Three big MMA events are taking place this weekend, but capping everything off will be a loaded UFC On Fox 20 card. The event will be headlined by a huge women’s bantamweight division fight as former champion Holly Holm takes on Valentina Shevchenko. Also, Gilbert Melendez faces Edson Barboza and a key women’s strawweight division fight takes place.
UFC Women’s Bantamweight Division Fight
“The Preachers Daughter” Holly Holm (10-1-0) vs. Valentina “Bullet” Shevchenko (12-2-0)
Holm will be fighting for the first time since losing her bantamweight title to Miesha Tate at UFC 196. Shevchenko will be looking to rebound from her first loss under the UFC banner, which came to current bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes at UFC 196. Holm will go down as the first woman to ever defeat Ronda Rousey in MMA and she is also a former Legacy FC Women’s Bantamweight Champion. Prior to coming to the UFC in late 2015, Shevchenko had fought other top names like UFC veteran Liz Carmouche and Strikeforce veteran Jan Finney. Holm is the best striker in all of female MMA right now, but Shevchenko has shown the ability to ground good strikers, Shevchenko eats a few shots and ultimately grounds Holm on route to a decision win.
UFC Lightweight Division Fight
Edson Barboza (17-4-0) vs. Gilbert “El Nino” Melendez (22-5-0)
Barboza has rotated wins and losses in his last five UFC fights, with his last fight being a victory over Anthony Pettis at UFC 197. Melendez will be competing for the first time since being suspended for a failed drug test following UFC 188. Barboza has finished two fighters via leg kicks in the UFC, which is tied with Keith Jardine for the most finishes via leg kicks in the UFC. Melendez has not earned a victory now in nearly three years and he is a former Strikeforce Lightweight Champion. Melendez will want to turn this fight into a wild brawl for all three rounds, but Barboza slows him down with leg kicks and his other strikes notch Barboza a decision win.
UFC Heavyweight Division Fight
Bojan Mihajlovic (10-3-0) vs. Francis Ngannou (7-1-0)
Mihajlovic will be making his UFC debut in this fight and he is a longtime veteran of the Serbian Battle Championships. Ngannou is currently undefeated in UFC competition and none of his fights in the UFC went past the second round. Ngannou is amazing at using his range, he catches Bihajlovic early the first round for a knockout finish.
UFC Women’s Strawweight Division Fight
Kailin Curran (4-2-0) vs. Felice “Lil’ Bulldog” Herrig (10-6-0)
Curran will be looking to build on the momentum of her first UFC win, which came over Emily Kagan at UFC Fight Night: Namajunas vs. VanZant. Herrig will be looking to rebound from her first loss under the UFC banner, which came to Paige VanZant at UFC On Fox 15. Herrig has seemingly lost a step since coming to the UFC in 2014, Curran uses her constant pressure to eventually submit Herrig in the third.
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Michel Prazeres over JC Cottrell
James Moontasri over Alex Oliveira
Jim Alers over Jason Knight
Luis Henrique over Dmitry Smolyakov