Fight fans around the world have enjoyed one hell of a ride over 2016, we’ve seen; the successful return of Brock Lesnar, the not so successful debut of CM Punk, what has felt like a never-ending slew of controversies, and some of the most remarkable fights in UFC history. The last fortnight has been no exception to this, and the thrill-a-minute ride has not slowed down, and here at Made4Fighters. we’re going to look back at the biggest stories in MMA from the last 14 days.
Ronda Rousey set for UFC 207 comeback
Dana White promised a monumental announcement over the weekend, and he most definitely delivered on that promise - confirming that Ronda Rousey would make her return to the Octagon on December 30th to face off against Amanda Nunes for the UFC Bantamweight title. Rousey has been a high-profile absentee from the Ultimate Fighting Championship; and her return against Nunes at UFC 207 will mark her first fight since her shocking defeat to Holly Holm in November 2015.
Questions will undoubtedly be asked regarding Rousey, and whether or not she’s able to once again catch fire in the same way which catapulted her to becoming one of the elite in the world of sports, transcending the world of combat sports to establishing herself as a pop-culture icon. Dana tweeted that Rousey is “100 percent ready”, and itching to make a comeback from her time away from the Octagon.
It looks like a potential Cyborg Vs. Rousey fight will have to wait; but if Rousey is able to vanquish Nunes and reclaim her status as the most popular fighter in Women’s MMA; a clash against Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino will likely headline a show in the not so distant future.
UFC 204 - Bisping retains; Dan Henderson retires on a high
Coming so soon after McGregor and Diaz went the distance in their main event bout at UFC 202, we all got to enjoy another classic at UFC 204; as 46-year old Dan Henderson lasted five rounds against defending UFC Middleweight Champion, Michael Bisping. BIsping has enjoyed a relatively late, and extremely well-timed run of form as of late; and has somewhat hushed naysayers who were quick to assert that ‘The Count’ didn’t have what it takes to fight in the UFC, after he was knocked out cleanly in the first round of his 2014 bout against Luke Rockhold.
Since that fight, BIsping had bested C.B. Dollaway, Thales Leites, Anderson Silva, and Luke Rockhold - in a rematch of their 2014 clash. Critics of the outspoken Brit will be quick to cite the controversy that surrounded his victory against Silva; after being saved by by bell following a knockout shot from ‘The Spider’. He can now add a successful hometown title defense to his career resurgence.
Despite sporting a mangled face, Bisping did just enough in the judge’s eyes to be awarded the fight via unanimous decision to retain his crown in front of an adoring Manchester crowd. It also has to be admired that the knowledgeable crowd did offer a standing ovation to the retiring Henderson, who has so far reiterated that he will stand by his word that UFC 204 would be his last ever appearance in the competitive arena.
Elsewhere, Gegard Mousasi backed up his own fighting words, finally getting the opportunity to face off against Vitor Belfort after what feels like an eternity of call outs. Belfort definitely isn’t the fighter he used to be, but still packs the raw power to rock any opponent with his patented left; however the ‘Dreamcatcher’ was able to negate pretty much all of what Belfort could muster - finishing things as early as round 2 following a lightning fast takedown and a barrel of Mousasi strikes from the mount.
UFC 205 Main Card Announced
With UFC 204 in the rearview, and Ronda’s UFC 207 return a couple of months away; we’re well and truly focused on UFC 205 - which has without doubt one of the most stacked main cards in UFC history. The show itself is expected to smash all currently held box office records, with McGregor predicting that the card he’s set to headline will exceed 2 million buys. We’ve listed the UFC 205 main card below for you to look over:
UFC Lightweight Championship - Eddie Alvarez (28-4) Vs. Conor McGregor (20-3)
UFC Welterweight Championship Tyron Woodley (16-3) Vs. Stephen Thompson (13-1)
UFC Strawweight Championship Joanna Jedrzejczyk (12-0) Vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz (10-0)
Donald Cerrone (31-7, 1 NC) Vs. Kelvin Gastelum (12-2)
Chris Weidman (13-1) Vs. Yoel Romero (12-1)
Miesha Tate (18-6) Vs. Raquel Pennington (8-5)
Has 2016 been the most interesting year in UFC history? What are you looking forward to most from the remaining UFC events in 2016? As always, let us know by getting in touch with us