- Blaydes vs Volkov is one of the best heavyweight match-ups possible.
Saturday night’s main event sees two of the very best heavyweights the world has to offer going toe-to-toe. In a heavyweight division that has long been waiting around due to ongoing trilogy between Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic and with Francis Ngannou always lurking just behind both of them, this fight is incredibley important. To avoid the division getting blocked up, top guys need to fight top guys and both these men have been fingertips away from becoming the next in line. The only way to push themselves to the front of the cue, a hard task considering Ngannou’s record, is to beat the other top guys in the division.
With this fight you’ve got the classic grappler vs striker dynamic of will Volkov be able to keep it on the feet or will Blaydes take him down. The reason this match-up is so great is because Curtis Blaydes has taken everyone down not named Francis Ngannou and beat them up on the ground whilst Volkov has picked all of his opponents apart on the feet aside from being caught by Derrick Lewis right at the end of the fight. These men are the best in the division at what they do, proven by the fact they’ve both only lost to one other heavyweight in the UFC. Emphasis on the fact this is a great match-up and that doesn’t mean it’ll be a great fight.
2. Emmett vs Burgos is a brilliant fight plain and simple.
Top ten featherweights Josh Emmett and Shane Burgos meet in the co-main event in a fight that is most fight fans one to watch this weekend. Josh Emmett’s last four fights have all ended via KO or TKO. Since knocking out Ricardo Llamas with one punch in 30 seconds at the end of 2017, Emmett has only fought three times. After losing his follow-up main event to Jeremy Stephens, Emmett has put together back to back finishes over Mirsad Bektic and a knockout of the year contender against Michael Johnson.
With a record of 13-1 with six UFC wins and his only loss being to Calvin Kattar, Shane Burgos, similar to Emmett has been one of the very best value for money featherweights over the last few years. Currently on a 3-fight win streak with wins including a split decision of Cub Swanson and A finish of Makwan Amirkhani, both these men have serious momentum and a win here will send either into a main event shot at another top featherweight.
3. Belal Muhammad vs Lyman Good is great matchmaking.
Both these men have the talent and skill no question about it. When you look at the name’s both men have lost to, it’s clear to see that they only lose to guys who are going to the top. Muhammad has a record of 16-3 with his losses coming to Geoff Neal, Vincente Luque and Alan Jouban. Lyman Good who was the inaugural Bellator lightweight champion, has only lost to Demian Maia and Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos and the likes of Ben Askren and Andrey Koreshkov in Bellator. This is a real test as both men seem to be at the same level, who will be able to push past that gatekeeper stage.
4. A chance for Roosevelt Roberts to really hit a stride in his forward momentum.
Since coming in to the UFC at the end of 2018, Roosevelt Roberts has gathered some serious momentum. Despite losing his third UFC bout to Vinc Pichel, Roberts quickly got back on the right path with back-to-back wins over Alexander Yakovlev and Brok Weaver with the submission against Weaver taking place on the 30th May. In this quick turnaround, Roberts gets the chance to really make a statement against one of the very best tests out there for up and coming guys in Jim Miller. Constantly in competition with Donald Cerrone for most UFC fights, Miller will edge in front of Cerrone with this fight at 34. If there are any questions still unanswered as to whether Roberts can go far in this division, we will find out this weekend.
5. A brawl waiting to happen and Torres’ last chance.
Two prelim fights stand out with the first being the featured bout between Clay Guida and Bobby Green. What else is there to say about this one aside from it feels like it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a brawl. Secondly, ranked strawweight Tecia Torres has lost four back-to-back fights against some of the very best in the division. She now faces Brianna Van Buren, the 26-year old, who has looked impressive since winning the Invicta strawweight title and being successful in her UFC debut. What could be Tecia Torres’ last shot at staying in the UFC also looks like a chance for Brianna Van Buren to make a huge statement by beating the 11th ranked woman in her division in only her second Octagon appearance.