ByDave Rispoli, writer at
Staff Writer and Resident Talking Head @
Dave Rispoli

It's the UFC PPV's that tend to garner the most attention, but sometimes it's the UFC Fight Nights which can be the most memorable... and they cost a lot less!

This is an ongoing series dedicated to those who are just beginning their journey into MMA fandom. I'm going to give you one fighter from each card to watch and maybe even root for!

Aljamain Sterling AKA "The Funk Master"

Opponent: Bryan Caraway AKA "The lucky bastard who has somehow convinced foxy Bantamweight Champion Miesha Tate to date him" ... OK his nickname is actually "Kid Lightning" but I've spent three years and 600 tweets trying to vie for her attention, but to no avail!

Reasons to root for him: If the nickname "the Funk Master" was any indication, Aljamian may have the biggest personality in the division and has already claimed he's the solution to beat current champion Dominick Cruz saying "I think he's got sick footwork and I think I've got the remedy for that ass." (Via Fox Sports)

Keeping the momentum of his four-fight win streak, he hasn't just scooted by opponents, he's run through them. He's got knockout power in his hands and it's his submission game that has made him the division's fastest riser.

Besides, if Hip-Hop legend Eric B approves, you should too!

My call: Sterling submits Caraway, who will show the effects of not having fought for almost a full year... THEN Miesha will be all like "Uh, see ya loser! I'm going with that dude with glasses from Champions Minute of MMA!" (a guy can dream, right?)

Jessica "Evil" Eye

Opponent: Sara McMann. Who is no slouch, being the first American woman in HISTORY to win an Olympic silver medal in wrestling.

Reasons to root for her: Extremely sweet and generous outside of the Octagon and tough as nails inside of it.

She had a rough childhood in Ohio, overcoming both poverty and abuse, yet stays true to her roots by choosing to train there. Fighting out of Cleveland, the same gym as new heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic, she has that blue-collar, hard-working, no BS Midwest vibe that makes it easy to get behind.

My Call: Coming off a pair of losses, Jessica gets back that "evil eye" and brings an onslaught of strikes to Ms. McMann, earning her a decision and a much-needed W.

Cody Garbrandt AKA "No Love"

Reasons to root for him: Comes from a lineage of fighters. Goes full throttle every fight. More tattoos than professional fights.

He can come off as a little bit of a "bro," but if you watch the UFC's latest feature on him, you'll see him going back to his old high school to work with the young wrestlers who look up to him, a ritual he does before every fight. Aw, Cody!

My Call: Almeida wins... HEY! I said this was about who to ROOT for. I'm sorry, Almeida is an absolute savage!!!

Who are YOU rooting for? Who do YOU think will win?

Comment below and let us know!


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