We have Sports!!! Live Sports are back on PPV this evening as Dana White brings the UFC back to everyone’s television screens tonight. The fights will take place from the Vyster Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, FL in front of…..NOBODY. The prelims will start at 8pm on ESPN, and the main card can be seen on PPV at 10 pm est.
The latest news from Jacksonville is the cancellation of the Souza vs. Hall fight. Souza tested positive for the coronavirus. He contracted the virus from a family member, and is obviously unable to fight tonight. The UFC are taking the proper precautions ahead of the Event. Some of things being implemented are announcers sitting at separate tables, and all workers wearing the proper PPE equipment. Also, there will not be post fight interviews in the octagon. Instead, there’s a satellite station set up cage side where they’ll have a sanitized headset ready for the fighter to participate in an interview.
Interim Lightweight Title
“El Cucoy” Tony Ferguson vs. “The Highlight” Justin Gaethje
Justin Gaethje steps in for Khabib Nurmagomedov to fight Tony Ferguson for the interim title. Khabib was unable to travel to the states due to the ongoing pandemic across our nation. Both fighters are coming off TKO victories vs. Donald Cerrone. Although Ferguson and Gaethje are both former All-American wrestlers, we can expect a bloodbath on their feet. Dana White chimed in his thoughts on the main event this evening “Ferguson vs. Gaethje will be one of the most violent fights you’ll ever see, I can guarantee you that”. All I can say is that it sure has the potential to be electric!
Ferguson Tale of the Tape Gaethje
26-3 Record 21-2
USA Country USA
5’11 Height 5’11
155 Weight 155
76.5 Reach 70
Prediction: Tony Ferguson via KO 3rd Round
“The Messenger” Henry Cejudo vs. “The Dominator” Dominick Cruz
The co-main event of the evening is for the Bantamweight title. Cejudo is entering this bout on a five fight win streak dating back to 2016. Dominick Cruz steps back in the octagon after a 4 year hiatus from the sport. Cruz has battled injuries throughout his career, but seems poised to enter the octagon tonight and shock the world. Cejudo is riding the wave of confidence after capturing titles in multiple weight classes. He’s one of only 4 fighters to accomplish this feat. If Cruz shakes off the rust, this could be an incredible fight!
Cejudo Tale of the Tape Cruz
15-2 Record 18-1
USA Country USA
5’4 Height 5’8
135 Weight 135
64 Reach 68
Prediction: Dominick Cruz via unanimous decision
“The Predator” Francis Ngannou vs. “Bigi Boy” Jairzinho Rozenstruik
Jairzinho Rozenstruik will carry an unblemished record into UFC 249 vs. Francis Ngannou. This one has the makings of an explosive fight ending in a brutal knockout. Let’s hope so! Ngannou is thriving after 3 consecutive victories in dominant fashion over Curtis Blaydes, Junior Dos Santos, and Cain Velasquez. Rozenstruik holds the second fastest knockout in UFC heavyweight history with a 9 second knockout on Allen Crowder. The hands better be flying in this one, and hope one connects early. No reservations from each fighter. Just throw down!
Ngannou Tale of the Tape Rozenstruik
13-3 Record 10-0
Cameroon Country Suriname
6’4 Height 6’4
250 Weight 242
83 Reach 78
Prediction: Francis Ngannou via TKO 2nd round
“Lil Heathen” Jeremy Stephens vs. Calvin Kattar
If you want an exciting fight with a potential knockout, then I would suggest not missing this one. Jeremy Stephens and Calvin Kattar aren’t the submitting type, and will trade blows on their feet until someone goes to sleep on their feet. Kattar is riding a 3 fight KO/TKO streak. Stephens has struggled recently as he’s winless in his last 4 contests. Kattar is the strong favorite here, and expect his heavy hands to be raided in victory.
Sidenote: Stephens missed weight, but the fight will go on. 30% of Stephen’s purse will go into Kattar’s pocket.
Stephens Tale of the Tape Kattar
28-17-0 (1NC) Record 20-4-0
USA Country USA
5’8 Height 5’11
150.5 Weight 145
71 Reach 72
Prediction: Calvin Kattar via KO 1st round
“Prince of War” Greg Hardy vs. “The Mad Titan” Yorgan De Castro
Greg Hardy, the former Dallas Cowboy, enters the octagon seeking to get back in the win column at UFC 249. Hardy is seeking to re enter the win column after a decision loss to Alexander Volkov back in November. De Castro won his UFC debut over Justin Tafa in October. The common theme with tonight’s fights: It’s gonna be a brawl! No change here in this fight. These guys will stand up with each other, trade shots, and hope they avoid getting knocked out.
Hardy Tale of the Tape De Castro
5-1-0 (1NC) Record 5-0-0
USA Country Cape Verde
6’5 Height 6’1
265 Weight 250
80 Reach 74
Prediction: Greg Hardy via KO 2nd round
Preliminary Bouts (8 PM, ESPN)
Welterweight: Anthony Pettis vs. Donald Cerrone
Heavyweight: Aleksei Oleinik vs. Fabricio Werdum
Women’s Strawweight: Carla Esparza vs. Michelle Waterson
Welterweight: Vicente Luque vs. Niko Price
Donald Cerrone via KO 3rd round.