Hello, fight fans, and welcome to this week’s edition of the Monday MMA Round-Up, where we look back at the week that was and look ahead to the week that is in the world of mixed martial arts. Let’s dive right into what is going on in the MMA world.
Looking back at UFC on ESPN+ 47
- Jairzinho Rozenstruik’s first-round knockout of Augusto Sakai in the main event of Saturday’s UFC on ESPN+ 47 in Las Vegas showed he’s still a considerable threat in the heavyweight division. I don’t know that he’ll ever fight for the title, as he falters right when he’s in that mix, but he’s still a dangerous fighter who can finish opponents with one punch. It will be interesting to see who he gets matched up against next.
- Marcin Tybura has quietly put together an impressive five-fight win streak after scoring a great comeback win over Walt Harris on Saturday. Harris had Tybura in tons of trouble right away when the fight started, but unfortunately for Harris, it looked like he punched himself out trying to get the finish, and Tybura weathered the storm and was able to get Harris down and finish him. Tybura said post-fight that he didn’t feel he was ready to be in the title picture, but that he’s close. He should definitely get a more high-profile fight next, maybe even a main event slot on an ESPN+ card.
- If you missed Saturday’s UFC show, you need to go back and watch the fight between Santiago Ponzinibbio and Miguel Baeza. It was an extremely entertaining fight, and it has a good shot to end up being the “Fight Of The Year”. It was that incredible, and an incredible showing for Ponzinibbio in coming back to win after losing the first round.
- The rest of the show was decent. There were some good fights, and some boring fights. I would like to point out two great performances from Montana De La Rosa and Manon Fiorot, who both got stoppage wins. Fiorot especially was impressive and looks like a fighter who could be a threat down the line in the women’s flyweight division.
- It could be announced as soon as this week, but there are more-and-more signs that UFC 265 on August 7 will be in Houston, with UFC Heavyweight Champion Francis Ngannou defending against Derrick Lewis in the main event.
- UFC’s planned London show has been pushed back from August 14 to September 4, with the main event bout between Darren Till and Derek Brunson, as well as a couple other fights, also pushed back to that date. There just wasn’t enough time to settle on the necessary logistics handled for 8/14, but they’ll have it worked out to run 9/4. The interesting thing is that 9/4 was also the scheduled date for UFC 266, but that is going to be changed, with September 18 likely being the new date for UFC 266.
- Some UFC main events were switched around this past week, with the biggest change being Kelvin Gastelum replacing Paulo Costa against Jared Cannonier in the main event of the 8/21 UFC event. Costa claimed he never signed the contract for the fight and was talking on social media about wanting to be paid more, specifically talking about how much money the Paul brothers are making for boxing. Look, Costa isn’t even a tenth of a star that the Paul brothers are, plus the pay scale is way different in MMA, so he can’t expect to be making anywhere near what they’re making, even though we all know MMA fighters should be paid more. If he’s going to get in a contract dispute with UFC, we all know how that tends to end. Also, the 7/31 show will be headlined by a middleweight bout between Uriah Hall and Sean Strickland, which moves up from the 8/7 card.
- Kevin Holland is taking up Daniel Cormier’s offer and has arrived at AKA in San Jose to specifically train wrestling under the tutelage of Cormier.
- Renan Ferreira is upset with the PFL, stating that he was supposed to get a rematch with Fabricio Werdum after their first fight was changed to a no contest after a controversial finish. However, when the PFL announced the match-ups for the next round of heavyweight fights, Ferreira was booked to fight Ali Isaev, while Werdum was booked to fight Brandon Sayles. Ferreira called the matchmaking “very shady,” and that he wants the fight with Werdum as soon as possible. For what it’s worth, Werdum ended up pulling out of the fight with Sayles.
- Congratulations to Henry Cejudo, who announced his engagement to his girlfriend, Ana Karolina, while also announcing they were expecting their first child, a baby girl, in the fall.
- Happy trails to Tito Ortiz, who resigned from his position on the Huntington Beach City Council, saying that the job wasn’t working from him, that he was tired of being under scrutiny constantly, that he was constantly a target of biased media, and that he and his family were constantly being threatened. Thank you Tito, for all of the memories of your time on the city council, such as suggesting having an Easter egg hunt on Thanksgiving in April, and threatening businesses for not letting you into their establishments because you refused to wear a mask during a pandemic.
