Ariel Helwani: It’s time to focus on Derrick Lewis.
One of the big questions for Saturday night’s Main Event is what Curtis Blades will have to do if he beats Derrick Lewis.
Normally, such a victory – which would have been his fifth in a row – against a quality opponent like Lewis would have led to a title chance. However, with Jon Jones moving up to heavyweight status, it was clear that the Blades would either have to wait a while or stay active, as a boost to the title wasn’t coming anytime soon.
Well, for all that.
The truth is, Lewis got too involved in this fight. Maybe because he had already fought for the UFC title and Blades hadn’t. This may have something to do with the fact that Blaydes seemed pretty dominant against all UFC opponents not named Francis Ngannou. Or maybe it’s because we prefer the wrestler to the attacker in heavyweight fights.
Either way, most of us, including the Las Vegas forecasters, have done Lewis a disservice in preparing for this fight. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Lewis (+350) suffered the largest defeat in a UFC main event since Michael Bisping (+400) defeated Luke Rockhold at UFC 199. It doesn’t seem fair, but it does say a lot about the fact that the Beast was neglected on Saturday night.
He must have felt good, because Lewis didn’t like Blades and was upset that their fight was cancelled the day before their November meeting when Blades tested positive for VIDOC-19. Due to devastating weather problems in his hometown of Houston last week, Lewis also took a long time to get to Las Vegas.
At the end, Lewis gave an uppercut as mean as you’ll never see it, and then gave a few more blows to an unconscious Blade (one or two too many, if you ask me). Then, to make sure his message had been conveyed loud and clear, he hit a few WWE-style heels while Blades was still down. If that’s not worse, I don’t know what is.
Not too long ago (March 2019) Lewis lost his second win in a row and seemed a bit lost on how to proceed. Since then, he has returned to form, struggled with persistent injuries and struggled as always.
Lewis’ career was surprising: he was in prison, then became a truck driver before fighting and eventually a fighter in the UFC. Saturday he celebrated his 21st birthday. UFC fight, which is surprising considering that, as Brendan Fitzgerald noted on the show, his original goal was to just get three fights in the Octagon.
Despite this match, Lewis, like Blades before the fight, is aware that it will not take him to his next step for the title. The UFC will never give up Jones’ participation against Stipe Miocic winner Ngannou, and rightfully so. This is a huge battle that needs to be fought as soon as possible.
So who could be next on Lewis’ list? There are only two options:
1. Revenge against Alexander Volkov. Remember when they fought at UFC 229, Volkov was seconds away from victory before he was knocked out by Lewis. It was the famous battle for my balls. We had a nice time.
2. The winner of the fight between Jairzinho Rosenstruyk and Cyril Gain next weekend.
I don’t think any of these options can be wrong. Both are intriguing – Volkov because he looked so good against Alistair Overeem earlier this month, and the winner next weekend because it would be a new challenge for Lewis.
After the win, Lewis said he wanted Overeem next. It’s a fight Lewis has wanted for a long time. I’m sure Overeem would have fallen as well, but I don’t see this fight going down for Overeem given the beating he just took against Volkov. Lewis really hits hard at the end.
As for Blaydes, it sucked because he was about to fight and he only had one fight left under his UFC contract. If he wins this fight and the next, he’ll get a big contract before fighting for the belt. Теперь он смотрит на один последний бой, оставшийся после нокаута по контракту, и, как он сказал мне ранее на этой неделе, несуществующие, ннесколько морозные отношения с президентом UFC Даной Уайт. Он в трудном положении.
Может быть борьба с проигравшим главное событие имет следующие смысл, но в должно быть через это время. Блейдам нужно отдохнуть после нокаута.
Говоря о контрактах, Льюс сейчас вступает в финальную битву и по своей сделке, с тоной импульса на его стороне. There are many good reasons for this, but I think it is important that we show our appreciation for the work of theфинальном поединке, том обналичить деньги. Этот новостной сюжет едва ли вызвал пульсацию в новостном цикле MMA, потому чтомы все были сфокусированы ситуации Blaydes.
Джеф Вагенхайм: Куницкая отправляет сообщение
Яна Куницкая удивила многих доминирующим выступлением на площадке Кетлен Виейры. ООО Крис Унгер/Зуффа.
Аманда Нунес будет защищать свой чемпионат UFC в полутяжелом весе через две недели. Ей также на принадлежит пояс в полутяжелом весе, и она года года года года этот кон кон с 2019 года. За это время сформировалась очередь из 135-фунтовых претендентов. В субботу вечером Яна Яна Куницкая встала
All UFC Fighting Night fights: Blades vs Lewis will be available on ESPN+.
– Curtis Blaydis v Derrick Lewis-Ketlen Vieira v Yana Kunitskaya-Charles Rosa v Derrick Minner-Alexey Oleynik v Chris Daukaus-Phil Hawes v Nassurdin Imavov-Andrew Arlovskiy v… Tom Aspinall, Jared Gordon v Danny Chavez, Eddie Wineland v John Castañeda, Julian Erosa v Nate Landwehr, Shana Dobson v Casey O’Neal, Ayeman Zahabi v Draco Rodriguez, Serge Spivak v Jared Vanderaa…
Follow the entire card on ESPN+.
It was only a small step, as ESPN’s No. 9 ranked women’s bantamweight class narrowly defeated No. 7 ranked Ketlen Vieira. But while Kunitskaya posted one of the least dominant wins of the night, she showed an extra dimension to her game that will give the other 135-pound fighters something to think about.
Kunitskaya, who has trained in Taekwondo and Muay Thai, has always been at the forefront of standing combat. But Vieira, a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, is having none of it. She led the fight early on on the ground and kept that up for most of the first round. But despite all his efforts, Vieira could not apply.
At the beginning of the 2nd. The fight returned to the mat in the second round, but this time Kunitskaya was in the lead. The 31-year-old Russian stayed in place for most of the tour and did far more damage than Vieira. As the fight entered the closing stages, Vieira seemed to realize she needed to get the upper hand, which she did – until Kunitskaya changed position in the final 30 seconds, enough time to do her bloody damage to win the fight.
Kunitskaya held an impressive 47-7 lead in attack, 215-35 overall. Even more impressive: She took the most canvas photos during the battle. By doing so against one of the best grapples in the division – if not the best – Kunitskaya sent a message to all above her.
Marc Raimondi: Aspinall is the most willing heavyweight candidate on theteam.
Tom Aspinall has made it to the first round twice in his first two UFC fights against mediocre opponents. The UFC doesn’t really have demonstration fights, but Aspinall made Jake Collier and Alan Baudo look like what you call opponents in boxing – guys who have to beat their opponents. Andrei Arlovsky, however, is not a pre-fight. He may not be among the elite anymore, but the former UFC champion is a solid goalie ready to stop the jump to the upper echelon of the heavyweight division.
Aspinall showed on Saturday that he is no mediator. He’s legit, he’s the smartest heavyweight on the UFC list, in fact. No disrespect to Chris Daukaus, who arrested Alex Oliynyk with his fist on Saturday. Daucaus is 31, Aspinall only 27, a relatively heavyweight babyface where the best opponents are probably older. Aspinall’s quick hands found Arlovski’s chin in the first round. Then, after a boxing storm, Aspinall took down Arlovski and choked him. So far, Arlovski has only been presented once in his career, and that was by Josh Barnett, one of the best heavyweight fighters of all time.
The UFC seems to have something in Aspinall and this could be a boon for promotion in the UK. Imagine Aspinall in a big fight on the card led by teammate Darren Till in their hometown of Liverpool? That would be great. And after this win over Arlovski, there are only big fights ahead for Scouser.
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