The time UFC fans around the world have been waiting for! Less than 48 hours until UFC 205.
The Octagon travels to New York City for the first time at Madison Square Garden hosts the already historic event on November 12!
Does anyone think Eddie Alvarez can be the latest underdog in a year full of upsets to retain his lightweight belt against Conor McGregor?
Alvarez will be badly badly hurt and it will be over for him. He will not fight again and not look the same after the fight according to Conor McGregor. He has been through hell a lot of wars. He’s been dropped continuously.
He’s right. I do think it’s a game, and I know it’s a game. I think he’s right in his assessment. The guys he’s picked to fight, these are subpar guys. Even Nate is a .500 lightweight and everybody in the lightweight division has beat Nate and he had trouble doing that. So the guys he’s faced are nothing, nothing of a caliber fighter I am. And he will see the night of the fight that, ‘S***, I’ve been going up against s****y opponents that were good style matchups and this one’s not and I’m f****d. Because he’s stronger, way stronger, just as fast and he’s got skill sets that can dominate me any day of the week.’ That’s what the reality he’s going to deal with. He’s trying to convince himself that he can do something he knows he can’t. And the night of the fight, we’ll see. And I would love –
– Eddie Alvarez answered.
Welterweight champion Tyron Woodley will defend his belt against Stephen Thompson in the co-main event. Woodley is looking to knock his opponent out to put on the performance of the night. Woodley is known to come out aggressively during his fights. He has proved against Robbie Lawler that he has the one-punch knockout power.
Well, he does. He’s definitely got some one-hitter quitter power, as you saw when he fought Robbie Lawler. I mean, it took one shot. Obviously I want to stay away from that right hand. But, he’s not only a good striker, he’s always a good wrestler, so when I go out there I definitely have to be on my P’s and Q’s, because not only could he hit you with the right hand, but he’ll take you down as well. Keeping my footwork, always moving, making it difficult for him to beat on my legs, and just trying to hit and move. That’s the only thing I can do, try and Muhammad Ali him. He is the champion for a reason, so I’m taking that into perspective and always being aware when I’m out there.
-,Stephen Thompson on how he plan to approach their fight.
The toughest woman at straweight Joanna Jedrzejczyk returns to the octagon this weekend to defend her title and have a rematch with Karolina Kowalkiewicz.
Definitely she is going to be different fighter than she was four years ago. It’s a big deal for her. It’s a big fight for both of us. For me, because I want to defend my title for fourth time already, but she’s a challenger. She has nothing to lose. I must put on great fight. I put on a great performance this camp, but I must put on good fight and everything is going to be fine.
– Joanna Jedrzejczyk about the changes or if Karolina evolved in the years, since then coming into this fight.
Everybody wants to know about Chris Weidman and New York, and rightfully so, as the Long Islander played a pivotal role in getting MMA sanctioned in his home state earlier this year. But what about Yoel Romero, the guy Weidman is fighting on November 12? The Olympic Silver medalist from Cuba has been nearly forgotten in the lead-up to the fight, but he has the power to spoil this homecoming with one swing, and luckily, “The All-American” knows it. So despite all the media obligations, Weidman has been putting in the hours in the gym and he expects to be more than ready for the real reason he’s heading into Midtown on Saturday night.
Donald Cerrone has been a revelation at welterweight, with three wins, three finishes and three bonuses since moving from the lightweight division in February. And while “Cowboy” still talks of going back to 155, if he beats Kelvin Gastelum this weekend, you have to put him in the title picture. Of course, that’s easier said than done, and with Gastelum coming off the best win of his career over Johny Hendricks in July, and him being the bigger and stronger welterweight, it just might be the former Ultimate Fighter winner walking away with the win, the bonus, and a spot in the title race. On November 11 however Kelvin Gastelum announced that he didn’t make the weight limit. He apologized to Cowboy Cerrone that their match was pulled from the card.
Before Raquel Pennington and Miesha Tate even step into the Octagon on Saturday, you have to tip your cap to these two ladies, who have probably fought the highest level of competition of anyone in WMMA. That means this one is likely going to be a grueling three-round war, because neither fighter knows how to give ground to an opponent. Sure, they’ve had their losses, but they’ve only come against the best in the business, making this a solid opener to the Pay-Per-View main card.
Frankie Edgar and Jeremy Stephens could wind up being a Gatti-Ward type fight for MMA. Think about it – two old school, hard-nosed fighters who always show to do just that – fight. It may not be pretty in a conventional sense, but I think after 15 minutes of action, we’ll call it a beautiful masterpiece.
Despite his background on the mat, Michael Johnson told me he’s not getting into a wrestling match with Khabib Nurmagomedov. Good call, and a smart one, because if “The Menace” can keep his unbeaten foe at bay and stick and move his way out of trouble, it will be another statement-making victory for a young man who will have gone from back-to-back losses to Beniel Dariush and Nate Diaz to the doorstep of a world title shot.
Chicago’s Belal Muhammad has quickly become a must-see in the Octagon, and the fact that this is his third fight in the UFC since July (and fourth overall for 2016) just adds to his appeal. And then there’s Vicente Luque, who has also emerged as one of the welterweight division’s top prospects as well thanks to three consecutive wins – and finishes. This will be an exciting fight, but more importantly, a star will likely emerge from the bout.
In July, Jim Miller was contemplating retirement. Now he’s got a two-fight winning streak and could crash the lightweight top 15 again if he can defeat Thiago Alves. Brazil’s “Pitbull” never thought about walking away after a series of injuries, but now he’s entering a new division against one of that division’s most aggressive competitors. Miller will find out quick is Alves is ready for 155 pounds.
With his back against the wall earlier this year, Tim Boetsch delivered, snapping a three-fight losing skid with a stoppage of Josh Samman. In that fight, “The Barbarian” realized that living up to his nickname in the Octagon may be the best course of action from here on out. And he can repeat that kind of performance against Rafael Natal, but he’ll also have to look out for the kind of slick jiu-jitsu “Sapo” can deliver after the slightest of mistakes from an opponent.
New Jersey’s Katlyn Chookagian impressed in her UFC debut, decisioning Lauren Murphy with a striking attack that had all the hallmarks of her coach Mark Henry in it. If she can maintain that attack against former world title challenger Liz Carmouche, she may just end up in the top 10 next week. But Carmouche is no easy out for anyone, and her swarming style will be a tough one for the local favorite to deal with for 15 minutes.
Below is the full fight card, bout order and broadcast details:
MAIN CARD: (Pay-per-view, 10 p.m. ET)
Lightweight champ Eddie Alvarez vs. featherweight champ Conor McGregor – for lightweight title
Champ Tyron Woodley vs. Stephen Thompson – for welterweight title
Champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz – for strawweight title
Yoel Romero vs. Chris Weidman
Donald Cerrone vs. Kelvin Gastelum
Raquel Pennington vs. Miesha Tate
PRELIMINARY CARD: (FS1, 8 p.m. ET)
Frankie Edgar vs. Jeremy Stephens
Michael Johnson vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov
Rashad Evans vs. Tim Kennedy
Vicente Luque vs. Belal Muhammad
PRELIMINARY CARD: (UFC Fight Pass, 6:30 p.m. ET)
Thiago Alves vs. Jim Miller
Tim Boetsch vs. Rafael Natal
Liz Carmouche vs. Katlyn Chookagian