Here are some fights I would make next for those who fought at UFC On ESPN+ 47 on Saturday:
- Jairzinho Rozenstruik vs. Curtis Blaydes
- Marcin Tybura vs. Shamil Abdurakhimov-Chris Daukaus winner
- Augusto Sakai vs. Walt Harris
- Santiago Ponzinibbio vs. Demian Maia-Belal Muhammad winner
- Montana De La Rosa vs. Roxanne Modafferi
- Ilir Latifi vs. Carlos Felipe-Jake Collier winner
- Muslim Salikhov vs. Carlos Condit-Max Griffin winner
- Manon Fiorot vs. Luana Carolina
Here are some fights that were announced over the past week:
- Kayla Harrison vs. Cindy Dandois — PFL 6 — June 25 (MAIN EVENT)
- Carlos Condit vs. Max Griffin — UFC 264 — July 10
- Uriah Hall vs. Sean Strickland — UFC Fight Night — July 31 (MAIN EVENT)
- Jared Cannonier vs. Kelvin Gastelum — UFC Fight Night — August 21 (MAIN EVENT)
- Bea Malecki vs. Josiane Nunes — UFC Fight Night — August 21
- Mana Martinez vs. Jesse Strader — UFC Fight Night — August 21
- Dustin Jacoby vs. Askar Mozharov — UFC Fight Night — August 28
- Darren Till vs. Derek Brunson — UFC Fight Night — September 4 (MAIN EVENT)
- Anthony Smith vs. Ryan Spann — UFC 266 — September 18
- Montel Jackson vs. Batgerel Danaa — UFC 266 — September 18
Here are some of the major MMA events coming up this week:
- UFC 263 is the big event taking place this week, on Saturday, June 12, from the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. The main card airs on ESPN+ pay-per-view at 10:00 p.m. ET, with prelims airing on ESPN at 8:00 p.m. ET and early prelims airing on ESPN+ at 6:00 p.m. ET. UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya defends against Marvin Vettori in the main event. The card also features UFC Flyweight Champion Deiveson Figueiredo defending against Brandon Moreno, and a non-title, non-main event five-round bout between Leon Edwards and Nate Diaz.
- PFL 2021 #4 takes place on Thursday, June 10, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The main card airs on ESPN2 at 10 PM eastern time, and prelims air on ESPN+ at 6:30 p.m. ET. Claressa Shields makes her MMA debut against Brittany Elkin in the main event, while Anthony Pettis vs. Alex Martinez is the co-main event. Other fights on the card include Bubba Jenkins vs. Bobby Moffett and Brendan Loughnane vs. Tyler Diamond.
- Invicta on AXS TV 2 is on Friday, June 11, airing at 7:00 p.m ET on AXS TV.
- Bellator 260 takes place on Friday, June 11, from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. The main card airs on Showtime at 9 PM eastern time, while prelims will air on YouTube at around 5:00 p.m ET. Bellator Welterweight Champion Douglas Lima defends against Yaroslav Amavov in the main event. Paul Daley vs. Jason Jackson and Aaron Pico vs. Aiden Lee are also on the card.
- RIZIN 28 airs Sunday, June 13, airing at 1:30 a.m. ET on pay-per-view.
This week in MMA history
On June 13, 2009, UFC held their first-ever event in Germany, which was also the first-ever UFC event on mainland Europe, as UFC 99 took place at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Germany. The event was an overall success, drawing 12,854 fans for a gate of $1.3 million. It was also a success on pay-per-view, at a time when UFC was drawing extremely well on PPV, earning 360,000 buys.
In the main event, Rich Franklin scored a unanimous decision win over Wanderlei Silva in the “Fight of the Night”. In the co-main event, future UFC Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez scored a unanimous decision win over Cheick Kongo. The rest of the main card saw Mirko Cro Cop finish Mostapha Al-Turk in the first round, Mike Swick scoring a second-round TKO over Ben Saunders, Spencer Fisher winning a decision over Caol Uno, and Dan Hardy taking a split decision over Marcus Davis.
Among the winners on the prelims were Terry Etim, John Hathaway, Paul Taylor, Paul Kelly, Dennis Siver, and, in one of the bloodiest fights in UFC history, Stefan Struve, covered in blood, submitted Denis Stojnic in the second round.
You can watch UFC 99 on UFC Fight Pass here.
In The Clinch
This week on In The Clinch, myself and Paul Fontaine will look back at UFC On ESPN+ 47, look ahead to UFC 263, preview some big fights on PFL #4 and Bellator 260, talk all of the news and everything else. You can listen to In The Clinch on The Fight Game Media Network, with our Patreon page, found here.