For those of us that love the world of MMA, there occasionally comes a weekend like this where there are multiple cards on multiple days and you can kind of just plan a lazy weekend around watching a steady stream of violent athleticism on both the feet and the ground.
Even rarer still comes the Friday-Sunday run of both MMA and a boxing match that even a casual fan wants to tune into. And we have just that this weekend. Not one but two UFC cards and the hotly anticipated heavyweight title fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder. Sure, The Saturday UFC card goes head to head with Fury vs. Wilder, but one can always rig up a stream of the FS1 card card. Plus I doubt the boxing goes off until like, 1 or 2 in the morning because boxing is batshit like that (Note: Red is seething reading through this because we once stayed at a bar until 3:00am to watch Ronda Rousey only to have her knock out her opponent in like, 15 seconds).
To get into the nitty gritty, we kick off our weekend of pugilistic omnipresence with the finale of the most recent, and possibly last (???????) rendition of “The Ultimate Fighter”. I honestly haven’t seen an episode which always makes me sad. As much hate as it gets I do think it’s a pretty enjoyable show. This season they had heavyweights on which makes it even more intriguing as it puts the “big brawler vs. talented martial artists/athletes” question under the microscope. Did I mention the other weight class they had was women’s featherweights? The seemingly non-existent weight class occupied by Cyroid? So ya, bit of a circus this one.
The HW final is between Justin Frazier, 29, from Alaska who brings a 3-fight win streak into the contest. His opponent is a Spaniard with a long-ass name (Juan being the first part) who is 38 but only has one loss to his credit. It looks to be striker vs. grappler so I am going to just guess the Alaskan clubs him with one. The women’s final is Pannie Kinzad, a known quantity in Women’s MMA vs. Macy Chiasson, a slightly more unknown fighter. I have Kinzad, who I believe held an Invicta belt at one point. The Main Event of this one pits Rafael dos Anjos against Kamaru Usman in a pivotal 170lb clash. After what happened against Colby Covington I just can’t take RDA, who I fucking love. Usman by UD.
Wake up, watch some college football, and then it is on to UFC Fight Night: Dos Santos vs. Tuivasa. The first notable fight is what the man himself has said will be Mark Hunt’s last MMA fight. He fights AKA prospect Justin “Big Pretty” Willis and honestly I don’t think the Super Samoan has anything left at this point. Willis by KO in RD2. Next is Shogun against Tyson Pedro. I LOVE Pedro as a prospect, mostly for his size and penchant for violence, but he keeps stumbling and seems to not have much in the grappling department. Shogun, while a blackbelt in BJJ, won’t really go after a sub. He is, however, a world class kickboxer and I think gets the UD here over the greener Pedro. The main event, as mentioned pits Junior dos Santos against Tai “Bam Bam” Tuivasa. I think this one goes like any other “Cigano” fight against someone not named Velasquez, Miocic, or Overeem. Basically, unless you have technical assets better than JDS’, he is a very hard out. JDS by UD.
Finally, we have Fury vs. Wilder. Not only is this a long awaited fight, but it is so in part due to a complete mental breakdown/run of addiction on Fury’s parts that saw him weigh 400lbs and have most folks just figure his career was over. And all of this after just beating Klitschko. I will preface anything else I say with the fact that I DON’T KNOW SHIT ABOUT BOXING I AM JUST TRYING MY BEST. To beat Klitchsko you have to have some great technical ability and from I’ve read Fury is indeed an excellent technician and can change his approach based on opponent. I’ve watched Wilder fight and he pretty much just tries to take you’re fucking head off. something which he is VERY good at doing. That said, I don’t think Fury engages in a brawl and I think Wilder fails to clip him. Fury by UD.
At this point it will be Sunday and you will be hungover and exhausted and wondering what happened but hey, that’s the price of the clash of many titans. So whether you like it when they just bleed or fail to protect they neck, this should be a fun few days.