Despite a freak foot injury ruining one of the potentially biggest main events in UFC history, UFC 196 moves on this weekend with a card worthy of your time. The event will be headlined by a welterweight division fight as current featherweight champion Conor McGregor faces Nate Diaz. Also, Holly Holm defends the women’s bantamweight title against Miesha Tate and two crucial light heavyweight bouts are on the card.
UFC Welterweight Division Fight
“The Notorious” Conor McGregor (19-2-0) vs. Nate Diaz (18-10-0)
McGregor is the current UFC Featherweight Champion an dthis fight will be his UFC Welterweight Division debut. Diaz is currently winless as a welterweight in the UFC and he is coming off of an eight fight run in the lightweight division. McGregor’s last fight saw him end the near decade undefeated streak of former featherweight champion Jose Aldo, who he defeated in less than fifteen seconds. Diaz has only won just one fight in the last two-plus years, that win came over Michael Johnson at UFC On Fox 17. Diaz has all the skills to beat McGregor, but his striking is to much of a routine based system, McGregor catches Diaz late in the first with strikes to notch the win.
UFC Women’s Bantamweight Title Fight
“The Preachers Daughter” Holly Holm (10-0-0) (Champion) vs. Miesha “Cupcake” Tate (17-5-0)
Holm will be making the first defense of her championship, which she won by defeating Ronda Rousey at UFC 193. Tate will enter the fight riding a four fight winning streak, last defeating Jessica Eye by decision at UFC On Fox 16. Holm was also the women’s bantamweight champion in Legacy Fighting Championships, she defeated Juliana Werner to win that title. Tate will be challenging for this belt for the third time, she lost her last two shots to then champion Ronda Rousey. Tate’s best shot to get the gold is to get Holm to the ground, she will eat a plethora of shots on route to doing that and squeaking out a close decision to win the gold.
UFC Light Heavyweight Division Fight
Ilir “The Sledgehammer” Latifi (11-4-0-1NC) vs. Gian Villante (14-6-0)
Latifi has won four of his last five fights under the UFC banner, most notably defeating Sean O’Connell at UFC Fight Night: Dillashaw vs. Cruz. Villante has won three of his last four in the UFC, including defeating Anthony Perosh in the fighters final bout before retirement. Villante’s striking has gotten better with each bout, but Latifi is on another level and he clobbers Villante with strikes to get a first round stoppage.
UFC Light Heavyweight Division Fight
Corey “Beastin’ 25/8” Anderson (7-1-0) vs. “Filthy” Tom Lawlor (10-5-0-1NC)
Anderson has won four of five fights under the UFC banner and he is a former Xtreme Fighting League Light Heavyweight Champion. Lawlor has been undefeated since joining the light heavyweight division, having defeated Gian Villante at UFC On Fox 16. This fight should be contested on the feet for as long as it does last, but Anderson’s striking is better and he finishes Lawlor with strikes in the third.
UFC Women’s Bantamweight Division Fight
Amanda “Lioness” Nunes (11-4-0) vs. Valentina “Bullet” Shevchenko (12-1-0)
Nunes has won four of five since coming to the UFC, last defaeting Sara McMann by submission at UFC Fight Night: Teixeira vs. St. Preux. Shevchenko is currently undefeated in UFC competition, having defeated Sarah Kaufman at UFC On Fox 17. Shevchenko looked amazing in her short notice UFC debut, she weathers the early storm from Nunes and finishes her with strikes in the third.
Siyar Bahadurzada over Brandon Thatch
Erick Silva over Nordine Taleb
Vitor Miranda over Marcelo Guimaraes
Darren Elkins over Chas Skelly
Diego Sanchez over Jim Miller
Jason Saggo over Justin Salas
Julian Erosa over Teruto Ishihara
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