Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is gearing up to stage some of the stacked playing cards of 2019, as UFC 235 is set to go down this TONIGHT (Sat., March 2, 2019) from inside T-Cellular Area in Las Vegas, Nevada. Headlining the occasion might be a Mild Heavyweight title battle between Jon Jones and No. 3-ranked contender, Anthony Smith. In UFC 235’s co-main event, Tyron Woodley will defend his Welterweight title towards Kamaru Usman in the championship double header.
Jones is set to make the quickest turnaround of his combined martial arts (MMA) career, dealing with “Lionheart” simply three months after reclaiming the 205-pound strap with a thunderous performance towards Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 in Dec. 2018 (see it). Truly, “Bones” is trying to struggle more typically, which is a deal with for struggle fans as “Bones” has been sidelined for the better part of the final two years due to myriad drug-related points.
As for the fast activity at hand, Smith offers Jones with an fascinating problem. Sure, he’s the large underdog, and no, not many people anticipated him to be Jones’ next challenge. But, after “Lionheart” racked up three straight wins at 205 kilos in only a matter of months, there was seemingly no different selection. With nothing to lose and every part to realize, Smith goes in to the battle with no strain, as the one thing he can do is shock the world by taking down maybe the perfect to ever do it. Meaning he can open up and take more dangers, one thing group Jones is prepared for.
During his run at 205 pounds, Smith has made quick work of his foes, one thing that is unlikely to happen with Jones. But, that’s the place the intrigue comes in — Smith likes to get in and mix it up early and get int dog fights. And as we’ve seen up to now, lots of Jones’ opponents are typically tremendous cautious … for good purpose. There is no telling just what sort of gameplan Smith and Co. will employ towards the champ, which is the rationale everybody will tune in.
One other win for Jones provides him his ninth title defense, though not consecutive for apparent reasons. The scary thing about Jones is that he seemingly hasn’t peaked, which suggests he’s only getting better, greater and stronger. All of that doesn’t bode properly for Smith — or anyone else for that matter. With Georges St-Pierre retired, Anderson Silva seemingly on his method out and Demetrious Johnson now fighting for ONE Championship, Jones has the prospect to keep adding to his legacy contained in the Octagon and break (and set) data that could possibly be past attain.
Assuming there are not any extra hiccups like this and this, in fact.
UFC 235’s co-main event will see Tyron Woodley try and defend his strap towards Kamaru Usman. When you may think Woodley hasn’t competed in a very long time, it’s solely truly been six months because the last time he defended his 170-pound title in Nov. 2018 towards Darren Till.
Don’t allow them to paint the narrative for you.
Many anticipated Tyron to face Colby Covington, but after what can only be described as apparent miscommunication between “Chaos” and the promotion, the struggle finally went to Usman. And it’s not that “Nigerian Nightmare” isn’t deserving, it simply seems UFC missed the boat by not staging a struggle many people have needed to see due to their bitter previous. Still, Usman does provide a reliable menace to Woodley, having not tasted defeat in more than 5 years.
Usman has the prospect to finish Woodley’s reign at 170 kilos, which — consider it or not — has been going for almost three years now. Woodley, although, is determined to maintain including to his resume en path to turning into the most effective Welterweight of all time. He nonetheless has a ways to go before surpassing Matt Hughes and Georges St-Pierre, but a win over “Nigerian Nightmare” is an enormous step in getting there.
Plus, a win sets up a struggle towards Covington … assuming Dana White hasn’t reduce him because of this.
It’s fairly arduous to seek out one thing to complain about with this card.
Unique Card Vs. Actual Card:
We had a couple of shakeups, however nothing too main to discourage battle fans from shopping for the pay-per-view (PPV) event. Holly Holm and Aspen Ladd have been booked to throw down at this event, however the bout was unexpectedly yanked from the cardboard after it was revealed Holm and Co. have been making an attempt to get a greater deal from UFC.
Yadong Music pulled out of his scheduled Bantamweight battle towards Alejandro Perez, and was finally changed by Cody Stamman.
Thomas Almeida and Marlon Vera have been set to scrap, but after Almeida was struck down by the damage bug, he was changed by Frankie Saenz. That battle was additionally scrapped after Marlon Vera fell unwell. Also, Ovince Saint Preux was pressured out of his battle towards Misha Cirkunov as a result of damage, and was subsequently replaced by the highly-entertaining prospect, Johnny Walker.
Ben Askren, child!
After years of back-and-forth bitterness between White and Askren, “Funky” will lastly make his UFC debut. And he attracts a troublesome match up towards former 170-pound champion, Robbie Lawler. It’s an fascinating choice to say the least, as “Ruthless” was perhaps the one man Askren didn’t name out when he was traded from ONE.
That stated, it’s nonetheless a troublesome match up for both men, as Lawler can finish the battle together with his cement blocks he calls fists, while Askren will definitely stick with his bread-and-butter and attempt to wrestle his strategy to a profitable Octagon debut.
