There are several reasons to watch a fighter compete. Knockout power, technique, submission prowess, and killer instinct are but just a few of them. But another, more abstract reason is potential. Not the potential for violence or the potential to see a knockout, but the potential a fighter has within them. It’s a less popular reason to tune into a fight, in fact, it’s probably one of the last things you’ll hear when you ask someone “Why do you like this fighter?” But for those fans who track the careers of certain fighters, every bout is another opportunity to see how said fighter has grown and if he/she is closer to reaching their full potential.
Those of us who have the privilege of training around up and coming fighters tend to see their growth on a more day to day basis, but for other fans, it’s sometimes months between seeing their favorite fighter perform. Furthermore, it’s usually only for 15 minutes at a time at most. It’s in those 15 minutes that a fighter’s potential is both born and put to the test. How many times have we heard that a fighter is a world-beater in the gym but just can’t put it together when it’s show time. Or how about the opposite? A fighter who has great success in the cage, but can’t seem to stay out of trouble in between fights.
It’s this potential that many fighters have, few hold on to, and even less fully reach. This Sunday, the UFC visits Saskatoon with a fight night card full of Canadian potential. Perhaps the greatest of that potential comes in the form of undefeated lightweight, Olivier Aubin-Mercier, or OAM as his fans like to call him. The 26 year old ‘Quebec Kid’ has been on the UFC’s roster since making it to the finals of The Ultimate Fighter: Canada vs. Australia. Despite losing in the finals, OAM has quickly become a fan favorite and one of Canada’s best hopes as their next UFC star.
Sporting a 6-1 record (with his lone loss in the aforementioned TUF finale), the welterweight-turned-lightweight has 6 career submissions to his name. With only 7 fights, OAM’s Mixed Martial Arts career is certainly a young one, but it’s hard to dismiss the fact that he has submitted 6 of his 7 opponents. Even more impressive is that Olivier Aubin-Mercier shows a new wrinkle in his game every time he makes an Octagon appearance. Only a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu under Firas Zihabi, OAM has a lot to learn, and that might be the scariest thing about him. He has yet to stumble, despite the loss, of his trajectory as a fighter, both in and out of the octagon, has been nothing but positive. Couple that with the fact that he is training at one of the world’s best gyms in Tristar, and you have an unlimited amount of potential.
With all the right people in his corner (literally and figuratively), OAM is poised to become the next breakout Canadian star. Although he has expressed in the past that he doesn’t necessarily like to be compared to Georges St. Pierre, it’s difficult not to wonder if the man who also has a 3 letter acronym as a nickname can achieve the level of greatness his predecessor did. With such potential, it’s no wonder why people tune in to watch OAM compete. The question this weekend, though: will he continue his ascent in reaching his full potential?
*WATCH* DaveNoseMMA – Aljamain Sterling Knockout Aftermath
Stipe Miocic vs. Francis Ngannou Official for UFC 220
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”.
— UFC (@ufc) December 10, 2017
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.
Ladies Fight Night 7: “Double Trouble” Preview
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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