Photo courtesy of Andre Luiz Moreira/Shutterstock
On Saturday night, millions of MMA fans were treated to the third UFC fight card in just eight days. I knew that I was in for a treat when I started watching, because not only did the card have a championship main event between Joseph Benevidez and Deiveson Figueiredo for the vacant Flyweight championship and a high stakes middleweight matchup between two top 10 contenders, but it also had an undercard stacked with exciting prospects.
The championship matchup between Benevidez and Figueiredo was a rematch between the two combatants. Earlier in the year, the two had fought for the vacant Flyweight title, but only Benevidez would have been able to win the belt that night as Figueiredo missed weight.
The fight ended when the two accidentally collided heads and Figueiredo was able to land a massive right hand shortly after to win the bout. Even though I was pulling for Benevidez, coming into this rematch I did not have much confidence things would go much different than the first fight.
It ended up being a brutal showcase by Figueiredo as he dropped Benevidez three times in the first round before choking him unconscious with a rear naked choke. It was impressive to watch, but at the same time I found it heartbreaking watching a pioneer of the sport come up short once again.
The co-main event saw Kelvin Gastellum take on Jack Hermanson. This was the fight I was most excited about going into the fights and although it did not go how I expected it still delivered. Early in the first round the two ended up on the ground and Hermanson was able to lock up a vicious heel hook and submitted Gastellum.
That now begs the question, what matchup makes the most for Hermanson and the middleweight division? Champion Israel Adesanya will be facing number 2 contender Paulo Costa at UFC 253. With that being said, I would love to see Hermansson face the winner of Whittaker vs. Till.
It is difficult to highlight some of the fights, so people should go back and watch because they were all fantastic, including great submissions such as women’s flyweight Ariane Lipski’s ruthless knee bar over Luana Carolina and Amir Albazis slick triangle choke on Malcolm Gordon.
For me however, the two must watch fights were Davi Ramos vs. Arman Tsarukyan which was an exciting stand up battle where Tarukyan showed that he is a very exciting young fighter to watch and Marc Diakiesi vs. Rafael Fiziev which won Fight of the Night honors for its fast pace, powerful, and exciting striking between two very talented and tough fighters.
Yet again, the UFC put on another great card that casual fans and hardcore fans alike could both enjoy. The UFC had arguably its best year in 2019 and even though 2020 has put roadblocks up, the UFC is still continuing to entertain their fans even when the arenas are empty.
With all the great matchups from last night, what future matchups do you want to see some of the winners from last night’s card take?