UFC 246 Recap and Future Predictions

AP Photo/John Locher

UFC 246 is over, which means the first fight week of 2020 has come to an end. Whether you were getting drunk off of Proper Twelve or drinking your sorrows with a 12 back of Budweiser, the first event of the new decade had a rocky start, with the Gadelha vs. Grasso fight falling through. However, it recovered and ended with a bang. With 19,040 in attendance and with a gate total of 11 million, it blew the last PPV by a staggering 3,000 plus attendance count and a massive 5 million gate total difference.

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Ferreira Submits Showtime

The Brazilian fighter submitted the former lightweight champion Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis within the 2nd round with a neck crank to extend his streak to a 6 fight win streak. By defeating the 11th ranked Pettis, this will most likely put him in a top 15 spot or close to a top 15. So, what’s next?

When looking at the UFC rankings, I, personally, would not be against the idea of Al Iaquinta, who’s currently placed at #9 and has a record of 14-6-1, as an opponent. Granted, Iaquinta is currently on a 2 fight losing streak, with his last fight being a decision loss against Dan Hooker last October in Melbourne, Australia but this could be an interesting bout. Iaquinta’s mix of boxing and high-level Jiu-Jitsu would prove to be an interesting match-up.

As for Pettis, well, he’s on a two-fight skid and he looked strong at 170, so why not plan Pettis vs. Cowboy? It would give both fighters a chance to bounce back and it would be a classic, due to Pettis and Cowboy having a striking heavy fighting style.

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Kelleher Submits Newcomer Osbourne  

Brian Kelleher returned to the UFC octagon after an injury in 2019 kept him from completing all last year. His first fight back ended with Kelleher’s hand being raised due to a Guillotine choke against newcomer Obe Osbourne, who was making his UFC debut after his win during the 2019 Dana White’s Contender Series. Now that Kelleher is back, who is next for the 30 fight veteran?

Considering Kelleher is currently ranked at the 24th spot in the UFC bantamweight rankings, Eddie Wineland is a good choice. Wineland is also a veteran with 38 fights under his name and currently sits at #20. Wineland also has strong takedown defense which could prove challenging, as Kelleher is known for his submission game, with most of his wins in the UFC coming from submissions. Obe Osbourne is not a lost cause though, he is a newcomer and he did lose his debut but it’s not the end of the world for him. He can bounce back against another unranked fighter such as Iuri Alcantara.

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The Boa Constrictor Submits Greene 

The 42-year-old Aleksi Oleinik submitted Maurice Greene within 2 minutes of the 2nd round with an armbar, after almost submitting him within the first due to a scarf choke. However, Greene held his ground to survive the round, the Heavyweight division needs some movement.

The fighters currently not fighting are Blagoi Ivanov, Augusto Sakai, Shamil Abdurakhimov and Sergey Pavlovich. Ivanov’s last fight was against Derrick Lewis, which ended in a Decision loss. Sakai last fought and knocked out Marcin Tybura. Abdurakhimov fought Curtis Blaydes and lost via TKO and Pavlovich also fought Greene and won via TKO. There are choices but one sticks out the most, Fabricio Werdum. Currently, Werdum is suspended until May of this year, and Werdum has even gone on Twitter to congratulate and call out Oleinik, saying that Werdum has better jiu-jitsu. As for Greene, he is currently 3-2 in his UFC tenure, so a win is urgent. Ben Rothwell is someone I personally would like to see him fight, Rothwell last fought Stephen Struve, which he won via TKO.

AP Photo/John Locher

Holm Edges Out a Decision Win Over Pennington  

Holly Holm is back in the winner’s circle after last night’s victory over Raquel Pennington, solidifying the first victory she had over Pennington back in 2015. Holm recently has fought for the title shot and lost last July, she has some leeway on who she can fight.

Aspen Ladd sits under her at the #5 spot who recently has a TKO win over Yana Kunitskaya. She could fight #6 Irene Aldana, who beat the undefeated Ketlen Vieira via TKO. As for Raquel Pennington, I would like to see her fight against Marion Reneau or Julianna Pena. Pena’s last fight ended with a decision win over Nicco Montano, and Reneau’s mix of boxing and jiu-jitsu could prove to be interesting and entertaining. 

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AP Photo/John Locher

McGregor Rocks Cowboy and Shocks the MMA World 

The Notorious One is back and he proved he was back to his old self by dismantling Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone in 40 seconds. With the mixture of shoulder strikes, a flying knee, a crisp left high kick and ground and pound to finish the fight. (I personally thought Cowboy would win due to his height but that was not an issue for McGregor whatsoever). So now that Conor is back and Red Panties night is over, what’s next for the Irish King?

The majority of fans want Jorge Masvidal vs. Conor McGregor and it’s a good fight to make but Masvidal is not the only one on the list. Nate Diaz, Justin Gaethje, and even Paul Felder werecalled out by McGregor. He definitely has options and given that he is Conor McGregor, he can have basically anyone he wants. Cowboy will continue being Cowboy which means he will continue to fight as said so in his post-fight interview last night, but as mentioned prior, I want to see Cowboy fight Pettis at 170. 

Next week, the UFC will be in Raleigh, North Carolina for some heavyweight action with UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. dos Santos.

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