Take away the best light-heavyweight and top pound-for-pound fighter in the world and a top contender in the lightweight division and what do you get? Still one the deepest cards in recent memory. How deep? The fight for (presumably) the next title shot at flyweight is on the prelims. Every fight on the main card has substantial meaning as far as rankings are concerned and being topped off by two title fights make this one of the best cards to date. Here are some picks from our writers.
Anthony Johnson vs. Daniel Cormier
John Michael Edwards: This is a tough choice. I’m going to go with my gut and pick “Rumble” to pull out the win. While it is sometimes hard to get the visual of the old, struggling, 170 -185(ish)lbs out of my mind, since moving to heavyweight and light-heavyweight he has been sensational. It’s also better for the division if he wins, so I’ll say Johnson 48-47.
Jordan Killion: This is more than your traditional “striker v. grappler” match, because the “striker” (Rumble) can grapple, and the “grappler” (DC) can strike. DC via Unanimous Decision
Vinny Craig: What a tough fight to pick. The classic wrestler vs. striker conundrum. Cormier could neutralize Johnson and use his fighter IQ to win the fight, or Johnson could tee off at some point and send Cormier’s head into the second row. It’s going to depend on if Cormier can wrestle Johnson or not, with that we will see who will win. I got Cormier by decision.
Dom Tutino: It’s not a secret that Cormier wants to get this fight to the ground and Johnson wants to stand and bang. Although Johnson has great takedown defense and I see him maybe stuffing a few takedowns, I see Cormier’s Olympic wrestling eventually winning the day especially in the later rounds, with Daniel then capitalising on the gassed Johnson for a submission late in the fight.
Michael Maniscalco: Rumble’s punching power is obviously something for Cormier to look out for, but his wrestling and ability to put guys against the cage will help him prevail in a decision win.
Griffen Tobey: Cormier will win as long as he does not get knocked out by the heavy-handed Johnson. Cormier via Unanimous Decision
Jeff Severcool: I believe had this fight been 3-4 years ago, we would have DC reigning in this division, but unfortunately timing is everything, and it is a BAD time to have to fight Anthony Johnson right now. This will be a war of attrition, but Rumble young man, Rumble. DC falls once again and sadly becomes one of the greatest fighters to not win a title.
Derek Bowe: The main event between Anthony Johnson and Daniel Cormier is a difficult one to call. Should Rumble be able to land his powerful strikes, it could be a short night for Cormier. However, Cormier has superior wrestling than almost anyone in that division, Rumble included. If Cormier can close distance and is not forced to shoot from too great of distances, he wins this by grinding out a decision by controlling Johnson.
Brendan McGlynn: In my heart I want Daniel to pull this one out he is getting up there in age and may not have too many chances left. However, I think Anthony Johnson may be virtually unstoppable at this point in his career. It could be a different fight if Daniel can get Rumble on the ground since we have not seen Rumble tested on the ground during this resurgence. I got Anthony Johnson winning the belt via 4th Round TKO to obtain the vacant belt.
Brice Schroeder: I keep flip flopping on who is going to win this fight. The way I see it Rumble needs to finish Cormier and Cormier can only win by going the distance. Rumble was able to nullify Phil Davis’ wrestling when they fought, but DC is a whole different animal. I’m picking DC here. Look for him to use his wrestling to avoid the knockout blow from Johnson
Jim Edwards: DC is a guy that can’t get over the line in the important fights. He’s suffered many disappointments in his career already, but there must be some mental scarring in that he’s lost in so many important points in his career already. Johnson via KO.
Sam LaPoint: I believe Daniel Cormier will pressure Anthony Johnson in the early rounds to wear him down and be able to secure the victory from there by unanimous decision or technical knockout.
Chris Weidman vs. Vitor Belfort
John Michael Edwards: Nothing against Weidman, but I’d love to see Vitor win this in classic (violent) Vitor fashion…I don’t see it happening though. Mind beats heart on this pick. Weidman 49-46.
Jordan Killion: Weidman is the better overall fighter. He’ll have to withstand a flurry early, but I’ll take “The Chris” via Submission rd. 3
Vinny Craig: I see the strength of Weidman being an issue for Belfort. He won’t be able to use his speed against him either as Weidman uses angles better than almost anyone in the organization. No scenario in my mind, besides Weidman being lazy, do I see Vitor catching the champ. I have Weidman winning by decision.
Dom Tutino: I believe Weidman is truly the better fighter in near enough every aspect of MMA. Vitor was once a great fighter but at 38 and off TRT I see Weidman just being too much for him. I see Chris working his wrestling and ground and pound early, rocking Vitor on the ground making Belfort scramble to recover and leave himself open for a submission early in the contest.
