This Saturday, The Barclays Center hosts UFC’s first pay-per-view event of 2017 as former Bantamweight champion Holly Holm takes on Germaine de Randamie for the inaugural Featherweight title
Back in December, Dana White announced a brand new weight class for women in the UFC, the 145-pound divison. The Featherweight division was primarily created for current Invicta FC champion Cris Cyborg, which Dana White admitted Cyborg turned down offers to challenge for the first ever championship fight in the brand new weight class.
He then after confirmed that former 135-pound champ Holly Holm (10-2 MMA, 3-2 UFC) would square off against number 10 ranked Bantamweight Germaine de Randamie (6-3 MMA, 3-1 UFC) for the first ever Featherweight title bout.
“I offered Cris Cyborg a title fight at 145 pounds a month ago,” said White when the Holm and de Randamie fight was announced. “She had eight weeks to get ready for it; she said she couldn’t make the weight. She couldn’t make 145 pounds. So then I offered her another 145-pound title fight for Brooklyn and she turned it down.”
Nine days after White announced the 145-pound title bout, Cris Cyborg was flagged for a potential doping violation by USADA so is currently unable to compete for the UFC.
“We’ve now got two of the most decorated strikers ever in the UFC fighting for the title (Holm and de Randamie),” said White. “It should be a fun fight. We’ll see how that thing ends and then we’ll go from there.”
Expect a very technical five round battle which is mostly on the feet between Holm & de Randamie. I predict Holly Holm comes out of the bout victorious, which would hopefully lead to an epic encounter with Cyborg and would be one of the biggest fights in women’s MMA history.
Anderson Silva Vs. Derek Brunson
The co-main event of the evening sees middleweights, Anderson ‘The Spider’ Silva (33-8 (1) MMA, 16-4 (1) UFC) compete against number 8 ranked, KO artist Derek Brunson. (16-4 MMA, 7-2 UFC) Both men coming off defeats, Brunson who lost by TKO in November and Silva hasn’t officially won a fight since October 2012. If you’re not excited for this one than you should be, these are two top-level guys who knock people out for fun.
I’ll be very surprised if this one goes the distance, I see Brunson being very aggressive and trying to finish the fight in the first round. Ultimately though, I see Anderson Silva finishing off a very fatigued Derek Brunson either late in the second or in the third round. If the contest does in fact end up with Brunson brutally knocking Silva out or winning Unanimously, we could well see the end of arguably the greatest mixed martial artist of all time.
Jacare Souza Vs. Tim Boetsch
Another 185-pound fight taking place on the main card of UFC 208, Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza (23-4 (1) MMA, 6-1 UFC) meets Tim Boetsch (20-10 MMA, 9-7 UFC) in a bout which I strongly believe ‘Jacare’ will be dominant and finish the fight within one round. Either way, the Middleweight division will be left looking very strong for contenders coming out of UFC 208.
Glover Teixeira Vs. Jared Cannonier
This Light Heavyweight contest is essentially veteran Vs. prospect. I see this being a dark horse for fight of the night, but I do see Glover Teixeira (25-5 MMA, 8-3 UFC) winning by a Unanimous decision. I just think it’s too much too soon for Jared Cannonier. (9-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) Whoever does come out victorious on Saturday though would be right up in contention and potentially a title eliminating fight.
Dustin Poirier Vs. Jim Miller
When I first saw this fight announced, I immediately thought someone’s getting knocked out. Conclusively though, I do believe Poirier (20-5 MMA, 12-4 UFC) will have his way against Miller. (28-8 (1) MMA, 17-7 (1) UFC) Dustin Poirier, in the build up to his encounter with Miller, looks like a completely different fighter than in his previous contest against Michael Johnson. Poirier also admitted during the UFC 208 media day that when he dislikes his opponent and gets too emotionally invested, he doesn’t do as well as he possibly can. He looks much better mentally coming into this one and I believe we will see a very improved Dustin Poirier than what we saw in his previous bout.
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