slip away from him. Early in the second round, however, Oliveira threw a poorly timed knee in an exchange that turned out to be illegal, as Lentz was a grounded opponent. The knee saw Lentz incapacitated and the fight was ruled a no contest.

Now, 4 years later, both men find themselves in the top 15 at featherweight. Since that fight Lentz lost two more at lightweight and has gone 4-1 in his new weight class. Similarly, Oliveira lost his next at 155 pounds and since has gone 5-2 at featherweight (mind you those two losses were against top 5 guys at the time.) Both men are impressive and can do big things in this division, but, for me, it comes down to how dynamic of a fighter they are. And Oliveira wins that category hands down.

Oliveira, since moving to featherweight, has won 4 post-fight bonuses in his 5 victories. Hitting calf slicers and anaconda chokes and earning dominating wins, Oliveira also went the distance with the current #1 ranked featherweight, winning fight of the night, even though it was a losing effort.

There is something special about Charles Oliveira. Since his debut in the UFC he has shown glimpses of absolute brilliance. He has come up short against elite competition, but every time he enters the cage he is a better version of himself, and that is the scariest attribute a fighter can have. Let’s not forget he made his UFC debut when he was 21 years old and is still only 25. Oliveira has potentially another decade in this sport to grow and become better. As the current #8 featherweight in the world, it’s incredible to think about where he might be in 4 or 5 years. My guess is fighting for or defending the featherweight belt. Thus, Charles Oliveira, his ridiculous skill, and his overwhelming potential is the fighter to watch for tonight’s event.

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*WATCH* DaveNoseMMA – Aljamain Sterling Knockout Aftermath

Harry Davies

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In this video, MMA Latest’s Dave Noseworthy shares his thoughts on Marlon Moraes’ brutal knockout of Aljamain Sterling that took place this past weekend at UFC Fresno.

Check out Dave’s thoughts below:

 

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Fight Announcements

Stipe Miocic vs. Francis Ngannou Official for UFC 220

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UFC 220 in Boston, Massachusetts has its main event. Stipe Miocic (17-2) will put his belt on the line for the third time against rising heavyweight star, Francis Ngannou (11-1)

Rumors surrounded the match-up for UFC 220 after Ngannou’s first round knockout over Alistair Overeem, at UFC 218. The Cameroonian heavyweight called for the fight himself. In his octagon interview proceeding his most recent victory, Ngannou stated:

“I’m feeling good… I’m on my way to a title shot”.

The heavy handed Ngannou has finished all of his opponents in all of his six UFC bouts. A streak which includes a kimura submission over Anthony Hamilton and a TKO victory against former UFC heavyweight champion, Andrei Arlovski. Overall, he holds a ten fight win streak. His only defeat came by way of unanimous decision to Zoumana Cisse, in his second professional MMA fight.

If victorious, Ngannou would become the first African-born champion in UFC history.

Not to be diminished, Stipe Miocic rides his a streak of his own into the beantown match-up. Five consecutive wins, five knockouts and the past four of which, ended in the first round. A victory in Boston for the champ would make him the longest reigning heavyweight champion in UFC history. Currently, Miocic is one of three heavyweights, in the promotions entirety, whom has successfully defended the belt twice.

UFC 220 will be held at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts on January 20th, 2018. The pay-per-view (PPV) card will also feature light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, as he faces challenger Volkan “No Time” Oezdemir.

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Events

Ladies Fight Night 7: “Double Trouble” Preview

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Polish women’s federation Ladies Fight Night is going to celebrate their second birthday this year on the 15th to 17th of December. Two days, two events with a lot of great bouts.

LFN in Poland is being titled the new Invicta FC. The Polish owners created this federation to give European women a chance to fight on a big platform.

Hosting their first ever event in December 2015, LFN will hold two great cards next week, that will feature women who have fought under many prestigious promotions, such as the UFC, Invicta, Bellator, Glory, and Kunlun.

Two days of fantastic fights, intensified by a double dose of sports impressions. The name is not accidental, LFN 7 / LFN 8 combines two events, during which the best Polish fighters will be shown, as well as the best fighters from Europe (including France, Sweden, Italy, the Czech Republic and Romania)

The stakes are high, and we are electrified by the clashes between warriors such as Żaneta Cieśla vs Silvia La Notte and Patricia Axling vs. Cindy Silvestri. Mainly due to their vastness of their experience in the cage.

In the fight of the evening, the talented Romanian Cristina Stanciu will face Magdaléna Šormovádo. Stanciu fought twice in the UFC, but she was unfortunately cut from the promotion after suffering consecutive losses to Cortney Casey and Maryna Moroz.

Judyta Rymarzak vs Marta Waliczek is an amazing fight between two experienced kickboxers. Both making their pro MMA debuts on the night, we will witness a one-of-a-kind duel between two kickboxing perfectionists, as they look to transcend their skills into the MMA world.

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