How The ‘Prelims’ Look:
The underbelly of this event is excellent, and must be very entertaining prior to serving up the primary dish. Diego Sanchez and Mickey Gall will collide in Welterweight motion in a bout that may see one of the unique The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winners, Sanchez, try to gather back-to-back wins for the primary time in almost nine years. Gall will look to do the identical, but Mickey’s final consecutive win streak befell a couple of years in the past, as he’s only been fighting professional for 3 years. This ought to be a highly-entertaining showdown in a battle of “Old vs. New.”
After impressing in his first two UFC fights with two first spherical knockouts, Walker has captured the hearts of UFC fans because of his aggressive fashion and unique character. If he can stick with it, he could possibly be in line to be Brazil’s next huge star in UFC. Up subsequent for him, though, is a troublesome match up in Misha Cirkunov, who seems to be to capitalize off his first round submission victory over Patrick Cummins.
Headlining the “Prelims” on ESPN is a highly-intriguing Featherweight showdown between Jeremy Stephens and Zabit Magomedsharipov. Zabit has been on a tear since making his UFC debut in 2017, racking up four straight wins, three of them by way of stoppage. Going again additional, “ZaBeast” is presently on a 12-fight win streak. In his brief time contained in the Octagon, Zabit has proven to be a legit menace to the division title, wowing battle fans with one impressive performance after one other. Stephens will undoubtedly be the hardest challenge of his career.
As for “Lil Heathen,” he is trying to bounce back from a knockout loss to Jose Aldo last summer time. The loss snapped Stephens’ run and briefly ended his hopes of fighting for the division strap. Afterward, Stephens opened up about how devastating the loss was for him mentally, prompting him to have suicidal ideas. After shaking off the cobwebs and getting the psychological help he wanted, Stephens seems to return back with a vengeance and get back on monitor contained in the Octagon by handing Zabit his first loss in 5 years.
Who Needs A Win Badly:
After starting his profession with 11 straight wins — nine of them by way of knockout — and capturing the Bantamweight strap in just his sixth UFC struggle by dethroning Dominick Cruz, Cody Garbrandt suffered back-to-back knockout defeats.
So as to add insult to damage, they got here at the palms of his former training partner-turned rival, TJ Dillashaw. Though the probabilities of getting another shot at the title as long as “Viper” is the champion are slim, “No Love” needs a win within the worst method, as dropping three in a row might be disastrous for the power-punching ex-champ.
Although Pedro Munhoz was the nicest individual — virtually too good — to Garbrandt during their pre-fight presser, the Brazilian bomber is all business contained in the cage. Profitable six of his final seven fights contained in the eight-walled cage, Munhoz’s only loss throughout that span came towards former title contender John Dodson. Certainly, a win over Garbrandt places him on the fast monitor to greater and better things, while a loss for “No Love” might send him in search of greener pastures at 145 kilos.
Interest Degree: 10/10
Whereas have been are nonetheless early in 2019, this is the most effective card of the yr to date because of the fast return of the 205-pound king and championship double-header. Jones will look to make a press release towards Smith in hopes of holding true to his word to struggle fairly a bit this yr. That stated, we might very nicely see the most important upset in MMA historical past if “Lionheart” manages to clip “Bones” with considered one of his missiles.
Woodley has the prospect to keep silencing his largest critics — this one included — while we get to see if Askren can reside up to his non-stop social media chatter in his long-awaited UFC debut. Rounding out the primary card is a ladies’s Strawweight struggle as Tecia Torres seems to be to snap her two-fight skid towards Weili Zhang, who is on a ridiculous 18-fight win streak.
Take pleasure in what is positive to be a fantastic night time of fights!
Full UFC 235 Struggle Card:
UFC 235 PPV Foremost Event:
205 lbs.: Mild Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones vs. Anthony Smith
UFC 235 PPV Co-Important Event:
170 lbs.: UFC Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley vs. Kamaru Usman
UFC 235 PPV Most important Card (10 p.m. ET):
170 lbs.: Robbie Lawler vs. Ben Askren
115 lbs.: Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang
135 lbs.: Cody Garbrandt vs. Pedro Munhoz
UFC 235 ‘Prelims’ on ESPN (eight p.m. ET):
145 lbs.: Jeremy Stephens vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov
205 lbs.: Johnny Walker vs. Misha Cirkunov
135 lbs.: Alejandro Perez vs. Cody Stamann
170 lbs.: Mickey Gall vs. Diego Sanchez
UFC 235 ‘Prelims’ on UFC Battle Move (6:30 p.m. ET):
185 lbs.: Charles Byrd vs. Edmen Shahbazyan
135 lbs.: Macy Chiasson vs. Gina Mazany
115 lbs.: Hannah Cifers vs. Polynna Viana
*Struggle card, bout order and the quantity of matches topic to vary.
Keep in mind that MMAmania.com will ship LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow protection of your complete UFC 235 struggle card, starting with the Battle Cross “Prelims” matches on-line, which are scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard stability on ESPN at eight p.m. ET, earlier than the PPV primary card start time at 10 p.m. ET.
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