On Sunday evening the world-famous Las Vegas Strip will likely be filled with folks celebrating 2017 and ringing within the New 12 months in fashion. However on Saturday evening, all consideration will likely be targeted on T-Cell Area packed comfortably between New York, New York and Monte Carlo for the UFC’s last Pay Per View occasion of the yr.
With a brilliant combat in the primary occasion between legends Cris Cyborg and Holly Holm, and numerous enormous matchups littered all through the combat card, Vegas is assured a weekend filled with fireworks.
Cyborg meets her most formidable foe up to now in Holm
The relentless successful streak of Cris Cyborg has been one of the demolition-filled rampages within the historical past of blended martial arts.
Cyborg’s devastating end in opposition to legend Gina Carano highlights a profession crammed with finishes and devastating stoppages which have stuffed the web with sufficient spotlight clips to final a lifetime.
However in relation to highlights, none could depart a much bigger mark within the sport than Holly Holm’s head kick knockout of the long-lasting Ronda Rousey at UFC 193 in 2015.
The matchup is layered with causes to observe in and of itself. Not solely are these two of the best feminine fighters in historical past, however they’re assembly for the featherweight title. Holm has lengthy been talked about as a possible foil to Cyborg’s aggressive hanging fashion. “The Preacher’s Daughter” makes use of her size and boxing/kickboxing acumen to grasp distance and make charging fighters pay for his or her pursuit.
Within the age of cash fights, this one is well worth the worth of admission all by itself.
Undefeated Nurmagomedov makes lengthy awaited return
At 24-Zero, Nurmagomedov has established himself as one of the dominant fighters within the sport. Now on the doorstep of championship rivalry, “The Eagle” takes on his hardest check up to now within the veteran Barboza, who holds a formidable 87 p.c takedown protection mark in 17 profession UFC bouts.
Nurmagomedov is assured in his standup in opposition to the aerial artist who has a few of the most iconic head kick finishes in UFC historical past.
Strawweight rising star will get subsequent check in prime 10
The Workforce Alpha Male prime feminine has gone Three-Zero with a pair of submissions on her solution to the No. 6 rating within the 115-pound division. A win over Esparza makes 4 straight wins to open her UFC profession in only a 10-month span.
If Esparza has something to say about it, the hype prepare round Calvillo will get derailed. The primary-ever strawweight champion has an enormous alternative to vault herself again into title rivalry if she’s in a position to steal Calvillo’s momentum on this high-stakes matchup.
Pure Born Killer is again – sufficient mentioned
When Carlos Condit tweeted in September that he was set to make a comeback to the UFC, your entire group paused to present thanks.
We’re speaking about one of the must-see fighters of his era and Condit is handled like a treasure in a sport that values leisure worth.
In opposition to Magny – a enjoyable fighter to observe in his personal proper – Condit will get the proper matchup in his return as he kicks the rust off the tires in a Combat of the 12 months pre-fight contender.
Vegas’ Rountree trying to find one other KO
The heralded mild heavyweight Khalil Rountree stumbled out of the gates with a pair of losses to start his UFC profession. He struggles in opposition to wrestlers and that was the early knock on him.
However after re-committing to his coaching and altering his mindset, Rountree has emerged as a rising prospect at 205 kilos driving a two-fight win streak (two first spherical knockouts) into his UFC 219 scrap with Michael Oleksiejczuk.
“Lord” is a striker recognized for KO energy which all however ensures a hanging present in the primary occasion of the FS1 prelims.
Matt Parrino is a digital producer and author for UFC.com. Observe him on Twitter at @MattParrino
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