Michael Maniscalco: Vitor’s best chance of winning this fight is in the opening two rounds, he’s going to come out aggressive and I expect Weidman to stay on the defensive until the later rounds. I’ve got Weidman.
Griffen Tobey: Weidman will dominate this fight with his wrestling if he can keep his distance from Belfort on the feet and take the right opportunities to go for the takedown. The only way I see Belfort winning this fight is by the improbable knockout. Weidman via Unanimous Decision.
Jeff Severcool: Weidman has beaten a couple notorious killers and former champions in Anderson Silva and Lyoto Machida. However, he meets his match in Vitor Belfort. While Silva and Machida excel in counter punching, it allows the champion to get comfortable and find his pace in the early rounds. But Vitor is not patient, and he enjoys quick kills. The night of the Blackzillian champions begins with a shockingly vintage Belfort blitz setting up Belfort vs. Rockhold 2.
Derek Bowe: Weidman has an amazing all-around set of abilities: he is good on the feet, excellent in taking the fight to the canvas and has a brilliant Jiu Jitsu game. One which stands out to me is Weidman’s tendency to absorb strikes. He has gotten hit in almost every fight he has been in, including significantly by Machida in his last defense. Belfort is a fighter whose strikes cannot be taken and shaken off. If Belfort can apply pressure without being taken down and held and this fight is contested on the feet we are likely to see a new champion.
Brendan McGlynn: And New UFC Middleweight Champion Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort! Call me crazy, but after a year and a half layoff I think Belfort comes out guns blazing. I have Vitor making it 4 straight wins via head kick KO, stopping the Champ in the second round.
Brice Schroeder: Even though Vitor has looked like an animal the last couple of fights I’m taking Weidman to take a fairly dominant decision win here. Weidman is young, hungry and pissed off at Vitor who has a lot of miles on his 38-year-old body. Now that he is off the juice who knows how he will look. I don’t think “cheez-its” will be enough to save Vitor in this one.
Jim Edwards: I’m still changing my mind about this one. Despite Weidman’s undoubted top level ability, there’s just something I’ve not liked about the way he’s looked during the preparation for this fight. There are so many variables we can’t quantify at this point at this point – Vitor off TRT, Weidman seemingly being prepared to take a shot to give one, etc. I’m going to go with the challenger to upset the odds. Belfort by KO.
Sam LaPoint: Chris Weidman can out-wrestle Belfort if he can’t outstrike him. However, I believe Weidman won’t need to and can get the win via TKO within the first three rounds.
Donald Cerrone vs. John Makdessi
John Michael Edwards: Cerrone SUB
Jordan Killion: Cerrone Sub rd. 2
Vinny Craig: Cerrone by SUB
Dom Tutino: Cerrone SUB
Michael Maniscalco: Cerrone UD
Griffen Tobey: Cerrone SUB
Jeff Severcool: Cerrone SUB
Derek Bowe: Cerrone SUB
Brendan McGlynn: Cerrone SUB
Brice Schroeder: Cerrone SUB
Jim Edwards: Cerrone UD
Sam LaPoint: Cerrone UD
Travis Browne vs. Andrei Arlovski
John Michael Edwards: Arlovski SD
Jordan Killion: Browne TKO rd. 2
Vinny Craig: Browne def. Arlovski by KO
Dom Tutino: Browne KO
Michael Maniscalco: Browne TKO
Griffen Tobey: Browne KO
Jeff Severcool: Arlovski KO
Derek Bowe: Browne KO
Brendan McGlynn: Arlovski TKO
Brice Schroeder: Browne KO
Jim Edwards: DRAW – no one wins this fight…. no one!!
