Saturday, January 20, 2018
With UFC Looking for New Star...Will They Find it in Frank Ngannou?
Thanks to the now, repeated failures of Jon ‘Bones’ Jones, the lack of appearances from Conor McGregor and the fall of once unbeaten and universally beloved ‘Rowdy’ Ronda Rousey, the UFC and president Dana White are now scrambling to find their next new ‘superstar’.
By all accounts, White would love for that next star to come in the form of powerful heavyweight contender Francis ‘The Predator’ Ngannou. The Cameroon native knockout artist will get his chance to step into the UFC limelight in a big way when he takes on reigning UFC champion Stipe Miocic in the headline bout of the quickly approaching UFC 220 card.
Event: UFC 220: "Miocic vs. Ngannou"
Date: Sat., Jan. 20, 2018
Location: TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts
Broadcast: Pay-Per-View (PPV), FOX Sports 1, UFC Fight Pass
Now, let’s take a look at the card’s featured fight, the co-headline light heavyweight title bout between Daniel Cormier and Volkan Oezdemir and one other main card bout on what looks like an entertaining event just waiting to happen.
Stipe Miocic (17-2) vs Francis ‘The Predator’ Ngannou (11-1)
35-year-old heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic has won five straight fights, including his title clenching victory over Fabricio Werdum at UFC 198 back on May 14, 2016. Miocic followed that win up with a first round KO (punches) win over Alistair Overeem at UFC 203 on September 10, 2016 and made his second successful title defense by dispatching Junior Dos Santos via first round TKO (punches) at UFC 211 in May.
Shockingly, Miocic will enter this bout looking to become the first heavyweight champion to make just three successful title defenses after former champs, Cain Velasquez, Brock Lesnar, Tim Sylvia and Randy Couture were all beaten after recording two straight title defenses. Miocic, a native of Ohio, stands 6-feet-4-inches with an 80-inch reach. he’s recorded 13 of his career wins by way of knockout, one via submission and three by way of decision. Miocic has also suffered one KO loss and one loss via decision.
31-year-old Francis Ngannou has won 10 straight fights with each victory coming in either the first or second round and seven of those wins coming by way of KO or TKO. Ngannou enters UFC 220 coming off a first round KO (punches) over Alistair Overeem at UFC 218 on December 2.
Ngannou stands 6-foot-4 and has an 83-inch reach and has recorded seven of his 11 career wins via KO with four coming by way of submission. Ngannou has also suffered one decision loss in his career.
Daniel Cormier (19-1) vs. Volkan Oezdemir (15-1)
38-year-old Daniel Cormier is once against the light-heavyweight champion, but only because Jon ‘Bones’ Jones tested positive for performance enhancing drugs (Turinabol) after initially recording a third round KO (head kick and punches) win at UFC 214 in July.
Cormier, who stands 5-11 with a compact 72.5-inch reach, had won four straight fights since suffering his first career loss against Jones at UFC 182 in January of 2015. Prior to his now, reversed loss against Jones, Cormier dispatched Anthony Johnson via submission (rear-naked choke) at UFC 210 in April. Now, Cormier will defend his 205-pound title at UFC 220 against challenger Volkan Oezdemir.
The 28-year-old from Switzerland has won five straight fights including a first round KO (punches) win over Jim Manuwa at UFC 214 in July. Oezdemir, who stands 6-2 with a 75-inch reach, is looking to become the first Swiss UFC champion in history. He’s gone 3-0 in his UFC career, but is giving up a big edge in experience, although he does have plenty of finishing power.
Stipe Miocic vs Francis Ngannou
Daniel Cormier vs Volkan Oezdemir
Calvin Kattar vs Shane Burgos
Gian Villante vs Francimar Barroso
Dustin Ortiz vs Alexandre Pantoja
*Fights labeled as "may not be broadcast" are scheduled to take place before the live broadcast begins. These pre-recorded fights are inserted into the broadcast if time permits. However, due to broadcast time constraints some of these undercard bouts may not be seen on a broadcast. These additional bout can be found as bonus footage on the event DVD.