An Action-Packed Card Takes Place In Detroit Saturday Night
The UFC is in Detroit, MI at the Little Ceasers Arena for UFC 218. The event is headlined by featherweight champion Max Holloway who is putting his belt on the line against former featherweight champ, José Aldo.
Holloway won the belt when he TKO’d Aldo at UFC 212 back in June. What makes that fight more impressive is Holloway (21-3) winning the fight in Brazil, Aldo’s (26-3) home country. The win gave Holloway an impressive winning streak of eleven straight victories.
Holloway’s last loss was a three-round decision to Conor McGregor back in August 2013. Since then, Holloway has been dominate, finishing eight of his eleven opponents. Holloway is currently #4 in the UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings.
Holloway is in his prime, but he is facing the most dominate fighter in featherweight history. Aldo defended the UFC featherweight belt seven times, (not including the two times he defended the WEC featherweight belt before the UFC bought out the WEC) before losing the belt to McGregor (21-3) at UFC 194 by getting knocked out in 13 seconds.
Aldo is taking the fight with Holloway on short notice and had to try multiple times to make the weight of 145 pounds. If Aldo is going to win this fight, he needs to try and finish Holloway early. Aldo usually comes out firing, but fades in the later rounds. Whereas Holloway sometimes starts slow and gets better as the fight goes on. Aldo is not going to be able to win the fight in a decision, with a difficult weight cut and on short notice.
Prediction: Holloway via 2nd round TKO
In the co-main event, up-and-coming heavyweight Francis Ngannou will take on legend Allistair Overeem. The winner of this fight could be in line to fight heavyweight title holder Stipe Miocic.
Ngannou (10-1) looks like he is the future of the heavyweight division. He has only been training for a few years, but has had a lot of success. In his last three fights, he has three knockouts, all within just two minutes of the opening round. The only dig on him is, he hasn’t faced top competition.
Ngannou did fight former heavyweight champ Andrei Arlovski (26-15), but that was Arlovski’s fourth straight loss. He is nowhere near the fighter he once was and Ngannou did was he was expected to do.
This will be the first big test of Ngannou’s career, who was suppose to fight former heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos (18-5), but he was forced to pull out due to an USADA violation. The fight on Saturday night is a good fight for Ngannou, with Overeem not being able to take a punch like he once did.
Overeem is looking for another shot at the heavyweight title. After losing three out of his last four fights from 2013-2014 and looking like his career was coming to an end, he won four straight to earn a title shot against Miocic (17-2). Overeem landed some good shots and nearly submitted the champ, but was knocked out 4:27 into the first round.
Since the loss, Overeem has won two straight fights. One was a vicious third round knock out against the heavy-handed Mark Hunt (13-11) and the last fight was a controversial split-decision win over former heavyweight champion, Fabricio Werdum (23-7).
This is would be a huge win for Ngannou, proving that he is among the elite in the heavyweight division. This is a tough fight to call, but it may be too much, too soon for Ngannou. However, don’t be surprised if Ngannou gets the KO.
Prediction: Overeem via UD