Sam LaPoint: Brown via TKO
Joseph Benavidez vs. John Moraga
John Michael Edwards: Benavidez UD
Jordan Killion: Benavidez via UD
Vinny Craig: Benavidez UD
Dom Tutino: Benavidez SUB
Michael Maniscalco: Benavidez UD
Griffen Tobey: Benavidez TKO
Jeff Severcool: Moraga UD
Derek Bowe: Benavidez TKO
Brendan McGlynn: Moraga UD
Brice Schroeder: Benavidez SUB
Jim Edwards: Benavidez SUB
Sam LaPoint: Benavidez UD
John Dodson vs. Zach Makovsky
John Michael Edwards: Dodson TKO
Jordan Killion: Dodson via UD
Vinny Craig: Dodson TKO
Dom Tutino: Dodson UD
Michael Maniscalco: Dodson TKO
Griffen Tobey: Dodson UD
Jeff Severcool: Dodson KO
Derek Bowe: Dodson TKO
Brendan McGlynn: Dodson KO
Brice Schroeder: Dodson KO
Jim Edwards: Dodson UD Sam LaPoint: Dodson UD
Dong Hyun Kim vs. Josh Burkman
John Michael Edwards: Kim UD
Jordan Killion: Kim via UD
Vinny Craig: Kim TKO
Dom Tutino: Kim KO
Michael Maniscalco: Kim UD
Griffen Tobey: Burkman SUB
Jeff Severcool: Kim UD
Derek Bowe: Kim UD
Brendan McGlynn: Burkman SUB
Brice Schroeder: Kim UD
Jim Edwards: Kim UD
Sam LaPoint: Kim UD
Uriah Hall vs. Rafael Natal
John Michael Edwards: Hall TKO
Jordan Killion: Hall TKO rd 1
Vinny Craig: Hall TKO
Dom Tutino: Hall KO
Michael Maniscalco: Hall TKO
Griffen Tobey: Hall TKO
Jeff Severcool: Hall TKO
Derek Bowe: Hall UD
Brendan McGlynn: Hall TKO
Brice Schroeder: Hall KO
Jim Edwards: Hall UD Sam LaPoint: Hall TKO
Rose Namajunas vs. Nina Ansaroff
John Michael Edwards: Ansaroff TKO
Jordan Killion: “Thug” Rose Submission Rd 1.
Vinny Craig: Namajunas SUB
Dom Tutino: Namajunas SUB
Michael Maniscalco: Namajunas SUB
Griffen Tobey: Namajunas UD
Jeff Severcool: Namajunas UD
Derek Bowe: Namajunas SUB
Brendan McGlynn: Namajunas UD
Brice Schroeder: Namajunas UD
Jim Edwards: Ansaroff UD
Sam LaPoint: Namajunas UD
*Live Updates* UFC Winnipeg Official Results
The UFC returns to Canada for the final Fight Night card of 2017. In the cold of Winnipeg, Manitoba, the UFC will host eleven of the originally twelve scheduled fights. Unfortunately, Tim Elliot will not fight in the north country. His scheduled opponent, Pietro Menga, a newcomer to the promotions roster, failed to make weight after taking the bout with just over a weeks notice.
An exciting main card will be capped off with a potential contender eliminator bout featuring, Robbie Lawler and Rafael Dos Anjos. The former champions (Lawler at welterweight, Dos Anjos at lightweight) both put together impressive win streaks which dispatched top contenders in their respective divisions. Elsewhere on the main card, Santiago Ponzinibbio takes on the outspoken Mike Perry.
The card begins on UFC Fight Pass at 4:30/1:30 ETPT.
UFC Winnipeg Official Results:
MAIN CARD – FOX – 8PM/5PM ETPT
- #2 Robbie Lawler (28-11) vs. #4 Rafael Dos Anjos (27-9) – Welterweight bout
- Result: Rafael Dos Anjos def. Robbie Lawler via unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45)
- #3 Ricardo Lamas (18-5) vs. Josh Emmett (12-1) – Catchweight bout (148.5 lbs)
- Result: Josh Emmett def. Ricardo Lamas via KO (punch) 4:33 round 1
- #10 Santiago Ponzinibbio (25-3) vs. Mike Perry (11-1) – Welterweight bout
- Result: Santiago Ponzinibbio def. Mike Perry via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- #3 Glover Teixeira (26-6) vs. #7 Misha Cirkunov (13-3) – Light Heavyweight bout
- Result: Glover Teixeira def. Misha Cirkunov via TKO (punches) 2:45 round 1
PRELIMINARY CARD – FS1 – 5PM/2PM ETPT
- #14 Jared Cannonier (10-2) vs #15 Jan Blachowicz (20-7) – Light Heavyweight bout
- Result: Jan Blachowicz def. Jared Cannonier via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Julian Marquez (6-1) vs. Darren Stewart (7-2) – Middleweight bout
- Result: Julian Marquez def. Darren Stewart via submission (standing guillotine) 2:42 round 2
- Chad Laprise (13-2) vs. Galore Bofando (5-2) – Welterweight bout
- Result: Chad Laprise def. Galore Bofando via TKO (punches) 4:10 round 1
- Nordine Taleb (13-4) vs Danny Roberts (14-2) – Welterweight bout
- Result: Nordine Taleb def. Danny Roberts via KO (head kick and punch) :59 round 1
- John Makdessi (14-6) vs Abel Trujillo (15-7) – Lightweight bout
- Result: John Makdessi def. Abel Trujillo via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Alessio Di Chirico (10-2) vs Oluwale Bamgbose (6-3) – Middleweight bout
- Result: Alessio Di Chirico def. Oluwale Bamgbose via KO (knee) 2:14 round 2
EARLY PRELIMINARY CARD – UFC FIGHT PASS – 4:30PM/1:30PM ETPT
- Jordan Mein (29-12) vs. Erick Silva (19-8) – Welterweight bout
- Result: Jordan Mein def. Erick Silva via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-26)
Gilbert Burns vs. Olivier Aubin-Mercier Added to UFC Orlando
The UFC has now added more bouts to the front end of their 2018 schedule. Gilbert Burns (13-2, 5-2 UFC) will face Olivier Aubin-Mercier (10-2, 6-2 UFC) in Orlando, Florida on February 24th, 2018.
— UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) December 14, 2017
Alongside a few other high-profile fight announcements, is the addition to the UFC Orlando, Florida card. The two lightweights will join Jake Collier and Marcin Prachnio, as the second fight set for the event.
It has been a while since the UFC hosted an event in the state of Florida. Last seen by the Floridians was UFC on Fox: Texeira vs. Evans, on April 16, 2016 in Tampa Bay. The card was a success, despite the cancellation of its planned main event between Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov. Drawing a gate of $1.05 million and 2.13 million viewers.
Gilbert Burns signed with the UFC after accumulating an undefeated record of 8-0. His first loss came in his home country of Brazil, as Rashid Magomedov defeated him via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson 3, in November of 2015.
In his most recent bout, Burns defeated Jason Saggo by KO with five seconds remaining in the second round at UFC Fight Night: Rockhold vs. Branch.
Aubin-Mercier will come into the contest as a winner in his last three bouts. The Canadian fighter trains out of the Tristar gym, alongside legends such as Georges St. Pierre and head coach, Firas Zahabi.
In 2011, Aubin-Mercier was chosen to compete on The Ultimate Fighter: Nations. Competing in the welterweight bracket, he became a finalist by defeating both, Jake Mathews (unanimous decision) and Richard Walsh (rear naked choke). In the finale, Aubin-Mercier lost to Chad Laprise by split decision.
UFC Orlando will take place at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida on February 24th, 2018.
Eryk Anders vs. Lyoto Machida Officially Headlines UFC Belem
Eryk Anders vs. Lyoto Machida is officially booked to headline UFC Belem in Brazil.
Following his unanimous decision victory over Markus Perez on last weekends, UFC Fight Night: Ortega vs. Swanson, undefeated middleweight, Eryk Anders, called for the match-up with former UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida. The UFC heard, and obliged.
First reported by The MMA Kings (@mma_kings.)
EXCLUSIVE: My sources tell me that Eryk Anders (@erykanders) has gotten his wish. He'll headline UFC Fight Night: Belem against Lyoto Machida (@lyotomachidafw) in Brazil. Ask and you shall receive. #UFC pic.twitter.com/qX62A9qH6k
— The MMA Kings (Nolan King) (@mma_kings) December 14, 2017
Anders holds a 2-0 undefeated record in the UFC. The Alabama native made his promotional debut against Rafael Nata in July of this year. A bout he took on short notice, replacing Alessio di Chirico whom withdrew from the fight due to a neck injury. Anders defeated Natal by knockout in the first round that night at UFC Long Island.
Prior to his indoctrination to MMA, the undefeated middleweight played for the University of Alabama football team, between 2006-2009.
Machida recently returned to the UFC roster after an 18-month suspension handed down by USADA, stemming from a failed out-of-competition test leading up to his April 2016 contest against Dan Henderson.
In his return to the octagon, Machida faced Derek Brunson in the main-event of the UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Machida, in Sao Paulo, Brazil. “The Dragon” lost the bout via first round KO.
UFC Belem, Brazil is scheduled for February 3rd, 2018, at the Mangueirinho Arena. The card will also feature the flyweight debut for Valentina Shevchenko as she faces Priscila Cachoeira.
- Opinion2 months ago
A list of fighters who fought Michael Bisping – while on steroids
- Interviews2 months ago
Sage Northcutt on Moving to Sacramento and Life at Team Alpha Male
- BAMMA1 month ago
BAMMA 32: Official Results and Live Stream
- Interviews2 months ago
Tim Means on Lawsuit Against Supplement Companies “I’m Going to Shut Them Down”
- Cage Warriors2 months ago
EXCLUSIVE: Matt Inman Talks Cage Warriors 87, His Love For Fighting And Craig White Possibly Tiring Himself Out.
- Interviews1 week ago
Exclusive: Alexander Gustafsson eyeing summer 2018 return- wants title shot next
- Interviews2 months ago
Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”
- Bellator2 months ago
Exclusive: Ilima-Lei Macfarlane- from beating ‘Soccer Mom’ to potentially making history