It’s here! It’s finally here! The embarrassment of riches that is UFC 205 was slowed by New York legislators and threatened by #ConorMcGregor negotiations, but even the most ruthless culinary unions can’t stop the UFC machine from rolling into town.
Kings and Queens
Not since UFC 33 have there been three UFC title fights on one show. Besides bringing title implications en masse, UFC 205 delivers three title fights with three very different storylines.
McGregor chases history in an attempt to become the first to hold two UFC belts if he can dethrone #EddieAlvarez. Thi$ fight i$ al$o $o big for other rea$on$ a$ well. ($$$)
#TyronWoodley defends his welterweight belt for the first time against the human kung fu movie #StephenThompson. The all-American wrestler feels completely disrespected by Thompson, the fans and Las Vegas oddsmakers who made the champ a +170 underdog. If “T-Wood” defends, there’s a giant “I told you so” moment coming at the UFC 205 press conference.
Remember that incredible Polish sports moment? Neither can I, so Quick Jabs is dubbing the strawweight title tilt between Poland’s two best female fighters, #JoannaJedrzejczyk vs. #KarolinaKowalkiewicz, the Superbowl of Polish sports.
Using reckless, possibly inaccurate and irresponsible math, Alvarez could make more money at UFC 205 than he made in all of his other 32 fights combined. Earning pay-per-view points on a McGregor card is like coming across a broken ATM machine that just vomits cash at you. It’s safe to safe Alvarez won’t ever wash his own car again.
This is all well and good for the "Underground King,” but he is as much of a beneficiary of timing as he is a product of high-valued prize fighting. Of the eight lightweight champions in UFC history, no one has defended the belt more than three times. The belt is a hot potato. While McGregor may in fact avoid the less stylistically favored matchups against #KhabibNurmagomedov or #TonyFerguson, Alvarez’s massive payday could have been anyone’s. He just happened to be in the final chair when the music stopped.
The MMA injury bug is a pestilence. It’s a modern day Black Plague, consistently dropping fighters out of competition. However, UFC 205’s mighty immune system built a fortress of a card. Two injuries scrapped undercard bouts, but the main card remains intact. And even if injuries did start to rack up, the depth of the card would hold up. Nurmagomedov could step in for either fighter in the main event, #DemianMaia could step up in the welterweight title bout, and Claudia Gadelha could probably be persuaded to glove up in the strawweight bout. There is a lot of meat on the bone at UFC 205.
Prelims Built for Primetime
You hear the word “prelims” and you might think it’s the foreplay you didn’t ask for. Amateur hour used to kill time before you watch the fighters who sold Reebok fight kits to more than just their grandma and uncles. Not Saturday. A former champion, top contenders and 63 combined UFC wins make the walk on FS1 Saturday night. It’s a FOX card quality lineup repackaged to warm up fans for the best pay per view of all-time.
Can #MieshaTate bounce back?
#RondaRousey’s most popular foil finally got a chance to shine in Rousey’s absence, claiming the bantamweight title over #HollyHolm. She was champion for all of 129 days before #AmandaNunes crushed her at UFC 200. She’s lost before, but never on such a large stage.
How Does Khabib Look in His (Non)Title Fight?
The man ain’t happy about losing what he felt should have been a title shot at UFC 205. He had a chance to headline the promotion’s #MadisonSquareGarden debut and win the belt in the world’s toughest division. Now he fights #MichaelJohnson who has lost two of his last three. That can be a deflating proposition going from the biggest fight of your life to an undercard bout. If that frustration bleeds over into a lacking performance, the Dagestani could find himself in the back of a very long lightweight line.
We can all agree, whoever wins the historic headliner gets a performance bonus, right? Good. McGregor cashes in an extra $50,000 because this is America and the rich get richer. I also think the co-main event ends in spectacular fashion if “Wonderboy” can find his range and stay out of wrestling trouble. Fight of the Night goes to #KelvinGastelum and #DonaldCerrone because “Cowboy” can do this.